The remarkable feature of American democracy is the proximity of citizens to the highest elected officials in the land both during and after their public service.

clip_image002At CERAWeek a couple of weeks ago I had the chance to pose with two previous presidents of the United States, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, both of whom I had had indirect contact during the course of my professional career.

In fact, upon reaching the area where the past Presidents were posing with selected attendees, I told President Bush and President Clinton that I had the Kevin Bacon six degrees of separation with both of them. To President Bush, I told him that I used to work for Tom Kuhn, President of the Edison Electric Institute (EEI). Tom and he where classmates at Yale. President Bush smiled and nodded.

To President Clinton, I said I represented the Power industry on the Y2K issue with John Koskinen who ran the White House Y2K effort and Bill Richardson who was Secretary of Energy at the time. Bill turned to me, shook my hand and said 'Thanks a lot (Sarcasm)!". Everyone laughed.

It was a really neat opportunity to be with two people who had shaped our energy landscape in so many ways. – Jon C. Arnold