These are days that will chronicle a dark time in America. We are navigating the silence of a virus that’s sweeping through our communities, infecting and killing people in shocking numbers, filling hospitals, and closing down our towns and cities. So far, 40+ million people have filed for unemployment and millions of businesses are teetering on the brink of survival. These past days, America’s silence has been shattered by a national outcry as we reckon, once again, with the devastating reality of injustice and inequality. During these months, the lives of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor have been tragically added to a long list of American citizens who have been killed, mistreated, or singled out because of the color of their skin.
I have been reading a lot as I try to find balance from news feeds and talking heads on television. “The ‘voice of sanity’ is getting hoarse,” I read. But also, “I believe that man will not merely endure: he will prevail. He is immortal, not because he alone among creatures has an inexhaustible voice, but because he has a soul, a spirit capable of compassion and sacrifice and endurance.”
I read these things as signals from the past that speak to our now. The power of words is essential. The expression of today’s anger and rage must be spoken. But in the end, what will matter is that people will rise, they will find their deepest motivation and they will work with the courage and compassion necessary to create change. Dark times ultimately stir hope. Dark times also motivate action.
Small things matter. If we do the small things, collectively, these actions will lead to change. A few years ago, Envestnet, along with a group of forward-thinking partners, made a commitment to providing underrepresented individuals with the educational and career opportunities they need to forge successful careers in the wealth management industry. As of today, over 2,000 minority and female students have gone through the program. Our hope is to help our industry better engage all communities so that financial security becomes possible for more and more American families. These are steps—small ones—but over time, important strides can be made.
These are important days. They are filled with anger and rage, inexcusable violence and destruction, sorrow, frustration, dismay. Many have shared an excerpt from William Faulkner’s Nobel Prize speech: “The voice of sanity is getting hoarse.” This seems so true today, but in the weeks ahead, as the shouting fades, it is Envestnet’s intention to remain committed to action.
Chief Executive Officer