With respect, I wish to acknowledge Elwood Clay as a person who profoundly and positively influences all of those who are fortunate enough to interact with him. I could write an extensive essay on his many attributes, but for the purpose of this submission, I will provide comments in bullet point format (with one exception later set forth) as follows:
- Elwood, in effect, serves as a compassionate pastor and spiritual guide to our firm and to all occupants of our building;
- He reaches out as a counselor and mentor to soldiers stationed at military bases in San Antonio and is attentive to their needs during holidays when they are away from home.
- He has provided solace and comfort to our firm when members have become ill or passed away.
- He is available to offer assistance and encouragement to anyone who requests his help.
- He has an incredible work ethic that he models, including often working late at night on his recycling project.
- He always makes the start of each day better by his morning greeting and constant caring and optimistic outlook.
- He has raised his children to be very successful, caring citizens.
—And, many more attributes
Here is one unknown story which exemplifies Elwood’s positive influence—
Our daughter, Emily, was pursuing her master’s degree in Social Work at UTSA when one of her professors asked students to invite speakers to class that they felt would have interesting life experiences to relate. I suggested that Emily invite Elwood and, of course, he readily accepted her invitation to speak and, thereby fulfill her class assignment.
After he spoke at UTSA, I was informed that his presentation was so eloquent and powerful that the professor was in tears at its conclusion, stating it was the most meaningful presentation he had ever heard by a visitor to his class. And, subsequently, students sent messages to Elwood offering their thanks to him, with some stating that hearing him speak was a life changing experience. I only know this from my daughter, Emily— not from Elwood.
What an amazing person! I conclude by pointing out that my admiration for Elwood really should not by limited by any racial categorization or identity. He is one of the finest people I have ever had the honor to know without regard to such ethnic limitations.