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Mayor’s Day – Still Getting Things Done

April 2, 2014

Remarks from Mary Bruce, Co-Executive Director, AMERICORPS ALUMS at the Washington, D.C. Mayors Day of Recognition, April 1, 2014.

AMERICORPS ALUMS Co-Executive Director Mary Bruce rallies the crowd during 2014 Mayor's Day of Recognition

AMERICORPS ALUMS Co-Executive Director Mary Bruce rallies the crowd during 2014 Mayor’s Day of Recognition

Thank you so much for including me in this amazing celebration!  I’m here on behalf of AMERICORPS ALUMS, the only national network representing the nearly one million individuals who have served with AmeriCorps since 1994.

Today is the second annual Mayor’s Day of Recognition for National Service, and we are here to thank those who serve.  Like Jeffrey, the Chief Service Officer of DC, who introduced me, I am an AmeriCorps Alum. And, like him, and like many of you here today, when I began my year of service I pledged “to get things done for America” – my year of service and beyond.

On this Day of Recognition, we’re joining more than 1,750 mayors across the country in this celebration – and of those, more than a few are AmeriCorps Alums. Dayne Whalling is the mayor of Flint, Michigan. But before he was a mayor, he served with AmeriCorps, right there in Flint – and he’s still getting things done for Flint. John Fetterman is the Mayor of Braddock, Pennsylvania.  Before he was mayor, he served with AmeriCorps, right there in Braddock – and he’s still getting things done for PA.

But let’s not talk about Michigan or Pennsylvania – let’s talk about what’s happening right here in DC!

Right now, there are nearly 4,000 currently serving AmeriCorps members in DC.  In fact, since 1994, more than 7.3 million hours have been served by DC AmeriCorps members – and those Corps Members spurred thousands of additional volunteers to get things done in DC.  Through that work, they’ve met critical needs, supporting students and families, getting things done, all across this great city and this great nation.

And that’s what AMERICORPS ALUMS, the organization I lead, does.  We get things done FOR our alumni – so that they can keep getting things done for America because our alumni our amazing.   And not just the Mayors I mentioned. They’re across the city, and across the nation, leading nonprofits, working at foundations, serving on boards, and voting and volunteering at rates far above the national average.  In fact, they’re powering this event — I’d like to thank our DC chapter for coming out early to help set up!

This is the Mayor’s Day of recognition – and Alums are here, too, powering the Mayor’s Office.   Before Chris Murphy was the Mayor’s Chief of Staff, he served with AmeriCorps.  And before Daryl Levin was Special Assistant to Mayor, he served with AmeriCorps and before Kaya Henderson became the Chancellor of DC Public Schools, she served with AmeriCorps!  We got things done in AmeriCorps – and we’re still getting things done!

So, to the currently serving Corps – I want to be the first to welcome you to this amazing network and thank you for your service.  I’ve been there.  When I wanted to go to college, but couldn’t figure out how to pay for it, I joined AmeriCorps and I served right here in DC, in 1999, at HD Elementary School with the Latin American Youth Center. And that year changed my life.  I was made in AmeriCorps, and I look back on my year of service and know that I am who I am today because of that year of service.

I also know how hard that service was — figuring out how to buy groceries on a modest stipend, and how to provide supports to the students at HD Cooke they so mightily deserved, and how to get my first job after my year of service.   If you haven’t registered with us – please do that at  We have nearly a million individuals across the country who want to support you in your life time of service.    AmeriCorps members, and AmeriCorps Alums – thank you for getting things done – today, every day, and for a life time.

Thank you.

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