Front Porch Institute

   The Front Porch Institute, created by Patrick Overton in 1996, is dedicated to exploring the role of the arts and culture in the community-making process, especially focusing on the essential role the arts play in engaging citizens in the democracy of civil discourse.

   Through its various outreach efforts, the Institute assists organizations and individuals in understanding their own sense of community and culture. Dr. Overton provides various organizational consultant services including organizational assessment, strategic planning, board and volunteer development, rural and small community cultural planning, paid and non-paid staff development, facilities management and development and organizational communications resources.

   Patrick Overton conducts a variety of workshops and presents speeches at statewide, organizational and professional development conferences, symposia, and special events. He has published numerous resources provided for understanding community-making in rural and small communities.

   His publication Rebuilding the Front Porch of America: Essays on the Art of Community Making is the result of twenty years of working as a professional in the community arts and community cultural development field.

   He is currently working on a new publication called The Poetry of Place that explores the rich fabric of the intersection between the individual and others he calls the nexus of community.  He tackles the challenges of change facing communities today and offers suggestions for ways in which citizens can engage in the democracy of civil discourse and reclaim their "sense of self" and "sense of community" through self-determination.

The Institute provides a number of organizational and professional development workshops including:

Navigating White Water in A Leaky Raft

Helping Nonprofit, Community-based organizations
Survive Chaos, Crisis, and Change




Engaging the Democracy of Civil Discourse

A workshop on identifying community values and developing strategies for citizens to work together to create circles of convergence to preserve and protect the best of who you are and, at the same time, promote the most of who you can become as a community.




After Burnout, What?

A Professional Development Workshop
for Nonprofit Paid and Non-Paid Administrators




The Poetry of Place

Understanding the Organizational Culture of Cultural Organizations




Exploring Sacred Circles

The Relationship Between Art, Healing, and Spirituality

Contact us for more information on how your organization may benefit from the services offered by the Institute.




Home | Faith Poem Poster | Books | Front Porch Institute
Biographical Information | Contact Information | Order Form