Since announcing my plans to retire this year, I’ve been overwhelmed with emails, phone calls, handshakes and even mail— it turns out people still write letters — from well-wishers thanking me for my work at SourcePoint. All the kind words have been both appreciated and, at the same time, embarrassing. I’m the one who should be doing the thanking.
Since my first day on the job — May 4, 1992 — I’ve received nothing but encouragement and support. If I were to use this essay simply to list the names of everyone who played a significant role in SourcePoint’s success story, you would grow weary of reading.
In our complicated world, where there are big problems to solve, it takes more than one person, one organization, one community to successfully address a need. It takes teamwork, collaboration, and sometimes compromise to get the job done. Compromise has become a dirty word these days, but I think taking into account multiple perspectives and seeking respectful accommodation is the only path to lasting progress. We’ve had that here and having a united team working toward the same goal is what led to our success.
One thing I’ve repeatedly heard from our volunteers is that they get more out of volunteering than they give. That same sentiment certainly applies to me as I envision retiring from a place I love. Working here taught me so much, made me humble, and helped me become a better person. I’ve been reminded on a daily basis just how lucky I have been to lead SourcePoint, and to work in Delaware County alongside so many truly awesome people.
I will not miss the few naysayers. I will not miss the problems that seem to fall out of the sky. I will not miss endless meetings. I will not miss having to say, “No,” when I would prefer to say, “Yes.”
At the end of the day, I will miss the people. I’ll miss working together to find creative solutions to challenging issues. I’ll miss my stunningly productive and passionate staff. I’ll miss our incredibly dedicated volunteers. I’ll miss the insight and support of my knowledgeable board of directors. I’ll miss our generous donors and supportive community members. I’ll miss our partners on the front line of service throughout the county. I’ll miss hearing first-hand from in-home care clients and enrichment center members about how we’ve helped. I’ll even miss those of our hardworking elected officials who have supported me and SourcePoint over the years.
When I hear thanks from others, I think of these people, because they are who have made SourcePoint possible. Together, over the past 27 years, we’ve made a difference in the lives of literally tens of thousands of people. The great news is that, as I step aside, all of those awesome people will still be here, passionate, involved, and lifting our community to even greater heights.
The new executive director is inheriting a great team. She will need the same support and encouragement I received and benefited from as she leads this unique organization.
Thank you for the opportunity to be a small part of a big effort to create something special, and thank you for your continued support of SourcePoint as it meets new challenges in the future.
I’m about to begin the next adventure in my life’s journey. I hope to see you along the way.