“Water can flow. Or it can crash. Be water, my friend.”
These are powerful, immortal words from the legendary Bruce Lee. They flowed through a talk on the global subject of “Water” from Jessica Moss and her father, Joseph, at the meeting of CreativeMornings/Charlotte on Friday, March 8 at NoDa Brewing.
As an ardent advocate for artists, communities of color and accessible arts education, Jessica Moss is the Founder and Director of The Roll Up. This national network of art incubators is embedded in neighborhoods mired in persistent poverty and concentrated disadvantage. In Charlotte, the Roll Up explores economic improvement through people, community arts and creative strategies in the Camp Greene community.
Joseph Moss, Jr. is a senior vice president at AECOM, a massive engineering firm with $20 billion in global infrastructure work. Currently, he specializes in water-based projects, including the well-known challenges facing the community of Flint, Michigan. Joseph was not able to be present at the talk, but participated via pre-recorded video.
Over the course of 25 minutes, the two took on a winding course of topics related to the power of servant leadership. They discussed quality of life, racial equality and the ways in which resources, especially real estate, impact economic opportunity and mobility.
In a talk with wide-reaching issues, perhaps Joseph summed up the talk best. “Think long-term trade-offs between what’s important today versus making choices to benefit the future of tomorrow,” he said. This mindset informs both his work at AECOM and Jessica’s with The Roll Up and other projects.
Jessica added, “Problems emerge. Then they evolve. But, the one solution that remains constant is to be malleable. Fluid, yet confident. And, always remember to be like water.”
And, as Joseph concluded his portion of the talk, “…that’s the deal.”
Watch Jessica and Joseph’s CreativeMornings/Charlotte Talk
The Conversation Continues
With the breadth of topics covered in Jessica and Joseph’s talk, there was much left unsaid. CreativeMornings/Charlotte hosts Matt Olin & Tim Miner reconvened with Jessica at BLKMKTCLT to see the current 10-year retrospective of Dammit Wesley‘s work and to continue the conversation on the CreativeMornings/Charlotte Podcast, produced by Andy Goh.
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