Jim Gordon

From Governor Dummer, I went to Cornell, where I sat next to Mark Johnson in freshman English (he was always better prepared than I was). Although I can make no claim to being a Renaissance man, like Tay Vaughan or Ted Moore, I did discover girls and beer (but I can't remember in which order). Oh yeah, I also discovered sports. I went out for lightweight crew and never got cut. When we got off the water in the late fall, those four years of running to the bridge and back must have paid off, because I found that I could run faster than just about everybody else on the team. In my Engineering 101 class, the Dean started it off by saying, "Look to your left, now look to your right. Neither of those guys will graduate with you." He was right. I think I was the guy on the left. Unlike at Governor Dummer, nobody told me when to study. So, with alI the diversions - girls, beer, rowing, fratemities - I didn't (or at least, not enough). After the second time they told me to go away for a while, I figured there was a message there. I was just about to enlist in the Marine Corps, but my dad persuaded me to finish college first (this was 1966). So, I transferred to Boston University. After Comell, BU was a pretty rinky-dink place, but I finally graduated with a BS in Engineering in 1969.

I next went to work for Stone & Webster in Boston helping to design a nuclear power station. That might sound interesting, but I found it really boring, so I went in the Navy as a Supply Corps officer. I went to sea on a destroyer, and that really was an adventure - just like the recruiting posters say. I got to see the world and had some interesting and fun experiences.

After some shore duty in the Bay Area, I got out of the Navy and went to Stanford for an MBA. I was running around the track there one day, when I saw a cute girl on the other side. I chased her for two laps before I caught her, and I've been running with Marcia ever since. (My mother always told me to marry a chaste woman.)

After a couple of awful corporate jobs and moves across the country, I finally figured out I couldn't work for somebody else. Actually, I didn't figure it out - Marcia did. So I took her suggestion and applied at Dean Witter. To my surprise, I loved it and achieved some success.

By 1986, we had two kids and a house that was too small, so we moved to a nice house in Woodinville, Washington. At the same time, I joined Smith Barney in Bellevue, and we've been in the same house and I've been at the same firm ever since.

Marcia and I now have three kids: Laurel, a freshman at Columbia; Jeffrey, a junior in high school (who also wants to go to college on the East Coast), and Gretchen, an eighth-grader (who might make a career on the stage).

At Smith Barney, I do financial and estate planning for high-net-worth individuals. It's very rewarding. I travel just enough so it's still a little bit of a novelty, and I have wonderful clients to work with. I don't think I'll every retire, but maybe I'll slow down some day.

I stayed in the Navy and Navy Reserves for a total of 23 years, and I'd do that all over again. I've been president of my Rotary Club and the local chapters of the Stanford Business School and Governor Dummer Alumni Associations, but our leisure activities have been largely centered around our kids. I'm going to have to find some new hobbies soon. I still run or ride my bike almost daily, but the wear on my body parts is starting to slow me down.

Of all the things I've done in my life, the most rewarding, by far, has been being a dad. I have three wonderful children, who are fortunate to have a fantastic mom. I would love to have had them go to Govemor Dummer, especially now that it's coed, but I couldn't bear to send them so far away.

(This came out much longer than I intended. I know I find it much more interesting than anyone else will, but I'm terrible at editing.)