Bob Fuller was the youngest (age 34) University president in US history at Oberlin College. He earned a Ph.D in Physics at 23. Although we’re fifty years apart in age, we agree we’re kindred spirits.
Bob Fuller x Youngest US University President x Rankism, The Dignity Movement, Making Race History Aand Being Kind
We talked about what it means to become a somebody (Rankism) and then fall from grace (shame). After leaving the presidency at Oberlin, Bob became what he calls a “nobody.” The phone stopped ringing. No one wanted to have lunch. Bob told me that as occassional nobodies, we must stand up and realize we have nothing to lose except for the shame that got us there in the first place.
Then President Jimmy Carter called. Then the USSR. Then Werner Erhard. Life is constantly in ebb and flow.
I loved the story of how Bob made history not only as the youngest president, but then pushed his board to vote 6-to-4 to authorize the first black head of athletics in history.
Bob is in his 70s now, and the conversation and stories of the life he’s lived is simply extraordinary.
Enjoy Bob as much as I did. Jake.
Bob Fuller: “Dealing with racism at the college athletic level felt like war. I thought that if we didn’t win this thing, we won’t win as a country.”
The Jake Sasseville Show is co-executive produced by Vivienne Kelly and Gregory Stutzer. Produced by Michael Howard Nathanson. Associate Producers Kodi Seaton, Topher Keene and Max Mogensen (c) 2015 Profoundly Human All Rights Reserved.