PMIWDC Member's Only Fairview Park Book Club Meeting

PMIWDC Member's Only Fairview Park Book Club Meeting

Katherine Graham: The Leadership Journey of an American Icon by Robin Gerber

PMIWDC Non-Member Rate

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About the Book Club Meeting

The PMIWDC Book Club is a forum for talking about books that touch on the widely varied challenges of project and program management. Our meeting on the “Katherine Graham: The Leadership Journey of an American Icon” will take place on April 15, 2014 - the same evening as the Chapter dinner meeting - and will be at the same time as PM Tools. We will be meeting in the Networking Room from 5:00pm - 6:00pm.

Read more about the format of the book club in "About the Book Club" below.

About the Book

Katherine Graham: The Leadership Journey of an American Icon by Robin Gerber

From the Foreword by Jim Collins, author of “Good to Great”:

"If I were forced to pick one business leader from whom to draw professional learning and personal aspirations, that one leader would very likely be Katharine Graham. She is the consummate example of a Level 5 Leader. Most corporate CEOs barely make it to Level 4; few make it to Level 5 – the highest level we discovered in our research into what separates great companies (and their leaders) from merely good ones. These leaders distinguish themselves not by their towering personalities – indeed, most had a “charisma bypass” – but by something quite surprising: their humility. But it is humility of a special type: the leader is ambitious first and foremost for the cause, the company, and its core values, not himself or herself. When you combine this beyond-self ambition with the ferocious will to do whatever it takes (whatever it takes) to make good on that ambition, you have the makings of a truly great leader."

For more than twenty years Katharine Graham was a self-described "doormat wife." But after her husband’s suicide, she took over as publisher and CEO of The Washington Post and shocked the male executives who bet against her success. She defied the government by publishing the Pentagon Papers, took on the president in the Watergate investigation, and stood down a violent labor strike. Through every challenge she stuck by her values, building a diverse, profitable, and much-admired company.

Graham’s bestselling memoir Personal History gave readers this great woman’s intimate view of her own story. Now, Robin Gerber focuses on the heart of Graham’s success: her leadership. Gerber shows how Graham overcame an emotionally impoverished childhood, deep insecurities, and a marriage to a brilliant but mentally ill husband.

Drawing on exclusive interviews with some of her closest friends and colleagues, such as Ben Bradlee, Sally Quinn, Margaret Carlson, and Gloria Steinem, Gerber analyzes the principles that guided Graham’s toughest decisions.

Perceptive and thought provoking, Katharine Graham provides a wealth of lessons for anyone moving up the leadership ladder. It’s also a deeply inspiring and hopeful book, offering women who continue to face sexism in the workplace a model for personal triumph.

About the Author

Robin Gerber is a national commentator and speaker on leadership, and the author of Leadership the Eleanor Roosevelt Way: Timeless Strategies from the First Lady of Courage (Penguin/Portfolio, 2002) and Katharine Graham: The Leadership Journey of an American Icon with a foreword by Jim Collins, author of Good to Great (Penguin/Portfolio, October, 2005). She published in 2010 Barbie and Ruth: The Story of the World's Most Famous Doll and the Woman Who Created Her. Her books are used in leadership development courses and corporate programs across the United States. She is also a lawyer and senior faculty for the Gallup Organization, and a senior fellow in Executive Education at the Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland, College Park.

A member of the Board of Contributors for the opinion pages of USA Today, and a columnist for Reader's Digest, Robin also publishes frequently in other national newspapers. She has been a commentator on NPR's Marketplace and Morning Edition, and has appeared on The Newshour with Jim Lehrer and dozens of radio talk shows.

Robin is an inspirational keynote speaker on leadership development, using moving stories from the lives of Eleanor Roosevelt, Katharine Graham and other great leaders to illustrate leadership lessons.

Her clients include Bank of America, IBM, Marriott, Legg Mason, JP Morgan/Chase, Freddie Mac, Aetna Information Services, the AARP, Lee Hecht Harrison, Giant Food, The Culinary Institute, West Point, the U.S. Forest Service, the Council for Excellence in Government, The 3rd Quality Conference of the European Union, and many universities, colleges, girls' schools, nonprofits and government agencies. She also has a select client list for executive coaching. Prior to becoming an author, Robin practiced law in Washington, D.C. and worked on Capitol Hill. She has studied and written about leadership development since 1975.

Event Location

Fairview Park Marriott - Networking Room
3111 Fairview Park Drive
Falls Church, VA, 22042

Agenda and Cost:
5:00pm - 6:00pm: Open book discussion
Free meeting for Chapter members.
Preregistration, reading the book before the meeting, and bringing a copy (e-book okay) of the book to the meeting is required.
You can purchase the book through Amazon at
Special Instructions
PDU's Available:
Based on the amount of time you will spend in self-directed study of negotiation – we estimate up to six hours of reading, which converts to up to 6 PDUs for qualified PMPs who are under the 30 PDU limit for their current three year certification cycle. Please note that these PDUs will need to be reported as Category C: Self-Directed Learning. For full details on PDU reporting refer to the PMP Handbook.
PDUs Available: 
6.00 PDUs for Certified PMs

About the Monthly Book Club

The Monthly Book Club is a forum for talking about books that touch on the widely varied challenges of project and program management. There is no Book Club membership. Anyone can sign up to join our conversations. There are just three key requirements: preregistration, reading the book before the meeting, and bringing a copy of the book to the meeting. Note that you should sign up early as we limit the discussion to fifteen people so that everyone has a chance to share their opinion.

Come to the Book Club with an open mind and prepare to have your understanding adjusted as you hear about the book through the voices of your professional peers.

Studying project management and related topics through books is recognized and rewarded by PMI in PDUs, roughly on the basis of one hour of study equals one PDU. Continued certification as a PMP requires the accumulation of these valuable credits and we are pleased to offer this opportunity to obtain both the important training and the educational credit associated with it.

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