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Local Author Takes on Trump

Photo by Mary Emily Myers / OUTLOOK La Cañada High School’s Julianne Lauenstein (left) and Georgia Cervenka were among the seven young women selected to the Tournament of Roses Royal Court at a ceremony on Monday in Pasadena.
OUTLOOK photo<br >Don Sheppard a longtime La Cañada Flintridge resident said he did not write his recently released book The Dividends of Decency How Values Based Leadership Will Help Business Flourish in Trumps America to make money but to be part of the resistance

La Cañada Flintridge resident Don Sheppard offers a stinging businessman’s critique of President Donald Trump in his new book, “The Dividends of Decency: How Values-Based Leadership Will Help Business Flourish in Trump’s America.”
The book is different from the many other recent releases about the president, Sheppard said, because it’s written from the perspective of a 70-year-old white male Republican.
In the book’s prologue, Sheppard states: “As stunning as it may seem to those who accept Donald Trump’s actions and values as appropriate business practices, there is more to be gained in the long run by behaving decently than there is to be gained from assuming the business world is some Wild West fantasy.”
Sheppard — a native Canadian who built and sold an employee communications consulting firm, Sheppard Associates — said he’s been stunned by some of the responses he’s received, both to the book and to recent opinion pieces published on various political news websites.
“I talk about something as sensible as gun control, which the vast majority of America supports … and it’s, ‘Oh, it’s another one of these left-wing liberals trying to take away our guns,’” Sheppard said. “But my background is that I’m not that. I’m a Republican. I’m an entrepreneur. I believe in smaller government. I believe in free enterprise. I’m not what you picture as a liberal.”
That sort of partisan labeling and judgment is not productive, Sheppard said.
“Talking these days about common sense issues, talking about decency,” he said. “It’s so interesting to me how people would label what I’m talking about in the book.”
In the past few weeks, he has been making that point as he’s discussed his book on talk shows, including SiriusXM’s “P.O.T.U.S” channel and WGN Radio’s “The Opening Bell.”
“It’s been really, really fun,” said Sheppard, who is known locally for his philanthropy, including founding the Los Angeles Futbol Club and funding La Cañada High School’s first artificial turf football field in 2003. “The book’s gotten tremendous response because it’s a message that’s needed.”
Sheppard will have a book signing on June 28 from 7-8:30 p.m. at Flintridge Bookstore and Coffeehouse.
“The Dividends of Decency,” which was released by British Columbia’s Figure 1 Publishing, went on sale April 14.

— Mirjam Swanson


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