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Haystack Blog

Posted by Mark Testoni, November 26, 2014

Many Reasons to Be Thankful This Thanksgiving

Modern Thanksgiving embodies turkey, football, family and friends … and the day before Black Friday (which is now working its way into Thursday night).

Sometimes lost in all the commotion is a sense of the history behind Thanksgiving. Nearly 400 years ago, people looking for a better life ventured out on the sea to come to a new world and life in North America. Legend suggests that after a successful harvest in 1621, those emigrés celebrated a Thanksgiving feast based on European traditions started centuries earlier. A couple of centuries later, President Lincoln codified the last Thursday in November as a standard American holiday. President Franklin Roosevelt realigned it specifically to the fourth Thursday in November and helped create the aura of a holiday shopping season to drive some economic activity at a difficult time for our country.

Much like the early settlers 393 years ago, we have many reasons to be thankful. I am fortunate to be associated with such a great team of people working on important missions for our government and U.S. national security.

Our NS2 team is also fortunate to have an opportunity to serve our nation's military service veterans through a nonprofit organization we started, NS2 Serves. Last week, another class of 20 veterans completed the rigorous NS2 Serves Training Program, becoming "Certified SAP Associates" with credentials for high-paying, in-demand careers. A few days before that, we were honored to co-convene a reception in the U.S. Capitol at which Members of Congress and others joined us in a "call to action" to help serve our veterans.

So I encourage you to take a moment over the next few days to reflect on your own personal and professional blessings. Let us keep those in our military and in the national security arena in our thoughts as they stand vigilant to protect our way of life.

This weekend also kicks off the start of the holiday season, and safety becomes paramount. We want all of our employees and families to enjoy the festivities without incident. Have fun and be safe.

My hope is that each of you, your families and friends enjoy a most special Thanksgiving.

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The Haystack Blog is where SAP NS2 President and Chief Executive Mark Testoni shares his perspectives on how to advance the national security mission through I.T. innovation. The name comes from his observation that in the 21st century, "We seem to be collecting more and more haystacks in which intelligence needles must be found."

SAP NS2 President and Chief Executive Mark Testoni
Mark Testoni
President and Chief Executive of SAP NS2