crowning achievement. Every day it carries over a hundred thousand vehiclesacross the Golden Gate, which is the opening of the San Francisco Bay into the
Pacific Ocean. Frommers Travel Guide calls it “possibly the most beautiful bridgein the world.” And it is the perfect backdrop for this year‟s conference as we
explore the urgency of building bridges to opportunity for all those in need.My friends, for over a century we have been about the work of reducing poverty.We have been providing critical safety net programs that for many are a means of survival. We have been charting pathways out of poverty for millions. And wehave been supporting and stabilizing families and individuals in crisis to keep themfrom falling into the grips of poverty. Every step of the way, we ourselves have been building bridges. Last year those bridges impacted the lives of nearly tenmillion people. And behind every individual that makes up that statistic is a face, aname, a story, a hope. Our work focuses on one individual, one family, one storyat a time, with the goal of providing the support they need to fulfill their God-given potential and bring to fruition their hopes and dreams.
But for a minute let‟s go back to Joseph Strauss‟s Golden Gate Bridge. Like manyof the major bridges across the country, it forms an integral part of our nation‟s
infrastructure and is vital to the economic and social health of our country. Whilethe Golden Gate Bridge was finished in 1937 after four years of construction,
much of the nation‟s infrastructure was built in the 1960‟s. As we have been
hearing for years, bridges built at that time are now showing the tremendous