statement

A Statement from America’s Promise Alliance on the Passing of General Colin L. Powell

It is with deep sadness that we mourn the loss of General Colin L. Powell, an American luminary and lifelong public servant who was the Founding Chair of America’s Promise Alliance and a fierce, longstanding advocate for the nation’s young people. 

Twenty-five years ago, the country’s living presidents convened a summit focused on the future of America’s young people. Under the leadership of General Powell, that summit gave rise to America’s Promise—a sustained and flourishing alliance of civic and community leaders, nonprofit organizations, policymakers, philanthropists, corporate leaders, citizens, and young people, all focused on helping the nation’s youth thrive. 

“At our founding, General Powell’s vision for a national collective effort to ensure the next generation’s wellbeing and success was groundbreaking,” said C. Gregg Petersmeyer, Chair of America’s Promise Alliance. “But General Powell didn’t stop at this vision. He put in the work. He committed his time, energy, creativity, financial resources, and leadership to helping this collective effort translate into impact in communities all across the country. His advocacy brought together unlikely partners, he inspired corporate America to make tangible commitments to the nation’s youth, and he shone a light on the important role that adults of all backgrounds can play in helping young people find their path to success. His own life was the very embodiment of America’s Promise.”

“General Powell understood both the urgency of this work and the potential for outsized impact when you foster a greater sense of shared purpose and more effective coordination among the organizations and institutions that collectively define outcomes and opportunity for young people in America,” said Mike O’Brien, CEO of America’s Promise Alliance. “That same urgency and that same opportunity still exist today. It is with great humility and purpose that we work to carry on the legacy and the vision of General Powell.” 

In 2022, America’s Promise Alliance celebrates its 25th anniversary. We will use this opportunity to more deeply reflect on and celebrate the contributions made by General Powell to our work and will invite our community to join us in that effort. In the meantime, we are sending love from everyone in the America’s Promise Alliance community to Mrs. Powell, Michael, Linda, Annemarie, and the entire Powell family.