I write with glad and hopeful tidings at the beginning of this new year.
2023 marks the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of Humanities Texas, so in addition to our usual programming, we are planning a series of receptions around the state to mark five decades of service to local communities.
We held the first of these events in San Antonio just a few weeks ago, when more than 125 people attended our reception at the Briscoe Western Art Museum. It was such a pleasure to visit with representatives from the city's cultural and educational organizations, along with scholars, teachers, elected officials, and current and former board, and celebrate our activity in the San Antonio area over fifty years.
There are many more of these events to come, so keep an eye out for an invitation to a Humanities Texas reception in your part of the state.
Anniversaries are also moments of reflection. As we simultaneously look back and look ahead, it's worth recalling NEH's founding legislation from 1965. Here is what I regard as the key passage:
An advanced civilization must not limit its efforts to science and technology alone, but must give full value and support to the other great branches of scholarly and cultural activity in order to achieve a better understanding of the past, a better analysis of the present, and a better view of the future.
Democracy demands wisdom and vision in its citizens. It must therefore foster and support a form of education, and access to the arts and the humanities, designed to make people of all backgrounds and wherever located masters of their technology and not its unthinking servants.
Humanities Texas—like many of our fellow councils—began work in 1973. While our programs in Texas have evolved over five decades, our core mission has remained the same: to strengthen Texas communities by conducting and supporting programs that cultivate the wisdom and vision that representative democracy demands of its citizens.
I'm deeply grateful to our board, staff, partners, and supporters for joining us in this critical work.
I hope our paths will cross in 2023. In the meantime, here's to another five decades of meaningful service to the state of Texas. Please be in touch should you have thoughts or suggestions about how Humanities Texas can further advance our mission, which has never been more important.