2019 President's Letter

As we watch the train wreck of our national political discourse, I am reminded of how much better we Islanders are at quarreling. When I say better, I don’t mean we are less passionate or cocksure of our opposing positions, but at the end of the day (and argument) we have to live together and we never forget it. As we all know, those who choose to live on an island are a bit contrarian by nature but at the same time, our pride of place and respect for our neighbors is what brings us back together, regardless of any difference of opinion. The bond that drew us here is far stronger than any disagreements we may have along the way.

How do we rise above the fray? Simply, we continue to do what the Vineyard has always excelled at – think globally and act locally. While the national discourse and outlook might seem a little intractable, here on the Island our cadre of dedicated charitable agencies, partnerships and concerned citizens continue to work tirelessly (and civilly) to preserve and protect the unique character of Martha’s Vineyard.

The Farm Neck Foundation is our way of being a small part of the support fabric of our island community. We have always strongly believed in giving back and the Foundation is our way to collectively put words into action. Whether it is helping those in need, protecting the environment, planning for our future or preserving our past, your contributions have helped us sustain hundreds of worthy ideas and projects.

So, are Islanders really better at quarreling? Probably not. The real difference is that when all is said and done, the realization that we are all in the same boat is what brings us back together. Sharing a small Island seems to transform how we go about resolving the issues that arise. We are all in this together.

And working together makes all the difference.

Timothy D. Sweet