On Feb. 21, Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot (D) presented the William Donald Schaefer Helping People Award to LEAP Forward Inc. for 2017. It was a wonderful occasion enjoyed by board members, community leaders, supporters, sponsors and students. During the program, Comptroller Franchot spoke highly of the great work LEAP Forward performs in support of underrepresented youth. He expressed a desire to help, and in his closing remarks offered the opportunity to provide an internship to a student referred by LEAP Forward. Comptroller Franchot said, “Come by and see me.” Without hesitation, we scheduled a June appointment in Annapolis.
During our meeting, we, of course, reminded the comptroller of the promised internship. We provided the resume for a recent college graduate who majored in accounting, and we suggested that she would be a great candidate for an internship. Well, days later, she was hired, and we know that she will serve her employer well. Comptroller Franchot and his staff also pointed us to grant opportunities as we talked about funding strategies.
Why is all of this important?
First, because Comptroller Franchot was sincere and took the time to “meet and talk” with LEAP Forward representatives.
Absolutely, LEAP Forward was honored to receive the Helping People award; however, we are also appreciative of the “response” that followed the award and the clear demonstration of belief in our mission.
Secondly, this is important because Comptroller Franchot was true to his word and kept his promise. A student was just given an opportunity to work, learn and grow. That’s what public service should be about — a sincere desire to help the qualified people who elected you to office.
Thirdly, it gives us hope and is encouraging, particularly in a national climate where “lies” are told daily, and there’s little respect for government. How refreshing it is to make a promise to help our youth and to actually do it.
Thank you, Comptroller Franchot, and we look forward to our continued partnership and to your next term.