Hard to believe, but almost three years has passed since I wrote the first “Giving Back” column in 2010. Credit goes to James Overstreet, associate publisher of The Daily News, who pulled me aside one day and asked if I had ever thought about sharing my ideas and some of our Lipscomb Pitts Breakfast Club philanthropic efforts with a broader audience. What started as an idea to share helpful tips, quickly evolved into a pipeline for positive stories, a spotlight for local nonprofits, and an avenue to provide easy ways to get more engaged in our community.
Looking back, I am proud to say that we were able to highlight the efforts of around a hundred nonprofits that are all doing amazing work in the Mid-South. More important, though, is the fact that many of you did not just read the columns, but actually responded by stepping up and getting engaged. Over the years we had countless success stories of readers stepping up to volunteer, become mentors, attend events, raise money, and host food, clothing and toy drives.
We have talked about it before, but the key to our success as a city, region and nation is engagement. While money is a great resource, people provide the real power in making a difference and moving our community forward. A dollar bill cannot walk, talk or physically solve any problems. We must lend our time, talents and energy to being a part of the solution. Each of us has a part to play and together we can do great things! So, engagement will always remain my focus and I hope will remain yours, as well.
Now the time has come for me to say goodbye, at least temporarily. This will be my last “Giving Back” column with The Daily News. I want to personally thank the whole Daily News team for affording me the chance to have a voice in sharing some of the positive stories from across the Mid-South. Indeed, it is a tremendous honor to be a small part of the movement taking place here in our city, where positive energy is working to create a tidal wave of opportunity for everyone.
You will still be able to follow me and our Lipscomb Pitts Breakfast Club efforts in our free weekly email newsletters, on our radio and television shows, and at our events. Our LPBC Radio Show airs each Saturday from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. on AM 990 and our television show, “The Spark,” airs the third Thursday of each month at 9 p.m. on WKNO-TV. Once again, thank you to The Daily News for the amazing opportunity and a huge thank you to each of you for taking the time to read and follow the column over the last three years. I truly appreciate it!
Jeremy Park, president of the Lipscomb Pitts Breakfast Club, can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and followed on Twitter (@lpbreakfastclub) and Facebook (facebook.com/lpbreakfastclub).