Bennet’s storied career is marked by adaptability | SummitDaily.com

Bennet’s storied career is marked by adaptability

Michael Booththe denver post

While chasing future wife Susan Daggett in Montana, Michael Bennet fixed up their rental cabin with used furniture and stocked the wood supply. (Photo courtesy of the Bennet Campaign, Special to the Denver Post)

The knock on Michael Bennet is that if he is Superman, it’s only because he has leaped over his own resume in a single bound.His move to Denver in 1997 came after holding four different jobs in his four years out of Yale law school.He landed a plum job crunching spreadsheets for a Republican billionaire after admitting in his interview that he was bad with numbers.He was picked as chief of staff by a Denver mayor who didn’t even know what a chief of staff was supposed to do.He was named superintendent of Denver schools having never worked in education.And then, passing over several entrenched politicians faster than a speeding bullet, Bennet was tapped as U.S. senator, when his wife, SusanDaggett, said “never in a million years” did she imagine him running for office.Bennet’s father calls it extreme adaptability and attributes it to the Wesleyan way. And Douglas Bennet, the former president of storied Wesleyan University, which tops national lists of the best schools, should know.Liberal arts graduates from Wesleyan are taught to reach beyond what they already know and learn what they need as they move along, said the elder Bennet.”This may be a Wesleyan prejudice,” Douglas Bennet said, “but you don’t need to walk in with that skill.”And Wesleyan grads tend to stick together, leading to a well-founded impression that Michael Bennet is a super hero of networking.Bennet’s rise through the public ranks in Colorado didn’t come without some wandering in the wilderness, figurative and literal. Four different stints as an East Coast lawyer soured him on the legal trade. After meeting Daggett, a fellow Yale Law grad, Bennet was happy to chase her to Montana, where she worked in environmental law.While she toiled long hours, Bennet plied his woodworking hobby and fixed up old furniture for their cabin. They hiked, fished and talked about which city to raise future children in: Bozeman? Seattle? Washington, D.C.? Bennet was adamantly a “no” on the last one, though he’d grown up there, Daggett said in an interview.Read more at http://www.denverpost.com/election2010/ci_16175968