Dear Greenhouse Scholars Community,
I want to begin by expressing our solidarity with the individuals, families, and communities of color who continue to be victimized unjustly. We remain hopeful that our country and the world will continue to evolve and progress to a place where the sort of violence that happened this past week is eradicated from our society. While every voice in support of changing this is important, more important are our actions and solutions.
Our vision is “to create a community of leaders who will evolve the communities of the world.” For me, this resonates strongly these past several days. Our work has never been more urgent and important.
The outcome of our work is to enable hope, opportunity, and belief to thrive in every community. We believe everyone in our society should be able to live the life of their choosing. One of the underpinnings of our goals and aspirations is to bring together a diverse community of people to work together to create lasting change across communities. We must have people from all walks of life come together and unite in a manner that cannot be ignored or set aside for another time and place.
We refute and stand firmly against any approach that meets violence and victimization with violence. We must find a way for times like these to bring us together, not allow hate and violence to further separate us.
Our society has made meaningful progress on issues of race and inequality. Our progress is not enough. Now is a time to accelerate solutions, to demand more and faster change. We will continue on our path with renewed vigor. We will continue to work every day to infuse hope, opportunity, and belief into every community. We will continue to put ideas in place that lead to everyone being able to live a life of their choosing. As I write this note I ask myself how I can help more than I have previously, how I can change, how I can implement positive solutions, how I can be the change I want in the world. Maybe everyone has questions and answers for themselves.
Making statements, assuring our voice is counted on the right and just side of history is not enough, not even close. We need more action. We will continue to lead with our actions. We will continue to unite people, to include people, to bring together diverse leaders from across the divides that separate us: socioeconomic, generational, political, ethnic, religious, etc. We will continue to elevate our Scholars’ solutions. We will continue working from within low-income communities to shine a light on some of our country’s most inspiring role models. We will continue educating our donors and supporters about what our Scholars are facing and achieving. We will continue preparing our Scholars to lead and to have a positive impact. We will continue to promote the power of education to create opportunity and positive community change.
This is a moment of great sadness, frustration, anger, and disbelief. We must use it to fuel our resolve and our focus on positive, sustained progress. We must not shrink from or confuse the challenge that is in front of us but rise to the occasion – today and every day.
With hope and belief,
Peter M. Burridge
President and CEO