by Rachel Moss
As she was finishing school at Pepperdine University, Peggy Grande made a list of 10 places she would like to intern in Los Angeles, and only got one call back. Luckily, that call was inviting her to interview for a position in Ronald Reagan’s post-presidential office.
If you need inspiration on how to move through the ranks at your workplace, look no further than Peggy Grande! She started working for former President Ronald Reagan as an intern, and eventually worked her way up to becoming his Executive Assistant and official post-presidency photographer. She worked with Reagan from 1989 to 1999, and became a steady, reliable presence in his career.
Due to the significant role Reagan played in her life, Grande authored The President Will See You Now, which was published in early 2017. The book details the thrilling early days of working for the president, the relationships Reagan maintained, and the emotional final years of Reagan’s life.
The first chapter recounted her first meeting with the beloved president, and her reaction to seeing him was completely relatable. When Reagan walked by after she was leaving her internship interview, she was so nervous that she put her hand over her heart as if she was watching a flag go by.
Grande has said that working for Reagan was the honor of a lifetime, and she learned valuable life lessons serving in his office. As a campus and corporate speaker, she encourages listeners to be mindful of how their current actions affect their goals; she once said, “Your legacy is not written after you are gone. It is written every day of your life.”
As an author, speaker, leader, founder, and consultant, Grande does it all, and she does it all well! She is a strong, conservative woman who serves as a role model for ambitious women.
Rachel Moss is a 2017 Summer Fellow.