I am approaching “being in person” again with passion and gusto! I have seized the opportunity to see my family far and wide, welcome new grandbabies in person, celebrate my oldest son’s upcoming wedding and assume caregiver roles for my aging parents.
The holidays are a time of reflection and renewal. We turn inward to examine where we are, where we have missed the mark, where we find ourselves with room to change and grow and then we must turn outward with new purpose.
I am reimagining what “togetherness” means to those I work with, those we serve and our community partners. This writing prompt asks for us to share personally. In this case, personal is professional. Leading the agency during the pandemic was like guiding through fog, listening for the cries for help and the outstretched offers of partnership.
It took an unprecedented need for reinventing what it means to work, to serve, to listen and to act. Now, as the fog has cleared, we stand in an open field. We have grabbed this opportunity to commit ourselves newly to being the strongest community partner possible. We have created new staff positions dedicated to the mission of strengthening lives and empowering our community through outreach and partnership.
We are open, accessible, and hungry to hear from you. Life is not always easy, and the obstacles can appear insurmountable. Yet- if we link arms, share hearts, listen with love, laughter, and curiosity we can harness the strength of togetherness to make rainbows where there were storms and pathways where there were none.
I pledge myself anew to lead and live with curiosity, empathy, compassion, a commitment to serving with excellence, and the courage to fail and begin anew. I am grateful to be on this journey with you, in friendship and fellowship.
Terri Bonoff is the chief executive officer of Jewish Family and Career Services.