‘Tis the season for graduation celebrations and Leadership Oakland is no exception. Earlier this month, 54 members of LOXXVI – the self-proclaimed “Best Class … Period!” – officially graduated from the Cornerstone program. In a celebration held at Baker College’s Auburn Hills campus, there was laughter, reminiscing, fun, and promises to not let the bond developed between them die now that their Cornerstone journey is over.

Nine months ago, this group gathered for the kick-off retreat, mostly strangers, and over the course of the year they grew, connected, challenged themselves and each other, and executed one of the most successful Day of Service projects in LO history. It was only fitting that they take the time to celebrate their accomplishments and enjoy each other’s company. As the ceremony ended, many of them lingered to take pictures and chat more with each other.

The whole evening left me feeling inspired and a little reflective – how many of us actually take the time to celebrate and have fun, especially after a job well done? I know it’s something I don’t do enough. Usually, we’re on to the next thing on our “to do” list or latest issue clamoring for our attention. The number of unused vacation days in the U.S. is staggering.

Summer is here. The year is half over. There’s no time like the present to take some time to celebrate what you, your team, or your family have accomplished. Maybe it’s a small step on a large project or maybe it’s getting through a difficult health diagnosis. Whatever it is, pause, reflect, celebrate and declare it the “Best Success … Period!”

Enjoy your summer!