On February19, 2020 I stood on the Edmond Pettus Bridge for the first time after leading a day of professional development for leaders at a Fortune 200 organization.
There was a holy silence as I stood on that bridge.
The invite to lead came from a company leader who had attended one of my career development presentations over 3 years ago.
Our chance encounter came full circle, when I, a black woman, business owner, in my 30s, was asked by him to come and facilitate leadership development for his team: a 90% white male audience, mostly natives of historic Selma, AL.
The courage of the men and women on that bridge in 1965 on Bloody Sunday, fighting for Civil Rights, allows me to stand in boardrooms today.
Only 55 years separates me from Bloody Sunday. Yes, just 55 years.
Because of them, he could become a leader in a Fortune 200 organization.
Because of them, I was able to become a business owner.
Because of them, we connected.
Because of them, we are able to bear witness of their sacrifice on that bridge, just a few feet away.
That is the power of courage and connection.
The memory standing on that bridge and all that led up to that specific moment is etched on my heart forever.
This weekend, I am reminded of the responsibility that I have, that we have, to continue making "good trouble". The loss of an icon and hero, the Honorable John Lewis, has left a gap that is unimaginable to fill. It will not take one person, but the collective spirit of hope, optimism, and unity in the humanity of all who seek freedom and justice to fill his shoes. Admittedly, it is hard at this particular time, but I refuse to let go of hope. We will continue the fight and honor the legacy of our ancestors.
#blackgirlmagic #blackhistorymonth #courage #connection