Democracy Dies in Darkness

On Leadership

George Washington: The man, the myth, the legend

January 10, 2016 at 4:59 PM

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Welcome to the first episode of Presidential, a new podcast by The Washington Post.

In 44 episodes, starting today and finishing right after election day in November, we'll examine the leadership and legacy of each of the American presidents. The podcast is hosted by Lillian Cunningham, editor of The Washington Post's On Leadership section.

Each episode of Presidential will explore how our previous presidents have confronted decisions, handled crises and redefined the role of commander-in-chief. As listeners tune in each week, the podcast will reveal the ways in which our collective sense of what's 'presidential' has evolved over the years and how each president—effective or ineffective, esteemed or forgotten—has something to tell us about what it takes to hold the nation's highest office.

This first episode features the voices and expertise of Washington Post reporters Joel Achenbach and Bob Woodward, as well as Julie Miller, a historian at the Library of Congress. They take us inside some of the defining traits of George Washington—from fearless action hero to charismatic dancer, to insecure and reluctant president.

Want a better sense of what it would be like to date George Washington? Or serve under him in the Army? Or counsel him on the etiquette of the presidency? Listen to the first episode of Presidential here:

New episodes will be released on Sundays. Here's how to follow along:


Lillian Cunningham is the creator and host of the "Presidential" and "Constitutional" podcasts. She was previously a feature writer for and editor of The Washington Post's On Leadership section, for which she received two Emmy Awards for her interviews with leaders in politics, business and the arts.

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