Books

Moments of Happiness: A Wisconsin Band Story

Autobiography, 2024

Presale is now open for the highly anticipated “Moments of Happiness: A Wisconsin Band Story” by Mike Leckrone and Doug Moe.

Click here to reserve your early copies of the story of 50 years of Badger Band memories!

Anticipated delivery is September 2024.

When Mike Leckrone retired as director of bands at the University of Wisconsin in 2019, he had served in that role for an astonishing fifty years. A brilliant showman, he became known for aerial entries and sequined outfits. He created the Fifth Quarter celebration that follows all home football games, removed barriers for women to march in the band, and established regular appearances at Camp Randall by special-needs high school musicians. Above all, Leckrone has always sought joy in life—which, along with his sixty-year love affair with his late wife, UW “band mom” Phyllis Leckrone, was perhaps the secret to his remarkable career. A consummate musician, as both a trumpeter and an arranger, Leckrone remains an outstanding raconteur—a talent beautifully on display in his long-awaited memoir.

This book is the next best thing to sitting down with this master storyteller. Coauthor Doug Moe captures the joys of performing—whether at Camp Randall, in the Kohl Center, or along the Rose Bowl Parade route. Reading Leckrone’s story, one comes to understand the mix of discipline, showmanship, work ethic, warmth, toughness, wit, and musical skill that make him a Wisconsin treasure. Even for people who know Leckrone, Moments of Happiness details the stories behind the highlights and the unglamorous work that made his accomplishments possible. It both cements his legend and offers unprecedented insights into a career that will never be equaled.


The Right Thing to Do:
Kit Saunders-Nordeen and the Rise of Women’s Intercollegiate Athletics at the University of Wisconsin and Beyond

biography, 2022

Published in the 50th anniversary year of the landmark Title IX gender equity legislation becoming law, “The Right Thing to Do” is both a chronicle of the rise of women’s intercollegiate athletics in the United States and a biography of one of the movement’s leaders, Kit Saunders-Nordeen, the first director of women’s athletics at the University of Wisconsin and vice president of the Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women (AIAW).

The book is locally available at Mystery to Me Bookstore, 1863 Monroe Street, Madison, WI

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tommy thompson book

Tommy: My Journey of a Lifetime (with Tommy G. Thompson)

autobiography, 2018

The autobiography of four-term Wisconsin governor and former Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy G. Thompson. Filled with never before told stories, the book captures Thompson’s incredible journey from small-town grocer’s son to globetrotting statesman.


Excerpts

"Once when I was visiting President George H. W. Bush in Washington, while he was president, he took me out to lunch at the Alibi Club, a private club where he was a member. It was clear the staff there revered him. At one point, Bush took me into the kitchen and introduced me to the chef and the waiters. It was hard for me to imagine a president doing that, but he did. Leaving the kitchen, Bush said, ‘Never forget where you came from, Tommy.’ I never have. "

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United Way of Dane County 1922-2022: Celebrating a Century of Innovation, Collaboration and Positive Change

2022

Published in its centennial year, “United Way of Dane County 1922-2022: Celebrating a Century of Innovation, Collaboration and Positive Change” chronicles 100 years of philanthropic impact by Dane County Wisconsin’s largest local private funder of health and human services. Stories of engaged citizens, business leaders and thousands of volunteers along with the impactful programs advanced by United Way make this book a celebration of the contributions United Way has facilitated to education, income, housing, health, nonprofit coordination and civic engagement.


A digital version is found here.


The Back 40: TASC’s Story

2019

An amazing 40-year story that began with a Stevens Point farmer's vision of fair tax deductions for sole proprietors. Don Rashke's vision became, under his son, Dan Rashke, Madison-based TASC, the country's largest third-party administrator, with annual revenues in excess of $100 million. To get there, the Rashkes faced down doubt and near bankruptcy, and emerged not only spectacularly successful, but with an unmatched commitment to giving back and philanthropy.

Audio version currently available on iTunes for free

Also available on Kindle.


Stroke Runner: My Story of Stroke, Survival, Recovery and Advocacy

Autobiography coauthored by Doug Moe, 2020

Eric Sarno was an elite amateur triathlete, race director, successful bio-pharmaceutical sales representative and single father of two young daughters when the unthinkable happened―he suffered a near-fatal stroke. In this riveting and emotional memoir, he describes his journey to recovery and advocacy. This is an inspiring story of resilience told with candor, humor and an eye towards helping others.

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Dissassembled: A Native Son on Janesville and General Motors – a Story of Grit, Race, Gender and Wishful Thinking and What it Means for America

Nonfiction edited by Doug Moe, 2019

There have been many articles and even books written on what happened after General Motors closed its plant in Janesville, Wisconsin in 2008 after some 90 years of operation. Here, for the first time, former Wisconsin state senator—and Janesville native—Tim Cullen tells the inside story of how and why it happened, and what it means for the future not only of Janesville, but cities across America.

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mikeroykobook

The World of Mike Royko

biography, 1999

An illustrated biography of the celebrated Chicago newspaper columnist. A Chicago Tribune Choice Selection of the Year.

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lordsofthering

Lords of the Ring: The Triumph and Tragedy of College Boxing’s Greatest Team

non-fiction, 2004

The rise and fall of varsity boxing at the University of Wisconsin. Twice optioned for a film, the book was runner-up for the Derleth Award for the best nonfiction book of the year by a Wisconsin author, and received honorable mention on the Chronicle of Higher Education’s list of the best college sports books of all time.

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favre

Favre: His Twenty Greatest Games

non-fiction, 2008

A look at the life and times of the legendary Packers quarterback through the lens of his best performances on the field.

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surrounded

Surrounded by Reality: The Best of Doug Moe on Madison

articles, 2005

A collection of Doug’s best newspaper columns. Of the book, longtime Madison Mayor Paul Soglin noted, “Humor and sensibility in the same author with a determination to get to the truth. It is uncommon but it is Doug Moe.

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goodmen

Good Men: The Lives and Philanthropy of Irwin A. and Robert D. Goodman

biography, 2014

A biography of the beloved brothers who gave Madison so much, with a foreword by legendary basketball coach Bo Ryan.

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uncommonsense

Uncommon Sense: The Life of Marshall Erdman (with Alice D’Alessio)

biography, 2003

A biography of the Madison original who built the Unitarian Meeting House for Frank Lloyd Wright, and much more.

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alexjordan

Alex Jordan: Architect of His Own Dream

biography, 1991

A biography of the extraordinary and enigmatic creator of the House on the Rock near Spring Green.

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ringside

As Editor: Ringside Seat, Wisconsin Politics from the 1970s to Scott Walker by Tim Cullen

biography, 2015

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‘A marvelous retelling of the American story’

Tom Loftus, former U.S. ambassador to Norway, on “Tommy: My Journey of a Lifetime”

Doug Moe’s books can be ordered through Mystery to Me Bookstore in Madison or by clicking here.