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Farewell from Sy
September 27, 2011
Farewell from Sy

JF&CS News Fall 2011

You’ve seen many opening letters, notes, comments, and quotes from me along the years. They are usually easy for me to write because there is so much that is good and exciting in what is happening here at JF&CS. This time it is harder. Maybe, because I have to write about myself, for I will be retiring at the end of September after being here for 18 years.

As you can imagine, there are many thoughts, memories, and feelings at this point. There are, of course, the programs that have been created, the people who have been my friends and colleagues, and the ideas that worked and those that did not. There have also been the many times that I realized the importance of what we were doing, the genuine impact we had on people, and the stimulation of finding new ways to address old problems. But most of all I appreciate the experience of doing all this with so many wonderful people.

The author Ian McEwan once said, "No one knows anything, really. It's all rented, or borrowed." This quote has been very true for me. My best times have been in those small conference rooms brainstorming, musing, joking, and creating. Sometimes the people who have been with me have been staff, other times board members, and still other times people who just cared very much about JF&CS. But, it is these people who provided inspiration, support, and the path forward. I have never been in an organization and community where people have been so open, collaborative, and encouraging. This includes many of you who are now reading this. So, thank you for letting me borrow and rent so many good things.

Freud stressed that the important people and experiences in our lives become internalized – they become a part of us. Who we are is a product in many ways of the people who have touched us. I always say at farewell parties that nobody ever really leaves JF&CS. This will also be accurate for me, because JF&CS is very much a part of me.

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