Fifty Years in Public Causes: Stories from a Road Less Traveled / Edition 1

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2005 Hard cover New in fine dust jacket. New Unread Book, Very Light Shelfwear to D/J. Glued binding. Paper over boards. With dust jacket. 228 p. Civil Society. Audience: ... General/trade. (18E) Read more Show Less

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Overview

In this extraordinary memoir, Brian O'Connell traces a lifetime of encouraging citizen participation and influence beginning at the local level and extending to national and international crusades. O'Connell worked with the American Heart Association in its earliest efforts to reduce death and disability from heart attack and stroke, spent twelve years as national head of the Mental Health Association during major breakthroughs in the understanding and treatment of depression, and was on the ground floor of the founding of CIVICUS: World Alliance for Civic Participation. In 1980 he and John Gardner launched Independent Sector, where O'Connell served for 15 years as president and CEO of a vast coalition devoted to strengthening voluntary initiative, philanthropy and civic action.

A prolific author, beloved teacher and activist, Brian O'Connell imparts to readers the priceless lessons he gleaned during a lifetime of third-sector experience. These gird his essential and heartfelt mandate to his "successors" in public service: Take pride in America's legacy of voluntary participation and generosity, fortify the volunteer sector, preserve the independence of non-profit organizations, redress the lack of citizen participation in American democracy and, above all, pass these values on to future generations in America and around the globe. Brian O'Connell's reflections celebrate voluntary action and provide practical advice on ensuring its growth and impact in the years ahead.

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What People Are Saying

John W. Gardner
"Most Americans welcome the voice that lifts them out of themselves. They want to be better people. They want to make this a better country. And of the voices to listen to, there is none more relevant than Brian O'Connell's."
John W. Gardner (1912-2002), Founder of Common Cause; U.S. Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare; and Cofounder and Chairperson Emeritus, Independent Sector
John W. Gardner (1912-2002)
"Most Americans welcome the voice that lifts them out of themselves. They want to be better people. They want to make this a better country. And of the voices to listen to, there is none more relevant than Brian O'Connell's."
John W. Gardner (1912-2002), Founder of Common Cause; U.S. Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare; and Cofounder and Chairperson Emeritus, Independent Sector
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Product Details

Meet the Author

BRIAN O'CONNELL is a founder of and professor at University College of Citizenship and Public Service at Tufts University, and is the author of fourteen books, including Civil Society: The Underpinnings of American Democracy (UPNE, 1999); Voices from the Heart: In Celebration of America's Volunteers (1998); Powered by Coalition (1997); People Power (1994); Volunteers in Action (1989); Philanthropy in Action (1987); and America's Voluntary Spirit (1983).
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Table of Contents

Preface Which Road to Where?: False Starts, Unexpected Influences, and a Special Mentor 1953-1956
A Straight-Up Learning Curve: American Heart Association - Maryland Director 1956-1961
Riding the Golden Bear: American Heart Association - California Director 1961-1966
Hearding Cats, Tiger-Size: Mental Health Association - National Director 1966-1971
Survival, Successes, and Enough: Mental Health Association - National Director 1971-1978
"It Won't Fly, Orville": Creating INDEPENDENT SECTOR 1978-1980
Early Victories and Lessons: INDEPENDENT SECTOR 1980-1985
Powered by Coalition: INDEPENDENT SECTOR 1985-1995
What's a Community Organizer Doing Globally?: International Assignments 1985-2005
Bridging the Worlds of Action and Writing: Fourteen Books, From the Practitioner's View 1975-2005
Improbable Professor: University College of Citizenship and Public Service, Tufts University 1995-2005
If the Past Is Prologue: For Those Going Forward 2005-2055
Appendix: Chief Volunteer Officers with Whom I Served Notes References Selected Other Writings of Brian O'Connell Index
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