Smart Decisions by Rural Communities Make a Difference

National community development expert to speak in Des Moines on Oct. 11.

Dr. Suzanne W. Morse, president of the Pew Partnership for Civic Change in Charlottesville, Va., will present "Smart Communities: What Makes the Difference" at the Des Moines Central Library on Thursday, Oct. 11, beginning at 6:30 pm. A pre-event reception will begin at 5:30 pm. Sponsored by the Wallace House Foundation, the Federal Home Loan Bank of Des Moines, and the Des Moines Public Library, the event is free and open to the public. RSVPs are requested to 515-243-7063 or [email protected].

In her speeches Morse promotes "smart" thinking about community issues. She brings an upbeat message that builds from the successful strategies for community change outlined in her book, "Smart Communities: How Citizens and Local Leaders Can Build a Brighter Future".

Every year thousands of citizens, elected officials and civic leaders in urban and rural areas are inspired by her message that communities become successful by working together, building on existing assets and thinking strategically about the future. She'll sign copies of her book after her talk ($35--cash or checks only).

How citizens can help build a better future
"Suzanne Morse is a visionary scholar who is able to institutionalize her learning to help communities become more resilient," says Cornelia Butler Flora, director of Iowa State University's North Central Regional Center for Rural Development. "Her sense of humor and appreciation of the wisdom of local people illuminates her work. I have had the privilege of working with her over the years and have greatly enjoyed the experiences both personally and professionally." Morse is president of the Pew Partnership for Civic Change, which partners with communities, nonprofits, and foundations to identify and implement strategic approaches to civic challenges. For almost three decades her work in developing citizen leadership and in building thriving communities has helped change the prospects for success for all Americans. Before founding the Pew Partnership, she spent 19 years in philanthropy and higher education, including nine years at the Charles F. Kettering Foundation.

The Wallace House Foundation is a neutral, nonpartisan facilitator of citizen dialogue to build community and resolve issues. Headquartered in Des Moines, the Wallaces House Foundation was started in 1988 to restore the home of "Uncle Henry" Wallace at 16th and Center Streets in the historic Sherman Hill neighborhood of Iowa's capital city.

The Wallace House also serves as a museum about the influential Wallace family. Wallace family members founded Wallaces' Farmer magazine, Pioneer Hi-Bred International, and Hy-Line International, and served the nation as a vice president of the United States, a U.S. secretary of commerce, and there were two Wallaces who served as U.S. secretaries of agriculture. The museum is open to the public and there is no charge.

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