Jackson 2.0 – A Call to Action

As a native of this fair city, I’ve been told my entire life that Jackson has seen better days. Apparently, the decline started long before me and this used to be a robust community that all took pride in. It’s hard to pinpoint exactly what started this cascade of negativity and diminishment of what Jackson has to offer, but it’s clear to all that we need change. What we have to remember is that our city is booming with potential. Redefining decades old perceptions won’t be easy, but it’s absolutely paramount to ensuring that our children don’t have to grow up ashamed of where they come from.

Collectively we are capable of almost anything, but don’t dHand holding a megaphoneiscount what you as an individual can do. The opportunities we have as individuals to strengthen our community are endless. So many great opportunities exist for all of us to give back that surely we can all find some way to leave a positive impact. The scope of this is so broad that no one is immune to this call to action. Whether you have time to volunteer at any of the great charities and non-profits that serve our local community, or something as small as picking up a piece of trash taking away from Jackson’s natural beauty. The great thing about this is that no deed is too small or large; there are no requirements, no minimums, and no competition. It’s as simple as each of us individually giving this town more than we have received to leave it better than we found it. This idea of social responsibility could be the catalyst, that first domino if you will, that cascades to prosperity for the future.

The idea behind Jackson Young Professionals is to, as a group, establish, promote and encourage social and career development opportunities in the Jackson community to enhance Jackson’s ability to attract and retain talent. Overall, making Jackson a great place to live, work, and play.. Our group is new and still figuring out exactly how to do that. If Jackson is to prosper it is our responsibility to figure that out. As the young professionals of our community we must be prepared to be looked at for answers. We have to shoulder the responsibility as the best and brightest of our peers. If Jackson is to be revitalized we must be at the forefront using every ounce of creativity and savvy we can muster. This is our city, and we as a group owe it to each other, our families, and ourselves to do what we can to see this town as a model of prosperity instead of despair.

As someone who’s grown up here my entire life maybe I have more invested than most in the success of this place. Jackson has never been perfect, but it’s always been home. I can’t go anywhere in this city without a childhood memory, and I want this to be somewhere that my children can grow and make their own memories. Jackson is a part of me, and as such I take immense pride in her past, present, and future. Whether you’ve lived here your entire life or moved here last week; we’re all a part of this community and owe it to each other and ourselves to make it something we can be proud of. Let me end this rant with a simple plea, help me make Jackson what I always thought it could be.

By: Michael Dunigan