This week we lost two men that could be considered all of the above and then some.
Activist Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth is credited as being the soul of the civil rights movement and Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, who created technology the world never knew it needed but now can’t live without.
While they were two very different men, they had a similar goal – to improve upon a system that was both outdated and oppressive.
Stay with me while I connect the dots.
Reverend Shuttlesworth was one of the co-founders of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. Created in 1957, the organization led non-violent protests to end segregation in America. Although the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. served as president of the SCLC and was considered “the face” of the movement, Shuttlesworth laid the foundation. President Barack Obama said in a statement that Reverend Shuttlesworth was a “testament to the strength of the human spirit” and that “today we stand on his shoulders, and the shoulders of all those who marched and sat and lifted their voices to help perfect our union.”
Steve Jobs lived his life having made the conscious choice to step out into the unknown and challenge the status quo on his terms – not someone else’s. By example, he taught us that trusting yourself is the genius thing to do and that genius is something within us all, not something that only the special few have.
If you break it down to its most basic level, each of these men made a decision to make a difference in the way people were able to live their lives and then did whatever was necessary to ensure that it happened.
Both men were risk takers.