The Harwood Institute and ALA Launch Program to Help Libraries Tackle Community Issues

The Harwood Institute and ALA Launch Program to Help Libraries Tackle Community Issues National Workshop Scheduled to Begin Oct. 28 in Washington, D.C.

Oct. 9, 2013, Bethesda, Md. – The Harwood Institute for Public Innovation, in collaboration with the American Library Association, is launching a year-long program to help libraries nationwide increase their role as centers for public innovation and change. The training will kick off Oct. 28 in Washington, D.C. at the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library with a three-day learning lab.

Community change expert Richard C. Harwood will help lead the workshop during which library leaders will learn new approaches to expand their libraries’ roles; strengthen libraries as gathering places for diverse groups of people to work collaboratively to identify and tackle challenges in their communities; and help library leaders discover how best to harness funding and other resources to better serve the public.

“We need libraries now more than ever before to strengthen our communities,” said Harwood, founder and president of the Bethesda, Md.-based Harwood Institute for Public Innovation. The national nonprofit teaches and coaches people and organizations to solve pressing problems and change how communities work together.

The Institute will soon offer a certification program for people who want to become public innovators – those who want to spark and lead change in their communities and how they interact.

Following the workshop, participants will take part in a year-long program of coaching and online support. For more information or to sign up for the training, visit Registration continues through Oct. 11.

The program was created with the ALA through its Promise of Libraries Transforming Communities initiative.

Rich Harwood is a renowned speaker and prolific author whose most recent book is “The Work of Hope: How Individuals & Organizations Can Authentically Do Good.”  He is available for interviews and may be reached at or 301-656-3669 (office).