Skip to main content
Cover for Up and Doing

Up and Doing

Two Presidents, Three Mistakes, and One Great Weekend—Touchpoints to a Better World

James Harmon

Hardcover

List Price: 28.00*
* Individual store prices may vary.

Description

When everyone else says no, say yes.

James Harmon has embraced that motto through a lifetime of adventures—brokering international deals, meeting the famous and the notorious alike, purchasing the song “Happy Birthday” for $18 million, and even wrangling congressional back-room dealings as CEO of the Export-Import Bank during the Clinton Administration.

From the moment he arrived on Wall Street as a young investment banker in the 1970s, Harmon said yes to each new chapter. His journey begins in Italy and reaches a climax during post-Arab Spring protests in Egypt, where he works with the State Department to stimulate the local economy. At each stop, Harmon advocates for global change by examining the issues of our time, such as the economic empowerment of women and the urgent need for a carbon-free future.

Harmon’s words encourage us to embrace public service in ways big and small, from helping a local library to electing a president or bolstering a nation. A journey through a period of great change in American history and in one man’s life, Up and Doing shows that we can grow wherever we’re planted and that the best way to do well is by doing good.


Praise For Up and Doing: Two Presidents, Three Mistakes, and One Great Weekend—Touchpoints to a Better World

"Harmon deftly manages the writer’s trick of turning his life into story. The tales of this one man’s astonishing journey are irresistible, riotous, resonant, heartfelt, and subtly revealing of where America has been and where we’re headed. I loved this book." —Ron Suskind, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author of The One Percent Doctrine and Life, Animated

"While some would have taken their Wall Street winnings and coasted, Jim went to Washington, Asia, and Africa to help define a new frontier of investing. [He] could have stopped there, but he saw yet more purpose and impact to be made—with the environment, Egypt’s economy, and now this book." —Roben Farzad, host of public radio’s Full Disclosure

"Harmon finds that his financial expertise is vital, but he is convinced that what matters far more is his talent for building relationships—with Hollywood movie executives, Mormon businessmen in Utah, Washington politicians, Russian oligarchs, and Egyptian entrepreneurs." —Connie Bruck, staff writer for The New Yorker

"From billion-dollar business deals to pathbreaking climate change research, Up and Doing defies classification—much like its author. Jim Harmon’s inspiring book traces a career in the service of others and gives new hope for harnessing the power of economic development to secure a sustainable future for generations to come." —Andrew Steer, President and CEO, Bezos Earth Fund

"For those who wish to understand complex market dynamics and how investing has the potential to create positive change, Up and Doing serves as an invaluable and informative reference." —Sherif Kamel, Dean, the American University in Cairo School of Business

"Whether focusing on climate change, assisting or investing in underdeveloped economies, or just standing up to unfair policies and practices, Harmon proves again the importance of ‘doing.’ The candor of his reflections and the import of his actions will inform and inspire others to get up every day and go about the work of making a better world." —Ruth Simmons, President, Prairie View A&M University

"In a time of division and polarization, Up and Doing is a refreshing return to the lost art of relationship building. James Harmon has given us a playbook for transforming the world through the most challenging financial markets, but it’s more than that too. It’s an inspiring story of a wildly successful career." —Stephen Ross, Chairman and Founder of Related Companies

Disruption Books, 9781633310544, 376pp.

Publication Date: November 9, 2021



About the Author

JAMES A. HARMON is chairman of the Egyptian–American Enterprise Fund, a private corporation seeded by US government funds to promote the development of the Egyptian private sector. He is board cochair of the World Resources Institute, a global policy and research institution. Nominated by President Clinton and confirmed by the US Senate in June 1997, he was the chairman of the Export-Import Bank of the United States for the four years that ended June 2001. Prior to that he was chairman and CEO of the investment bank Schroder Wertheim (1986–1996). He lives in Weston, Connecticut.