Every path to adulthood is strewn with missteps, epiphanies, and hard-earned lessons. Only Reggie Love’s, however, went through the White House by way of Duke University’s Cameron Indoor Stadium. Mentored by both Coach Krzyzewski and President Obama,Love shares universal insights learned in unique circumstances, an education in how sports, politics, and life can define who you are, what you believe in, and what it takes to make a difference.
Power Forward tells the story of the five years Love worked as a personal assistant to Senator Obama as a candidate for president, and President Obama, and it is a professional coming of age story like no other. What the public knows was well put by Time magazine in 2008: “[Love’s] official duties don’t come close to capturing Reggie’s close bond with Obama, who plays a role that is part boss and part big brother.” What the public doesn’t know are the innumerable private moments during which that bond was forged and the President mentored a malleable young man. Accountability and serving with pride and honor were learned during unsought moments: from co-coaching grade school girls basketball with the president; lending Obama his tie ahead of a presidential debate; managing a personal life when no hour is truly his own; being tasked with getting the candidate up in the morning on time for long days of campaigning.
From his first interview with Senator Obama, to his near-decision not to follow the president-elect to the White House, to eventually bringing LeBron, Melo, D-Wade, and Kobe to play with the President on his forty-ninth birthday, Love drew on Coach K’s teachings as he learned to navigate Washington. But it was while owning up to losing (briefly) the President’s briefcase, figuring out how to compete effectively in pick-up games in New Hampshire during the primary to secure support and votes, babysitting the children of visiting heads of state, and keeping the President company at every major turning point of his historic first campaign and administration, that Love learned how persistence and passion can lead not only to success, but to a broader concept of responsibility.
Reggie Love was the special assistant and personal aide to President Barack Obama from 2007 to 2011. Before that, he graduated from Duke University, where he was captain of the 2004–05 Duke Blue Devils basketball team and a member of the 2001 NCAA national championship team. Love graduated from the Wharton School of Business in 2013 and now serves as partner and vice president of Transatlantic Holdings.
“This is a behind-the-scenes look at apolitical campaign, a presidency, and a young man’s coming-of-age as he learnsthe value of persistence and responsibility.” —Booklist
“[Love] ably reflects the human dimension of the president whose former aide plainly still admires him, and [Power Forward] also suggests what a tumultuous transition it can be for an outsider to find himself immersed in Washington, D.C., without much sense of the responsibilities or expectations accompanying his new job…. [T]he mentorship he received from coach MikeKrzyzewski prepared him well for the responsibilities of being a team playerfor Obama… Though Love admits to his share of mistakes, both he and thepresident he served emerge from this memoir as admirable and likable.” — Kirkus Reviews
“[Power Forward] is kind of a political coming-of-age tale, and it's by far the most fun political memoir to come from the Obama administration. . . . Love's book is the bro-iest portrait of the president yet, but maybe also the most humanizing.” —New York
“These stories are worth telling, and this book is worth reading. . . . What Love knows is more interesting than what he thinks, and the small moments he shares can be charming and memorable. . . . Its real value is showing Obama up close, watching him react in those fleeting moments that never make headlines.” —The Washington Post
“If you still marathon ‘The West Wing,’ you’ll be into this one.” —The Skimm
“[A] well-written and entertaining account.” —St. Louis Dispatch