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A Thank-You For More Than Money

MLK Day Parade JRC staff-board-01172011 (2)Milton Davis (second from right) with staff and board members of Jordan/Rustin Coalition preparing to march in the King Day parade.

Byline: Vincent Jones

Liberty Hill received the following thank-you note in October from Milton Davis, Program Director of the Jordan/Rustin Coalition just after Milton had traveled with other members of the Liberty Hill community to the White House to meet with members of the Administration about the issues that most concerned group members.

We're  sharing it with you in this holiday season as a reminder not only of one of 2012's highlights for our grantees, but also of how much the gift of 360-degree support means to frontline leaders working for change. 

"To whom it may concern,

I have been involved with Jordan/Rustin Coalition as a staff member for almost a year now, and I have been associated with JRC as a board member or volunteer since a year prior to that; the entire two years I have been with this organization it has been synonymous with the Liberty Hill Foundation.  In those two years I have seen JRC grow tremendously largely as a result of your support.

Although direct funding is always nice, I wouldn’t say it’s solely – or even mostly – money that has been beneficial from Liberty Hill. As both a board member and staffer, I was present for several Liberty Hill workshops, trainings, and convenings.  Although they can be demanding, I can say with full confidence that it was Liberty Hill that taught us how to approach funders, it was Liberty Hill that taught us about the importance of membership, and it was Liberty Hill’s hands-on staff who gave us the real-world advice and unique opportunities so often missing from Foundations we receive funding from. Vincent, Evelin, Shane, Anthony, Jacky, and others we have interacted with will always be considered friends of JRC.

Touring the White House last week (through Liberty Hill), I walked past the Blue Room and exchanged jokes with one of your "donor-activists." This environment that you create where everyone is interconnected in the same struggle and roads of access are mutual represented one of the many moments  of realization I’ve had where I’ve been reminded that what happens at your foundation is truly unlike anything our organization has encountered – or perhaps ever will – encounter anywhere else.

So, thank you for the generous gift of $32,000, but thank you more for all you’ve done which hasn’t involved a check. I mean that sincerely on behalf of JRC and sincerely as a young leader whose anxieties have consistently been calmed by your generous staff and unique programming."

Sincerely,

Milton Davis

Program Director

The Barbara Jordan/Bayard Rustin Coalition

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