Harford County to Launch “Choose Civility” Campaign Promoting Respect, Empathy, Tolerance
BEL AIR, Md., (June 19, 2018) – “Choose Civility” is a national campaign to lift up communities by promoting
respect, empathy, and tolerance between individuals, and within and among organizations. Harford County
Executive Barry Glassman and Harford County Library CEO Mary Hastler have joined to lead the local chapter
and host a kickoff breakfast from 9 – 11 a.m. on Wednesday, June 27 at Water’s Edge Events Center in
Belcamp. The keynote speaker will be Valerie J. Gross, MLS, MM, JD, president of Education Enterprises for
Libraries and founder of the national movement. Individuals of all ages, businesses, and community
organizations are welcome to register for this free event and help Harford County become a model of
civility. Space is limited and will be available first come, first served. Register by Sunday, June 24 at
“We are thrilled to have Valerie Gross help us launch Choose Civility in Harford County,” Mary Hastler said.
“Planning is also underway for more exciting events to make this a sustainable and countywide movement.”
Based on a small but powerful book by Johns Hopkins University Professor P.M. Forni, Choose Civility outlines
simple rules of considerate conduct that go beyond good manners. Civility benefits communities by reducing
feelings of insult, thereby reducing stress, anger, and the potential for violence. Civility also leads to the
productive exchange of opinions and improves social experiences for a happier life.
First launched in 2007 by Howard County Public Library, the Choose Civility movement has since spread within
Maryland and to other states nationwide. Local organizations are welcome to join the Harford County
chapter, which will offer community events and activities, along with practical ways to overcome bullying and
rudeness in everyday situations, including social media.
“The way we treat one another directly impacts our daily lives, which is why I am proud to partner with Mary
Hastler and our public library on this ambitious campaign,” County Executive Barry Glassman said. “We care
deeply about our community because of the people who call it home. By working together we can choose to
make Harford County even better – we can Choose Civility.”