I was living with Nat for a year, 25 years ago, when the first meetings to create The Bridge were happening. Enthused and energetic men and women gathered at his house and elsewhere to debate its name, its nature, what issues it would cover, how it would run. I was 25 at the time and quite amazed that a group of community members could not only have the audacity and vision to dream such a thing but could actually make it happen. It filled me with awe, excitement, hope. Still does.
Twenty-five years on I am immensely proud of all that my Dad has done not only in helping to conceive and bring The Bridge to life but in safeguarding its continuity over time. All the nurture, leadership, passion, energy, drive, determination, grit and sheer nose-to-the-grindstone hard work month in month out, year in year out. Making The Bridge a local institution. A part of the fabric of the community. Part of what the people of Montpelier and Central Vermont are proud about.
This is of course not just about the efforts of one man. It is testament to the collective work of a group of highly motivated, very creative, very hard-working people and a tremendously supportive community.
But I know of no other person who could have built and replenished the team, encouraged and galvanized action against the odds, grown and nurtured business and community connections and support, and overcome successive challenges and obstacles, in quite the way that my dad astonishingly has been able to. I am a deeply proud daughter.
I hope you and he all enjoy his send off. You all deserve to. And I wish you, The Bridge, and all in The Bridge team a successful, bright and exciting future.