- Hello Congressman, This is Your Wake-Up Call: How to Take Your Representative from Information to Action
- Rebirth of a Notion: How to Breathe New Life Into a Dead Legislative Issue
- Fertilize Your Grassroots: Identifying, Motivating, Activating and Institutionalizing Grassroots Advocacy
- Show Me the Money: Researching, Tracking (and Getting) Federal Grants and Loans
- The Budget & Appropriations Process: Making Sense of the Dollars & Cents
- Legislative Process 101 – Getting to Know the Process
- A New Perspective: Organizing Your Grassroots & GR Efforts
- Grassroots Survivor: Keeping Your Grassroots Engaged Through the Conventions, Elections and Start of a New Congress
Stephanie D. Vance, has experience in Washington, DC, both as a lobbyist and a congressional aide, holding positions such as legislative assistant, legislative director and staff director for various members of Congress.
Stephanie Vance, The Advocacy Guru work on congressional communications stems from a deep and abiding belief that the US system of government is effective only when citizens are active and well-informed participants.
Personal Statement: I used to think that our system of government was a complete mess. Actually, I haven’t really changed my mind on that, but I do believe that government is, in fact, designed to be a complete mess. Our founding fathers wanted to put together a system of government that just doesn’t do much: too bad they were so successful.
The good news is that government actually isn’t broken and I’ve spent a lifetime figuring out how you and your organization can work the system and beat the odds. If you want to win your government relations issue, let me know how I can help!
My experiences at the firm furthered my interest in the legislative process and inspired me to earn a very interesting (although some might say not entirely useful) Master’s degree in Legislative Affairs. I then tested my academic understanding of the legislative process through a job as a Legislative Assistant on Capitol Hill. Needless to say, the “real world” of working on the hill was vastly different from the text books.
During my first tenure on Capitol Hill, I had the opportunity to be a part of history by losing my job when Republicans took over the House of Representatives. A year-long stint as a lobbyist for National Pubic Radio helped me understand how hard it is for organizations and individuals to get their views across to members of Congress and their staffs. I began to parlay my experiences as a lobbyist and congressional aide into an understanding of the best ways to gain the attention of elected officials and their staff. As a Legislative Director and Chief of Staff, I had the opportunity to work with both professional lobbyists as well as citizen activists and realized that many people do not understand how to effectively communicate with an elected official.
As the self-appointed “Advocacy Guru”, my work is based on a deep and abiding belief that government is effective only when citizens are actively and responsibly engaged. Contrary to popular belief, government isn’t broken: people just need to know how to work the system and beat the odds.