State of the Environmental Movement: We’re All Leaders

Dec 16, 2011 by  | Bio |  Leave a Comment

Courtesy of Putneypucs @ flickr. Creative Commons

In talking with guests at CLF’s holiday party last week, I was reminded of something simple and powerful: In this movement, we’re all leaders.

Helping New England thrive is a group effort.  It’s also CLF’s vision. To make it happen we work with  our colleagues, our allies, and our friends – many of whom were present at the party.

These guests included elected officials, heads of state and government officials, business and nonprofit CEOs – even an international delegation. CLF staff and alumni were there. Board members, families and friends joined us.  And also many dedicated people who help New England thrive by doing their part – sometimes small but always heartfelt – every day, week or month.

Talking with many present, I was reminded of what I have often thought: To succeed, we need each other.

I was also reminded of the story of an 8 year old girl with courage and a voice, but struggling against acute asthma. At a hearing for a proposed project in western MA that would aggravate her asthma and further threaten her community, she was sitting with my colleague Sue Reid, vp and director, CLF Massachusetts. She had in her hand a one page handwritten statement she was prepared to deliver that said, among other things, “It’s not fair!” After the committee spoke, she turned to Sue and said: “This really isn’t fair!”

She was right. We have followed her lead, and are working hard for fairness and justice for her community. We all should learn from her, and be inspired by her. She is a leader in our movement.

Reflecting on our holiday season, this message seems appropriate: we are sustained by the work of our allies and friends. In this movement, it does take a village. And everyone truly is a leader.

To all those who have worked with us, to our donors, sponsors, and allies, and to our friends and family, thank you. Without your leadership, we couldn’t do what we do.

May have you have a wonderful Holiday season.