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Advocating at the State Level: What’s it Like “Behind the Scenes?”

Stacy Bogard

By Stacy Bogard, CAE, MASB Assistant Director of Communications, PR & Marketing

DashBoard, Sept. 20, 2017

According to MASB’s recent member survey, advocacy was heavily mentioned in terms of the value members have for MASB’s legislative efforts, member awareness and engagement in legislation that affects their district, and as a way to address ongoing school funding issues and other top priorities.

MASB member boards have regularly been proactive by passing resolutions in support of or against legislation, and many of you have made calls or sent emails to your legislators when a big issue is on the table. But do you really know who you are calling or sending emails to, as well as whether or not you are communicating in the most effective way?

To help answer these questions and “arm” you with valuable advocacy tools, MASB is holding a Behind the Scenes at the Capitol event on Thursday, Oct. 12 at the State Capitol.

Board members who participate will be given the opportunity to meet and hear first-hand from active legislators, ask them questions about what they look for when someone is testifying before a committee and learn from their perspective on how to be more effective in advocacy efforts. Legislators in attendance are also former school board members, including Reps. Gary Howell (R-North Branch), David LaGrand (D-Grand Rapids), Frank Liberati (D-Allen Park) and Dave Pagel (R-Berrien Springs).

Attendees will also be given the opportunity to hear from a multi-client lobbyist, Dave Ladd of Kelley Cawthorne, on how to best prepare for committee meetings and impact legislation.

Finally, attendees will receive the rare opportunity to walk onto the House floor during a private tour with Rep. Donna Lasinski (D-Scio Township), and will receive a formal welcome and introduction by the Michigan Senate.

The event will take place in the Speaker's Library at the State Capitol in Lansing starting at 9 a.m. with lunch included. Registration is now open and space is limited. Contact MASB Government Relations if you have any questions. We look forward to seeing you at the Capitol!

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