Libraries Transforming Communities
By Bailey Brewer
When Erica Freudenberger, director of the Red Hook (N.Y.) Public Library, set out to make change in her community, she knew she couldn’t do it alone—she would need the community itself to help her.
And though her community is small—1,900 people inhabit the village of Red Hook—it has proven itself mighty, making changes that community members have wanted to see for many years. Of course it wasn’t Freudenberger and the community alone who made these changes happen; it was thanks in part to an initiative called Libraries Transforming Communities (LTC), which launched a program in April 2014 involving 10 library districts. The initiative is the result of a partnership between the American Library Association and the Bethesda, Maryland–based Harwood Institute for Public Innovation, and it focuses on how libraries can turn outward to their communities for input and inspiration.