LLOW me to ruminate on our sector . . .

CHANGE. It takes many paths, comes in many forms, and is so often unexpected.

FOR INSTANCE, say your organization has gone through the effort to develop a strategic plan. You put it in a shiny cover, so pleased that it is done. Along comes a bump in the road, a disaster like Katrina or Sandy, and your strategic plan no longer applies. You have to put things on hold, suspend a capital campaign, or perhaps drop established programs for radically new ones. The capability to do this is actually a goal onto itself; flexibility is the strongest trait of our most successful nonprofit organizations. To be able to respond to bumps in the road should be part of a strategic plan, not the thing that stops the plan completely.

A BIG CHANGE we are seeing these days is the retirement of senior staff. The ubiquitous baby boomers are reaching that certain age. While we are sad to lose the pool of talent and experience we have grown to know, the opportunity for new ideas and a different perspective creates its own energy. Hopefully your executive director's retirement is in your strategic plan. If it is, be proud that your organization has planned for succession, for many do not. Recently, we at NYCB Foundation have received phone calls from several long time grantees' executive directors to announce their retirement. Each mentioned change, exciting plans for their organization going forward and voiced delight about thriving programs and completed projects. We wish them luck and know that their organizations are positioned to continue effectually.

WITH CHANGES in the economic environment, and the changes in the physical environment that we have seen in our region after Superstorm Sandy, we hope you can thrive as well. In every crisis there is opportunity. We hope this is a time of positive change for you and your organization.