Of all the federal holidays we celebrate, Memorial Day is one that is both cheerful and somber. While it marks for many of us the unofficial start of summer, Monday is a day of observance, centered on remembering and thanking the countless Americans in uniform who have given their lives for this country. Memorial Day is about acknowledging those heroic individuals and the remarkable sacrifices they made.
Many of our AME members have family, friends and loved ones who’ve lost their lives in service to their country. Our debt to these heroic individuals can never be repaid. They have earned our undying gratitude, and we will never forget their sacrifices.
No matter how you choose to spend the long weekend, infuse your activities with an extra burst of gratitude. I, for one, have so much to be grateful for. In February, I celebrated three years as CEO of AME. Because of all your hard work and support, I reflect on my transition to CEO as a period of resilience and am grateful for the opportunity to serve in this role during an incredible time of learning and change.
And our endurance paid off. This year already, we’ve hosted a wealth of in-person and virtual events, including our virtual AME Back to Basics Summit and, most recently, our AME Charlotte 2023 Lean Summit in Charlotte, North Carolina. I’m incredibly grateful for all who poured their energy into these events. I am also grateful to work within an organization that values people-centric leadership and the open exchange of knowledge.
As we take time to quietly reflect on all that we are grateful for, I’d like to share the following quote by John F. Kennedy: “As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter the words, but to live by them.” A true mark of our appreciation is transforming it into action. However you choose to exhibit gratitude, do so with the intention of lifting the spirits of others. Appreciation is infectious.
Enjoy your Memorial Day Weekend, and please remember to take a moment to honor those who gave their lives so you can enjoy it. Heroes live on forever in the hearts and minds of those who would follow in their footsteps. As always, please stay safe and keep looking out for one another.