Recently, television giant and NBC Anchor Tom Brokaw quietly announced his retirement. Stepping off the field with dignity and grace and humility, just like the way that he led. But I wanted to say something personal, about this great man Tom Brokaw, and the way he led when no one was looking.

Formally and professionally, Mr. Brokaw, who I met through former MSNBC President Phil Griffin (also a dear friend to me and to the Operation HOPE family), has graciously spoken before Operation HOPE and our HOPE Global Forum Annual Meetings.

Behind the scenes, Mr. Brokaw has actually been the most, helpful to me and to my work.

He and I have shared quality time over lunches in New York City, in the days pre COVID19, where he gave me counsel that was priceless, then and now.

He invited me to speak at a special meeting of leaders that he was associated with, back in 2018. The problem was, the meeting was right after Chaitra Dalton, now Chaitra Dalton Bryant and I were to be married. He turned to Chaitra, and made her request directly to her, as a first class gentleman. Marrying the ‘right woman’ as I did, Chaitra was quick to acknowledge her support for me to travel, attend and to speak.

And that particular meeting, was a game changer for me and our Silver Rights Movement work at Operation HOPE, Inc.

I am so very thankful that God gave birth to this man, and that the universe allowed his path to cross mind — and that he found value in leaning into my life. Because my life, Mr. Brokaw helped to change.

His journey is far from over, but I wanted to give him now, at least part of my and our genuine, sincere and personal appreciation now.

Thank you Mr. Brokaw. Thank you.

John Hope Bryant, founder, Operation HOPE

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