Forty-four years ago, a 29-year old Andy Young, a 32-year old Martin King and a 41-yaer year-old Harry Wachtel (my dear father) had the audacity to believe that our society could learn to care. They shared the core conviction that our nation could not move forward if it was leaving so many of its own behind. With this moral mandate, the Drum Major Foundation was established.
As the 2000 election neared and my own children were reaching voting age, I realized that an entire generation of Americans could not appreciate the power of the civil rights movement and the enormity of non-violent social change.
It was that sentiment that led me back into the embrace of my then only living hero, Ambassador Andrew Young. And through providence of sheer coincidence, Andy was equally concerned about the renewed silence of good people throughout America, especially young adults. So we resolved to set a beat for the new millennium… h. Hence the creation of the Drum Major Institute.
My parents were deeply committed to helping Dr. King make our nation one in which the rising tide lifts all boats. As such, I had the indescribable opportunity to learn first hand the magical ways of a unique American who had what he described as the “audacity to believe that people everywhere can have three meals a day for their bodies, education and culture for their minds, and dignity, quality, and freedom for their spirits.”
I hope you will join us so that the steady beat of a renewed drum major can once again resound as all of us dare to be audacious for the sake of our democracy.
William B. Wachtel
Drum Major Institute for Public Policy