This is the most preaching you’ll ever see from PMC. And it’s tongue-in-cheek, at that. The message is nonetheless vitally important as we enter the mostly indoors months ahead. In addition to protecting our neighbors, let’s protect the workload (and sanity) of our health care workers by doing whatever we can to minimize the reach of the virus. The more we all make safety from the virus our priority in these winter months, the more we will be helping our already-strained health care system as we await vaccine distribution and, eventually, Spring (yes, Spring will come, both literally and metaphorically!). Such efforts are truly the best Holiday gifts we can give each other.
Wishing you happy and safe Holidays!
The National Security Agency has again asked Brookings Executive Education (BEE) to provide instruction on conflict resolution to executives at NSA Headquarters, Fort Meade, MD. BEE’s goal is to support the men and women who serve our country with cutting-edge leadership courses, either at the Brookings facility in Washington, DC, onsite at the requesting agency, or virtually. The BEE instructor retained for this purpose is Paul Paese, of PMC. Paul will teach “Strategies for Conflict Resolution” at Fort Meade virtually next month. This two-day course has been converted from in-person to virtual delivery with agencies like NSA specifically in mind. Paul is excited to have the opportunity to continue working with the distinguished executives at NSA.
With election season upon us, the deep political and ideological divisions in our country are especially palpable. Passions run strong on all sides. Is it possible to debate and disagree in today’s climate without “going tribal” and putting one’s tribe ahead of our nation as a whole? As we’re bombarded by inflammatory rhetoric in the weeks and months ahead, let us remember the words contained in the Seal of the United States – E pluribus unum, or “Out of many, one.” Lively political discourse is essential for a healthy nation, of course. Yet even as we debate, we are still one. It’s easy to forget this crucial fact. The more mindful we are of our national unity, the more peaceful we will be toward each other, despite our ideological differences. And who knows? If we can see beyond our political divisions, what’s to prevent us from defining our loyalties even more broadly? As Martin Luther King said so famously: “If we are to have peace on earth, our loyalties must become ecumenical rather than sectional. Our loyalties must transcend our race, our tribe, our class, and our nation; and this means we must develop a world perspective.” Here’s wishing us all some perspective this electoral season.
These words from William P. Johnson, Dean of the Law School at Saint Louis University, exactly capture our sentiments at PMC:
“By now it should be clear that the story of racial injustice in America is not a story of a few bad apples; racial injustice in America is a horror story that began to be written 400 years ago. It is a horror story that includes the enslavement of Black bodies, a civil war fought to preserve the right to enslave Black bodies, the lynching by angry, racist mobs of thousands of Black bodies, Jim Crow laws and legally enforced segregation, Dred Scott, Plessy v. Ferguson, redlining, mass incarceration and the school-to-prison pipeline. For too long, white America has simply taken for granted aspirational notions of equality and of justice for all, while not paying heed to the Black voices that have been trying to tell us all along about the brutal reality of the Black experience in America.”
As white Americans, we at PMC commit to listening better, learning more from Black Americans, and amplifying their voices. We commit to taking action, each in our own way, to contribute to the urgent need for societal change.
For the past several weeks Paul Paese, of PMC, has been working on converting to online delivery one of the executive courses he teaches at the Brookings Institution. Thanks to the innovative partnership between Brookings and Olin Business School at Washington University, Paul has had the amazing good fortune of working under the tutelage of Ray Irving, Director of Olin’s Center for Digital Education. The CDE got a big shout-out this month, and deservedly so, from business school Dean, Mark Taylor, in the Olin blog. The course Paul and Ray are converting, Strategies for Conflict Resolution, is coming together nicely and will officially launch in the Brookings Executive Fellowship program early this month.