One Year Later
A time for reflection and a time to look ahead. That seems to be the mantra or repeated phrase that we invoke on ourselves this week as time almost stood still for the past year. My calendar a year ago was full on the week of March 8th, 2020 and I recall attending an exciting press conference at the Heinz History Center on March 12, 2020 introducing the latest initiative “Pittsburgh Works Together,” or PWT, with my friend Jeff Nobers, Executive Director. There was something strange about being downtown, mask or no mask, shake hands or just fist bump…..What was going on?
Then the whole thing stopped! Our Chamber, who was embracing 16 new member companies each month for the past 8 months all came to a screeching halt! The doors closed, staff was sent home and quite frankly everything was a blur after that. Meetings were somehow held remotely on “Zoom” which was completely foreign to me and “all hell” seemed to be breaking loose. It was abundantly clear that we had to develop a plan to not only work from home but to completely change our habits both personally and professionally.
All of us have learned from this and I learned something very special. Strength from my staff, board and members of our Chamber was the glue that held everything together for us. Creativity, leadership and an open mind come to play as I look back and try to learn from it all. I’m proud to reflect today that as a leader I followed the numbers, followed the science and did not get caught up in a political mess that turned families, communities and loved ones against each other. So look where we are, with just over 30% of our adult US population vaccinated. The economy just received a huge “jolt” from the new administration with a $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package and an additional forthcoming infrastructure spending initiative-the second phase of an ambitious plan to revitalize the American economy.
I’m grateful to my family, my colleagues and to you, those individuals who have encouraged and supported me and this Chamber to move forward and serve our community and individuals the best we can. Let’s not look back for too long but look forward and know that like always we will be better than ever.
Pittsburgh Airport Area Chamber of Commerce