JoAnne Epps received the Woman of Spirit Award at the 2016 Women Against MS (WAMS) luncheon on May 26, 2016. Ms. Epps is Dean of the Beasley School of Law at Temple University. Many Melior employees were in attendance, including Linda J. McAleer, President of The Melior Group, and founding chair of the event.
In her acceptance remarks, Ms. Epps encourage those in attendance to “slow down:”
“Not just the obvious ‘Take time out – or time off. Put the gadget down and talk or read a book.’ I mean slow down and notice what’s coloring your world. Slow down and notice people. Slow down and notice events….At the other end of the world’s continuum, we all need to slow down and notice the things we need to change. One example? The sharp decline in civility, decorum and respect for authority in this country. I want to emphasize that this comes with no political agenda, because that is not my purpose. There are reports that behavior is deteriorating in some of our nation’s high schools, because high school students feel that it’s okay to challenge, belittle and berate their teachers. Politicians, not just current candidates, feel no obligation to respect the Presidency, the Supreme Court, or the sacred principles of the Constitution on which our country rests.”
“So here are some things I ask you to slow down and notice. Notice that medical research is too often held hostage to unrelated political agendas. Notice that we still live in a world where the economic potential of your daughters is dwarfed by that of your sons. Notice that the indigent defense system in this nation, and particularly in this Commonwealth, is rapidly approaching the point where the quality of justice you receive is directly connected to your ability to pay. Notice that too often the quality of a child’s education, and in turn her or his life potential, is defined by that child’s zip code (thank you, Mayor Kenney, from whom I borrowed this last example). Notice, as my husband said the other day, that you woke up on the right side of the green grass, that you are able to walk downstairs to a refrigerator with food in it, or drive to a food store and buy anything you want. He’s right. Those of us in this room are mightily blessed. And when you notice, don’t look away. Make a comment, write a letter, offer words of appreciation or encouragement, express compassion, sign a petition. Just don’t fail to see.”
For more information about JoAnne Epps, click here: http://www.law.temple.edu/contact/joanne-epps/
For more information about WAMS and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, click here: http://www.nationalmssociety.org/Chapters/PAE