Markkula Center of Applied Ethics

Avoiding Ethical Pitfalls in Government Service

Joe Simitian, who has served on a school board, city council, county board of supervisors, and in the state assembly and senate, shares the questions he tells every member of his staff they should ask themselves before making a decision:
Is it legal?
Is it ethical?
How will it look on the front page of the newspaper cast in the worst possible light?

Simitian is interviewed by Judy Nadler, senior fellow in government ethics at the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University.


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