Book cover of An Ordinary Man: The Surprising Life and Historic Presidency of Gerald R. Ford by Ricahrd Norton Smithby Richard Norton Smith

“Richard Norton Smith had brought a lifetime of wisdom, insight, and storytelling verve to the life of a consequential president—Gerald R. Ford. Ford’s is a very American life, and Smith has charted its vicissitudes and import with great grace and illuminating perspective. A marvelous achievement!” — Jon Meacham

From the preeminent presidential scholar and acclaimed biographer of historical figures including George Washington, Herbert Hoover, and Nelson Rockefeller comes this eye-opening life of Gerald R. Ford, whose presidency arguably set the course for post-liberal America and a post-Cold War world.

For many Americans, President Gerald Ford was the genial accident of history who controversially pardoned his Watergate-tarnished predecessor, presided over the fall of Saigon, and became a punching bag on Saturday Night Live. Yet as Richard Norton Smith reveals in a book full of surprises, Ford was an underrated leader whose tough decisions and personal decency look better with the passage of time.

Interview with the Author

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Richard Norton Smith, “An Ordinary Man”
9/3/23           63 min

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#131: Richard Norton Smith – “An Ordinary Man: The Surprising Life and Historic Presidency of Gerald R. Ford”
7/18/23           65 min

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America’s Most Improbable President: Richard Norton Smith on Gerald Ford
4/24/23          51 min

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“He finds himself in a job he never wanted” A Conversation about Gerald Ford with Richard Norton Smith
4/27/23         41 min

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