From the Desk of Kevin J. Todeschi
Retirement and Dreaming the Next 90 Years!
Ten years ago (July 2011), I wrote a column in which I stated that one of my favorite quotes was from Walt Disney who once said, “It’s kind of fun to dream the impossible.” Not only do I have that quote framed on my office wall, along with a photo of Walt Disney walking over the empty fields that would eventually become Disneyland, that same quote has often inspired me during my tenure as Executive Director and CEO of the Edgar Cayce work.
Dreaming the impossible was the inspiration behind many of the changes that we have undertaken during the past 15 years. It was the encouragement behind working with the City of Virginia Beach and our Virginia Beach neighbors as we sought permission for a series of expansions and renovations that many said could not be done. It was the motivation enabling us to transform this site with a new building and renovated facilities that included an onsite café, upgrades to all of our buildings, and new office space. It was the stimulus behind a series of massive technological upgrades – upgrades that helped move the Edgar Cayce work (A.R.E., Atlantic University, and the Edgar Cayce Foundation) into the 21st Century. It was the incentive behind creating professional, expanded classroom facilities for the Cayce/Reilly School of Massage. It was the impetus that enabled us to transform Edgar Cayce’s weathered hospital building into a modern Health Center and Spa.
In spite of many financial challenges in this Work’s history, so many impossible things have been accomplished because of the commitment and help of our members, our volunteers, our Board and our staff. Each of you have been an integral part of the transformation that has brought Edgar Cayce’s A.R.E. into the 21st Century. THANK YOU! None of these things could have been accomplished without each of you.
Over the past few weeks, I have often thought about the fact that Charles Thomas Cayce, my predecessor, chose the special occasion of the 75th Anniversary of this Work to announce his retirement. It seems only fitting that I should choose the occasion of the 90th Anniversary to announce my own. With that in mind, I told the Board of Trustees before the 90th Anniversary Congress that it was my plan to retire as CEO at the end of this year. I also assured them (and you) that this Work and the Cayce readings will remain – whether through speaking or writing or participating in so many things we offer – a central part of my life long after my retirement.
Many of you know that this Work has been central to my life for more than 45 years. Ever since reading my first Edgar Cayce book as a teenager, being a part of A.R.E. was the only thing I ever wanted to do. The fact that I have had the opportunity to be on staff for 39 years, serving in a variety of roles, and working with such an incredible group of people – staff, volunteers, Board members, national and international contacts, countless members – has truly been one of the greatest honors of my life.
Although there have been a number of challenges along the way, the joys that I have experienced in this Work, in the countless friendships that I have experienced, in the innumerable insights and understandings and glimpses of the Divine that have come into my life simply by working with the Cayce readings has been nothing less than miraculous!
I consider myself truly blessed to have had the opportunity to be a part of the staff. For years, this Work has been the central focus and beacon in my life. How many people really get to live their dream? I got to do it, and it has been an amazing experience. I consider myself truly blessed.
My dream for this Work is perhaps best encapsulated in one of Edgar Cayce’s readings in which he stated that this Work would help to change the thought of humankind in general in many directions (254-37). This Work has so much to offer in terms of healing, and facilitating peace, and enabling us to understand our connection to one another. In so many ways, it remains an untapped goldmine of insights and possibilities for the world. My dream is that over the next 90 years this Work might move ever closer to transforming the consciousness of the planet.
It is kind of fun to dream the impossible. Let us imagine the next 90 years together!
Kevin J. Todeschi