This list was curated by our COO, Meaghan Keeler-Pettigrew!
It might seem a tall task to come up with a list of Top Ten highlights for 2020, but when the Global SOF team actually started talking about it at our final staff meeting of the year, we realized that we have a lot to be proud of and grateful for.
To be sure, 2020 has been a tough one. And the number of deaths and illnesses caused by the coronavirus pandemic is sobering. We are encouraged by this month’s initial vaccine deployment, but we also know that we are not yet out of the woods.
As we close our doors for a much-needed rest from Dec. 24 through Jan. 3, we think it’s a good time to reflect on what has gone right this year. Without taking pause to be grateful, one can get mired in the doom and gloom of an impending winter in which we must continue to stay home and separate from family and friends.
So, to that end, we bring you the Global SOF Top Ten highlights of 2020…
10. First ever SOF Imperatives Forum on February 12, 2020.
It is a bit of a cheat to use this one since it happened before the pandemic hit in full force, but it remains a great mark on our timeline. The event itself was fantastic, but it also kicked off a larger and longer campaign of educating policymakers on what’s important to SOF.
We feel like we made headway in our quest to highlight the importance of USSOCOM’s proposed Armed Overwatch program and the need to elevate the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations and Low-Intensity Conflict to an Under Secretary position.
9. Rick held two “Ranger Rick” training sessions with Meaghan’s two kiddos (Land Nav 101 and Intro to Scuba).
This is just a fun glimpse into our team’s inner workings. Rick is the consummate trainer, and Meaghan’s 10- and 7-year-old kids can’t get enough of Mr. Lamb. Next up in 2021: Land Nav 102 and Intro to Firearm Safety!
8. Stu started sharing his updates on all things Global SOF via dynamic video newsletters.
We’ve heard positive comments from many of you about the new format. And people love the bloopers, too, especially when pets are involved!
You can watch the latest edition here:
7. The addition of an online community platform for members to engage with each other.
Perhaps you haven’t had a chance to check it out yet, but now’s a good time to do it! Through our member portal, you can access exclusive content, look up other members in the online directory, post interesting content, and discuss relevant issues.
Plus, if you update your profile in the next month, you’ll receive a 2021 Global SOF calendar! Click the banner below for more details.
6. SOFSpot Podcast made it to the 50-episode mark!
Chelsea has worked tirelessly on the podcast, and there is something for everyone in the community. Feel free to binge listen over the holidays!
Just search “SOFspot” wherever you get your podcasts, or click the button below!
5. Our successful launch of SO MANY virtual events…
…Including SOF Stories: Live!, virtual brown bags, and Corporate Partner Spotlights. Plus we held an inaugural Silicon Valley + SOF event AND a virtual Modern Warfare Symposium with USASOC. We pretty much crushed it.
4. We added over 880 NEW individual members and 19 NEW Corporate Partners to the Global SOF roster.
The individual membership drives in the fall were particularly impressive — over 300 joined in November alone! Plus we added some stellar industry partners to the Corporate Partner directory.
3. Ranae Grehl and Jennifer Brooks joined our team!
We are so pleased to have these two hard-working, professional, and passionate teammates. Ranae has long been a member of our extended team, but believe it or not she only came on officially in January of this year.
Jenn is a newer addition, but she has jumped right in to row with us and fits into the team seamlessly (with the assistance of her elves). They are both making a huge difference already!
We also had a stellar SkillBridge intern for 2020, SFC (R) Dennis Moore, and we were thrilled to help him find civilian employment that started directly after he retired this month.
2. The Foundation is on strong financial footing.
It’s not the flashiest news, but it certainly ranks high for us in importance. This is enabling us to weather the negative financial impact of the pandemic. For this, we must thank our Corporate Partners and individual members for their support. We are so grateful.
1. Finally, and above all else, the Global SOF team and our loved ones have remained safe and healthy.
We hope that you have, too, as we weather this storm. Thank you for your support, and we hope to see you again in 2021!