South San Francisco, CA December 20, 2018 by Aubrey Merriman, CEO of Boys and Girls Club of North San Mateo County
The typical holiday message mentions all the business success of the year soon to end, talks about goals for the future, thanks customers, vendors, and talks about holiday cheer, peace and goodness. This year, I want to tell you about our employees and Board of Directors. They are the backbone of this organization. They make the important things happen every day. They are generous to a fault, not just at the holiday time but, throughout the year. Sure, there are times when they disagree, when days are long and patience is short. However, they rally together in service to our Club community time and time again!
We have employees who go school, take on other jobs to make ends meet, sit on PTAs, school and district committees. We have employees who participate in mentorship programs, coach, work with their churches, cook for the needy, and work with organizations. We have Board members who sit on other boards, run their own businesses, take care of their families and Club families, participate in other organizations, host meetings, fix and paint, give and get resources, run for political office, make themselves available for the Club in a moment’s notice, and advocate for the Club. These are some of the things I know about. I’m sure many of them do things privately for the good of others that they choose not to openly discuss. They are just good people. I feel incredibly privileged to have been a part of this Boys & Girls Clubs team for almost 3 years. I have been challenged by the work, by my own impatience at times, inspired by our young people, and in awe of our incredibly dedicated employees and Board. I am encouraged by our collective effort to make the Club and our community a better place – because our members and the community deserve the best we have to offer. The success of our Club is built on the efforts of our people – built on the “power of WE.”
Thank you to all of our employees and Board who work each day to make our Club, our community, and our world better – and me look good! Most of our customers will never really know how hard you and your colleagues are working to make our mission a reality. But they will appreciate the depth of care and effort behind everything you do from the moment they pick up their kids. People, who know the Club, have fond memories about the Club, which means they have been moved our mission. It is a humbling reminder that your collective effort is critical and transformative.
Our Club members do the heavy lifting each day. The step outside of their comfort zone and inspire us to do the same. This is why I constantly push myself, you, and this organization to do the best work possible, and commit to a process of continuous improvement. And, as we take steps to becoming a stronger, higher-performing organization, we will have an even greater impact in the future. We have more hills to climb, relationships to build, doors to open, courses to chart, lessons to learn, and members to serve.
At some point, every truly invested leader reaches a place where it’s no longer about the money, the conquest or chase, the growth or acquisition, etc. As you get older, it’s more about “Am I making a difference?”, “Am I positively influencing people?”, Am I ensuring that leadership is shared and diversity, equity, and inclusion are embraced?”, and “Am I fostering a values environment?” My answer is that I am not but, WE are! What greater holiday gift could a leader ask for? None, I have this gift and I am so proud of it. Thank YOU!
Best wishes for a magical holiday season to you and your families as we all look forward to a successful 2019!
Chief Executive Officer
Boys & Girls Clubs of North San Mateo County
Our mission is to inspire and enable young people to realize their full potential and contribute to their communities.