Chelsea Clinton On ‘Gutsy,’ Good Advice, & Leading The Clinton Foundation


In one of my favorite scenes in the new Apple TV documentaries, boldHillary and Chelsea Clinton take tango lessons. (Yes, as before Minister of Foreign AffairsSenator, and Hot sauce lovers note Hillary Clinton.) They stand facing each other in brightly colored dresses, and decide who will lead. bold Unwritten, but this moment seems particularly unplanned. Hilary quickly gave in to her daughter as the music started, but after just 30 seconds, she somehow usurped control of the dance. they laugh. There is “of course” to their reactions. You can practically hear Chelsea’s inner monologue: “Mom…”

This episode, from episode eight, focuses on motherhood and motherhood. At one point, they browse through a photo album and talk about Chelsea’s childhood in the public eye. The 42-year-old is a global health advocate with three children Under the age of ten, and she – like her mother – is trying to make a difficult world softness for kids and adults alike.

This week, in her role as Vice President of the Clinton Foundation, Chelsea returned to the stage for a different kind of dance: After a six-year hiatus, the collective support event, Clinton Global Initiative (CGI), returned to New York, to welcome global leaders and activists – people like Dolores Huerta, Malala Yousafzaiand New York Governor Kathy Hochhol and Melinda French Gates.

Chelsea, who is vice president of the Clinton Foundation and the Clinton Health Access Initiative, is at CGI.Noam Gallay/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

It’s great to be back,” Chelsea told Bustle at the annual event, which began in 2005. “It feels great to be in a community with so many problem solvers, and it’s great to have the most diverse people and the smallest group of participants ever.”

CGI participants were asked to make commitments toward positive change, many of which were revealed during the event. (For example, the French Gates pledged $50 million to a Rwandan university from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.) This year alone, CGI celebrated over 140 commitments, which will create More than 1.6 million jobs.

Below, Chelsea talks about preparing for and dealing with the haters and Buckingham Palace.

“I’ve become more shy and reserved as I get older, in part due to a reaction, frankly, to my parents being my parents.”

Since your last CGI, do you think your driving style has changed?

Oh my God yes. I hope I have developed positively in the past six years. I think I have a clear sense of who I am and where I want to spend my time and energy.

I’ve been thinking about how to be more inclusive, making sure I’m listening not just from the people I want to hear from, but the people I need to listen to. I was thinking about how to get the right balance between confidence and humility. to become a parent It helped me feel my confidence in a more instinctive and deeper way, so that I could feel more right about where I invest time — and not invest it in areas where other people are better equipped, have better goals, and have a better ability to make a difference.

Thinking about the people you love, do they have leadership styles that you want to emulate in your work?

Sometimes I want everyone to understand 18 reasons why I think [something] It is important. I want everyone to know everything. And sometimes people, even those who might agree with them, exercise restraint because of the fourth reason. So I had to work out how to communicate. saying about Briefness is the soul of intelligence I think it may not always be about intelligence, but the ability to build consensus. Like, “Okay, these are the three or four things that we work towards and hope to achieve.”

When you’re working to build consensus, whether in a meeting or at an event like CGI, do you have specific ways you’re preparing for it?

I like being overly prepared, which I know is something we women really struggle with, because we feel like it sometimes. Only if we’re done, finished, more than ready Are we even ready? However, it would be disingenuous to say that I do not do all my reading and write my own notes. Even if I receive recommended notes, I will often rewrite them in my own words, in my own rhythm. This is the time when I feel I can call the meeting to order, because I know all I want to achieve.

Do you feel that there was a certain period in your life when you were able to reach your leadership potential?

I had a fair amount of trust from my parents and grandparents, but especially from my Little Rock teacher. Then I became more shy and reserved as I got older, in part due to the reaction, frankly, to my father. be from my father and like it live a private life, ‘Do my job’ and ‘Put my head down’. When She campaigned for my mom in 2008And the [I became] More comfortable by feeling uncomfortable. Speaking in public was really out of my comfort zone. And then when I started teaching, when I was working on my Ph.D., it helped push me in different directions.

Chelsea with her dad, President Bill Clinton, and stockings a cat in the Oval Office in 1994.Smith Collection/Gado/Archive Images/Getty Images

Logical. Do you see that any of your leadership qualities come from one parent or the other?

I think the need to prepare comes from my parents. especially MomEven though my dad.

What’s the best advice you’ve received?

There are two types of advice, one of my grandmother And one from my mom. My grandmother said, “Life is not about what happens to you. It is about what you do with what happens to you.” I believe in that deeply. Then my mom always told me some variation of, “Sticks and stones can break your bones, but words can never hurt you.” Or, you know, “You have to have thick skin, but also don’t dismiss people who give you constructive criticism.” And the way I filter that is by taking serious criticism from serious people seriously, and taking non-serious criticism from non-serious people in a not-serious way.

Oh, I love it. Has a serious person ever given you bad advice, or advice that was not helpful to you personally?

Absolutely. I received a tip [about] How do I prepare to speak in public which was not particularly helpful to me. I find training in front of the mirror really distracting. I find myself looking at my eyebrows or the way my mouth moves and not actually listening to what I’m saying.

in interviews boldyour mother said What would Queen Elizabeth ask for? Was she on the show? The Queen’s funeral today. What is your experience with meeting her?

I met Her Majesty when I was on an official visit with my parents 20 years ago. My main impression was of a person of exceptional dignity and duty. She made me feel comfortable asking questions about the history of Buckingham Palace, did a little tour and everyone was so kind to me. I later learned that I shouldn’t wearing pants, which I didn’t know at the time, but was later told I should have worn a dress. But no one told me before I went, but I felt bad about it afterwards.

The Clintons with Queen Elizabeth at Buckingham Palace in 2000.Paul J Richards/AFP/Getty Images

Is there anything she said left with you?

more [than words]her dignity, the true warmth of her introduction.

And one last question before you fall back into CGI. Looking towards the midterm elections, who inspires you?

Oh my God, so many people. I am very inspired by Val Demings in Florida. I think she’s amazing and I’m so impressed with her campaign and how she’s so clear about why she’s running and why she deserves everyone’s vote to serve the people of Florida in the United States Senate. I’m still very impressed Senator Warnockwho has yet to explain why climate change is real, or why we have an obligation to one another, and yet he does so with such intelligence.

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

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