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How Bristol Won: and will keep on winning

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Like hundreds of small towns across America, Bristol Borough, in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, a once prosperous commercial hub of its region, fell on difficult times as nearby factories closed or drastically reduced their workforce. The downward spiral of economic activity and erosion of investor confidence led to population loss and a decline in property values. Thanks to talented and effective local leaders, an incredible group of tenacious volunteers and an amazing community spirit, Bristol Borough, clawed back from obscurity and economic stagnation to emerge first out of 3500 communities across America to the win the national Small Business Revolution-Main Street competition sponsored by Deluxe Corporation of Shoreview, Minnesota. Buoyed by its success, and bursting with renewed confidence, it stands poised to move forward to create its own opportunities and to be a model of hope for other struggling towns whose best days can lie ahead. Bill Pezza, President of the economic development group, Bristol Borough Raising the Bar, which spearheaded the effort that was joined by thousands, tells an inspirational story of the grit and determination of a town that refused to quit. Civic organizers and elected officials will benefit from chapters on volunteer recruitment, networking, goal setting, media relations, use of social media, the importance of symbolism, public/private partnerships, and more. The book's appendix includes messages from leaders of five other towns that were finalists in the SBR contest, driving home the notion that there is a commonality of problems and opportunities that small towns face, and there is value in working together to explore best practices for solutions.
Last Lecture

Last Lecture

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After being diagnosed with terminal cancer, a professor shares the lessons he's learned--about living in the present, building a legacy, and taking full advantage of the time you have--in this life-changing classic.

"We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand." --Randy Pausch

A lot of professors give talks titled "The Last Lecture." Professors are asked to consider their demise and to ruminate on what matters most to them. And while they speak, audiences can't help but mull over the same question: What wisdom would we impart to the world if we knew it was our last chance? If we had to vanish tomorrow, what would we want as our legacy?

When Randy Pausch, a computer science professor at Carnegie Mellon, was asked to give such a lecture, he didn't have to imagine it as his last, since he had recently been diagnosed with terminal cancer. But the lecture he gave--"Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams"--wasn't about dying. It was about the importance of overcoming obstacles, of enabling the dreams of others, of seizing every moment (because "time is all you have . . . and you may find one day that you have less than you think"). It was a summation of everything Randy had come to believe. It was about living.

In this book, Randy Pausch has combined the humor, inspiration and intelligence that made his lecture such a phenomenon and given it an indelible form. It is a book that will be shared for generations to come.