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From Kevin Johnson, President and CEO

As I think about the importance of gifts as a part of most holiday traditions, my hope this year is for the continued gift of perspective.

Perspective might not be atop your wish list. It can’t compete with expensive jewelry or golf clubs or a PlayStation 4. But it might be the gift we need most, especially when facing a changing and often difficult world.

Five short years ago the world had given up on our city. Today, Detroit is brimming with economic excitement. Our city is the same, but our perspective and attitude have changed. The spirit of optimism toward Detroit is infectious. Many of us now perceive opportunity and prosperity, and are working with that attitude to make Detroit a world-class city to work, live and play.

Perspective is powerful and transformative. It attracts abundance and can mute the power of defeat, replacing it with the will to forge ahead.

I say this because, despite our momentum, challenges do occur. Businesses will close. Deals will fall through. When progress hits a bump, our thoughts are quick to go negative.

That’s why perspective is such an important gift. With it, I am able to see what truly exists. I see a Detroit that is making remarkable strides. I see increased opportunities for employment, streets enjoying newfound activity and neighborhoods alive with commerce and comradery. Across the region, I see people working together to turn what’s good into great. And the world is taking notice.

Having the clarity of mind to retain this perspective is a gift I hold dear. It keeps me present, grateful and grounded in times of uncertainty. Reflecting on what’s really important – my family and friends, our health and wellbeing, and the opportunity to serve the community – recalibrates my thinking. Only with a fresh perspective can I do my very best.

As you spend this holiday season with friends and family, remember to retain a positive perspective. It offers both the gift of peace and hope.

Please take the time to relax, enjoy and rejuvenate in preparation for next year. On a personal note, I thank each one of you for welcoming me to the DEGC family and for your work moving Detroit forward. With a positive perspective, I look forward to great things in 2019 for our staff and our city.

All the best to you and your families this holiday season.