Jimmy Dunne is, by his own admission, a man who sees the world in black and white. In a time when shades of gray are increasingly admired, this is not always a popular perspective. But Dunne’s singular vision became a bright light for others to follow after his workplace was decimated by terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center. Dunne is Senior Managing Principal for Sandler O’Neill, an investment banking firm that suffered the loss of one-third of its 171 member workforce on 9/11/01.
At a 2010 Princeton University event, “Faith & Work Ethics in the Executive Suite,” Dunne spoke at length with Laity Leadership Institute Senior Fellow David W. Miller about his decision making process in the first harrowing days after he learned that his partners, friends, and coworkers had been killed. Nine-and-a-half years after suffering those losses, Dunne was still emotional about them.
He had survived the first terrorist attack on the World Trade Center in 1993, but was on the golf course the morning of September 11, 2001, when he learned of the second attacks. Thinking about the needs of spouses and children left behind, he quickly decided that these grieving families would receive salaries, medical benefits, and bonuses owed to their missing loved ones. …
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