The Man in the Glass

Harvin C Moore IIIA few weeks ago, Professor Limburg and the MPA program welcomed Harvin C. Moore to speak at our Distinguished Speaker Lyceum.

Mr. Moore began his presentation with some relatable stories, his qualifications, and who he was. To give you some background, Mr. Moore was a lawyer, businessman, and UT Grad (Hook ‘Em!) who had much success in both Real Estate Development and the Savings and Loan business. He was known for having a “Midas touch”  due to his gift for putting together lucrative real estate deals. His story seemed to be similar to others we have had the pleasure of hearing this semester in Lyceum- a successful businessperson who has graciously volunteered their time to share with us personal anecdotes and provide some advice before we head off into the real world.

All of a sudden, Mr. Moore began describing a scenario to us and asked us to close our eyes and imagine a man standing alone in the middle of El Paso. (Are you a little confused? Don’t worry- we were too.) Much to our surprise, we open our eyes and see Mr. Moore standing on stage and he begins to tell us of his time in PRISON in El Paso. His company had been issuing illegal loans, and justifying it to themselves because they were solvent at the time of the loan. Being solvent doesn’t negate the fact that the type of loaning Mr. Moore was participating in was illegal. He explained that after he was notified about the criminal charges, he knew he could not sit in the court room and plead “not guilty.”  Thus, Mr. Moore went to prison.

I found his story so interesting, and it was quite an eye-opener to the entire Lyceum audience. The MPA program provides us with ample opportunities to succeed, yet once we do succeed, we must be sure that we maintain our ethical principles. In his message, Mr. Moore alluded to the poem, The Man in the Glass, by Dale Wimbrow. The poem reminds us that we will all have the opportunity at least once in our lives to act in a way that compromises our ethical beliefs, but if you can’t live with yourself after you make such decision, it probably is the wrong decision.

One thought on “The Man in the Glass”

  1. Great post Melissa, its all too easy to lose sight of ethics in the business world. It’s usually not a one time decision, but rather a series of small choices that leave you unable to recognize true ethics, sort of like the story of how to cook a frog. It tells you to place a frog into a pot of water and slowly bring it to a boil, the frog won’t notice it is being cooked until it’s finally cooked through… so it goes with ethics.

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