26 by 26

by Rachael Doff, CAO, Chief of Staff

26 years ago a man, only 26 years of age, was compelled to engage. As he sat on a hill in Malibu and watched the streets where he grew up engulfed in flames of disappointment, frustration and rage, his heart was broken.

He had always been a survivor, filled with revolutionary ideas and the courage to take thoughts and transform them into action. He also had the gift of influence, the ability to share his dreams and vision with others, igniting their belief in what could be possible with the right application of focus and energy. He was (and is) a born leader.

The riots, he knew, may have been sparked by the unbelievable outcome of the trial, but in reality they were simply a symptom of prolonged deficits in the hearts of the communities painted in red. Lack of service, lack of access, lack of opportunity, lack of hope. And so, on May 2, 1992 John Bryant founded Operation HOPE with a vision to eradicate poverty in his lifetime, as he knew it. Poverty of mind, poverty of spirit, poverty of pocket, poverty of being.

John Hope Bryant and the longest-serving employee of Operation HOPE, Rachael Doff.

Over the next 26 years he pushed himself harder than most ever do. Every. Day. 24 hours a day. 7 days a week. His thoughts about how to have the greatest impact on the most possible never stopped. Idea after idea. Partner after partner. He never gave up, although there were certainly moments when the weight of carrying the mandate forward took its toll.

There is so much more to be said for this man who has spent half of his life answering the call….the challenge presented to him 26 years ago, however, the most important thing to be said is that he is a good and faithful servant in whom the Father is well pleased.

Congratulations on 26 years of accomplishment, John Hope Bryant. You have changed many lives for the better.

Like what you read? Give Operation HOPE a round of applause.

From a quick cheer to a standing ovation, clap to show how much you enjoyed this story.