After nearly 4 years of good times, Advisory Council recommendations, business plan presentations, good friends and great volunteers, I bid you all a fond farewell. That’s right, Friday is my last day as Manager of ONEin3 Boston and man does it feel weird to write those words.
During my time as Manager I’ve gotten to know literally thousands of amazing young Bostonians from all over the world, all types of backgrounds, representing every community imaginable.
I’ve learned a million lessons from my mentor and great friend Isabel Hardy, who also happens to be the brain who conceived of ONEin3 and set it on its way.
I’ve worked for and with the best Mayor in America, Mayor Thomas M. Menino, a man who believes fully in the idea that if you want to address the most important issues, you should go out and ask the people what they think.
I’ve participated, alongside 100 past and present members, in ONEin3 Boston Mayor’s Advisory Council work that has yielded tremendous programs and recommendations, from Neighborhood Nights and ONEin3 Gets Around to housing guides to plans for making the BPS School Selection Process more transparent. This year, I have no doubt the Council will produce at its highest level ever and I am proud to have been able to spend time with them.
I’ve played in a ONEin3 Wiffle Ball tournament on City Hall Plaza with our friends at Social Boston Sports and Phoenix Media Group. And the view from my sweet cube at ONEin3 HQ (til Friday) is of the most baller trophy anywhere (I didn’t win…I just stole the trophy!).
I’ve watched the entrepreneurial community in Boston evolve, challenge itself, grow and push the City toward a strategy for incubating our best startups in the Innovation District.
I’ve grown up with Boston Young Entrepreneurs, which was born out of Panos Panay’s civic commitment and Isabel’s vision. The BYE crew has taught me that entrepreneurs are a breed apart. They are people who quit their day jobs to scrape by on no cash. They wake up early and go to bed late and believe that the solution to any problem lies just around the corner. It will appear if and when they focus and work hard/smart enough. And best of all, entrepreneurs believe in supporting each other through good times and bad.
I’ve learned how to manage my budget with Jennifer Lane, ONEin3 Money and Mint.com. I wish I could tell you I’m loaded now but the truth is that Jenn and Mint have simply saved me from bankruptcy stemming from too many take out orders and rounds at the bar.
I’ve gone to events, volunteer opportunities, seminars and speaking engagements organized by our all-star ONEin3 Neighborhood Group leaders in every neighborhood of Boston.
I’ve discussed the future of government service with the bright minds in the Boston Urban Mechanics Program and the ONEin3 City Network.
I’ve worked with the best partners ever in Sonicbids, The Second Glass, Urban Adventours, Audissey Media, Massachusetts Office of Small Business and Entrepreneurship, Boston Home Center and Rental Housing Resource Center, The Office of Business Development, YAVA, Boston Cares, YWCA, Young Non-Profit Professionals Network, Americorps Alumni, MassINC, Time Out Boston, Social Boston Sports, MassChallenge, Shoestring Magazine, Exemplar Law and so so many more.
I’ve had the most capable and hard working interns imaginable in Matt Brownell, Samantha Vidal, Heather Green and Kendall Kirby, not to mention the craziest soccer fan in the world Nitjyot Saroan. Not my intern, but close enough.
And most recently, I’ve had the privilege to read the thoughts, ideas, hopes, dreams and stories of a tremendous stable of young writers.
In short, I wouldn’t give a minute of the last 4 years back.
So, my fellow young Bostonians, THANK YOU for riding along with me, doing all the work, coming up with all the good ideas and challenging me, the City, the Mayor and your peers to be better, smarter and more fun. You are the proof that Boston is a great city.
I hear all the time about the importance of grooming our future leaders. The implication is that when we’re old enough and it’s our turn, we will take Boston to great heights.
If I’ve learned anything at ONEin3, it’s that ONEin3ers are not future leaders. We are NOW leaders. So go get it!
While I am officially departing (although I’ll carry on with a few things while a replacement is identified), I know that ONEin3 is in great hands. You have built this and it’s yours to drive and grow.
Lastly, if it’s not clear yet, I sincerely love all of you. I consider everyone associated with ONEin3 a friend. Please stay in touch. You can reach me anytime on Facebook, Twitter or email at firstname.lastname@example.org
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