Taking action as a means of building hope

By Rich Gordon, President and CEO, Calforests – As I write this, I am completing two weeks of home confinement. While I am a little stir crazy, I am committed to doing my part to impact the spread of the virus and protect all of us.

In the 1980’s as gay men, my husband and I, confronted the AIDS epidemic. For several years we averaged three to four funerals a month as friends contracted the disease. It was especially difficult for my husband because as a physician he was on the front line caring for those with HIV-AIDS. He was also involved with Dr. Anthony Fauci and others in early clinical trials for treatments and vaccines. That work brought him hope. We also saw hope in the response from our community. Support groups, food delivery programs, and innovations in home health care were developed overnight. Within just a few months I was able to help build a non-profit hospice for patients who needed end of life care.

With Coronavirus I know the worst is yet to come. All of the disease modeling indicates that we are weeks away from reaching the peak of infection. After that peak we will also confront an economy in distress. We will need each other and we will need hope.

If you go to the dictionary you will find that the word ‘hope’ originates in an Olde English word ‘hopp’, which meant to “leap up in expectation”. That means that hope began as a verb, an action. The truth is – hope only becomes actualized when we take action.

I am committed to working with the staff team at Calforests and all of our member companies to take the actions necessary to create hope.

This is an industry that understands hope. We plant seedlings knowing that there is a thirty-year horizon before they mature. We nurture those seedlings, we steward their environment, and we provide every opportunity for them to grow.

Working together we will get past this pandemic and weather the economic challenges ahead.

Stay safe and be well.