Explorations in Black Leadership

Co-Directed by Phyllis Leffler & Julian Bond

Leadership: Developing Future Leaders

BOND: We have a few more minutes left. This will be the last question. How could we – that’s black people particularly or the larger society – how can we make sure that people coming up are going to be effective leaders, or that there're going to be effective leaders in the future?

MARSH: I'm not sure we can make sure of that. I mean, we can try. I have a theory that knowledge is power. And I think if you don't have knowledge you're ignorant. I think we have to do a better job of giving knowledge to people, empowering people. I'm devoting a lot of my time now to finding ways to empower people with knowledge. And I think if they have the knowledge they'll make the right decisions. So and whether or not the leadership will rise to the surface is something that we just don't know. But if they don't have the knowledge, if they don't know, they have no chance of exercising leadership. It's a problem in the age we're living in now because there's so much information out there that people don't focus on the right knowledge. I mean, we've got to find a way to use the information age better to get our message across.

We're still -- in civil rights organizations and other organizations -- we're still operating under the old ways of communicating instead of getting a video that we can pop in and show people with a picture, what we want to show 'em. We stand up there and tell them or send them a memo or something. We have to find a way to impart knowledge to people. That's why I think training leaders is so important. I mean, training people to be leaders now. If 1 or 2 percent of them become leaders then we are successful. But if we do nothing -- our opponents are working hard to indoctrinate and brainwash people. If we don't set something up to counter that we have no chance. The other thing that concerns me is greed. I mean, greed is like a disease that's infecting our progress. I don't know -- if you have the antidote for greed -- let me know what it is.

BOND: As soon as I get it, I'm going to get it [for you]. Henry Marsh, thank you for doing this.

MARSH: Thank you. I enjoyed it.