It’s not every day you get a call from the office of the former President of the United States asking if you’d like to come work for him. Luckily for Peggy Grande, just such a call was the catalyst for a lifetime worth of amazing experiences.
Peggy is the former Executive Assistant to Ronald Reagan and I was recently given the opportunity to ask her about what she learned throughout her 10 years with the politician and world leader. From the start of our conversation I got the impression that Peggy is still exceptionally humbled by the opportunities she has had, even after 27 years.
“I was still in college when I started working for President Reagan,” she begins. “It was such an incredible opportunity to work for him in Los Angeles. I was hired on the spot for a short-term role, but I learned the ropes quickly and he eventually hired me full-time as an EA. I knew I had big shoes to fill, but I couldn’t pass up the chance of a lifetime.”
By the time Peggy started working for the influential politician he was already nearing 80 years old but showed no signs of slowing down. “We were an unlikely pair, but we worked very well together,” Peggy comments. “It was such a pleasure and a delight to know him. He was a great boss, although it was sometimes difficult to keep up with him despite his age!”
She says the most rewarding part of working so closely with President Reagan was learning from everything he did. “He was known as ‘The Great Communicator’ and he wasn’t given that nickname for nothing. I look back on my years with him and it’s not always what he said that mattered, but how he lived his life. He never sat me down and said ‘I’m going to teach you a lesson’; he taught me through his actions. He was just a role model for being aware of others and living a life that’s worth a legacy. And now I see myself as a steward of his legacy.”
Wise and powerful words from a woman who is doing everything she can to continue telling President Reagan’s story.
This is just a snippet of my interview with Peggy. The full feature will be published in a future issue of PA Life, so watch this space.
Peggy Grande spoke at the recent London edition of Executive Secretary Live at the Grange Tower Bridge Hotel. She regularly speaks at the events around the world. Click HERE for more details