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Key to success: Vision Key to success: Passion Key to success: Perseverance Key to success: Preparation Key to success: Courage Key to success: Integrity Key to success: The American Dream Keys to success homepage More quotes on Passion More quotes on Vision More quotes on Courage More quotes on Integrity More quotes on Preparation More quotes on Perseverance More quotes on The American Dream


Dale Chihuly

Master Glass Artist

A lot of times when an artist starts an idea, very often people don't like it. Nobody really bought one of these for a couple of years, because they liked my earlier work. A lot of times the artists don't like it either. I remember on a couple of occasions starting a new series of work that I really thought was good, and some of my best friends would pull me aside and kind of tell me that they didn't think that was going to make it. But if you believe in the idea, then you go ahead and do it. At a certain point, maybe you might agree with them after three or four months. You've worked on it and you've developed it, and maybe you let it go. Either let it go or you carry on. For myself, it's usually when I exhibit it for the first time; that usually means I believe in the idea.
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Dale Chihuly

Master Glass Artist

Dale Chihuly: I suppose the most obvious setback that I had, I mean, I lost my brother and my father when I was in high school. And that certainly had a profound effect on me. And then I got in a wreck -- lost the sight of my eye -- in 1976, which made it hard for me to blow glass. It was a near-fatal accident, and six months in recuperation. I suppose that could have been a big setback, but it wasn't. I mean, it didn't get me down that much. I felt fortunate to have survived it. I suppose I could have taken a different perspective on the whole thing. I could have gotten depressed over it, but I didn't. I think sometimes those things make you look at things in a different way. Setbacks. Most setbacks in my own life have been self-inflicted. Depression, or whatever. Something to get you down and out. Usually that comes about for who knows what reason. But in terms of my career, I've been very lucky. I've had a lot of help, a lot of support from other people, and a lot of opportunities. That doesn't mean I didn't make a lot of those opportunities, but I think some of it must be some good luck.
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Tom Clancy

Best-Selling Author

I did all the right things. Maybe not always in the right way, but I did all the right things. Probably the most important message you can pass along is that if you have a dream, do not let go of it. I tell people the most important talent in writing is persistence. That's probably the most important talent in anything -- persistence, sticking with it, seeing it through, not giving up. If you do that, in a society like ours, chances are you're going to succeed.
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Johnnetta Cole

Past President of Spelman College

I was asked to give a speech. It was graduation time. And for this particular high school I said, of course I would. The schedule worked. And I went and I sat, waiting for my turn to speak, when I noticed that we were about to hear a song. And one of the graduating seniors stood, a young man went to the piano, and she began her song, and then she broke down, emotionally overtaken. And the audience clapped and she went back to her seat. I was then introduced to speak. And it hit me that I could not go and give that commencement speech, not at that moment. And so, I went to where the young senior sat and I reached out to her and I took her, literally grabbed her and brought her back to that microphone. I put my arms around her and I said, "You've got to try it again." And the young man looked at me as if to say, "This is a little out there, but I'll go along." He began to play and she sang. She was immediately overtaken again by the emotion. And I held her tightly, helped her sing it, encouraged her classmates to join us, and together we got through that song. I went to the microphone and I said, "Well, young graduates, that is your commencement message."
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Johnnetta Cole

Past President of Spelman College

Margaret Mead once said, "Never doubt the ability of a small group of committed individuals to change the world." It's the only way it ever happens. I think once you believe that, once you believe it really is possible -- to use the most frequently articulated phrase --"to make a difference," then you become an empowered force to do that. Surely, that's what was a part of someone like a Martin Luther King, Jr. He could not have done what he did if he didn't believe in the possibility of change. How could Nelson Mandela have sat for 27 years in prison if he didn't believe in the possibility of change? How could those great sisters, suffragettes that they were, have held on -- until finally in 1920 we women folk got the right to vote -- if they didn't believe that their action could lead to change?
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