Years ago I started writing a blog. I was trying to sort out what I was experiencing, to find my way through the fog. I had been a part of the Infrastructure Cult, but I knew something was wrong. It didn't make sense, but I lacked the vocabulary to explain why. Writing was the journey I used to discover new truths.
Today we're here together, part of a movement of people trying to change our national dialog on what it means to experience growth, productive investment and prosperity. We've chosen this path, not to triumph in a contest of right versus wrong, but to humbly serve our friends and neighbors. It's up to us to bring this conversation into the mainstream, to pioneer a viable, alternate approach that people can start demanding in their cities, towns and neighborhoods.
Here's the great thing: we're making it happen. You, me, all of us. Whether it is Hays, Kansas, or Waco, Texas, or Memphis, Tennessee, we're starting to see examples -- big and small -- of a shift. The Strong Towns conversation is spreading; last year even to the White House. We have a lot of momentum.
I feel a sense of urgency. So does our Board of Directors. It's clear that the current situation -- America's approach to growth and development -- is not stable, that we can't continue on along this course without more and more people being harmed. I don't want more Fergusons. More Detroits. More San Bernardinos. I fear an America that begins to accept decline as normal, even inevitable.
The urgency we feel has forced us to make some audacious goals. A million people who care is the centerpiece of our strategy. We're trying to create a movement where a million people care enough about the Strong Towns message to share it with somebody else. If we reach that point -- when we reach that point -- our ideas will quickly become mainstream. And we all know that, when we expose people to Strong Towns thinking -- when we show them the math -- an approach that improves our bottom line while improving people's lives is too powerful to ignore. Or unlearn.
Last year we reached 1,000 members. #1000Strong. To reach a million people who care in a timeframe that matters, we need our membership to double again in 2016. It took us three years to get our first 1,000 members. We have 300+ more days to add our next thousand. Membership is the base of support that we must maintain if we are going to succeed. It is, in fact, the most solid proof that we are succeeding. We need you.
Thank you for being a member, for sharing our stuff with others and for doing what you can to build a strong town.
PS - We're going to be holding some briefings on this report and our strategic plan soon, but why wait for that. Join the Strong Towns Slack and chat with me directly. I'd love to hear from you.