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December message from AVAP President

IMPACT. Verb. “To have a strong effect on someone or something.” 

Are you tired of this word yet? It seems to be one of the big buzzwords in advancement right now. We must show impact of the gift, have impact statements, etc. You all probably know enough about me by now to know how I feel about impact-not only in my job, but in living my life.

In this season of warm fuzzy feelings, holidays, food and fellowship, I have a great year-end story about impact I’d like to share (I’m just full of stories). I know this was the subject of one of my earlier emails, but I wanted to send a reminder (LOL!). This isn’t about money, but about kindness and connection and IMPACT.

A couple of weeks ago, I received an email from one of our alums from the class of 1988. I wasn’t working at LSU at the time, but knew people at the school, and I had a farm. This young alum had a very sick horse when she graduated that she was concerned would not make the trip to the new home/new job. I offered to keep the horse in comfort until she passed away, and I did so. Fast forward almost 30 years and I get an email from this alum (with whom I have not communicated since the call about having to put her horse down) wishing me a merry Christmas, and telling me how grateful she has been for all these years for what I did for her-that she often thinks about it. WOW! Made my day. And reminded me of why I am still around the vet school after all these years.

So, as we roll into this frenetic holiday season, finishing our cards, frantically shopping and honking our horns at crazy drivers (must be them, certainly can’t be ME), let’s stop and take a deep breath and take a moment to consider the impact we have on others, for good and for bad. Let’s stop and thank people, let them know what their presence in our lives has meant; let us be kind and giving, not just taking. Let US, not just our donors, live our lives in an impactful way.

The happiest of holidays to all!!

Gretchen