The Wind Beneath My Wings

Dear Editor: I nodded knowingly as I read your editorial about your father [“The Wind Beneath My Wings,” January/February 2005]. My father was in book publishing for more than 40 years and was singlehandedly responsible for my love of the business, also starting me off as a kid doing bits and pieces of things at his office. When he was an acquisitions editor, he'd haul home stacks of manuscripts by such famous people as F. Lee Bailey. When he worked in the college division, it was textbooks galore.

At his retirement party, many stood to deliver accolades and anecdotes and played — yes — “The Wind Beneath My Wings.” Not a dry eye in the house. We had to share him as a mentor to hundreds, but he had plenty left for us. He's about to celebrate his 80th birthday, and he is still consulted on a regular basis about publishing issues and continues to be sought after as an expert witness in legal cases concerning publishing practice.

Memorable mentors are hard enough to come by. Great dads as mentors are a rare and inspirational gift.
Margie Schulz
Editorial Director
HMP Communications
Princeton, N.J.

Dear Editor: I just read your comments about your dad, and wanted you to know, once again, how much I respected and appreciated Mel — he was one of my first favorites when I went to industry meetings, and he was such an advocate for professionalism of the industry before it was the cause célèbre that it is today. Congrats on your Women's Leadership series, also [“Legacy of Leadership,” January/February 2005]. Mickey Schaefer is a true example of how ethics, tenacity, and professionalism at all times [make the] cream [rise to] to the top. She's the best!
Beverly Winner Kinkade, CHME, CMP
Retired Executive, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc.; and Hospitality Industry Consultant
Ballwin, Mo.

Dear Editor: I particularly appreciated your column about your dad last month. Although my father has been gone for 19 years, he continues to be my moral compass (e.g., “What would Daddy have done/said in this situation?”) I, too, worked in his business — an auto parts store. It was there that I got my first lessons in how to be a good boss, what it meant to be a small-business owner, and how to deal with customers. Although university-based CME is a far cry from auto parts, some of these lessons still apply. Thank you for reminding me. By the way, I think this is the kind of thing the rabbis had in mind when they spoke of leaving an ethical will.

I also enjoyed the article “Conflict Avoidance,” [by Robert F. Orsetti, January/February 2005]. We are all struggling with how to realistically implement the new Standards with regard to conflicts of interest, and I think that article provides a clear, concise explanation of the issue and some practical ways to address it.
Sheryl Slone Tarkoff, MEd, CAS
Associate Director, CME
UIC College of Medicine
Chicago

Capsules, the e-Newsletter

Dear Editor: Congratulations on delivering a concise e-newsletter. I have the time to look through an e-mail like that and read what is important to me. (And with little advertising, too!) I look forward to seeing more. Thank you.
Len Berkstresser
Vice President
Fisher Medical Communications Inc.
Tampa, Fla.