I AM HONORED to step into the role of president of the Maine Maritime Academy Alumni Association. My predecessor, Joe Cote, and I worked closely together on the association’s strategic plan over the last four years while he was president and I was VP, along with fellow board members, and we are seeing elements of that plan implemented. Thank you, Joe, for helping pave the way for us.
In the next few months, as the school weathers the storm and impact of COVID-19, challenges will emerge that we may not foresee now. While we are fortunate that, with President Brennan’s leadership, the school is well positioned to deal with its effects, it will be incumbent on all of us to rise to meet the challenges, whatever they may be. This is the hallmark of what it means to be a Mariner.
Throughout our history, as Maine Maritime Academy alumni, we have always been leaders. In the workplace, I found that MMA alumni distinguished themselves by always doing more than others were willing to, and when things were especially difficult, they would find the ability to do what others simply could not. While I hope that any new challenges emerging do not require the grit we are capable of mustering, I know I can count on my fellow Mariners if it is required!
I am proud to cite a recent example of this; meeting the “Vision 2020” Alfond challenge, whereby we needed 20% alumni participation in unrestricted giving along with raising more than $750,000 each year for three years. Some expressed concern to me about moving the needle that averaged 13-16% participation to that level, though were confident we could raise the required monetary amount. We had more than 40 fellow alumni step up and volunteer to do the hard work of reaching out to you and making the “asks.”
“We did not just meet the challenge, we blew it away.”
So many of you responded that we did not just meet the challenge, we blew it away, with very nearly 25% of alumni giving in 2020. To all of you, I wish to pass along my thanks.
We do not know what lays ahead, but as Mariners we will be ready!
Bill Full ’76