OUR OWN COMMANDER IN CHIEF, IN BRIEF.
Charles Wilson founded Ernest with his brother Ernie back in 1946. He has succeeded for 75 years in business with a play-to-win attitude, a kind heart and an open mind. Many know him as our resident push-up champion, but he is more a champion for all the hardworking men and women at Ernest. So for Presidents Day, who better than our fearless leader to tell us his thoughts on POTUSes past and present?
THE DEFINITION OF EARLY VOTING.
Charles cast his first ballot in 1944 for Franklin Delano Roosevelt. He not only put his trust in the outstanding leadership of FDR, he put it into action, becoming a decorated WWII veteran. This particular U.S. President was much more than a man behind a podium. He led the U.S. through great depression, then led the allied forces to defeat a nasty regime. As Charles put it, “He got the whole world back into shape.”
FROM GREAT TO WONDERFUL.
When we asked our Chairman and CEO about Dwight Eisenhower and John F. Kennedy, he used these two superlatives, above, to describe both leaders. The greatness of Eisenhower was his work on the highways to connect our country like never before. The wonder of Kennedy was the steps he took for desegregation and fair housing, as well as founding the Peace Corp to make the world a little smaller. Although he met with a tragic end, JFK will always be remembered by Charles with both respect and reverence.
A FORCE FOR EQUALITY.
What JFK began, Linden Johnson took on with the full force of his being. Helped, no doubt, by the power he held with Congress. The subject of equality hit very close to home with Charles, as he fought in WWII alongside Black Americans and people of all different races and ethnicities as brothers and as equals. But coming back stateside was an entirely different story, as segregation and racism was still rampant. Johnson got the laws passed to uphold what it states in the Constitution “All people are created equal.”
Our fearless leader had such positive things to say about so many of our past Presidents and FLOTUSes, it’s kind of hard to narrow it down. So here’s the highlight reel. Most underrated? Jimmy Carter. Most memorable First Lady? That’s a toss-up between Eleanor Roosevelt and Michelle Obama. And who would Charles most like to have dinner with? Well, we’ll have to fix the time/space continuum for that one. Because he was stumped between Abraham Lincoln and Barack Obama.
IT’S ONLY THE BEGINNING.
Kind of strange as the heading for the last paragraph, right? But it’s this sort of positivity that we’ve come to know and love from Charles. Rather than summarizing, it seems only fitting we hear it from our own Chairman Chuck himself.
“Each generation comes on and we get better and better. People should always be treated equally and we’re better today because of it. We’re more aware of our problems and hopefully, in another 10 or 20 years, as our country changes and as minorities become majorities, it’s wonderful that we won’t have to worry about Black, White, Brown or whatever. It’s about who you are and how you act.”
Now that’s something we can all salute to.
Listen to the full Fireside Chat, here.