Passing the Pro Bono Baton

Nov 17, 2015 9:10 AM ET

I was at a conference recently where a young leader declared, "Pass the baton to us, or we're going to take it." After this comment, much of the room erupted defensively. But one of the more senior activists stood up in the back. She pleaded, "We want to pass the baton, but you need to teach us how."

We've probably been having these generational conflicts since the dawn of time, but I was struck by her response. Teach us how. Such a humble and reflective answer.

Recently, this hit home for me at a pro bono marathon event that the Taproot Foundation held in October during Pro Bono Week. We had gathered several Baltimore nonprofits at the Johns Hopkins University Carey Business School. Around 30 volunteers from Constellation EnergyT. Rowe Price, and students from JHU's Carey Net Impact club streamed in and took their seats at the assorted tables, ready to help with the challenges faced by the nonprofits.

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