WHERE ARE THEY NOW

After 26 Years in Congress, Elton Gallegly Teaches Public Service

House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio administers the House oath to Rep. Elton Gallegly, R-Calif., right, during a mock swearing-in ceremony on Capitol Hill in Washington, on Wednesday, Jan. 5, 2011. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)
National Journal
Cameron Smith
Aug. 8, 2013, 3:30 p.m.

“I don’t look for­ward to the rock­ing chair,” said former Rep. Elton Gal­legly, R-Cal­if. So the 69-year-old Los Angeles County nat­ive has kept him­self very busy since re­tir­ing from Con­gress in Janu­ary after serving 13 terms.

Gal­legly re­cently partnered with Cali­for­nia Luther­an Uni­versity in Thou­sand Oaks, just west of L.A., to or­gan­ize and launch a gradu­ate-level pro­gram for young stu­dents who are pre­par­ing for ca­reers in pub­lic ser­vice. He said the cen­ter’s goal is to help stu­dents “un­der­stand what pub­lic ser­vice is all about” and to ex­pose them to the world of polit­ics out­side of run­ning for of­fice.

“It will give them a great head start,” he said. “They’ll know that pub­lic ser­vice is about more than cam­paign­ing and fun­drais­ing strategies.”

The pro­ject has taken up a large por­tion of Gal­legly’s time in the past few months. “I got in­volved with what I thought was go­ing to be a little pro­ject and then real­ized it was huge,” he said.

But to Gal­legly, it has been time well spent. “Any­thing im­port­ant is go­ing to take time,” he said.

“You don’t want your name at­tached to something that is go­ing to fail. More im­port­antly, you don’t want something you care about to fail. You know, you have to en­joy what you’re do­ing in life. You don’t have to be the grand poo-bah or any­thing; you just have to en­joy it.”

Gal­legly has also con­tin­ued his work with the Ron­ald Re­agan Pres­id­en­tial Lib­rary, which is very im­port­ant to him be­cause of a friend­ship that was formed when Re­agan was pres­id­ent and Gal­legly was a ju­ni­or mem­ber of Con­gress.

“There’s a lot of syn­ergy between the two pro­jects, and they’re close to my heart,” said Gal­legly. The two in­sti­tu­tions will be linked by the schol­ars as­so­ci­ated with the cen­ter, he said.

Gal­legly seems to be en­joy­ing life in the fast lane. “It’s kind of like driv­ing a race car,” he said. “You’re either go­ing hun­dreds of miles an hour or you’re not mov­ing. I was a small-busi­ness guy, and some­where along the line I was al­most dared to shut up or do something, and so I ran for may­or, and to my own sur­prise I won. The rest went from there.”

Where Are They Now is a Na­tion­al Journ­al Daily series that catches up with law­makers who left of­fice in Janu­ary to find out what they are do­ing. It will run throughout Au­gust.

What We're Following See More »
STAFF PICKS
What the Current Crop of Candidates Could Learn from JFK
1 days ago
WHY WE CARE

Much has been made of David Brooks’s recent New York Times column, in which confesses to missing already the civility and humanity of Barack Obama, compared to who might take his place. In NewYorker.com, Jeffrey Frank reminds us how critical such attributes are to foreign policy. “It’s hard to imagine Kennedy so casually referring to the leader of Russia as a gangster or a thug. For that matter, it’s hard to imagine any president comparing the Russian leader to Hitler [as] Hillary Clinton did at a private fund-raiser. … Kennedy, who always worried that miscalculation could lead to war, paid close attention to the language of diplomacy.”

Source:
STAFF PICKS
Maher Weighs in on Bernie, Trump and Palin
1 days ago
WHY WE CARE

“We haven’t seen a true leftist since FDR, so many millions are coming out of the woodwork to vote for Bernie Sanders; he is the Occupy movement now come to life in the political arena.” So says Bill Maher in his Hollywood Reporter cover story (more a stream-of-consciousness riff than an essay, actually). Conservative states may never vote for a socialist in the general election, but “this stuff has never been on the table, and these voters have never been activated.” Maher saves most of his bile for Donald Trump and Sarah Palin, writing that by nominating Palin as vice president “John McCain is the one who opened the Book of the Dead and let the monsters out.” And Trump is picking up where Palin left off.

Source:
×