Last Thursday night I received a wonderful honor when 212NYC -- the New York digital advertising club -- presented me with one of their 2016 "Thought Leadership Awards" -- at least in part for the ideas that I share here in The Drift. After acknowledging the 212 leadership (past and present) and thanking my wife, Sharon, and the members of my team at Upstream Group, I used the occasion to say a few words about what our collective work in online advertising really means.

This week's Drift is proudly underwritten by Index Exchange, the principled exchange for publishers. The people behind Index engineer the best technology to create a neutral, transparent exchange that enables digital publishers and suppliers to sell their ad impressions in real time, and gives them the data, knowledge and context they need to understand and act.

"The last 22 years that I've spent in the digital world have been a gift that I work hard every day to try and deserve. For the last 18 years I've gotten to live a truly unreasonable life. From the thriving digital hub of Shelburne, Vermont, I get travel the country and the world and help digital sellers as they invent and reinvent a brand new profession. I get to work with people who are fun and courageous and creative, and I get to work with them at the precise moments when they are working to get better at what they do. Who am I to be so lucky? Why should anyone have this life?

In closing, I'd like to propose a toast to all of you here tonight and all of your colleagues, competitors and fellow travelers. What we do - what you do - matters so much. Your work is financing the reinvention of how the world reads, watches and listens. People have new ways to connect with information and community because of the work we do. Your work creates jobs and economic opportunity and more.

So from someone who watches you all very closely and sees the hard work you do every day, thank you. You're creating a new world and a new economy. You guys rock! Here's to you.

Thank you so much for this honor." ~ Doug Weaver, 18 February, 2016

Congratulations to fellow honorees Jennifer Gardner, Carl Fremont, Gary Vaynerchuk and Scott Hagedorn.

Photo credits to Jane Kratochvil and Sunny Norton.