Why is VeraSage a think tank?

I get asked this question all the time, and I’m afraid I’ve never given a completely satisfactory answer.

We get asked constantly for endorsements, for example, or affiliations to promote various products and services, and I always have to explain we are a think tank and that’s not part of our Purpose.

But a lot of people don’t have much contact with think tanks. I’ll freely admit I’ve been “over-invested” in think tanks for at least twenty years and have learned an enormous amount from all of them, as well as having mentors in nearly all of them.

So I thought I’d share with the VeraSage community the origins of our founding. It dates back to September 4, 1999, in a paper titled “Operation Telescope.”

This was written for Paul Dunn (and Ric Payne), at that time the founders/owners of Results Accountants’ Systems (RAS).

Obviously, the original vision did not come to fruition since Paul Dunn sold his portion of the company in 2001.

But the idea didn’t die, and my colleagues, Dan Morris and Justin Barnett, and I founded VeraSage in 2001.

As an organization, it’s a disembodied entity held together by an idea—that is, to improve the professions.

I recently read the Noble prize winning economist Herbert Simon’s autobiography—Models of My Life—wherein the last page reads:

To make interesting scientific discoveries, you should acquire as many good friends as possible, who are as energetic, intelligent, and knowledgeable as they can be. Form partnerships with them whenever you can. Then sit back and relax. You will find that all the programs you need are stored in your friends, and will execute productively and creatively as long as you don’t interfere too much.

Measured by this standard, VeraSage has certainly met my expectations. I get to work with some of the brightest people I’ve ever met, with the added bonus that they are all good friends.

I’d like to express my deep appreciation and gratitude to everyone of them:

  • Justin Barnett

  • Dan Morris
  • Scott Abbott
  • Peter Byers
  • Michelle Golden
  • Daryl Golemb
  • Brendon Harrex
  • Paul Kennedy
  • Ed Kless
  • Chris Marston
  • Tim McKey
  • Paul O’Byrne (R.I.P.)
  • Tim Williams
  • Yan Zhu

And of course thanks to our community who support us: readers, friends, colleagues, and a myriad of others too numerous to list.


  1. Ed Kless says:

    Dittos to Ron and my fellow fellows.

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