22 January, 2009

Who is Jon Favreau(Obama's Speech Writer)

He is said to be the youngest chief speech writer on record at the White house! At only twenty seven(27) years of age this youngman of French -Canadian descent is turning heads around the world for his sterling abilities demonstrated in the crafting of the 44th President of the USA Barack Obama's inaguration speech.
(Picture courtesy of AP)
According to the Times online this is how Favreau met Obama and their journey and work relationship set off: "Favs” as he is known to friends
— was barely out of college and working as a speechwriter for John Kerry when he met Mr Obama backstage at the 2004 Democratic Convention. The Illinois senator was running over his lines when Mr Favreau impudently interrupted him to suggest a rhythmical rewrite. Mr Obama was astonished - and hooked
" and most of us can see the reason why.

The Wikipedia Stub for Favreau(courtesy of wikipedia) needs more information but notable about the him is that :

Favreau joined Senator John Kerry's 2004 presidential campaign after graduating from the College of the Holy Cross in 2003 as the valedictorian. Obama communications aide Robert Gibbs, who had worked for Kerry's campaign, recommended his former colleague Favreau to Obama as an excellent writer. In 2005, Favreau began working for Barack Obama in his U.S. Senate office, before joining Obama's presidential campaign as chief speechwriter in 2007.

Favreau has likened his position to "Ted Williams’s batting coach," because of Obama's celebrated abilities as a speaker and writer. Obama senior adviser David Axelrod said of Favreau, "Barack trusts him...And Barack doesn't trust too many folks with that — the notion of surrendering that much authority over his own words."[7]

On December 5, 2008, a picture of Favreau performing a suggestive gesture (grabbing a breast) to a cardboard cut-out of Hillary Clinton surfaced on Facebook. Favreau issued an apology to Clinton,[8] whose spokesman referred to the photo as "an example of just good-natured fun between former rival camps."[9]

Favreau was the primary writer of Obama's Inauguration address. The Guardian describes the process as follows: "The inaugural speech has shuttled between them [Obama and Favreau] four or five times, following an initial hour-long meeting in which the president-elect spoke about his vision for the address, and Favreau took notes on his computer. Favreau then went away and spent weeks on research. His team interviewed historians and speech writers, studied periods of crisis, and listened to past inaugural orations. When ready, he took up residence in a Starbucks in Washington and wrote the first draft."[10]

President Obama's Inaguration ceremony was dubbed" a new birth of freedom" and his speech writer Mr Jon Favreau spent hours "crashing" i.e drinking starbucks caffeine haze of espressos and Red Bull energy drinks amidst breaks while playing the video game' Rock Band'.The ultimate end after a number of read throughs by the President and internalising was a speech that would move the World. He captured Presidents Obama's intents, thoughts and ideals perfectly. The speech was a call to sobriety and hardwork and a renaissance in activity to build and restore America.

Now Africa has to learn from this. Our Presidents/politicians yap out whatever comes accross their minds. Their speech writers are old men and women who cannot capture the moment but often live in the past. In Kenya ministers are among most members of public who often sleep when our dignitaries give their speeches yet most of us young college/university graduate wunderkinds who have the gift of garb and expression continue to end up unemployed,frustrated...etc despite demonstrated skills.

That speech took alot of hardwork, time labour, research and the ultimate end was a carefully crafted piece de resistance , a classic orchestrated masterpiece.....it only comes with effort that is the lesson for African leaders. Get rid of your speech writers, listen more, confer with others more before you speak.Master the art of speech writing, intenalisation ,delivery and the use of an outline.....think first before you speak and its not a must that you say something or respond to all your critics .And yes you can consult me if you or your teams are bereft of ideas! im only young enough and gifted tooo you can readily see!300x100

This article has been republished with more content at : Associated Content Website

1 comment:

  1. Interesting :-)

    And yes, African leaders have a lot to learn.



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