The end of any calendar year tends to be busy in ‘normal years.’ 2022 was an exact reflection of busy…but busy in a good way. Starting in 2021, I decided to celebrate duGard Communications’ anniversary to kick off the holiday season and celebrate the success we had accomplished as a team (it also happened to correlate with my birthday). Aptly named a gratitude celebration, it has become a wonderful opportunity to bring multiple aspects of my life – personal, professional and community relationships – under one roof.
In November 2022, I was extremely grateful for such an amazing turnout at what has become our annual Gratitude Celebration. The event is focused on uplifting: not just duGard Communications (dGC), but also our friends, family and clients. I truly believe that the diverse group of people in my network help(ed) shape me to be who I am…which ultimately allows me to be in a productive space to lead dGC. It’s because of this that I shaped the event largely to say, ‘Thank you’ to those who have poured into me…which has allowed the shaping and making of duGard Communications even possible. Our Gratitude Celebration is just one way to thank everyone who has assisted me along my personal and entrepreneurial way. It made me so happy to combine and celebrate my birthday and company with attendees.
It also must be said…albeit painful to admit…I have trouble celebrating myself. So, this event means a lot, and I’ve grown to a place where I am thankful to be professionally and personally aware enough to know these things about myself. I didn’t always have this space, but now that I do, I am learning to use it, to be comfortable and accepting of celebration and reflection. I have overcome various obstacles in my life to reach this platform, and now I feel I can help others find their voice. I want to inspire my kids to look people in the eyes and shake hands with confidence, and hope to inspire a new generation of young professionals to show them who they can be and what they can do in the communications industry.
Since its inception nine years ago, duGard Communications has been a place for me to implement my talents and experience with public relations, media relations, communications and even advertising to help other businesses thrive. My work has helped me grow dGC, build and nurture a fantastic team, and teach other business owners how to find their voice and develop strategies to engage with audiences. This work has been fulfilling also because of the opportunities it has given me to reach out to minorities in the same situations I was once in and inspire them with options and opportunities.
I feel so grateful for the people that have believed in me and duGard Communications over the years. Your faith and trust in our work means everything. I look forward to another promising year of diligent community service and working with businesses to help them reach their goals, the way I continue to strive toward mine.