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Urban Libraries Council Names Brooks Rainwater President and CEO

The Urban Libraries Council Executive Board is pleased to announce that it has named Brooks Rainwater President and CEO. Rainwater brings a proven record of success in national public policy organizations and experience driving community engagement efforts aimed at helping city leaders uplift innovation, center people in community decision-making and elevate racial equity as a core and important criteria when making decisions. Throughout his career, Rainwater has worked to advance urban policies that expand local democracy and provide funding for local programs related to economic opportunity, entrepreneurship, infrastructure and sustainability.

Rainwater comes to ULC from his position as Senior Executive & Director, Center for City Solutions at the National League of Cities, an organization that serves as the voice of America’s cities, towns and villages representing more than 200 million people across the United States. At NLC, Rainwater drove the organization’s research agenda and oversaw technical assistance efforts and leadership education. He led a team of thirty experts across the field of urban policy and regularly advised cities both in the U.S. and globally on critical issues.

“I am excited that Brooks is joining the ULC family,” said Dr. Mary J. Wardell-Ghirarduzzi, vice president for diversity, equity and inclusion and professor of communication at the University of the Pacific and chair of the ULC Executive Board. “Brooks has ensured that NLC’s work is data and outcome driven. He is a champion for urban spaces and recognizes the value and importance of the urban public library.”

As an advocate for strong local leadership, Rainwater has published numerous reports and articles on innovative solutions that lead to vibrant and successful cities. He also speaks regularly across the country and overseas on issues facing city leaders. Rainwater’s primary research interests are on advancements in technology and city innovation, the future of work and strengthening local democracy.

“ULC is a vital organization for North America’s urban public library systems, and I am thrilled to join as President and CEO,” said Brooks Rainwater. “My long-standing work in cities has demonstrated the value and importance of libraries as core community centers that enhance knowledge, strengthen our democracy and center equity and inclusion in decision-making. As we celebrate ULC’s 50-year anniversary, I look forward to working with the members to reflect on the amazing work of this venerable organization and chart the future opportunities ahead for public libraries.”

Rainwater holds a Master of Public Administration from The George Washington University and a Bachelor of Arts in political science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Rainwater will begin his tenure in July, and he will be based in ULC’s Washington, D.C. headquarters.