I am CEO

Executive Director Inspires Change Through History

Full Episode from I AM CEO Podcast - IAM1976

In this episode, we have the privilege of diving into an insightful conversation with Robert Kesten, the Executive Director of Stonewall National Museum Archives and Library in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

Robert emphasizes the unique role that the Stonewall National Museum Archives and Library plays in preserving LGBTQ history. The organization's national collection provides a comprehensive perspective that goes beyond local narratives, enabling a better understanding of the LGBTQ experience.


Our conversation with Robert Kesten leaves us inspired and enlightened. His dedication to preserving LGBTQ history and advocating for the rights and equality of the community is truly admirable. Robert's leadership style, rooted in respect, transparency, and inclusivity, serves as a powerful model for individuals in positions of influence.

Website: stonewall_museum.org

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Full Interview:


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Robert Kesten Teaser 00:00

We are looking for how we can learn from those mistakes. I don't believe that we necessarily repeat them. I think that subterranean level of prejudice and hate is always there.

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It's just when there's complacency above it, it sticks up its ugly head and tries to pull everything back to a place that never really existed.

Intro 00:23

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This is the I AM CEO podcast.

Gresham Harkless 00:51

Hello. Hello. Hello. This is Gresh from the I AM CEO podcast and I have a very special guest on the show today. I have Robert Kesten.

Robert, excited to have you on the show.

Robert Kesten 00:58

Thank you very much.

Gresham Harkless 00:59

Yes. Super excited to have you on and talk about all the awesome things that you're doing. But of course, before we jump into the great conversation, I want to read a little bit more about Robert, so you can hear about some of those awesome things.

Robert is the Executive Director of Stonewall National Museum Archives and Library in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. It is possibly the only national LGBTQ+ headquartered in Florida. Prior to this, Robert traveled globally, working to integrate the Universal Declaration of Human Rights into daily life. Robert conceived of the United Nations, decade of human rights education approved unanimously by the UN General Assembly running from 1995 to 2004.

His documentary film on the Holocaust won the jury prize as a Moscow film festival. He has worked on projects from global agriculture to producing concerts and events from Kyiv to Madison Square Garden. Robert is definitely a man of many talents as I touched on some of them too, including directing an award-winning documentary to a career in music and working with presidents and prime ministers as well too, I think.

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But I think one of the really cool things that I found out about Robert when reading a little bit more about him is that I appreciate more than anything else that he's definitely a change agent. I believe I read or heard a little bit that he also might have a pair of casts of shoes of Eleanor Roosevelt if I'm right.

Is that right, Robert?

Robert Kesten 02:17

I got them.

Gresham Harkless 02:18

Yeah, I thought so. So Robert, are you ready to speak to the I AM CEO community?

Robert Kesten 02:22


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