I want to start this year reflecting on my prosopon (Greek for “character” and “role”) for 2021. I believe that, as human beings, each of us has an inborn desire for leadership, and that we are obligated to fulfill this potential with honor, courage, and commitment in our own unique way.
Everyone can have a life of meaning and purpose, and it begins with an understanding of our moral and Christian duty to serve the public good. In practical terms, we can do this by finding ways to balance our roles and duties common to all humanity, unique to our personal calling, assigned to us by the chance of our social status whether it be family and/or profession, and that arise from our own decisions and commitments.
I am proud to work for the U. S. Department of the Navy, and especially proud to be part of a unique cyber team that defends the Navy’s networks from adversaries. This was a choice I made nearly a decade ago while in the midst of completing my PhD program and it threw my academic trajectory completely off track. I have no regrets but have often wondered where I would I be today if I had made a different choice. What I am certain of, is that the team would not be same today had I not joined it ten years ago. I, too, am a better leader because of the team and have been part of a few meaningful projects that made a significant impact across the team and the Navy more generally.
You don’t need to join the military or work for them, nor be in a position of power (nor in politics) to lead or serve the public good. We must each embrace our unique prosopon and take the resources we are given, leverage them, and become the best version of ourselves and contribute as much as we can to the big projects of our time.
I begin 2021 with a seven day fast and a deeper commitment to my moral and Christian duty to serve the public good.
How will you begin 2021?