I hope this letter finds you and your family continuing to be healthy and safe. We've finally made it to 2021 and hopefully the chaos of uncertainty - from the pandemic to politics - is nearing an end. The start of the year has been quite busy for the corporation and I am excited to share these updates.
You will notice several changes in the way we communicate with you as we continue to improve corporate operations. Significant delays with the postal service underscored the need to utilize multiple ways to stay in touch. We are starting an electronic newsletter, which you will receive by email if we have yours on file, and, in coming months, a website. We will continue to mail letters since a number of shareholders do not use email.
Speaking of problems with the mail, shareholder dividend checks were sent the day before Christmas; however, to date, only 75% of those checks have been received and deposited due to delays with the US Postal Service. If you have not received your check, contact me at email@example.com or (843)212-7082 to have it reissued.
Another area of concern is 2020 filings. Both the state and federal tax service offices changed to new forms which have delayed the accountant’s ability to complete our tax submissions. We hope to mail the K-1 forms shortly. If you would like your form emailed to you (in addition to mailed) please send a request to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Activity at the shopping center remains steady. The management company is working diligently to fill the one vacancy and continues to monitor the other tenants. The apartment complex should begin leasing in early Spring so we hope to attract new shopping center tenants that will be utilized by all of those new residents! Both the commemorative plaque and the new sign have been installed.
The board has posted a job description for board secretary. Vonzetta Pierre has served faithfully in that position for 7 years is stepping back to spend more time with her family. We are hoping to bring on someone from the younger generation to help take on those responsibilities. The job description may be found on the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/groups/GreenMyers.
A familiar refrain in my letters is that Green-Myers Development, Inc. was created to foster generational wealth for our family. A recent article I read points to several statistics about the wealth gap, including that the net worth of white households, on average, is more than TEN TIMES that of African American households in the US and, during times of economic hardship (like now), African American families are likely to see a higher decline in net worth than whites.
"All of this matters because wealth confers benefits that go beyond those that come with family income. Wealth is a safety net that keeps a life from being derailed by temporary setbacks and the loss of income."
Building wealth for your family is important; keeping that wealth in your family even more so. You worked hard for your home and other assets and you want to make sure your family can maintain and grow those assets into the future. As I mentioned before, if you have not already done so, at the very least, please make sure that you have written a last will and testament, signed by witnesses, and stored in a safe location. If can afford to, look into living trusts as an alternative. While it may cost more, it will save your family significant time with probate.
The board is working to grow our investment beyond the shopping center. We are also looking at how to provide more opportunities to help the younger generation of family members succeed. We hope to have updates on our efforts to support educational opportunities for our 5th and 6th generation at the annual meeting. In the meantime, if you and your family members have not yet watched our Facebook Townhall, where we talked about the creation of the corporation and how it works, please go to https://www.facebook.com/groups/GreenMyers. We will also be hosting a new shareholder orientation in the Spring.
The annual Shareholders Meeting will be on August 7, 2021. We continue to monitor the COVID-19 vaccine rollout to determine if we will be able to host an in-person annual meeting and family reunion this year. We will notify you in early spring of our decision.
Finally, it’s with sadness that I share the news that shareholder Josephine Green passed away in early January. Please keep her family in your thoughts and prayers.
Stay safe, wear your mask, and get your COVID shot. We’ll see you soon.