It has truly been an honor to serve as the Chairman for the Council for Quality Growth in 2016. And I am excited about the progress that we made and momentum we have as we enter 2017. When I became Chairman a year ago, one of the top priorities was to focus the talent that we have among ALL of our members. The combined expertise, experience and influence of our members is truly our greatest asset. We needed to find a way to leverage this strength, and we did just that.
In early 2016, the Council rolled out the Emerging Leaders Initiative, where we aimed to educate, engage and empower the rising leaders within our members’ firms. more than 80 members joined ELI in its first year, and we provided education around regional projects, as well as networking opportunities for ELI members throughout the year.
As we approach the second year of ELI, I hope you all will encourage the rising leaders within your companies to participate. They represent the future leadership of not just the Council, but of our industry. The team is already planning another great year of programming, and make sure to look for updates coming soon.
We also set out this year to broaden the diversity and depth of the Board of Directors and Executive Committee. Again, tapping into the talent within our membership, this will continue to be a goal of the organization that will enable us to expand the perspectives and circles on influence so that we represent the industry as a whole, across the region.
Another milestone planned, and achieved, this year was that we strengthened the financial stability of the organization. Through revenue growth, along with increased oversight of expenses, we were able to develop a plan for to increase the reserve account. This will serve the organization well for future growth and provide long term stability.
I am proud that not only was the 2016 tribute an incredibly meaningful experience for Jenny, but it was the most financially successful tribute in its 27-year history. The success will play right into strengthening the reserves and future of the council.
While Four Pillar is this organization’s largest program and fundraiser, the heart of the Council lies within the monthly advisory committees. We started 2016 with the goal of expanding our reach and advocacy to the Southside of our region. and in May, we hosted over 80 people at the first Southside advisory meeting. we have developed new and strengthened existing relationships in South Fulton and Clayton counties, and I am excited to see how the Council can continue to broaden our reach for the betterment of the industry in this critical and growing part of our region. And to that end, we continued to work daily with the 80 plus local governments to ensure on economically viable land use and development policies. This is and will continue to be the driving force and most significant contribution we can make to the Metro Atlanta region.
Finally, we are very lucky to be a part of an organization with such capable leadership and staff who have made all this possible.
Very best regards,