Turning Outward

Our library embraces a turning outward approach. This is an intentional process, a stance, for listening to and learning about our community. It also means we make the choice to ground library work in the community’s shared aspirations.

Since 2014, we have turned outward, listening, learning, and acting on feedback from library patrons, governmental peers, community members, and community partners. All have shared their hopes, dreams, and emerging concerns. Through continued conversation, shared aspirations in Oak Park include literacy, education, diversity, inclusion, equity, empathy, health, safety, and affordability.

Aspirations in action

How has turning outward affected how the library engages with its community? Here are a few examples:

In his own words, Library Executive Director David J. Seleb explains the impact of turning outward in this short video, created by The Harwood Institute for Public Innovation »

Thank you for “Building Community in Today’s World”

More than 100 community members, stakeholders, and library staff attended sessions with Rich Harwood, president and founder of The Harwood Institute for Public Innovation and creator of the turning outward practice. On Thursday, April 4, and Friday, April 5, 2019, Oak Park had incredible two days of learning. Stories related to that visit include “Community as as Common Enterprise” and “Why I wear a flag pin.”

Host a conversation, become a public innovator

Contact Executive Director David J. Seleb, 708.697.6911, davids@dev.oppl.org.

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