Like all federal employees, we don’t work on Thanksgiving. We do work on the day after, though, and this year we thought we’d pause to take a moment and reflect. Here are a few things that we’re thankful for, what brings meaning to our lives, and what brings us to work every day.

Inspiration and compassion for our partners in public service

I’m thankful to be have this opportunity to serve alongside other people who care very deeply about our country. I wake up every day with purpose and meaning and thoroughly love the work I do, the people I work with, and the federal agencies that we serve. This has been the best professional experience of my career. — Amanda Schonfeld

Thankful to be in a position to help our passionate federal partners. On every project I’ve worked on while at 18F there are at least 100 civil servants, contractors, and members of the military who are more expert, who have been working on these issues for years, doing good work to make sure that the American public is safe and healthy in any number of ways. I’m lucky to be able to be witness to their incredible work. — Jessie Posilkin

I’m grateful for inspiring stories of tenacity from employees at other federal agencies. — Andre Francisco

I’m thankful for the participation of our partners in other agencies and their willingness to let the needs of real users drive solutions to problems. — Billy Griffin

For having such great partners in state governments to work with, and for the visionary leadership here at GSA that has enabled us to work with them. — Mark Headd

Our partners in government and the private sector who share in our mission and are helping us improve public services each and every day. Meaningful change can’t happen without you. — Chris Goranson

I’m thankful that I get to do plain language work with so many dedicated, government employees. Together, we’re making it easier for real people to find information they need online. — Emileigh Barnes

Thankful for all of the federal partners we get to work with at 18F that are looking for new ways to approach their important missions on behalf of the American public. — Randy Hart

I’m thankful for how much I learn every week at 18F — from colleagues, agency partners, and the work itself. — Corey Mahoney

A more perfect union

I’m thankful to be given the opportunity to make our country — however imperfect — a better place. — Anonymous

To be part of a federal ecosystem (including federal and industry partners) with a tremendous culture of continuous improvement, and pride in delivering to the mission. — Jay Huie

I’m thankful for the opportunity to “be the change you want to see […in the government].” — Will Sullivan

I’m thankful to wake up each morning and begin the day knowing that my challenges are the nation’s challenges, and that I can contribute to solutions with what skills I have. — Peter Karman

Thankful (and lucky!) I actually get paid to get up every day and help the country out. — Lane Becker

I’m thankful for the chance to work with a group of such caring and talented people and to help make government work better for all people. — Maya Benari

I’m thankful for the opportunity to make the lives of every American just a little bit better. — Zac Cohn

I’m thankful that this country not only welcomed me and my family ten years ago, but also employed me to improve it — with some of the smartest, most passionate and downright lovely people I’ve ever met. — Yoz Grahame

The opportunity to serve and learn from the American public

The opportunity to apply my skills and passions to serve the American people, shoulder to shoulder with some of the most amazing folks I’ve ever met. — Nikki Lee

For a new home, a city that welcomed and embraced our family, and the opportunity to serve the American people for a second term with 18F. — Greg Boone

A chance to do solid, agile technology work in government and to be able to happy doing it. — Gray Brooks

C.S. Lewis said “the next best thing to being wise oneself is to live in a circle of those who are.” I’m so thankful for 18F, a place of grace and wisdom, and the opportunity to serve the public through our invaluable partners in government. — Will Slack

That working here allows me to serve the public and also learn more every day about how government works. — Britta Gustafson

For the opportunity to serve the people of the United States with a diverse group of curious, compassionate colleagues. — Nicole Fenton

I’m thankful for the opportunity to serve and improve government alongside an amazing group of talented, gracious, inclusive and thoughtful people. — Scott Weber

I’m thankful for the opportunity to learn from individuals I look up to and have a great deal of respect for, all while being able to pitch in and help our country. — Brian Hurst

I’m thankful that 18F exists. I’m thankful that there’s a creative, safe space in which we can explore, discuss, design, deliver, and acquire amazing government digital services. I’m thankful for my colleagues at 18F. I’m thankful for the amazing people who choose to partner with us. And I’m thankful for the ability to make a difference in the lives of everyday Americans. — Andrew Maier

A safe, welcoming, and constructive team

I am thankful that it’s possible to turn someone’s day around with purple hair and a kind smile. And I am thankful for each of my coworkers who, in moments of individual doubt, have lifted me up with their energy, optimism, and dedication. — Gail Swanson

I’m grateful that I have a team I truly look forward to working with every day. — Sarah Milstein

For the opportunity to work with all the wonderful people here at 18F. — Dahianna Salazar Foreman

I’m thankful for the opportunity to work with, and learn from a team of passionate, dedicated people to strive hard to make the government work better for people — Vishal Iyer

To work with some amazing people who challenge themselves and you to always be better and do good for our fellow human. — El Romke Eduardo de Haan II

I’m grateful to work with such an exceptional team of colleagues. — Anna Sebok

I’ve always believed in surrounding myself with compassionate people. I never thought this was attainable in the workplace, but 18F is full of the brightest, most compassionate folks I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with. I’m happy to serve the American people, but I’m genuinely thankful for the amazing folks I’ve met along the way. — Kimber Dowsett

I’m thankful for 18F. 200 of the finest technologists that anyone could hope to work with; an extended family without equal. — Clint Troxel

I’m thankful that there’s a protected place in government where I can have a real impact while learning from people who are incredibly generous with their skills and talents. — Bret Mogilefsky

The opportunity to work with an incredible group of colleagues and contribute my technical abilities towards creating better government services for the people of the United States. — Julia Elman

Having a team that is so willing and open to sharing their knowledge and teaching others. — Laura Gerhardt

Thankful that I have such a wonderful family who encourages me to come do a lot of fun work with interesting people here at 18F. I am also thankful that we get to help make a difference. So many startups just don’t have that kind of impact. It is so cool to be doing that. — Tim Spencer

I’m grateful that we assume best intent, learn from our mistakes, and understand that none of us is as strong as all of us together. To embody these as we work to serve the public is an honor and privilege. — Andrew Suprenant

I’m thankful for a safe workplace that encourages me to raise a hand for help…or a high five. — Micah Taylor