Rich Harwood

President & Founder, The Harwood Institute  |  Author, Speaker, Innovator

Rich Harwood is dedicated to transforming our public and political lives by supporting individuals, organizations and communities in their quest to create change.

His Story

A public life inspired by deep personal conviction and experience.

Led by the example set by his parents—who built their community’s first halfway house to support those with mental illness following deinstitutionalization, re-energized the NAACP, spoke out for the voiceless on urban renewal, and founded their local synagogue—Rich grew up in a family that believed everyone in the community should be treated fairly and with compassion. As a sick child, who was initially diagnosed with cystic fibrosis, Rich spent much of his youth and early adulthood in hospital beds, where doctors, nurses and specialists routinely surrounded his bed, all talking with one another, but never to him. He learned first-hand the pain and loneliness of being neither seen nor heard.

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Announcing Rich Harwood National Speaking Tour
Finding Dignity, Hope and Community in America Today


Book Rich to Speak

Rich keynotes events all over the world, discussing what we can do to make community a common enterprise and combat the divisiveness holding back progress. If you’re interested in bringing Rich to your community, please contact Colleen Bowman at  You can also learn more about how Rich’s speeches can help to mobilize and inspire your community.

The most important part of our work was creating both a shared vision for our community and a shared responsibility for that vision. Harwood helped us see that.
— Carolyn Akers (CEO, Mobile Area Education Foundation)

Rich's Redeeming Hope Blog