By the title of my report you would think we are moving?? Well, that’s not the case. Today is a special day for all of us in the region. Today is the day when the best of us is represented. How often can we say that is the case? How often can we say I have made someone’s life a little better and I did it without ever knowing their name.

As of today, the Ashland Alliance Young Professionals has partnered with you, the business community and individuals to help nearly 500 kids have a great start back to school! Backpacks filled with what the kids need (pens, pencils, paper) along with clothing and a pair of shoes are ready to find their way to little hands in the community.

This program in its 15th year, is even bigger than making a difference for 500 children. It represents families coming together and shopping for people they will never meet and showing that it is good to give back. It has warmed my heart to hear the stories of parents that say I look forward to this every year. There is no better way to teach my child that others need help and that it is our responsibility to be the best neighbor we can be. So many people have opened their hearts and pocketbooks to insure all children feel good on their first day back to school. This is a big deal and I am proud the Alliance is a part of this and the community.

Amanda Gillum, chair of the backpack program and the Young Professionals should feel proud. I also want to thank Missy McCalvin in our office and many others that have made this happen. Each one of you and your businesses should also feel you made a difference. We are investing in our best asset, the children. It is also an investment in ourselves. We are being our best when we care for others and bring everyone along.

This is a special day to be part of this community and I have all of you to thank.  Best of all it is being done for the right reason, for our children and it WILL make a difference.

—Tim Gibbs, Ashland Alliance