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Clifton Wharton chose his weapons

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in Leaders & Managers,Workplace Communication

Now that the first generation of leading black executives—a few of whom worked their way up the ranks during the civil rights era—has retired, they’ve begun sharing their wisdom with the rest of us.

Clifton Wharton, the first black CEO of a large company (TIAACREF), inherited that wisdom from a friend who told him there’s more than one way to press for civil rights.

The friend used the expression “choice of weapons.”

“In terms of fighting,” Wharton says now, “you always have a choice of weapons. Some of us chose to do our fighting on the inside.”

— Adapted from “Pioneers: Meet Six Unsung Civil Rights Heroes,” Cora Daniels, Fortune.

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