You are invited to apply for a 2013 All-America City Awards ( link here to request an application form). Completed applications are due March 11, 2013. Finalists will be announced in April. This year’s AAC awards will rally cities, counties and regions to take proactive steps to assist returning veterans and military families with access to jobs, housing, healthcare, education and other critical services. To qualify for the award program, communities list three examples of outstanding civic accomplishments. Applicants will be encouraged (but not required) to list one example of a community effort involving veterans and military families. The awards competition and workshops will be held June 14-16, 2013 in Denver, CO.  Last year’s efforts to spotlight early reading competency was instrumental in creating a nationwide network of communities to address this critical issue. For more information visit our blog or follow us on Twitter @AllAmericaCity.

NCL Board Officers: NCL’s Board and staff thank former Tampa Mayor Sandy Freedman for her four years of service as Board Chair.  Freedman remains on the Board.  Elizabeth Hollander, a senior fellow at the Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service (Tufts University), has been elected interim Board Chair. Other elected officers are: Vice Chair, Bev Perry Executive Director of the Southwest Megaregion Alliance; Treasurer, Jack Van Sambeek of Bonita, California; Secretary, Charles Ozaki, city/county manger in Broomfield, Colorado; and Rancho Cordova California Mayor David Sander, at-large member of the executive committee. Other executive committee members are Christine Benero, President and CEO of Mile High United Way, and Hon. Sharon Metz, CEO of the Carrolton Missouri Chamber of Commerce.

The next issue of the National Civic Review (NCR) will focus on public libraries and their new roles in promoting civic engagement. Look for this special issue next week. Supported by the Urban Libraries Council, the issue features essays and articles showcasing groundbreaking library public engagement programs and the future of libraries as centers for democratic participation.

In December, NCL President Gloria Rubio-Cortes and NCL CIO Mike McGrath presented case study drafts in a panel on fiscal sustainability and local governments at the University of Southern California. Supported by the Haynes Foundation, the research project is in its second of three years. The research team, which includes Mark Pisano and Shui Yan Tang of USC and Richard Callahan of the University of San Francisco, met with experts and local public managers to go over the finings of their case studies (San Bernardino County, the cities of San Bernardino, Santa Anna and South Gate and the El Rancho Unified School District).  The case studies will be published in National Civic Review in 2013.  To make sure you get yours sign up as an NCL member.  NCR is a benefit of membership, or subscribe to NCR.

NCL gets a shout-out in the Denver Post’s one-year assessment of Mayor Michael Hancock.  Hancock was praised for his quiet, but effective leadership and willingness to tackle tough challenges. The article notes Hancock’s stint at the National Civic League where he studied the “inclusive leadership style” of the late, former NCL President, John Parr ( link here to read the full article).