Ryzack, Yvonne: Lessons Learned from Moscone
Yvonne Ryzack: One of the many things that I learned from George, was the importance of relationships. George was amazing at keeping and maintaining relationships. He always remembered everyone’s name. I watched him a lot in that role and realized that in order to be successful in politics and in government, at the end of the day, it came down to relationships. George, many of his successes, especially in the Senate, on controversial issues, had to do with his relationships with people, people trusted him. So that was very, very profound for me. Also, not looking at a person based on where they are in the hierarchy of the world, but accepting them for being important for who they are and respecting them, and talking to them, and relating to them, that way, as a full person. George never would tolerate anything but that. So I learned that. And I also really, at the end of the day, learned to have a great amount of tenacity and persistence towards the things that were important to me, because I saw George had that. He, especially if it was controversial, but anything that he believed in, he was not going to be dissuaded. He brought a piece of legislation back year after year, went from having hardly any votes to more votes, to maybe five years later passing it as legislation. Not a lot of people really have that tenacity. A lot of people would just say “this isn’t working, I need to do something else,” but George had a vision. He knew what he wanted to do, he knew what he thought was best and he wasn’t easily deterred. That level of tenacity and of commitment has stuck with me for many years.
The Moscone oral history interviews are part of the George Moscone Collection, MSS 328.
Holt-Atherton Special Collections and Archives, University of the Pacific Library
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Ryzack, Yvonne, "Ryzack, Yvonne: Lessons Learned from Moscone" (2011). Moscone Oral Histories. 191.