So, where did the name “boodle” come from anyway?
boodle is the name for care packages that loved ones send to cadets at West Point. I fondly remember opening up the (boodle) packages from my mom filled with homemade brownies or chocolate chip cookies. For West Point grads, and much of the military, boodle is associated with goodies. When France, boodle’s Chief Strategy Officer, first thought of the name, Shawn and I immediately embraced it. We are all West Point grads and boodle brings us back to our roots.
Roots that inspire us
The commitment grads have to West Point is driven by more than a love of one’s alma mater. West Point taught us more than pure academics. It instilled character in us that served us in the military and beyond. It’s designed to do that. The military needs leaders of character in order to strive and succeed. West Point provides the foundation for that character.
All West Point Freshmen study courage, heroism, and selflessness. Selflessness is the heart of this character development. One of my favorite classes was Freshman English which focuses on the study of heroes in literature from Hercules to Shakespeare’s Henry the 5th.
I was never as inspired by the fearless, physically strong heroes who easily vanquished their enemies without losing a night of sleep as I was by the conflicted heroes – the heroes who do what they do because of selfless integrity. True heroes confront their fears for what they believe in and sometimes at grave personal sacrifice. When faced with a difficult choice, they choose the harder right over the easier wrong.
In the military, I encountered many heroes. Great Americans from all walks of life who were driven by a common commitment to service. I was humbled by the soldiers I served with and the selflessness they routinely demonstrated in their service to their country and commitment to their brothers and sisters in arms.
Today I work with a different but equally inspiring and underappreciated hero, the fundraiser. I did not fully appreciate peer-to-peer fundraisers when I joined boodleAI. I never realized the depths of commitment that fundraisers make to support the causes they care for and believe in.
Watching fundraisers commit to a $5K raise knowing they will have to make up the difference if they don’t raise that full amount is inspiring. Seeing the smaller fundraiser who is slightly out of shape nervously agree to a long race is humbling. Knowing the in-shape but shy fundraiser who agrees to fundraise but dreads making the “ask” makes me want to be a better person.
Fundraising is not easy. It is an act of selflessness. Regardless of what is raised, the act itself humbles and inspires. I truly believe good begets good. Seeing these everyday heroes fills me with the inspiration and humility to admit I have donated far too little in my life and completed far too few fundraising events. I need to do more.
To those who wake up at 5AM in cold sweats worrying about the $5K raise, nervous about making it across the finish line, and dreading making the ask…we salute you. You inspire us to be better people and make boodleAI a better company. To me, everyday heroes are far more inspiring than superheroes. You are everyday heroes. I am proud to work for a company that can support your valiant efforts.