Excellence. /ék-sul-uns/.

Webster’s New World Dictionary (Second College Edition, 1970, page 487) defines it as “The fact or condition of excelling.” We embrace this definition. We French it. We totally ravish it.

But we go further. To Daniel Webster, that word was just another abstract noun. To us, it is a concrete noun. More than that: to us, it is a proper noun. Which is why we always capitalize it. Like this: Excellence.

We strive to promote Excellence everywhere, and we use it to describe our strategic vision, goals and objectives by pressing into service all its lexical forms, including:

·Verbs (Excel, Excellerate);
·Adjectives (Excellent, Excellenter, Excellentest);
·Adverbs (Excellently); and
nterjections (“Excellent, Dude!”).

In testimony to our abiding commitment to Excellence, our professional and dedicated staff is currently involved in a long-term research project to develop forms of the word for the three remaining parts of speech. Prepositions are proving particularly challenging.

But we don't merely seek Excellence. We stalk it. Carefully, subtly, surreptitiously. Kind of like that quiet loner who lives across the street from you, with whom you exchange pleasantries but whom you cannot say you actually know, then you are astounded one day to read in your morning paper that he has been arrested as a serial peeping Tom, and the judge issues a warrant to search his house, which is so incredibly crammed with Nixon books and memorabilia that your local code enforcement office declares it a fire hazard, and the guy is let out on bail and given forty-eight hours to haul all that crap to the dump.

Anyway, to summarize: We have absolutely no use for people who settle for anything less than total Excellence. They make us vomit. We spit on them. And their families. And their pets.

Values are also important to us. We are on board with Panjandrum William Bennett. We have high—indeed, ionospheric—values. We value values. Not to mention accountability. And transparency. And it goes without saying that we value family. Yes, family is right up there. But above all else, we value Excellence.

And what about Diversity? Do you want to talk Diversity? As far as we are concerned (as you probably guessed already from the fact that we capitalized it), Diversity is also a proper noun. We genuflect to it. In our office, we worship at the altar of Diversity, around which our staff joins hands every morning to sing “Kumbaya.” “Kumbaya” is thought to be a Gullah word. Beyond this, however, its etymology is uncertain. Some linguists believe it is a noun. If it is, we consider it a proper noun.

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