The world knows Arnold Schwarzenegger as a famous bodybuilder and a Hollywood action hero, but he is also a successful businessman, generous philanthropist and California's 38th Governor.
During his tenure as CEO and Governor of the eighth largest economy in the world, Gov.Schwarzenegger fought to protect California's economy by taking on the special interest groups, from both sides of the aisle, with a David vs. Goliath approach. It was a battle of the old economy versus the new, as he worked to reform California's fiscal policies, create a better business environment, reduce burdens on employment, boost exports and stimulate job growth.
An Evening with Arnold Schwarzenegger
Arnold Schwarzenegger is a global icon; a mammoth of public life, sports, and entertainment. An immigrant with few resources, except those that really mattered: a vision, a fire in the belly, and huge charisma, his story is one of classic inspiration and the American dream. Gov. Schwarzenegger shares the four principles that have underpinned his success: have a vision and trust it; break the rules; don't be afraid to fail; and work hard - there are no shortcuts.
Will Innovation and Green Technologies Save the Global Economy?
From his experience in American politics to his efforts combating climate change, Gov. Schwarzenegger incarnates openness to change and the boldness of innovative solutions. His legacy is a California that is a world leader in renewable energy innovation, technology development and deployment. Gov. Schwarzenegger discusses the need to shift the debate on energy from a singular focus on carbon emission reduction, and instead urgently develop an American energy strategy. He identifies security and the U.S.'s overreliance on foreign oil; the need to address pollution more generally; and the importance of energy productivity, green jobs and technological innovation as the primary objectives of such a strategy.
In 2003, Schwarzenegger became the 38th Governor of the State of California in a historic recall election, and as governor ushered in an era of innovative leadership and extraordinary public service. Schwarzenegger's most notable accomplishments while governor include the nation-leading Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006 - a bipartisan agreement to combat global warming by reducing California's greenhouse gas emissions - and overhauling the state's workers' compensation system - cutting costs by more than 35 percent. In addition, Schwarzenegger was the first governor in decades to make major investments in improving California's aging infrastructure through his Strategic Growth Plan, helping to reduce congestion and clean the air. He established the Hydrogen Highway and Million Solar Roofs Plan, continuing his leadership in creating a greener environment. In November 2009, more than three years of leadership by Governor Schwarzenegger culminated with the passage of the Safe, Clean and Reliable Drinking Water Supply Act of 2010.
As governor, he was California's most effective marketing tool, traveling across the country and around the world promoting California-grown products, cutting-edge technologies and the state's diverse travel destinations. In addition, using his background as an internationally recognized athlete, Schwarzenegger made restoring health and fitness a top priority. He signed legislation making the state's school nutrition standards the most progressive in the nation and continues to promote healthy habits by taking harmful trans fats out of California restaurants and ensuring nutritional information is available to diners. To improve classrooms across the state and ensure that all California’s students have access to the world-class education they need to grow, thrive and succeed, Schwarzenegger led the reform to make California competitive for up to $700 million in federal Race to the Top funds.
In recognition of these efforts, Schwarzenegger has been rewarded for his great leadership and vision many times over in many arenas, including the Simon Wiesenthal Center's "National Leadership Award" and the American Council On Renewable Energy’s “Renewable Energy Leader of the Decade.”
Since leaving office, Schwarzenegger co-founded the R20 Regions of Climate Action, a global non-profit dedicated to helping subnational governments develop, implement, and communicate the importance of low-carbon and climate resilient projects as well as their economic benefits. In December 2012, he was recognized as a 2012 Global Advocate by the United Nations Correspondents Association for his work with the organization.
In August 2012, the University of Southern California Schwarzenegger Institute for State and Global Policy launched to provide students an opportunity to focus on the responsibility of leaders to transcend partisanship in order to implement policies that most benefit the people they serve. Its five priority areas of focus are education, energy and environment, fiscal and economic policy, health and human wellness, and political reform.