Owens honored by American Library Association
A literacy charity founded by James Owens, associate professor of clinical management communication at the USC Marshall School of Business, was singled out by the American Library Association (ALA) with a Presidential Citation for Innovative International Library Projects.
The World Is Just a Book Away was one of just four enterprises recognized with the 2012 honor, which lauds the most innovative examples of library projects that are sustainable, make a difference to their citizens and connect the international community in new ways. To date, the nonprofit organization has launched 49 libraries, 26 parent libraries and two mobile libraries in Indonesia, serving more than 27,000 children.
The nonprofit focuses on inspiring and educating children in developing countries by providing books, building libraries and developing curricular programs. Founded in 2008 by Owens and established in Indonesia with the help of Andru Subowo MBA ’94, a resident of that country, the charity includes several USC faculty, including USC Marshall Dean James G. Ellis, among its advisory board members.
“The USC Trojan Family has been a big part of the success of this whole organization,” said Owens, who accepted the ALA award at its annual conference in Anaheim, Calif., on June 25. “We have a lot of great people involved on our board and on our advisory board who put a great deal of strategic thinking into how we wanted to develop and evolve and partner with communities. Our goal is to have very measured growth that is focused on long-term success and long-term partnerships with communities.”