Harry Boyte

Co-Director
612-330-1453
boyte@augsburg.edu

Short bio

Harry Boyte is an architect of the Center for Democracy and Citizenship’s public work approach to civic engagement and democracy, and the creator of Public Achievement. Boyte has worked with a variety of foundations, and non-profit, educational, and citizen organizations in the United States and abroad concerned with community development, citizenship education, and civic renewal.

Boyte served as a senior advisor to the National Commission on Civic Renewal and presented research findings at a Camp David seminar on the future of democracy. He is the author of nine books on citizenship, democracy, and community organizing, and his writings have appeared in more than 100 publications including the New York Times, Perspectives on Politics, Kettering Review, and the Wall Street Journal. In the 1960s, he worked for the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. as a field secretary with the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in the Civil Rights Movement.

Boyte teaches graduate and undergraduate courses on organizing theory and practice at the University of Minnesota’s Hubert H. Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs, and is in demand as a keynote speaker with faculty, students, and professionals.

Long bio

Harry Boyte is co-director of the Center for Democracy Citizenship, which he founded at the University of Minnesota’s Hubert H. Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs nearly two decades ago. He is also a senior fellow and graduate faculty member at the Humphrey Institute.

Boyte is an architect of the Center for Democracy and Citizenship’s public work approach to civic engagement and democracy, a conceptual framework of citizenship that has gained world-wide recognition for its theoretical innovations and its practical effectiveness in translating lessons from community organizing into institutional and professional change.

From 1993 to 1995, Boyte served as national coordinator of the New Citizenship, a broad nonpartisan effort to bridge the citizen-government gap. He presented New Citizenship findings to President Clinton, Vice President Gore and other administration leaders at a 1995 Camp David Seminar on the future of democracy, a presentation which helped to shape Clinton’s “New Covenant” State of the Union address that year. Boyte has also served as a senior advisor to the National Commission on Civic Renewal, and as national associate of the Kettering Foundation. He has worked with a variety of foundations, nonprofit, educational, neighborhood and citizen organizations concerned with community development, citizenship education, and civic renewal. In the 1960s, Boyte worked for the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., as a field secretary with the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in the southern civil rights movement.

Boyte is author of nine books on citizenship, democracy, and community organizing, and his writings have appeared in more than 100 publications, including The New York Times, Perspectives on Politics, Kettering Review, and the Wall Street Journal. He earned a doctorate degree in political and social thought from the Union Institute.

Areas of expertise

Civic engagement; theory and practice of democracy; citizen politics; citizen professionalism, international democracy promotion; national service initiatives