Harrison Hollingsworth Owen

7808 River Falls Drive

Potomac, MD 20854


Phone 301-365-2093

Email hhowen@verizon.net

Date of Birth December 2, 1935

Professional Role Organizational consultant specializing in facilitating the development and/or transformation of large social systems with particular attention to the organizational culture.


1978 - Present President, H.H.Owen and Co. The primary business of the company has been to develop, test and market an approach to the enhancement of organizational culture in large social systems, especially under conditions of radical change (transformation). Typical activities (clients) have included -

Owens/Corning Fiberglas In a post take-over situation, which resulted in radical down-sizing, we assisted the largest operating division (INSOD) to re-design and energize its culture in order to effectively compete in a radically altered business environment.

Internal Revenue Service (Appeals Division) Assisted the smallest, but in many ways most crucial, division of the IRS to re-design and re-position its culture in order to effectively carry out a leadership role in the Service.

Future of Hampton Roads Inc. Designed and organized a community building process which allowed 9 cities and 4 counties (1,200,000 people) to create a regional identity after 300 years (more or less) of hostility. Tangible results included the movement of the region from the 149th market area in the USA to #28.

Eastern Virginia Medical Authority Created a strategic planning and organization building process which was instrumental in the movement of a medical school from a position of near destruction to a one of national recognition.

US Forest Service Provided the conceptual framework and ongoing support for the current service-wide effort to free its people of un-necessary bureaucratic constraints in order to effectively fulfill its mission.

Organizational Transformation Played a central role in the conceptualizing and development of the emergent field known as Organization Transformation, including convening the 1st, 3rd, 4th and 6th through 14th International Symposia on Organizational Transformation.

Education and Training Developed and presented a series of education and training programs on the subject of Organizational Culture and Transformation to a broad range of national and international groups. Clients: Procter and Gamble, Shell Canada, SAS Airlines, Shell Netherlands, Volvo, City University of London, ASTD, ODN, AHP, ABC France, Arthur Young, The Foresight Group (Sweden), de Baak (Dutch management association), Norsk Data (Norway).

Open Space Technology Originated the approach to group inter-action and organization enhancement in 1984, and subsequently have been training facilitators and refining the approach. Open space is now used in multiple situations all over the world, and has become the basis for new conceptualization of the nature and function of organization.

1976 - 1978 Executive Director of the VA Scholars Program and Executive Secretary of the VA National Medical Advisory Group. Assignment included designing and managing the senior level executive development program for the Veterans Administration.

1973 - 1976 Director, Education, Prevention and Control Programs, National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NIH). Responsible for the design and management of the patient, public and professional education programs.

1970 - 1973 Director, Nassau/Suffolk Regional Medical Program, a multi-million dollar federal program designed to create and/or develop the health care infrastructure for Long Island.

1967 - 1970 Associate Director, Peace Corps/Liberia, responsible for Urban Community Development and 150 volunteers in the capital city.

1965 - 1967 Associate Rector, St. Margaret's Episcopal Church and Executive Director, Adams Morgan Community Council. Urban Community Development.


"Spirit; Transformation and Development in Organizations," Abbott, 1987

"Leadership Is", Abbott Publishing, 1990

"Riding the Tiger", Abbott Publishing, 1991

"The Millennium Organization," ABBOTT PUBLISHING, 1994

"Tales From Open Space," (Editor) ABBOTT PUBLISHING, 1995

"Expanding Our Now: The Story of Open Space," Berrett-Koehler, Fall 1997

"Organization Transformation and the Uses of Myth and Ritual" Chapter in "Transforming Work" John Adams editor - Miles River Press

"Leadership by Indirection", Chapter in "Transforming Leadership", John Adams, editor - Miles River Press

"The Spirit of Leadership," Berrett-Koehler, 1999

"The Power of Spirit: How Organizations Transform," Berrett-Koehler, 2000

"The Practice of Peace," Human Systems Dynamics Institute, 2003

"Open Space Technology," Chapter in "The Change Handbook" edited by Peg Holman and Tom Devane. Berret-Koehler, 1999

"Wave Rider: Leadership for High Performance in a Self Organizing World," Berrett-Koehler, 2008

"Open Space Technology: A User's Guide," Third Edition, Berrett-Koehler, 2008


Listed in  "Whos Who in America." "Who's Who in Business and Finance"

Member of  The Cosmos Club


Williams College BA 1957

Virginia Seminary BD 1960

Vanderbilt University MA 1965

Client Engagements and Presentations (partial list): Owens/Corning Fiberglas, Procter and Gamble, Dupont, Eastern Virginia Medical Authority, Shell/Netherlands, Shell Tankers (Dutch), Shell/Canada, The French Ministry of Telecommunications (PTT), The US Forest Service, The US Internal Revenue Service, Jonathan Corporation, The US Army, Ikea (Sweden), Statoil (Norway), SAS Airlines, Young Presidents Organization, City University Business School (London), Gronigen University Business School (Holland), Taj Hotel Group (India), Congresso De Desarrollo Organizacional (Mexico), PepsiCola (Venezuela), National Education Association, Toronto-Dominion Bank (Canada), American Management Systems, American Society of Training and Development, Scott Paper, TELCEL/Venezuela, The American Society of Association Executives, The Presbyterian Church (USA), The Accor Hotel Group (France), Ermetek Corp (South Africa), The Union of International Associations (Belgium), Rockport Shoes, Corporate Express, The World Bank, AT&T, IBM, USWEST, The Organization Development Network, Lucent Technologies, The Bank of Montreal, Lockheed-Martin, Boeing, Banner Health, The YWCA(USA), The Howard Hughes Medical Institute, MicroSoft, and the UN.