Inauguration Day Sunrise Photo by Geoff Livingston

Capitol Communicator heard from a number of communicators  who provided their thoughts about the new administration.  Here’s what we heard:

-There was one line in President Biden’s speech that really resonated with me. He said we “must lead not merely by the example of our power…but by the power of our example.”  Let’s hope we can all better live up to this ideal in our personal and professional lives to help our country and communities move forward in a positive way. Ray Crosby, President & Chief Executive Officer, Crosby Marketing Communications.

-My heart is full of hope but my words cannot capture this moment the way Amanda Gorman’s did: “There is always light if only we’re brave enough to see it; if only we’re brave enough to be it.” Today is a new beginning for this country, as we take a step closer toward gender and racial equality. Kamala Harris is the first woman and woman of color to hold the nation’s second-highest office, and it’s our job to make sure she will not be the last. We must insist that strong leaders do not have to look a certain way. They do not have to be authoritarian or militaristic. They can be powerful and effective leaders and be authentically who they are, whether that’s empathic, relentless, collaborative, tough, or bold. They can be allowed to express the full range of their humanity. As a female CEO and mother of two daughters, today is an important reminder of my responsibility and opportunity to sponsor and mentor women and minorities in business. But it is also a day for each of us to ask ourselves, what can we do better? That’s the brave thing to do. Beth Johnson,  Founder and CEO, RP3 Agency.

-The communication tools that we use to strengthen our country, our relationships and our democracy are more important than ever.  As we’ve learned, the choices that we make in how we engage with one another matters and will ever continue to be a central focus as we are all ever-evolving.  This is a time to come together, define our voice, define our tone and define how we in the business community need to come together to do more, to understand each other more, embrace our unique perspectives, and like what we heard on inauguration day, making friends with foes, and building a bridge to the future. As brand leaders and thinkers in the communication strategy and creative space, these have always been our goal posts, but now more than ever we need to think about how all of our thinking incorporates where we currently are as a nation and as a people.  Excited for what lies ahead and how we can play a role in making this country and this world a better place.  Debbie Bates and Mark Devito at Beyond Definition.

-While Americans have always answered the call to serve, I believe the next four years stand to see the greatest response yet. “Government as a force for good” is the tone, vision and expectation of President Biden and his administration. From AmeriCorps to the Marine Corps, from public health to public education, I believe the rising generation of Z’ers will take notice and see government as a place where they can apply their skills, talent and education to improve society. As communications, marketing and media professionals who support these federal agencies, we need to step up as partners with government to build aspirational employer brands, improve federal hiring experiences, and introduce national service opportunities to this generation of new professionals. This Inauguration offers government a positive platform to attract the service-oriented, mission-driven people needed to accelerate our government’s, and our country’s, successes. With our support, maybe we can invent a new, long standing call to action inviting American’s to do what they can for the country that takes us further into this decade, and beyond.  Andy Blenkle, Vice President, Fors Marsh Group.

-I offer my very best wishes for President Biden and Vice President Harris. Today is not about the past, it’s about the future. I’m excited to see how they’ve already embraced diversity and inclusion with their cabinet nominations and I hope we see more appointments of diverse leaders across the government. It will only make our country stronger as we refocus on getting people vaccinated, supporting small businesses, and helping those in need. Thomas Sanchez, Founder + CEO, Social Driver.

-“Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.”  This quote from former President Barack Obama is meaningful for me today, both professionally and personally. I am writing this on Inauguration Day 2021, a day that marks the thriving of our democratic system, our freedom as a society, and our faith in government to support its constituents.  Mimi Carter, Senior Vice President & U.S. General Manager, Proof Strategies.

-Having documented DC protests for the past four years, I can easily say the mood in the city will greatly improve with the incoming Administration. Like everyone else who works in communications, I am ready for a less dramatic disruptive government that will stabilize the regional economy. The 2018-19 Federal Shutdown over the wall crippled my business and COVID has severely impacted elements of it as well. Geoff Livingston.

-For the last four years, the US has struggled to catch its breath under the weight of a narcissist who smothered our norms, values, and greater nature. Today is a chance for our nation to breathe again.”  Matt McDermott,  Associate VP, Creative Strategy, idfive.

-Thoughts by Lisa NirellEnergizeGrowth LLC

I’m so thankful for us as a nation and as a city to be starting a new chapter. It’s not just recent events; it’s been stressful living and working in DC for the past four years. I am excited for this new administration for what it represents and the diversity that it brings, not to mention the barriers that have been shattered. Welcome, Madam Vice President Harris!  Our brand was trashed; I’m hopeful that we can rebuild our identity and reputation. Narcissism ruled; I believe we can only succeed together, and with our amazing community of marketers, communicators and advertisers we will do exactly that.  The AMA’s purpose is to shape marketing practice as spur for positive social impact…economic growth and prosperity…and improved quality of life in a better world.   I’m happy that we can now do our part. Angela Long, Brand Experience Officer, American Marketing Association. 

One Response

  1. Liz Wainger

    Words matter. And beautiful words expressing bold aspirations for the future while acknowledging the challenges ahead to realizing that future were ringing across our city and nation during Joe Biden’s inauguration. Words alone won’t end the pandemic or erase injustice or fix so much that is broken. Words must be matched by action. But words are where we start, staking our claim to our intentions and our commitments. Let the work begin. Let us all live up to our words. That is when communication is most effective.

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