By Richard Weinstein, President & COO
Ocean Reef Community Foundation

Colors have strong associations with feelings and the world around us. Blue is associated with sadness and melancholy, like “the blues,” but also with the ocean and sky and great expanses. Green is the color of the Earth and the environmental movement. When we think of Valentine’s Day, we see red; we also “see red” when we are really mad. On the water, we know “Red, Right, Returning,” even though on the boat the red bow light is on the port side (left side of the boat facing forward), and when we spot red, we often, immediately, stop.

Years before the “golden era” of train travel, the railroads needed a system to control the flow of their traffic. In the early 1800s, they used a system of lights to direct the trains: at that time, green meant “Caution,” a white light meant “Go,” and red, just as today, was “Stop.” An unfortunate accident occurred when a lens on the red light fell off and left a white bulb. So the train went on through, only to meet another train coming the other way. (Yes, that light at the end of the tunnel was another train!)

After that, they reworked their system to make green the color for “Go,” while red remained as “Stop.” Yellow was a strong contrast to both, so it was chosen for “Caution.” We see that everywhere with bright yellow caution tape and “Slow Down” signs. Even railroad crossing signs today are yellow. It’s hard to believe there was a time when these colors were not associated with these meanings.

In business, it’s great to be given the green light on a project and even better if that project is in the black! Red, in this context, may not mean stop, but it is not the color you want on the financial projections, otherwise, you might get a pink slip.

With Easter behind and summer ahead, this is the time of year where many will be departing. This also has a strong association with feelings – the excitement of traveling to your “other” Club mixed with the fond farewell of your Ocean Reef friends and this wonderful location. Perhaps some of you will be excited to travel on an amazing trip that was acquired in the All Charities Auction. If that is the case, the rest of us will be green with envy, knowing we missed our golden opportunity to grab that trip for ourselves… perhaps next time…

With all this color, one thing is clear: the generosity of the Members once again makes this year another record-breaking All Charities, and that, coupled with the growth in the Foundation’s Donor Advised Funds, has brought the Ocean Reef Community Foundation to a new threshold. One where we are able to participate with continued enhancement for the Community as we add the Chapel as the newest Recipient Partner and work with ORCAT to support their new Building Fund. While none of this came out of the blue, we can all see the silver lining in keeping Ocean Reef as the unique community our Membership values so much.