While sorting my "end of life" papers and reviewing 82 years of life on Earth, I found some historic news clippings about Sen. Orrin Hatch. I was reminded that we're the same age, and of the pivotal roles he has played. Like him, I maintain my desire to "keep at it." Retirement lets me pursue gardening, talking with friends every morning at the local coffee house, reading nutritious, fact-based local and national news and keeping close to my children. With age, my respect for them and for those who have been leaders in my life seems to deepen. Also like Hatch, I need to remain active and continue sharing my experience and philosophy in the interest of our country for as long as I remain coherent (by my own definition!).
One of the freshly excavated clippings is a very rich, intelligent and caring interview conducted in Hatch's Salt Lake City offices with Salt Lake Tribune staff writer Ann Poore. The resulting well-written piece appeared on the front page of the Sunday, Nov. 11, 1990, Arts section under the headline: "Hatch speaks out on the arts" and continued under the subhead "Hatch makes a case for tolerance, 'human understanding' for arts." The portrait accompanying the article was of a youthful, composed, 55 year old.
We were both relatively youthful and in our prime: Hatch, a U.S. senator, and I, a practicing architect, appointed with Hatch's endorsement by President Ronald Reagan on Feb. 25, 1985, to serve as a member of the National Endowment for the Arts Advisory Council. Alas, my term was only six years. However, we both served and became acquainted during the presidencies of Reagan, George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton.