We miss you already.
As others have written in the last few days (see here and
had a remarkable impact on labor market policy advocacy. Your work is especially important because
it’s so accessible to a broad audience.
Of even more benefit – you’ve left so many of us with lessons
in making time for the joy.
Our friend E.J. Dionne introduced us at one of his
off-the-record, intimate “Friday
lunches” at the Brookings Institution. I’d already read your book and the lunch was
one of those thrilling DC-life moments for me – the chance to meet and talk
with a person whose work I greatly admired.
Not only did you prove to be super smart, but also lovely
and so NICE!!!
Only later – when I’d left my job at Brookings – did I come to realize
just how much you could offer to the struggling policy entrepreneur. Most
important to my colleagues at The Mobility Agenda and me: you really truly
understood and supported our effort to change the conversation about poverty
and low-wage work. This support made such a difference to us —- especially
when you agreed to moderate one of our most visible events: Lessons
from the UK and US: Developing Goals for Economic Mobility, Social Inclusion,
Your encouragement of the staff and friends of The Mobility
Agenda meant so much to us. We loved having you join our planning sessions and
we benefitted enormously from your strategic thinking about policy and politics.
We’ll always remember the encouragement and enthusiasm you
offered so generously and so often.
But, my favorite memories are not those of our shared vision
for the work.
No – instead I’m moved most by your suggestion to take time
off to hear the music.
One week, you told me that we needed to hear
the National Symphony on a Friday afternoon. So, on a gorgeous sunny day, we
met for lunch outside the Kennedy Center and then went to listen to some
You were so right – it was an important thing to do.
Beth, I want to do my best to honor both your commitment to
the work and to taking the time for the music in life. Thank you for sharing
these gifts with us all. Inspired by you and the difficult reminder that time
is so precious, I will take an afternoon soon and often for music, dance,
theatre, storytelling, galleries…joy.
Gratefully, your admirer,
The Mobility Agenda