Dear Editor,

Growing better is not about what you have but what you do with what you have. That concept has stuck with me since I was 15. Each morning mom had the aquamarine-colored transistor radio tuned to WGEM-1440 AM on the dial. Through the snap, crackle and pop of breakfast, radio host Earl Nightingale's message came in crystal clear to me that morning. He said, "Success is not about what you have but what you do with what you have. If you hear this, you have a heart, a brain, likely two hands, and two feet. With those universal features, no matter your lot in life today, living in this free country, you are equal to kings, queens and those with entitled inheritance. It is not about what you have but what you do with what you have." From my modest surroundings that morning, this message stuck.

With the celebration of Fincantieri Marinette Marine's proud production of the namesake ship, the USS Marinette, this event reminds me of what I learned. The idea about what to do with what you have translates to our community. Our #MyMarinetteMenominee region has many assets — water, woodlands and wildlife, to name a few. We have the advantage of an abundance of skilled jobs highlighted by Marinette Marine's growth story. Our concentration of industry jobs per-capita is a feature envied by other regions.

We have all we need to build a vibrant community. A vibrant place that keeps businesses healthy by attracting talent. We draw this talent by being a place people want to visit, stay, and make their homes. We have the freedom to be a vibrant small town with an open-air lifestyle. A region where our children and grandchildren would choose to stay, belong, develop, and contribute their talents. This betterment is how we enrich the lives of households in our community. What will we do with what we have? Our businesses and industries bring people here to provide services, consult and work. The story they tell their companies, families and friends back home can attract them to become our resident talent.

What is the voice in your head telling you about visitors? Do you welcome them? Is it your nature to invite and include new people? What do you tell them about living here? Without anyone else's permission and at little to no additional cost, you can choose to love living here. Please welcome visitors with the story of why you love living here. Decide to do all you can with all we have to create a better future for our children, grandchildren, family, friends and neighbors.

Keith Killen