Dr. VernonOver the Hill?by Richard Paul
March 30, 2012
Most of us have heard the phrase “over the hill” and it is usually used in jest... or maybe not. The 40 year old mark seems to be associated with the pinnacle or half-way point in life and then the rest is apparently down hill from there on. That may very well be the case for many people, but it doesn't appear to be so for one Robert Vernon, a retired assistant Chief of Police of the Los Angeles Police Department and a graduate from the University of Southern California's Managerial Policy Institute, the FBI's National Executive Institute, as well as earning an MBA at Pepperdine University.
After having served 37 years of duty as a police officer, Dr. Vernon pursued a higher calling not limited to local surroundings but rather a mission of global impact. In a world which more and more evidently lacks good morals especially from the leadership position, Dr. Vernon is courageously attempting to correct this dilemma through his efforts with Pointman Leadership Institute (PLI).
Seminars have now been presented in over 60 countries from the time it began in Hungary and the Czech Republic back in 1994. Are we, as Americans, spoiled having, or questionably have had, one of the best justice systems on the planet? We do not personally experience the injustices occurring around the world, nor does it appear that we are properly equipped to notice and understand some violations when it happens right here in our back yard. Still, we undoubtedly have an internal stir within us which awakens us that something is not right. I affirm that this software is embedded in each and every one of us and this is why we feel at odds when an error has occurred. PLI's seminars address the root of the problem. That root being one's character.
People either follow because of leadership or they will go off to act in their own ways. Poor leadership, which develops through immoral trends, can be worse than no leadership at all. Most people may want to do the right thing, as I mentioned this earlier with us having an internal software built within from the beginning. Good leadership calls for action to be taken for that which is right. Convictions for truth make our decisions easier to do the right thing. I declare that the truth is foundational with Christ and without Christ the foundation is weak and inevitably destroyed. Apply this declaration to a society and you will find that it either thrives or is subject to chaos/destruction.
What are some qualities of a good character? PLI emphasizes integrity, diligence, courage, humility, discipline, optimism, loyalty, and conviction/faith in their seminars. When these characteristics are learned and put into action by a person who has a leadership role it can dramatically influence a family, company, community, or even a whole country. Take Liberia, for example, being a country which used to be on the bottom, as far as ethics go, is currently rated 70 plus higher than before since having a change in leadership. Leaders have the responsibility to do that which is right. They should be accountable just as we should be accountable for our actions. Bad leadership should not be our excuse for our own self being unethical.
I believe that if we study what traits make a good leader we will be able to identify when someone is fulfilling that role properly and, definitely, when they are not. Good leadership is essential for any community to prosper and it all starts with good character. Let us not sit idle while injustices occur. Lets recognize the lack of leadership, or even worse, bad/corrupt leadership so that we can bring about a society which bears fruit worthy of praise. Just because you may be 40 or older doesn't necessarily mean you should be planning for retirement/death. I encourage you no matter what age you are that you strive for life(eternal)... that which the founded on Christ.
Dr. Vernon published a book called L.A. Justice – Lessons from the Firestorm. More information about the organization PLI, that he founded, can be found at PliGlobal.