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Ohio Center for Civic Character

16) LEARNING & MENTORING: High-character Our Ability to Change


people are lifelong wisdom-seekers and wisdom-
advancers. They have both a teachable and a teach- 19) SUBMISSION TO TRUTH: Truth transforms
ing spirit. They impart truth to the uninformed. They people only when we submit to it. People who seek
reduce ignorance by illuminating the disenfranchised. truth cannot not transform. Eventually everyone con-
They multiply character-based people and leaders. They fronts the power of truth. When people of conscience
nurture teaching relationships in order to maximize the are confronted by what is true, they feel convicted to
character and competency of others: they are men- replace or “put off” their lower character by pursuing
tors. Mentors endeavor to invest their lives in others in and “putting on” high-character ethics. Taking action
order to help them help others to attain their greatest on this choice can occur over night or over a long and
potential. (Observable Virtues: curiosity, creativity, often painful period.
teachability, inspiration)
e t a r y o f State:
Sec r
20) VALIDATING TRANSFORMATION: Over
la c k w ell, Ohio varied ingre
dients
e t h B e a nd
f J. Kenn
17) STEWARDSHIP: High-character people live as time, high-character people exhibit consistent osit iv
f the p
if they will eventually reap what they sow. They hope-giving and conscience-affirming character Desk o h and many o
e t- ne of
From th
ee n firs
actively identify with the role of trustee or steward virtues that are the outer proof of inner-charac- public service, I’ve
s
b ilit y. a c te r is th e cornersto of
rs in d via ha r tion C da
t my yea its strength
an
ve the rest. lso the foun
rather than owner. They perceive their function as a ter ethics. Virtues and vices are simply the observ- Throughou r co u ntr y d s o u t a b o nit y. It is a
resource or role “caretaker” for a limited time. As a able fruits that spring forth from either healthy or cor- e to give ou character—
stan
ndation of
commu
that combin ing r e d ie n ts —
ship is th e fo u
d vocabulary
result they regard “positions” and “possessions” as rupted roots of character ethics. Therefore, character e o f th o s e o d cit iz e n k a s h a re
On nd go
izenship. A d government. . We lac he-job chara
c-
“conferred in temporary trust.” Therefore, they care builders must make the lost language of character eth-
e ri ca n c it n d a m e n ta l resources ro le a s o n-t
Am d goo o fu r our
for their respective positions and possessions diligently ics their first language. Moreover, since it is fueled by business an of leaders often lack tw absence of support fo
both good e st of
and seek to add value to every role and every resource one’s daily responsibilities, not in the serenity of relax-
e t to d a y ’s generation a n d w e s u ffer from th fa llib ility . For the re
to which they have been entrusted. Ethical people have ation, character builders must adopt an accurate view Y ethics, laim in ymore
f c h a ra c te r-building p e o p le w ho dare to c s a re n o t c ommon an
a high regard for multiplying the value of their “ac- of the benefits of suffering. o n a few ed ethic
counts” for the purpose of serving others and benefit- ter builders
.
ho u g h w e ’ve all know b e ca u s e sadly, defin rners
erfect, alt common,” fe-long lea
ing those who follow. (Observable Virtues: humility, Relevance to Our Daily Lives No one is p n s e .” “ U n e . s u s to b e li e
e re is “ U
e
ncommonS ails upon the conscien f character. It challen
c ge
e n d U n c o mmonSens
orderliness, carefulness) us, th rev age o comm rvice
Persevering as a character-builder is the only thing that is “ S e n s e ,” because it p for learning the langu it o n . T h at’s why I re media, health and se
an d too l , and pas s on, faith,
nSense is a ve it, lead it government, educati
18) SEEKING COUNSEL: High-character people truly 100% within our personal control. This means Uncommo a s w e li the
seek wise counsel particularly when confronted there is hope for personal change today that is not de- e p u rs u e character— r O h io ’s b usiness, h a ra c te r e thics and at
as w odel fo ap of c reate a
with issues that cause tension and/or confusion pendent on change in others or in our circumstances.
s a c h a ra c ter ethics m e — it g iv es a clear m f UncommonSense c en
a rc
between two or more character ethics. Because Our conscience drives our convictions. These convic-
e rs . n s e to b e a rare resou
rs . T h e s ou nd ethics o B u t th is c annot happ
lead
d Uncomm
onSe othe ulture.
they are guided by their tireless pursuit of truth, they tions generate courage and this courage drives our con-
I have foun e a s il y p a ssed along to common character c e
e rd a uniting why I invit
regularly seek the wisdom of others of high character. duct, regardless of our past, our current circumstances,
ti m e is d e signed to b o p le to w a o n . T h a t’s
same rse pe stigati any
After they weigh this counsel, they act. The goal of or even cultures or settings that are hostile to high char-
e w o rk to guide dive m itte d to character. e c tu a lly honest inve a n d s h a re with me
fra m re com der inte ll articula te
ders who a
this process is wise action (what is right), rather than acter.
without lea e n s e w ill hold up un ad er to th oughtfully ics.
ncommonS ent, and I ask every re aracter eth
popular action (what would make one appear good) or
b e li e v e U a te d b y c h
pragmatic action (what might appear to work). The I ocum valid ealth,
result of a decision made with wise counsel is a clear e ri o u s s tu dy of this d . e s a ll re q uire and are r o f tr u e personal h
“Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. s ith it valu predic to
they find w nd guiding be the key
conscience and the fruit of a clear conscience is con- Only through experiences of trial and suffering critical fault s, worthy missions a a y s w il l g and
tentment. (Observable Virtues: thoughtfulness, patience, can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, n
Noble visio haracter foundation
is and alw
r b u il d in g . By learnin o-
ess. aracte a rev
discernment, confidence) ambition inspired and success achieved.” Thus, a str
ong c
o rg a n iz a tional succ w n c o m m itment to ch ’s le a d e rs can launch
n d g your o — Oh io
al vitality, a ider makin monSense
– Helen Keller interperson le a s e c o n s in U n c o m
mind, p ocated
With this in th e virtues adv me.
g c h ara c te re th ic s —
o u r g re at state. Join
livin ding in
ti o n o f c h aracter-buil
Ohio Center for Civic Character lu
J. Kenneth Blackwell
Ohio Secretary of State Sincerely,
180 E. Broad St., 15th Flr.
Columbus, OH 43215
www.OhioSpirit.org Blackwell
spirit@sos.state.oh.us J. Kenneth Citizen Education Project of the
877-767-6446 Ohio Center for Civic Character
Ohio Center for Civic Character Ohio Center for Civic Character

4) COMPASSION FOR OTHERS: High-character 8) RESPECT: High-character people treat others 12) UNITY: High-character people strive to build re-
UncommonSense® people are compelled by wisdom, fidelity and in- as they would want to be treated. They have an lationships that foster oneness among others who
tegrity to extend unmerited kindness to others accurate view of the human condition; namely that are bound with them to a common promise, mis-
(Copyright 2003, American Center for Civic Char- as an act of the will. They are compelled by an op- every person is capable of both dignified and depraved sion or purpose. Ethical organizations seek unifor-
acter, Version 5.5) Reproduction of UncommonSense erative conscience (rather than their emotions alone) conduct. As a result, they weigh the intrinsic worth of mity in their people's shared character ethics and unity
in its entirety, without modification and for non-com- to be genuinely benevolent and sacrificially giving. They others as exactly equal to their own worth. This is why among their otherwise richly diverse people. Without a
mercial resale use is herein granted. abhor meanness, cruelty and neglect of others. Act- people of character are convicted by the Golden Rule. persevering commitment to shared character ethics,
of-the-will compassion makes loving the “hard-to-love,” This conviction makes valuing diverse roles, giftedness, there is no hope for sustainable unity. (Observable Vir-
The Critical Importance of Truth: possible. (Observable Virtues: kind, gentle, patient, be- skills, style, personality, race, religion, and genders logi- tue: reconciler)
nevolent, generous) cal if not irresistible. Respect leads diverse people to
1) SEEKING WISDOM: Ethical or high-character value the dignity of others while having the liberty to 13) FORGIVENESS: Because they know they are far
people courageously seek something greater 5) HONESTY: High-character people speak the passionately disagree with their opinions (opinions that from perfect, people of high character are humble
than intelligence or knowledge (knowing what is); truth with compassion. Ethical people speak up, can be influenced by our depravity). (Observable Vir- and they extend to and receive from others, un-
they seek wisdom (knowing what is right or true). present their facts with thoughtful accuracy, and do so tue: an inclusive, engaging and honoring spirit) merited acceptance. Character breaches separate
Wisdom must logically culminate in the identification with compassion. They are not avoiders; they are care- people. Separation injures conscience. High-character
of conscience-convicting truth to be intellectually hon- fronters: they confront because they care. They clearly 9) PROMISE-KEEPING & TRUSTWORTHI- people forgive and genuinely seek forgiveness to rec-
est. Hence, the relentless pursuit of truth, its source qualify their yes and no and thereby minimize misun- NESS: High-character people do not break their oncile or restore their relationship with any person to
and its compelling advocacy is the moral objective of derstandings. They do not deliberately mislead or de- word with others. Because they prize interpersonal whom they have committed a character lapse. Seek-
ethical, character-building people. (Observable Virtues: ceive others by misrepresentations, overstatements, trust, they do not make promises lightly; they are can- ing forgiveness requires a confession of error by the
principled, prudent, contemplative) partial truths, selective omissions or other intentional did in supplying relevant information and they are dili- offender. Rendering forgiveness is a radical act of un-
means. They take responsibility and do not shift blame. gent in fulfilling their commitments. They make every deserved understanding (or grace) by the offended.
Applying Truth First to Ourselves: To avoid confusing others, high-character people break reasonable effort to fulfill the letter and the spirit of High-character people are thankful when forgiven and
habits of sarcasm and cynicism. To avoid inflaming their promises. They tirelessly maintain a promised are motivated to forgive inevitable offenses against
2) FIDELITY: High-character people courageously others, they avoid sanctimonious and condescending confidence. They do not interpret agreements in any them. They forgive others and seek the forgiveness of
strive to be what they say they are. Their behavior tones. (Observable Virtues: discrete, discerning) unreasonably technical or legalistic manner in order to others intentionally. (Observable Virtues: humility, pa-
matches their beliefs. As a result, they resist the temp- rationalize non-compliance or to justify escaping their tience, gratefulness, long-suffering)
tation to sacrifice “what is right or wise” for “what 6) JUSTICE: High-character people uphold truth, promises. (Observable Virtue: faithfulness)
might work or be popular” and overcome private and expose error and correct wrongs. Just people are 14) HONORING AUTHORITY: All people are im-
peer temptations that would render them hypocrites. diligent in weighing evidence. They contend for truth 10) EXCELLENCE: High-character people strive to perfect, requiring boundaries for behavior. High-
Only those who strive after what is true and then first and perform vigorous and unbiased examinations of be their best knowing that this enables them to character people willingly yield to the authority
apply this consistently to themselves, are capable of individuals and information. Just people do not oppress do their best every day. Ethical people experience of those who are charged with upholding those
authentically creating order and building trust (the pre- powerless persons, or condemn innocent persons; they good “being” that fuels great “doing.” Excellence is boundaries. They help shape and then abide by the
requisites to relationships) within their organizations, protect them. In the process of affirming good and re- the result of high character merging with high compe- legitimate laws, rules and boundaries established by
marriages, families, fellowships, friendships, teams, etc. proving evil, they strive not to be harsh, exasperating tence. Excellence is a high task achieved virtuously. legitimate authorities and strive to live within those
(Observable Virtues: courageous, sober, reflective, self- or manipulative. Just people strain to objectively deter- When high-character people collaborate, they produce boundaries for the betterment of all people. When those
aware, single-minded) mine what outcome, however difficult or painful, is right. a “culture of excellence.” True and enduring organiza- given authority violate conscience-convicting charac-
(Observable Virtues: upright, bold, diligent, decisive) tional excellence, therefore, is only sustainable by ter ethics, high-character people take wise action to
Applying Truth in our Relationships: people of high character. (Observable Virtues: self- justly hold them accountable. (Observable Virtues:
7) ACCOUNTABILITY: High-character people control, discipline, enthusiasm, pureness of heart, per- yieldedness, submission / “aligned with the mission”)
3) INTEGRITY: High-character people do what they scrutinize themselves and welcome the scrutiny severing spirit)
say they will do. Because of their habits of wisdom of others. They acknowledge that human nature com- 15) LIBERTY: High-character people preserve their
and fidelity, they demonstrate the courage of their con- pels us toward independence. Our preference for in- 11) SERVING-LEADERSHIP: High-character public rights by fulfilling their personal responsi-
victions by doing what they say they will do even when dependence results in isolation from one another. Iso- people sacrifice themselves for those they lead. bilities. In order to preserve public freedoms, every
there is great pressure to do otherwise. As a result, lation breeds temptation to unethical conduct. High- Serving-leaders model and mentor high-character con- person must exercise private restraints. Therefore, free
they do not manipulate anything or anyone at any time. character people resist this chain reaction by adopting duct and produce an inspiring environment in which people embrace self-control so the need for public con-
(Observable Virtues: consistent, predictable, orderly, transparent life and work-styles that invite inspection. their sacrificial example of serving others produces trols is minimized. As a result, high-character people
faithful, guileless) They place themselves in relationships that motivate relational harmony, principled reasoning, effective com- communicate and live out character ethics and inten-
self-examination and encourage constructive critique munication, clear mission, constant learning and char- tionally exhort others to do likewise as an active act of
from others, particularly those they serve. (Observ- acter-rich decision-making. Leaders of high character preserving liberty for everyone. (Observable Virtues:
“Everyone thinks about changing the world; but no able Virtue: an open, up-front, disclosing spirit) produce cultures of character where followers increas- temperance, self-control)
one thinks about changing himself.” ingly manifest virtues rather than vices. (Observable
– Leo Tolstoy Virtues: courage, humility, selflessness)
Ohio Center for Civic Character Ohio Center for Civic Character

4) COMPASSION FOR OTHERS: High-character 8) RESPECT: High-character people treat others 12) UNITY: High-character people strive to build re-
UncommonSense® people are compelled by wisdom, fidelity and in- as they would want to be treated. They have an lationships that foster oneness among others who
tegrity to extend unmerited kindness to others accurate view of the human condition; namely that are bound with them to a common promise, mis-
(Copyright 2003, American Center for Civic Char- as an act of the will. They are compelled by an op- every person is capable of both dignified and depraved sion or purpose. Ethical organizations seek unifor-
acter, Version 5.5) Reproduction of UncommonSense erative conscience (rather than their emotions alone) conduct. As a result, they weigh the intrinsic worth of mity in their people's shared character ethics and unity
in its entirety, without modification and for non-com- to be genuinely benevolent and sacrificially giving. They others as exactly equal to their own worth. This is why among their otherwise richly diverse people. Without a
mercial resale use is herein granted. abhor meanness, cruelty and neglect of others. Act- people of character are convicted by the Golden Rule. persevering commitment to shared character ethics,
of-the-will compassion makes loving the “hard-to-love,” This conviction makes valuing diverse roles, giftedness, there is no hope for sustainable unity. (Observable Vir-
The Critical Importance of Truth: possible. (Observable Virtues: kind, gentle, patient, be- skills, style, personality, race, religion, and genders logi- tue: reconciler)
nevolent, generous) cal if not irresistible. Respect leads diverse people to
1) SEEKING WISDOM: Ethical or high-character value the dignity of others while having the liberty to 13) FORGIVENESS: Because they know they are far
people courageously seek something greater 5) HONESTY: High-character people speak the passionately disagree with their opinions (opinions that from perfect, people of high character are humble
than intelligence or knowledge (knowing what is); truth with compassion. Ethical people speak up, can be influenced by our depravity). (Observable Vir- and they extend to and receive from others, un-
they seek wisdom (knowing what is right or true). present their facts with thoughtful accuracy, and do so tue: an inclusive, engaging and honoring spirit) merited acceptance. Character breaches separate
Wisdom must logically culminate in the identification with compassion. They are not avoiders; they are care- people. Separation injures conscience. High-character
of conscience-convicting truth to be intellectually hon- fronters: they confront because they care. They clearly 9) PROMISE-KEEPING & TRUSTWORTHI- people forgive and genuinely seek forgiveness to rec-
est. Hence, the relentless pursuit of truth, its source qualify their yes and no and thereby minimize misun- NESS: High-character people do not break their oncile or restore their relationship with any person to
and its compelling advocacy is the moral objective of derstandings. They do not deliberately mislead or de- word with others. Because they prize interpersonal whom they have committed a character lapse. Seek-
ethical, character-building people. (Observable Virtues: ceive others by misrepresentations, overstatements, trust, they do not make promises lightly; they are can- ing forgiveness requires a confession of error by the
principled, prudent, contemplative) partial truths, selective omissions or other intentional did in supplying relevant information and they are dili- offender. Rendering forgiveness is a radical act of un-
means. They take responsibility and do not shift blame. gent in fulfilling their commitments. They make every deserved understanding (or grace) by the offended.
Applying Truth First to Ourselves: To avoid confusing others, high-character people break reasonable effort to fulfill the letter and the spirit of High-character people are thankful when forgiven and
habits of sarcasm and cynicism. To avoid inflaming their promises. They tirelessly maintain a promised are motivated to forgive inevitable offenses against
2) FIDELITY: High-character people courageously others, they avoid sanctimonious and condescending confidence. They do not interpret agreements in any them. They forgive others and seek the forgiveness of
strive to be what they say they are. Their behavior tones. (Observable Virtues: discrete, discerning) unreasonably technical or legalistic manner in order to others intentionally. (Observable Virtues: humility, pa-
matches their beliefs. As a result, they resist the temp- rationalize non-compliance or to justify escaping their tience, gratefulness, long-suffering)
tation to sacrifice “what is right or wise” for “what 6) JUSTICE: High-character people uphold truth, promises. (Observable Virtue: faithfulness)
might work or be popular” and overcome private and expose error and correct wrongs. Just people are 14) HONORING AUTHORITY: All people are im-
peer temptations that would render them hypocrites. diligent in weighing evidence. They contend for truth 10) EXCELLENCE: High-character people strive to perfect, requiring boundaries for behavior. High-
Only those who strive after what is true and then first and perform vigorous and unbiased examinations of be their best knowing that this enables them to character people willingly yield to the authority
apply this consistently to themselves, are capable of individuals and information. Just people do not oppress do their best every day. Ethical people experience of those who are charged with upholding those
authentically creating order and building trust (the pre- powerless persons, or condemn innocent persons; they good “being” that fuels great “doing.” Excellence is boundaries. They help shape and then abide by the
requisites to relationships) within their organizations, protect them. In the process of affirming good and re- the result of high character merging with high compe- legitimate laws, rules and boundaries established by
marriages, families, fellowships, friendships, teams, etc. proving evil, they strive not to be harsh, exasperating tence. Excellence is a high task achieved virtuously. legitimate authorities and strive to live within those
(Observable Virtues: courageous, sober, reflective, self- or manipulative. Just people strain to objectively deter- When high-character people collaborate, they produce boundaries for the betterment of all people. When those
aware, single-minded) mine what outcome, however difficult or painful, is right. a “culture of excellence.” True and enduring organiza- given authority violate conscience-convicting charac-
(Observable Virtues: upright, bold, diligent, decisive) tional excellence, therefore, is only sustainable by ter ethics, high-character people take wise action to
Applying Truth in our Relationships: people of high character. (Observable Virtues: self- justly hold them accountable. (Observable Virtues:
7) ACCOUNTABILITY: High-character people control, discipline, enthusiasm, pureness of heart, per- yieldedness, submission / “aligned with the mission”)
3) INTEGRITY: High-character people do what they scrutinize themselves and welcome the scrutiny severing spirit)
say they will do. Because of their habits of wisdom of others. They acknowledge that human nature com- 15) LIBERTY: High-character people preserve their
and fidelity, they demonstrate the courage of their con- pels us toward independence. Our preference for in- 11) SERVING-LEADERSHIP: High-character public rights by fulfilling their personal responsi-
victions by doing what they say they will do even when dependence results in isolation from one another. Iso- people sacrifice themselves for those they lead. bilities. In order to preserve public freedoms, every
there is great pressure to do otherwise. As a result, lation breeds temptation to unethical conduct. High- Serving-leaders model and mentor high-character con- person must exercise private restraints. Therefore, free
they do not manipulate anything or anyone at any time. character people resist this chain reaction by adopting duct and produce an inspiring environment in which people embrace self-control so the need for public con-
(Observable Virtues: consistent, predictable, orderly, transparent life and work-styles that invite inspection. their sacrificial example of serving others produces trols is minimized. As a result, high-character people
faithful, guileless) They place themselves in relationships that motivate relational harmony, principled reasoning, effective com- communicate and live out character ethics and inten-
self-examination and encourage constructive critique munication, clear mission, constant learning and char- tionally exhort others to do likewise as an active act of
from others, particularly those they serve. (Observ- acter-rich decision-making. Leaders of high character preserving liberty for everyone. (Observable Virtues:
“Everyone thinks about changing the world; but no able Virtue: an open, up-front, disclosing spirit) produce cultures of character where followers increas- temperance, self-control)
one thinks about changing himself.” ingly manifest virtues rather than vices. (Observable
– Leo Tolstoy Virtues: courage, humility, selflessness)
Ohio Center for Civic Character

16) LEARNING & MENTORING: High-character Our Ability to Change


people are lifelong wisdom-seekers and wisdom-
advancers. They have both a teachable and a teach- 19) SUBMISSION TO TRUTH: Truth transforms
ing spirit. They impart truth to the uninformed. They people only when we submit to it. People who seek
reduce ignorance by illuminating the disenfranchised. truth cannot not transform. Eventually everyone con-
They multiply character-based people and leaders. They fronts the power of truth. When people of conscience
nurture teaching relationships in order to maximize the are confronted by what is true, they feel convicted to
character and competency of others: they are men- replace or “put off” their lower character by pursuing
tors. Mentors endeavor to invest their lives in others in and “putting on” high-character ethics. Taking action
order to help them help others to attain their greatest on this choice can occur over night or over a long and
potential. (Observable Virtues: curiosity, creativity, often painful period.
teachability, inspiration)
e t a r y o f State:
Sec r
20) VALIDATING TRANSFORMATION: Over
la c k w ell, Ohio varied ingre
dients
e t h B e a nd
f J. Kenn
17) STEWARDSHIP: High-character people live as time, high-character people exhibit consistent osit iv
f the p
if they will eventually reap what they sow. They hope-giving and conscience-affirming character Desk o h and many o
e t- ne of
From th
ee n firs
actively identify with the role of trustee or steward virtues that are the outer proof of inner-charac- public service, I’ve
s
b ilit y. a c te r is th e cornersto of
rs in d via ha r tion C da
t my yea its strength
an
ve the rest. lso the foun
rather than owner. They perceive their function as a ter ethics. Virtues and vices are simply the observ- Throughou r co u ntr y d s o u t a b o nit y. It is a
resource or role “caretaker” for a limited time. As a able fruits that spring forth from either healthy or cor- e to give ou character—
stan
ndation of
commu
that combin ing r e d ie n ts —
ship is th e fo u
d vocabulary
result they regard “positions” and “possessions” as rupted roots of character ethics. Therefore, character e o f th o s e o d cit iz e n k a s h a re
On nd go
izenship. A d government. . We lac he-job chara
c-
“conferred in temporary trust.” Therefore, they care builders must make the lost language of character eth-
e ri ca n c it n d a m e n ta l resources ro le a s o n-t
Am d goo o fu r our
for their respective positions and possessions diligently ics their first language. Moreover, since it is fueled by business an of leaders often lack tw absence of support fo
both good e st of
and seek to add value to every role and every resource one’s daily responsibilities, not in the serenity of relax-
e t to d a y ’s generation a n d w e s u ffer from th fa llib ility . For the re
to which they have been entrusted. Ethical people have ation, character builders must adopt an accurate view Y ethics, laim in ymore
f c h a ra c te r-building p e o p le w ho dare to c s a re n o t c ommon an
a high regard for multiplying the value of their “ac- of the benefits of suffering. o n a few ed ethic
counts” for the purpose of serving others and benefit- ter builders
.
ho u g h w e ’ve all know b e ca u s e sadly, defin rners
erfect, alt common,” fe-long lea
ing those who follow. (Observable Virtues: humility, Relevance to Our Daily Lives No one is p n s e .” “ U n e . s u s to b e li e
e re is “ U
e
ncommonS ails upon the conscien f character. It challen
c ge
e n d U n c o mmonSens
orderliness, carefulness) us, th rev age o comm rvice
Persevering as a character-builder is the only thing that is “ S e n s e ,” because it p for learning the langu it o n . T h at’s why I re media, health and se
an d too l , and pas s on, faith,
nSense is a ve it, lead it government, educati
18) SEEKING COUNSEL: High-character people truly 100% within our personal control. This means Uncommo a s w e li the
seek wise counsel particularly when confronted there is hope for personal change today that is not de- e p u rs u e character— r O h io ’s b usiness, h a ra c te r e thics and at
as w odel fo ap of c reate a
with issues that cause tension and/or confusion pendent on change in others or in our circumstances.
s a c h a ra c ter ethics m e — it g iv es a clear m f UncommonSense c en
a rc
between two or more character ethics. Because Our conscience drives our convictions. These convic-
e rs . n s e to b e a rare resou
rs . T h e s ou nd ethics o B u t th is c annot happ
lead
d Uncomm
onSe othe ulture.
they are guided by their tireless pursuit of truth, they tions generate courage and this courage drives our con-
I have foun e a s il y p a ssed along to common character c e
e rd a uniting why I invit
regularly seek the wisdom of others of high character. duct, regardless of our past, our current circumstances,
ti m e is d e signed to b o p le to w a o n . T h a t’s
same rse pe stigati any
After they weigh this counsel, they act. The goal of or even cultures or settings that are hostile to high char-
e w o rk to guide dive m itte d to character. e c tu a lly honest inve a n d s h a re with me
fra m re com der inte ll articula te
ders who a
this process is wise action (what is right), rather than acter.
without lea e n s e w ill hold up un ad er to th oughtfully ics.
ncommonS ent, and I ask every re aracter eth
popular action (what would make one appear good) or
b e li e v e U a te d b y c h
pragmatic action (what might appear to work). The I ocum valid ealth,
result of a decision made with wise counsel is a clear e ri o u s s tu dy of this d . e s a ll re q uire and are r o f tr u e personal h
“Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. s ith it valu predic to
they find w nd guiding be the key
conscience and the fruit of a clear conscience is con- Only through experiences of trial and suffering critical fault s, worthy missions a a y s w il l g and
tentment. (Observable Virtues: thoughtfulness, patience, can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, n
Noble visio haracter foundation
is and alw
r b u il d in g . By learnin o-
ess. aracte a rev
discernment, confidence) ambition inspired and success achieved.” Thus, a str
ong c
o rg a n iz a tional succ w n c o m m itment to ch ’s le a d e rs can launch
n d g your o — Oh io
al vitality, a ider makin monSense
– Helen Keller interperson le a s e c o n s in U n c o m
mind, p ocated
With this in th e virtues adv me.
g c h ara c te re th ic s —
o u r g re at state. Join
livin ding in
ti o n o f c h aracter-buil
Ohio Center for Civic Character lu
J. Kenneth Blackwell
Ohio Secretary of State Sincerely,
180 E. Broad St., 15th Flr.
Columbus, OH 43215
www.OhioSpirit.org Blackwell
spirit@sos.state.oh.us J. Kenneth Citizen Education Project of the
877-767-6446 Ohio Center for Civic Character