Someone must have shared this with Olga because she got up and left, but I'm sure she will return.
Giancarlo (Ibárgüen) said two minutes to read it, so that's what I'm going to do.
Pierre Goodrich introduced me to Dr. (Manuel) Ayau in 1973, on one of Muso's visits to the office. I didn't really begin to know and really get acquainted with Muso
until we were at the Liberty Fund Board meetings, beginning in the 1980's.
Over the years, Muso was a source of encouragement and support. Like many who are here today, I came to value his friendship, his counseling advice and most importantly,
the strength of his convictions and the use of freedom's principles.
In many ways he was like Pierre Goodrich; they both understood human freedom and its implications, and embraced them with great passion.
I can recall many fine dinner conversations before Liberty Fund Board meetings that became a basis for my greater understanding of world events. Whether it was the law
of comparative advantage, the inappropriate interference of the State Department, economics or recollections of various meetings or events he had experienced that bear on the subject being
discussed. He was forever a teacher.
Muso was a member of the Liberty Fund Finance Committee, which annually visited our endowment investment managers. We spent several days traveling, beginning in
Indianapolis, going to Chicago, New York, and Boston and then back home.
I recall one trip that I had "Bahia School of Economics" hats made, and on Muso's it said "Dean". We went to the 21 Club in New York for dinner with the US Trust Company
and the wait-staff cheered us as we walked through the kitchen to go to the private dining room.
When we got to the private dining room, Marybeth Ray, the president of the US Trust asked me: "What's the deal with the hats?" I said: "Well, if you don't find out soon,
I'll let you know."
She was sitting between Muso and me, I told her, like I said, if she didn't understand in five minutes, I would tell her. In three minutes she nudged me and whispered:
"I know." Muso rarely let much time go before he was talking about some aspects of economics at any time you met him.
In May 2000, I received an honorary doctorate from this university (Universidad Francisco Marroquín), with Muso giving the opening comments.
One of his statements about me was, I quote,: "He is, above all, a strict and faithful executor of the intentions of the founder of the institution he leads, an obligation
which he never ceases to remind us --his fellow members in the Board of Directors."
While I believe he was sincere in this comment about me, he was really sending a message to you, successor board of directors that are sitting in the room, that he wanted you
to follow his examples and his wishes.
On more than one occasion he told me that is exactly why he worded that phrase.
One of the most comical moments I shared with Muso is when he reported to us at dinner that he had just come through immigration and they'd refused to fingerprint
They told him that now that he was seventy-nine years old he no longer was a threat to the United States Government. He was speechless and you don't find that very often
with Manuel Ayau.
Just before he became tied to his bed, he visited me at the
carpintería (carpentry) at Hogar Rafael Ayau to say "thanks" for my involvement there with the orphans. It was a long walk from the parking area to
the carpintería that used-up precious strength and I'll never forget that visit.
Muso's many accolades in the newspapers and those discussed today are well deserved, but I will remember him as a mentor and a friend.
T. Allan Russell shares a few anecdotes about Manuel Ayau which depict his sense of humor, leadership style and passionate love of economics. Russell comments on how he will remember Muso: not only as a teacher but mostly as a mentor and friend.
Manuel F. Ayau: Forever a Teacher, a Mentor and a Friend T. Alan Russell
Plaza de la Libertad Universidad Francisco Marroquín Guatemala, September 12, 2010
A New Media - UFM production. Guatemala, September 2010 Camera: Mario Estrada, Claudia de Obregón, Jorge Samayoa, Sergio Miranda, Mynor de León; digital editing: Mynor de León, Claudia de Obregón, Sergio Miranda, Rebeca Zuñiga; webcast: Carlos Petz/Rebeca Zuñiga; index and synopsis: Ana Lucía Solórzano; content reviser: Sofía Díaz; publication: Carlos Petz/Daphne Ortiz
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons 3.0 License Este trabajo ha sido registrado con una licencia Creative Commons 3.0
T. Alan Russell
T. Alan Russell is chairman of the board of Liberty Fund, Inc. Previously, he was president and chief operating officer at Illinois Cereal Mills, Inc.; vice president of Indiana Telephone Corporation; and senior accountant at Arthur Andersen & Co. He is member of the Mont Pelerin Society and Philadelphia Society. Russell holds a BS in Business Administration with a major in Accountancy from the University of Missouri, and a Honorary Doctorate in Social Sciences from Universidad Francisco Marroquín.