Reflecting on a 2020 We Couldn’t Have Predicted

By Molly Cox | Dec 18 2020

Crafting an end of year message, in general, is not my favorite. There is an expectation—maybe self-imposed—that it will inspire or deliver hope in a beautifully crafted paragraph or two. Then, the end of the year 2020 arrived…
 
For the small but mighty team of SA2020, 2020 started with a 900-person luncheon in the Stars at Night Ballroom at our Convention Center in January. We celebrated the community’s progress, as we do, and called for action in the areas that require serious coordination and investment: family violence, college attainment and workforce development, affordable housing, and transportation. The event marked the launch of a year-long community engagement process to reaffirm and strengthen San Antonio’s Community Vision through the next decade.
 
Then, we all know what happened. And San Antonio, like many other cities, saw that the challenges we had known about—and even actively tried to work on together because we prioritized them in our shared goals—were compounded.
 
And still…
 
In the midst of a pandemic, more than 12,000 folks reaffirmed and strengthened San Antonio’s shared Community Vision through the next decade.

This year, our team went fully virtual. We left our home of the last 5 years in St. Paul Square and kept in touch from our respective homes, utilizing Slack and Teams and Zoom and Dropbox. We expanded our work in research, helping make sense of the pandemic through interactive dashboards and data visualizations. We grew our work in racial equity, producing recommendations for targeted interventions and training our Nonprofit Partners in advancing racial equity within their own organizations. We shifted to a four(ish)-day work week, knowing that when we take better care of ourselves, we can take better care of SA2020’s mission. You can see more about our work this year below. And we’re ready to deepen our impact. In August, we approved a 5-year strategic plan, ensuring our work and sustainability well into the next decade.
 
On Friday, January 29th, we’ll release a 10-Year Commemorative Report on San Antonio’s progress toward its shared Community Vision. We will show the trended data from when we began this journey together, celebrate the bold efforts that have contributed to San Antonio’s progress, highlight areas for continued growth and collaboration, and unveil the strengthened Vision you helped create. The Collective is our day-long celebration happening on the 29th, featuring more than 30 inspiring San Antonians.
 
This year has shown us that we have a shared responsibility for our collective well-being. You wrote that in the Community Vision ten years ago, and it holds true today. We have more work to do, collectively, and the entire team at SA2020 is grateful to do the work in partnership with you.
 
That we live in a city that actively considers and collaborates on shared goals is something to celebrate, (and something to even write an end of year message about). That’s also why our end of the year crossword looks back on 2020 and celebrates some of those successful efforts.
 
From the team at SA2020, we remind you to mask up, keep that 6-feet of distance, wash your hands, and support local businesses and nonprofits however you can. You can support SA2020’s work here. We hope the end of your year is filled with reflection and community (physically distant and socially connected and all that), and look forward to our continued partnership in driving progress toward San Antonio’s shared Community Vision in the new year.

Molly Cox

Molly grew up in Corpus Christi, TX where she spent the majority of her adult life as a radio “personality.” She received her BA in theatre from Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi, then went on to get her master’s degree in political science from UTSA. Molly worked as the Director of UTSA’s Center for Policy Studies, where she led the Nonprofit Management and American Humanics Programs. Her focus in nonprofit capacity building grew to include her own consulting business, Nonprofit Fancy Pants. In March 2013, she joined SA2020 as the Chief of Engagement and in early 2015 became President & CEO of SA2020.

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