Elaine and David Brownlow are two of the nicest people you will ever meet. They live in Melbourne Australia and run a privately held family company, Hawker Brownlow. David is an entrepreneur and former school teacher, and Elaine, before raising their two children who are now in the business, was a typesetter who morphed into a phenomenal editor, acquisitions manager and now the head of Hawker Brownlow. She is a damn good business woman…mate!
One of the attributes making Hawker Brownlow unique is that besides publishing their own materials they acquire book rights from other publishers, reproduce the titles in Queen’s English, distribute them in Australia and New Zeleand, and pay a royalty back to the publisher. Brilliant. Companies like ASCD, Corwin Press, Solution Tree, Josie Bass, Eye on Education, and Stenhouse Press would never be able to reach educators Down Under like they can, much less together…with no politics!!! Heck, ASCD and Corwin barely talk to me, much less share shelf space.
Four years ago when I attended my very first Hawker Brownlow Annual Conference, their 7th at that time, it was easy to see they could expand their conference offerings and also provide on-site Staff Development. When I say easy to see, it was easy for Douglas Rife, President of Solution Tree Press, to see. He encouraged me to go to Melbourne, see their operations, and put Elaine and I together to dream and scheme. Elaine and David were so welcoming and their operation so well run, a partnership seemed natural. So in the course of a 30 minute meeting involving Elaine, Douglas and me, we framed out Hawker Brownlow Professional Learning Solutions (HBPLS).
Since the formation of HBPLS we have expanded and grown under the watchful eye of David and Elaine, but run by their daughter Clare and Mr. Gavin Grift. Clare and Gavin are a powerful team expanding the reach of great educational thinkers like Jay McTighe, Ruby Payne, Bob Marzano, Mike Mattos, Anthony Muhammad, Dylan Wiliams, Andy Hargreaves and Rick and Becky DuFour just to name a handful. You can check out all the others at http://www.hbpls.com.au
All partnerships should be this easy, well run, and enjoyable. The Brownlows truly make a difference in the lives of so many educators and school children in Australia and New Zealand with their unique publishing company, and our partnership. And that is why we do it!