The Halcyon story began a few years ago. In reviewing the digital landscape of organizations that promoted moral values, we realized that the quality and engagement was severely lacking, specifically with Millennials. The reason was obvious: Millennials aren’t donors. The problem was organizations were saying that they were going to engage and change the culture, but the sad reality was they were doing neither, and instead their communication efforts were focused — for the most part — on what we call the Rally Market, which are the people that already agree (those that “rally” around the cause). Talking to those that already agree with you is necessary for donations, but fails as a strategy for change. We decided that we would talk to those we called the Change Market, which are the people whose worldview we wanted to change. Does it make fundraising more difficult? Yes, but it is real change, and that was important to us.

We put together a plan to create content that was strategically structured to reach Millennials, and we quickly realized that there was a necessary connection between the digital and physical world. We came up with a concept for campaigns that would facilitate real action in the real world. We became enamored with the idea of social change, which led us to dive into social movement science.

We met with people who specialized in social movements, we read everything we could get our hands on, and it became apparent that social movements are largely facilitated by local organizations. We created Halcyon Local, which is being grown into a chapter-based national infrastructure that seeks to create a better world on the foundations of faith and family. Halcyon is building a national infrastructure that works locally, but can also be united together as a single, national force for change. Our generation has the perfect characteristics to build on. Millennials, taken as a whole, are disconnected from the foundational values that God created to guide mankind, but the research shows that when Millennials are reconnected to moral values they are more active and engaged than any other generation.

So, why should you care? Organizations are not engaging Millennials, and yet Millennials are now starting to construct their future for our world. 75% of Millennials don’t care about threats to religious freedom. They are the least religious generation in the history of the United States. 60% support abortion. 7 out of 10 Millennials want to substantially redefine the concept of family, and over half think of gender as a spectrum. Moreover, research shows that there is an enormous gap between the Millennial worldview and a worldview reliant on foundational moral values. We believe, as Martin Luther King, Jr. did, that “all reality hinges on moral foundations.”

Now Is The Time For Change

We know that Millennials want to change the world, but they are not properly rooted in a worldview that has the understanding to make sense of, and get out of, the current moral decline. It is up to us to start making the connection.

Halcyon is uniquely built to complete this mission. The Halcyon Movement, built on a vision of charity and hope, will connect Millennials to moral values and build a better world.

Leadership

Who was the most influential person to you as a child?

My father was the most influential person to me as a child. I always looked up to my dad, and wanted to be just like him. He is a wise and kind man. He brings joy wherever he goes. His heart wants to do good. Yep, if I can get there I will have achieved something great!

When you hear the word successful who do you think of?

Victor Hugo. Now, this is a bit weird, but I think Les Miserables is the epitome of success. It is incredibly complex, and yet the message resonates. I used to think that the music from the play was the reason for this, but after reading the book I realized Hugo’s genius. The complications of doing good found in Hugo’s writing are complexities that we deal with today, and will always deal with. To convey that through a work of fiction is beyond amazing. I heard a story once that Hugo sent his publisher the manuscript for Les Miserables and included a note that read only “?”. The publisher’s response was perfect, and equally as short, “!”.

What is your most gifted book?

The book I give out the most is Creativity, Inc. by Ed Catmull, one of the founders of Pixar. The story of Pixar is incredibly inspiring, and the culture that exists at that organization is pretty amazing.

What advice would you give to your 20-year old self?

I would tell my 20-year old self to have courage. I can think of a million different times when I should have stood up, given money to the poor, marched, quit, risked something, etc. I don’t like those regrets, and the single thing that I always come to when I failed to complete what God has asked of me is that I lacked the courage in that moment. So, I would tell my 20-year old self to have the courage to do what you are called to do, and when you are called, act boldly!

What is something most people don’t know about you?

I used to have really horrible anxiety — like can’t get out of bed anxiety. I am known now as someone who can be a bold decision maker, so it is a paradoxical past. Oddly enough the night before I got married was the last day I ever had anxiety like that. I have been married for years now — and consequently faced my toughest challenges, like marriage, kids, work, etc. — and have not had that anxiety. What was it that changed me? I am not sure. Perhaps I just needed the stability, love, and trust only marriage can offer, but whatever it is I am grateful.

When did you know The Halcyon Movement was going to change the world?

At our first Board meeting, Nathan, Halcyon’s Executive Director, was giving a presentation on the talents of the team and some strategic direction. Watching the presentation unfold, while sitting there with the Board, was the first time I thought, “Wow, this is really going to be something big!” It was then that I knew Halcyon would change things.

Joshua is married with three kids. He has a Bachelors of Communications, a Masters of Public Administration, and a Doctorate of Organizational Leadership.

Who was the most influential person to you as a child?

My parents were the most influential people to me as a child. My father for making sure I pursued an education. Also, he taught me how to push myself to achieve everything I can. My mother taught me what it is to really love. Both of them were influential in teaching me the ability to forgive quickly. These are the things that grew in me as a child and why I am where I’m at today.

When you hear the word successful who do you think of?

I am a huge Winston Churchill fan. First, I love cigars, and even my bloodhound is named Churchill. I think Winston was successful for a few reasons: He was authentic, even if it did not suit the people around him and I am attracted to people who really know who they are and don’t fake it. He had failures and kept pushing forward. He loved his family very much. He worked crazy hard into all hours of the night. There were times in his career when people told him NO, and he found another way even if it would take years longer. Finally, the main reason is because he loved people and they always came first.

What is your most gifted book?

Bold: How to Go Big, Create Wealth and Impact the World is my most gifted book. This is the book that showed me how to think in new ways, specifically that anything, and I mean anything, is possible. Never settle!

What advice would you give to your 20 year old self?

The advice I would give myself is that life is about family, the relationships you make, and how you investment in people. I recently watch the Tony Robbins documentary on Netflix, and talked about how he has been in several hospital rooms with families and friends as they say goodbye to a loved one. You know what no one is talking about at that moment? Their business, their faults, where they have traveled, their political beliefs, and what they didn’t accomplish in life. What they are talking about is the relationships they built, the love they gave, and how much they poured into relationships, and what those relationships meant to them.

What is something most people don’t know about you?

Something most people don’t know about me is that I struggled with learning. I was in remedial classes most my life. I talked my way through most things. Learning is probably the first, and biggest, thing in my life that tried to defeat me…I won.

Nathan is married with three kids. He has a Bachelors of Marketing and a Masters of Business Administration.