A Blessing in Disguise?

One of the benefits of having a newsletter that goes out on the last day of every month is, it’s one of the last things to drop into your inbox for the whole, entire year. What can I say that hasn’t already been said? Or what can I repeat that should be reinforced? Or what words of wisdom can I impart to send you into the new year we’re all so hopeful for?

Really, I have only this to say: Thank you.

NGRA was able to not only continue our research mission in 2020, but strengthen it, in spite of everything the year threw at us. With the active engagement of our Board and Research Committee members, we designed new programs and seeded new projects that we hope to see blossom in 2021. We gave up our office and missed all the usual conferences and meetings throughout the year, but felt a sense of community in our shared separation. And through greatly reduced expenses, we will be able to grow our Research Fund in 2021–a promise for the future.

Collectively, I’d say we’re all amazed at how much we were able to accomplish, especially when there were so many really valid reasons not to. And inspired by how people pulled together to get through the darkness of a year we’re happy to leave behind.

2020 was nothing like we’d imagined. We may not have achieved everything we wanted, but we found renewed appreciation for all that we have.

I’m grateful for the lessons of the year, for the camaraderie of my colleagues (you!) and for the opportunity to try again next year. And in gratitude, I will offer this adapted quote from Winston Churchill as a toast tonight at midnight: If 2020 was a blessing, it was certainly very well disguised.

Happy new year,

Donnell Brown