12.29.2008

An Open Letter To HCCC Board Members On The Removal of Jeffrey L. Boney


(Blogger's Note: Below is a letter that I emailed to all of the Board Members of the Houston Citizens Chamber of Commerce (HCCC) in response to their decision not to renew the contract of it's President & CEO Jeffrey L. Boney.)

Dear HCCC Board Members:

I hope this letter finds you in the best of health and spirit.

A few weeks ago, while I was on a trip out of town, I was greatly disturbed by a notification via telephone I received from a man I have admired over the past year that I have known him. That man is Mr. Jeffrey L. Boney.

He wanted to let me know before I found out from somewhere else, that you have decided not to renew his contract as President and CEO of the HCCC. I could not believe nor comprehend why such a move was made.

While I in no way can profess to know every intricate detail of meetings, conversations, emails, or disagreements among those who oversee this organization, I can, however, profess to what I have witnessed from Mr. Boney in such a short amount of time that made me appreciate HCCC more than ever.

The scriptures say, "Just as you know a tree by the fruit it bears, you know a man by his works." I know Mr. Boney's works and so does our community.

He has done more in nine months for our community with the HCCC than many who have led decaying and unproductive organizations for decades in this city and country. Many are crying out today for fresh and innovative leaders to take their organizations to new heights because they have become non-existent in terms of empowering our children, schools and businesses.

And you have decided to release a jewel in Mr. Boney? It's very puzzling.

I don't have to run down to you his accomplishments because it's documented in your archives. But let me remind you that this is the same man who helped HCCC stabilize its financial structure, increase its corporate partnerships, and created new business development programs to educate, equip and empower small Black business owners while meeting the budget and leaving HCCC with a net financial gain.

What about the HCCC brand presence and national exposure he created? What about the Pinnacle Luncheon Series? What about the Pinnacle Awards that has inspired young entrepreneurs like the owners of Beaucoup Catering? What about the scholarships given to advance the education of our students?

The list goes on.

I don’t know whether all of you voted for President-Elect Barack Obama on November 4, but I am sure you felt a sense of joy to see him win. He campaigned on the theme of CHANGE which resonated with the entire world because there is so much dissatisfaction in our governments, schools, communities, homes and businesses.

I have been taught and have learned that all growth is change but all change is not necessarily growth. We cannot expect Obama to take care of our neighborhoods because that’s not fair to him or ourselves. That responsibility must be shouldered by those who have the heart, skills and vision to make change a reality.

Such a man is Mr. Boney.

I humbly submit to you that the change you have made by not renewing Mr. Boney’s contract is a serious blow to our community when more like him is needed in this day and time. I would hope that you will rethink your decision and allow this man to continue to take HCCC to new heights.

Sincerely,

Jesse Muhammad