Condolences for the Bush Family

We would like to share our condolences to the entire Bush family. Some of our students in 1990 had the privilege of seeing him on one of his visits to Portland. Below is our President and CEO Mr. Tony Hopson’s recollection of that moment.

President Bush receiving an SEI Letterman Jacket

President Bush receiving an SEI Letterman Jacket

“In 1990, SEI was a small organization trying to find its way. Under the leadership of Ray Leary and myself, the opportunity to share our program success as the George H.W. Bush 69th Point of Light was a tremendous boost to our agency; but to have the President invite our students to meet him on the tarmac at the Portland International Airport was truly a special moment. Not because it was the President, not because it was a unique experience for all of us, but because of the personal authentic way in which the President interacted with Ray, myself, and the students of SEI.

“Points of Light” awarded to SEI

“Points of Light” awarded to SEI

He was attentive, he was thoughtful, he was patient and he was giving. He shared his Presidential watch with one student, he allowed other students to sit in the Presidential limousine. He was warm and respectful to both Ray and myself in a way that crossed political parties. On that sunny afternoon, he was just a loving, caring human being that happened to be the President of the United States.

That day changed my opinion about politics. It’s not important if you’re Democrat or Republican, what’s important is that you genuinely care for others and can make the least of us feel special.

George H.W. Bush - may you rest in peace.”

Thank you for the memories Mr. President.