It is hard to believe the time has come to write this note with my final day being this Friday. As I shared in a public note earlier today, I haven’t spent a lot of time thinking about leaving Graham because this transition was never about leaving. Graham will always be a part of me and my family. Our daughter was just 1 when I joined; she will be a teenager next week. She knows only that we are Graham and Graham is us. We plan to keep it that way.
This transition is about setting Graham up right for our next chapter, the next in our 215-year old book. It is about the right leadership for the right time. Our new President & CEO, Kym Watson, has us pointed at Vision 2025 as our north star. With her at the helm of this amazing community of kids, parents of all kinds, staff, board, volunteers, supporters, and partners, we will weave ourselves more deeply into the fabric of our communities. Sometimes out-front, sometimes alongside, and other times supporting from the back, we will bring help, opportunity, and justice when and how it is most helpful to those we serve (and who also serve alongside us).
This journey will require that we continue to be intentional, nimble, and open to change. Change is inevitable; progress is harder. Progress comes from listening, being clear about where we are going, going together, and taking each step with intention. That is the Graham way. It will lead to new destinations in the future. Graham has never stood pat and now is no time to do so. In Kym, you are in the best of hands and hearts. Be bold in pursuing Vision 2025. Our City needs it. There will be hard moments and setbacks amidst the progress. In those moments, stick together. Lots went wrong in the last 12 years but we have come so far, together. I am very proud of our accomplishments and yet my greatest wish, which I am supremely confident will come true, is that they are dwarfed by what you all will achieve going forward.
You’ve inspired me in each of my days here. I will miss you all deeply but this isn’t farewell, goodbye or so long. We remain in this together. What that looks like, I don’t know, but I am certain it is so.