Marion Jones

Marion Jones: Track Star
"In my world, excellence means going beyond what the masses think is right or possible or gender-correct. I have less than 11 seconds to achieve my goals. To have everything gel, you need the belief that you can do it. Then there's intervention from the man above, and that just happens. Third, you need to put in the work, put in the time. I don't wake up in the morning as the fastest woman in the world. Sure, I was born with talent, but you have to dedicate yourself to what you're doing before you can even think about entering the realm of excellence."
Bill Cosby

Bill Cosby: Comedian
"For me, an excellent show happens when I feel that my audience trusts me. Knowing the audience is with me allows me to unlock certain doors and perform without a net. I know I don't have to lower the bar on my jokes or go for easy laughs, and my performance level rises. It's a wonderful feeling. I gave all my children names beginning with E, for excellence. Because a baby comes into the world pure and unaffected and fragile. The E names remind us of the excellence we continually have to strive for in caring for that baby."
Manolo Blahnik

Manolo Blahnik: Shoe Designer
"An excellent shoe results from the fusion of many things: the best quality silks, leathers, stones; the combination of colors; the rhythm and fluidity of the lines of the shoe. As a designer I always try to be as fresh and spontaneous as I can, without compromising or following trends. I made a shoe called Avion that I love very much, as it epitomizes a modern shoe to me. It's made entirely from modern materials: steel, aluminum, and plastic."
Ron Clark

Ron Clark: Teacher
"Every time I walk in front of my classroom, I always think. This could be the best class in America. The most important thing we can do for those we love is to lift them up with our words. If I were to constantly tell a kid, "You talk all the time and never do your homework," that child would begin to believe me. But if I were to say, "You're one of the brightest kids in the school," he or she would believe that, too. To move people toward excellence, begin to expect excellence and then communicate that."