Maurice Smith (00:03):
We are here today to recognize what the power of collective action, community involvement and intentional support can do for the good of this neighborhood and all of its surrounding communities. Today, we celebrate the completion of our multipurpose center here in Morgan Park.
Steve Hamman (00:23):
The space itself has two large atriums that let in a lot of natural light, 130,000 square feet of beautiful office space housing up to 550 employees along with a Blue Door Neighborhood Center, our second, as a resource to the community where all are welcome, not just Blue Cross members, but everybody in the community can come and experience and take advantage of those resources.
Gov. J.B. Pritzker (00:50):
The kind of building that's been built here will bring hundreds of jobs, health and wellness classes, insurance education programming, more neighborhood resources into what was an abandoned lot.
Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot (01:07):
What this collaboration shows is the power that public and private sector partnerships have to uplift communities, giving everyone the tools they need to stay safe, stay healthy and stay afloat.
Gov. J.B. Pritzker (01:20):
This project would be monumental in normal times, but it's especially vital right now when this community has carried an enormous burden of the health and economic effects of COVID-19.
Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot (01:34):
This now once-empty site is going to give Morgan Park residents and surrounding communities, long overdue access to high-quality, affordable health care and wellness resources and create 550 jobs that place a critical focus on recruiting directly from the surrounding community and working with community leaders and creating candidate engagement events.
Steve Hamman (01:58):
What will be the difference maker and greatest impact will be the great team of people inside. One of those newly hired Blue Door team members is a Aquea Wynn. Aquea grew up in Morgan Park and lives just six blocks from here in a three-generation household.
Aquea Wynn (02:16):
For those of us that live in this community, to be able to see a future and giving back and, you know, working in the community that we live in. And so I think with this institution of Blue Cross planting themselves here in Morgan Park is definitely a game changer. I'm excited to be a new member of this company and also serving as a resident of this community, which is just the perfect marriage.
Maurice Smith (02:43):
Today's celebration is not just about this building. It's about what this building can create. I look forward to continuing to work together toward a common goal, being a part of the lives of all of the communities and helping others get to the highest expression of themselves. Thank you.