Friday, May 05, 2017
by Mark Beckwith
A happy Mark Beckwith stands outside the world headquarters of Nevus Outreach, the little charity that could – and did.
July 2017 marks the 20th Anniversary of the formation of Nevus Outreach, founded in July 1997. It was at this time that six of us like-minded internet surfers met in Nashville to figure out how to focus our nevus energy – energy stirred up by frustration with lack of knowledge or answers, when it crosses paths with the love of our children.
Some years ago, I began making noise to our Board of Directors that I wished to stop being the Chief Executive. This put everyone into a quiet tizzy, given that my strengths are not in things like administrative documentation. The question quickly became, “What happens if Mark gets hit by a bus?” The confusion that ensued helped me realize that I was not the only one with an opinion. Ultimately the Board of Directors created a succession strategy which they are now rolling out, and they have asked me to help with it. You can read all about that stuff on the Nevus Outreach homepage.
I am in one of those spots that many people would find stressful – I really don’t know what I’m going to do yet after Nevus Outreach finds a new head. I have no idea if my professional relationship with Nevus Outreach will continue past my stated desire to stop being Chief Executive. In reality, there are so many other things I still want to do for Nevus Outreach, but being Chief Executive is not one of them. In a fashion, I did that for the first 20 years, it’s definitely time to let someone else have all that fun.
Unfortunately in conversation with those who control these matters, there is no clear view of my nevus future, that thing so dear to my heart, and a governance-mandated directive that the answer will be up to the new Executive Director. But on the other hand, this is a delicious catastrophe for me, since I am also one of those people who never seems to be lacking for things to do, and my life is built on fallback positions and great networks.
The better question is, where do I start!
From the beginning we ran this organization (all of us together) on faith and trust. I am so pleased with how that has worked out for the first 20 years. There are many successes that would not have happened without taking hands and stepping over the edge into very scary places. The miracles have happened because we have given them a chance.