• Dianne Lynch

Silver Lining #7: An amazing alumna gifts masks to our dedicated staff (in Stephens colors!)

Let me start with the simple fact that I don't sew. I own a sewing machine that I bought several years ago in an aspirational moment that had something to do with quilting. It's still in the box....enough said.

That means I can't make my own masks. It also means I can't make masks for others.

But one of the lessons of leadership is that you always surround yourself with people who have talents and skills that you don't have. And that's where Meghan Stone Thomas comes in.

Meghan is an alumna and a mask maker extraordinaire. She has a sewing machine and does she ever know how to use it!

I reached out to Meghan on FB and asked whether she might be willing to allow me to hire her to make maroon-and-gold masks for our amazing essential employees -- those folks who continue to come to campus every day to do the work we so need to be done.

And -- like an amazing Stephens woman -- she said yes first (and immediately). With one caveat: Meghan said she was honored to have been asked, but she refused any payment of any kind.

This was going to be her gift to Stephens.

Over a few short weeks, Meghan produced 75 beautifully crafted masks that arrived in my mailbox late last week -- with a thank you note for allowing her to serve Stephens in this important way.

(And now you know why this is one of my favorite Silver Lining stories of all time: In these challenging and disruptive times, the true kindness of the human spirit shines bright....)

This morning, a small group of our leadership team showed up at our Facilities office as the day shift arrived, bearing donuts and Meghan's amazing masks. We explained that one of our alumna had made these very special masks especially for them -- a perfect example of what community connection really means.

They were surprised....and grateful. And it was an inspiring reminder that we really are all in this together....

...especially at Stephens.


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