Letters to the Editor: The Hub’s director will bid a fond farewell next June
Editor’s note: The author of this letter is the director of The Hub teen center in Bristol.
The school year has started and everyone looks scarily older and we have some new faces at The Hub. However this isn’t a normal summer, or year. Before I go on I want to acknowledge that Bristol lost both Town Administrator Therese Kirby and Police Chief Kevin Gibbs from their work force this summer. The Hub has a deep appreciation for these two individuals, and for me personally, it was a complete honor to work with them. Over the last 9 years I have been here they have been strong and vital pillars to the community. They have been perfect examples of responsive, professional, and inspiring contributors to the Bristol workforce. I hope that whatever their next chapters are in life that it brings them fulfillment.
I mean this sincerely. Bristol has such a dedicated staff of such talented individuals that are so deeply engrained that it can be difficult to imagine everything running without them. I do trust in the people that will fill these positions as we are all on the same path to make Bristol a better, safer, and more efficient community.
As I mentioned before I have been working at The Hub for (just over) nine years now. Man, what a nine years it has been. Recently I looked at photos of The Hub when I started and the faces that inhabited it. I barely even recognized the interior, and all those faces are adults now, some older than I was when I started. It was a heavy and sobering moment. When I started this job I was 23 years old, and had no idea what an amazing opportunity I was stepping into. I have been so fortunate to meet so many strong and powerful youth at this job, to watch them grow up, and never cease to be impressive. Four years ago the Town of Bristol entrusted me to become the director of The Hub. In those four years I learned so much and had such amazing (and humbling) experiences. This is truly a “dream job”
This coming June marks my official 10 year mark of working for the town of Bristol, and it’s with a happy and slightly heavy heart that I will am announcing this will be my last year. I plan to stick through the school year and to proudly clap along as I watch this year of graduates walk, and I will leave before the summer starts.
My reason for leaving isn’t political, it’s not for lack of love for the youth or community I serve, it’s not about money or lack of appreciation for the job. It’s simply because I made a promise to my wife that we would travel the country together before we have kids and that’s a promise I intend to keep.
If I’m being honest I am a little scared. I am scared because I have spent my adult life at this job, driving from Burlington to Bristol and back every day. For four of those years I lived in Bristol. Every time I ride through town I see adults who used to be teens that came to the center and it sincerely warms my heart every time. I dunno what my professional future looks like, or what path it will take.
But I know that the skills and time I have spent in Bristol will absolutely, without fail be some of my fondest times and memories that I think about longingly as my life’s story comes to a close.
I want to thank everyone who helped me and gave me pointers, all the youth who trusted me, all my coworkers, collaborators, and everyone who ever gave a hoot about the youth center. Mostly, I want to thank the tax payers of Bristol for approving our budget year after year and creating a fun space for our youth to hang and discover themselves.
All this said, remember one thing: I’ll be here until June, so I plan to have a fun and excited, hard-working year ahead of me. I’m going to savor these moments, the good and the bad, the easy times and the hard for what is most certainly my favorite job I have ever had.
Thanks for all your support.
The Fresh Air Fund, initiated in 1877 to give kids from New York City the opportunity to e … (read more)
BRISTOL — A memorial service for Mark A. Nelson of Bristol will be held 1 p.m. on Saturday … (read more)
See when your favorite high school team is competing in the fall sports playoffs.