By Christian Vann, Communications Fellow

U.S. Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development, Jay Williams, sat down with Chairman, Founder and CEO of Operation HOPE, John Hope Bryant, prior to the ribbon cutting ceremony of HOPE Inside Atlanta Police Department. Strong role models, a good family name and trust were touchstones of their conversation. “My parents and pastor were my strongest role models. I knew from an early age that my name meant something and how I carried it meant something. When I was running for Mayor of Youngstown (Ohio), the verification of that was from people who knew my family and voted for me, a neophyte candidate with no experience, because of my family’s name and how I was charged and proud to represent it well,” said Assistant Secretary Williams. A good family name is generational wealth that should be taught and passed on to each successive generation.

Both leaders spoke of the development of their relationship and the sharing of commonalities that mirror the partnership between Untitled design (103)Operation HOPE and the US Department of Commerce. Both Operation HOPE and the Commerce Department’s Economic Development Administration practice being catalysts in the community; through financial empowerment and financial literacy. This is strongly represented by the launch of Operation HOPE inside the Atlanta Police Department, as they are on the front lines of the communities’ protection and have a high degree of responsibility that should not be hampered or undermined by financial difficulties and woes (read more about Operation HOPE and Atlanta Police Department‘s partnership). Elaborating on the HOPE Inside Atlanta Police Department ribbon cutting ceremony about to take place, Assistant Secretary Jay Williams remarked:

“This is an investment in our communities. This is our role as a facilitator of change in our communities. We are proud to partner with Operation HOPE as you are there with economic change, literacy and empowerment. We welcome this partnership very much.”  

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