Who Do You Think You Are?

Who Do You Think You Are?

The Community Foundation had the first board meeting of our new fiscal year last week.  Since we had some new board members joining us, we decided to do a new icebreaker activity to get to know each other a little bit better.

However, the icebreaker itself wasn’t new at all.  In fact, we have all probably read about this specific icebreaker at least once a year for many, many years!

The question was, “If you could have dinner with anyone living or dead, who would that be and why?  Sound familiar?  If it does, it’s because the Chronicle-Tribune has highlighted this question annually when we celebrate our Academic Excellence Award winners.  

We ask our best and brightest students this question every year.  But personally, I had never answered the question myself…neither had many of our board members, until last Thursday.

Some of the answers were funny.  Some were noteworthy.  Others were along the lines of, “Hey, why didn’t I think if that one?”  All were intriguing.

Perhaps the most do-able, yet hilarious, was that of one of our CPA’s.  After just surviving another tax season, she was hoping to simply have dinner with her husband and daughter!  Do we have any accountants out there that can relate?  Another accountant stated that she didn’t really want to have dinner with anyone, but maybe Harpo Marx would be a good choice since he doesn’t actually speak.  (Who knew that accountants were so funny?)

Several board members talked about visionary leaders within the business and political genres.  And, many, many more talked about their relatives…parents, grandparents and the like. 

The multiple mentions of family members were interesting to me since I’ve just recently gotten hooked on the new show “Who Do You Think You Are?”produced by Lisa Kudrow (Yes, that’s Phoebe Buffay from Friends fame).

WDYTYA is an American genealogy documentary show that airs each Friday evening in the NBC primetime lineup.  Every episode highlights a celebrity who goes on a journey to trace his or her family tree.

Each family tree is as different as each tree in Matter Park, but all are historically fascinating and, dare I say it, emotionally charged.  Some celebs find out that their relatives had been jailed for horrific crimes.  Others find out that they still have living relatives that they never knew existed.  It’s definitely pretty cool stuff.

All of this has gotten me thinking about the recent deaths we’ve had in our own community in the past three weeks.  Great leaders and philanthropists right here in Grant County.  Men that will be missed by their families and also missed by their community.  But, their imprints on our community are indelible.  They forged paths where there were no paths before.  They were role models for the younger generation.  And, now their legacies lives on.  Let’s do our best not to forget all that they’ve taught us, all that our history has taught us.  We can apply what we’ve learned right here, right now.

My wish would be that if anyone ever asks ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’ that we could all answer that we were people who made a difference by giving, living, and loving.

And, if that’s not your answer today, it’s never too late.  We are a work in progress.

Peace and Blessings,


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