True Blue, Through and Through

BYU Marriott School Sheri Dew

“I invite you to focus on a virtue that is just plain smart, because it will have as much impact on your happiness, peace of mind, career, and ability to fulfill your life’s mission as any I can think of,” said Sheri Dew, president and CEO of Deseret Book and a member of the Marriott School’s National Advisory Council. “It is the virtue of integrity.”

Dew went on in her 2004 convocation speech to explain the importance of integrity through a story from President Joseph F. Smith’s life. On his way home from his mission to Hawaii, nineteen-year-old Smith was sleeping when outlaws rode into his camp threatening to kill Mormons. Smith marched up to one of the intruders who, with pistol in hand, demanded, “Are you a Mormon?” He responded, “Yes siree; dyed in the wool; true blue, through and through.” The outlaw shook Smith’s hand, called him one of the most pleasant men he’d ever met, and applauded him for his integrity.

“Dilemmas can almost always be resolved if you are fair and honest and true,” Dew said. “Now is the time to learn to be strictly honest and commit yourself to a life of integrity.”

To read more about integrity—including stories about the de Havilland Comet airplane and Dew’s childhood in a farming community—check out “True Blue, Through and Through,” in the Winter 2005 issue of Marriott Alumni Magazine. You can also read from our latest issue, where Rex Tillerson, ExxonMobil CEO, addresses integrity as a fundamental for all businesspeople in, “The Most Valuable Asset.”