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Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Scoring Oprah Winfrey as Presidential Candidate

Applying the approach from my new book, How to Select an American President by James A. George with James A. Rodger (c) 2017 Archway Publishing, here is my evaluation of Oprah Winfrey as a candidate.

Spoiler: Oprah waved off talk about her entering politics many times. Her reason is that she doesn't have any government enterprise experience. While she possesses many relevant and applicable behavioral traits suitable for leadership, the degree of her lack of knowledge is too much to overcome.

She admits that by Donald Trump's standard, she might well surpass his credentials and qualifications. However, using Trump to lower the bar is not what citizens should want. Instead, we should be seeking much-improved candidates.

Attractive is having women and minorities seek the office of President. There are plenty of superior candidates in the universe of possibilities if they would step forward at once.

Candidate name: Orpah Gail Winfrey

Partner:   Stedman Graham (1986–present)

The kind of candidate I am:
"Winfrey says before Trump's election she thought that she didn't have the necessary government experience to run the country, but now she thinks differently. The billionaire businessman had never before held public office before his election victory in November. 
Winfrey also touched on her 25 years hosting a syndicated talk show. She says her ultimate purpose of the show was to let people know that "we are more alike than we are different."
Met the statutory requirements:

Birth date: January 29, 1954 (age 63)

Place of birth: Kosciusko, Mississippi, U.S.

Residences during the past 14 years:
Montecito, California
Lavallette, New Jersey
Telluride, Colorado
Maui, Hawaii
Chicago, Illinois
Fisher Island, Florida

Intelligence Quotient (IQ): Apparently high, but no certification.


High School:  East Nashville High School

College Graduate: Tennessee State University
Degree Type: BA
Major areas of study: Communication


Post Graduate
Honorary doctorate degrees from Duke and Harvard

The Oprah Winfrey Show was the highest-rated television program of its kind in history and was nationally syndicated from 1986 to 2011 in Chicago, Illinois.[5] Dubbed the "Queen of All Media," she has been ranked the richest African-American, the greatest black philanthropist in American history, and is currently North America's first and only multi-billionaire black person.

Professional Certifications:


Former host of The Oprah Winfrey Show
Chairwoman and CEO of Harpo Productions
Chairwoman, CEO, and CCO of the Oprah Winfrey Network
  • She was both the youngest news anchor and the first black female news anchor at Nashville's WLAC-TV. She moved to Baltimore's WJZ-TV in 1976 to co-anchor the six o'clock news. In 1977, she was removed as co-anchor and worked lower profile positions at the station. She was then recruited to join Richard Sher as co-host of WJZ's local talk show People Are Talking, which premiered on August 14, 1978. She also hosted the local version of Dialing for Dollars there.
  • In 1985, Winfrey co-starred in Steven Spielberg's The Color Purple as distraught housewife Sofia. She was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her performance. 
  • Winfrey has co-authored five books.
Salary: $75 million/yr
Net worth: Increase US $ 2.9 billion (2015)

Health Status: Healthy, sick, recovering, recovered: Verified with doctor’s report -- don't know

Voter’s assessment of candidate age: (Will the candidate be able to complete two terms? Does the candidate have sufficient knowledge and experience as evidenced by the time spent to acquire it?)

Older 61 >

Affected Class: African American Woman
Winfrey was born into poverty in rural Mississippi to a teenage single mother and later raised in an inner-city Milwaukee neighborhood.
Voter assessment of character and behavior

o   Adaptive
o   Allegiant to the Constitution and nation
o   Brave in the face of adversity
o   Leader, follower
o   Listener, talker
o   Passionate, impassionate, easy-going
o   Process-oriented (how), task-oriented (what), results-oriented (outcomes)
o   Thundering or reassuring
o   Visionary, administrator, integrator, independent, loner
This category is refined further, though this is a thought starter.
Voters’ assessment of leadership style

Similarly, we captured some words used to describe leadership styles.
o   Collaborator
o   Creative and inventive
o   Delegator
o   Detailer
o   Do it yourself
o   Hands-on

Education and Training (Professional Development)
On the job

Life-long learning -- Rich in social issues


American government system -- deficient
Concept of operations -- deficient
Concept of the role of the president in optimizing the nation’s government performance -- deficient
Economics -- individually successful
Entitlements  -- lived it
Foreign policy -- deficient
Information and communications technology--likely knowledgeable
International trade -- deficient
Knowing each governmental department and primary expectations for them -- deficient
Knowing how to create laws -- deficient
Knowing how to work with Congress -- deficient
Law -- deficient
Operational architecture -- deficient
Primary presidential tasks and associated outcomes -- deficient


Administrative -- competent
Budgeting -- competent in limited context
Strategic planning-- competent in limited context
Writing -- excellent
Speaking -- excellent
Negotiating -- excellent
Collaborating -- excellent
Debating -- excellent
Planning -- excellent
Problem-solving -- excellent
Decision-making -- excellent in context
Sense-making -- excellent
Predicting -- unknown
Modeling -- unknown
Recruiting and staffing -- excellent
Organization development -- excellent
Program evaluation and management--unknown
Life History -- extraordinarily accomplished
The kind of person that can relate to me; the kind of person to whom I can relate; my kind of person: Successful
Ability to manage the economy: The job of president is to create an environment in which private enterprise can flourish as that is what increases revenues. -- unknown
Optimization = Increasing GDP and higher quality service for the least cost and labor intensity
Presidential Platform and Agenda: Priorities, Issues, Causes, Programs, Solutions, Vision -- unknown
Banking -- some experience
Fossil fuels--deficient
Energy independence--deficient
Entrepreneur --extraordinarily successful in her niche
Food supply--deficient
Green renewable--deficient
Job creation--deficient with caveat
Preemptive war--deficient
Promote democracy--excellent
Sustainable economy--deficient
War is last resort--excellent
Relationship with Powerful Forces: Military Industrial Complex, Wall Street, PACs and Lobbyists
Political Party--imperfect
Relationships with party leadership--good
Attitude about big business--good
Attitude about campaign contributions--good
Attitude about educators--good
Attitude about free speech--good
Attitude about government regulation--good
Attitude about gun control--good
Attitude about health care--good
Attitude about immigrants--good
Attitude about organized labor--good
Attitude about public service--exceptional
Attitude about rural America--good
Attitude about small business--good
Attitude toward women--good
Attitude toward immigrants--good
Attitude toward minorities--good
States’ rights versus Central government--good
Work ethic--extraordinary
Military Experience: None
Public Office Experience: none
Private Sector Experience:
CEO/President--successful in a specific genre
Medium Corporation
Patents--intellectual property
Memberships: Organizations and Leadership positions -- some experience
Voters’ assessment of candidates on religion: Faith matters

An extraordinary person, though not the best presidential candidate

1 comment:

  1. I am interested in what readers think. How do you evaluate Oprah? What other women and minority candidates would you like to have scored. Observe that I didn't actually score Oprah. Read my book and do that yourself.