The Society of American Florists’ Congressional Action Days drew its largest crowd in more than a decade last year with 119 growers, wholesalers, retailers and suppliers — including 35 first-time participants — from 30 states. Nicole Palazzo of City Line Florist in Trumbull, Connecticut, was among the first-time participants and she’s returning this year for the 38th Annual Congressional Action Days (CAD), March 12-13 in Washington, D.C.
“I’m not a political person, but SAF showed me the ropes. I made the rounds on Capitol Hill and met with lawmakers,” said Palazzo. She participated with her mother, Sue, a CAD veteran, taking advantage of SAF’s offer of a free registration for first-time guests of attendees. “Our legislators want to listen, and it’s their job to listen, but they can’t act on our behalf unless we explain our industry’s concerns to them.”
SAF continues its “bring a first-timer for free” offer so CAD participants can share the lobbying experience with a colleague who’s never attended before.
Before heading to Capitol Hill, CAD participants hear from SAF lobbyists during the Issues & Advocacy Training session. Dr. Joe Bischoff of Cornerstone Government Affairs and SAF’s Senior Director of Government Relations Shawn McBurney will explain the key issues affecting the floral industry. Stephanie Vance, a professional lobbyist trainer with Advocacy Associates, will give a hands-on lesson in effective Hill communications. The training session is followed by a working lunch, where participants meet with others from their state or region and talk about how best to tell the industry’s story during your congressional appointments.
“I loved being an advocate! I loved everything about CAD,” Palazzo said. “I’m going to CAD this year, and every year. It’s an effective, personally rewarding way to give back to the industry.”
For more information about this year’s CAD, visit safnow.org/congressional-action-days. The cut-off date for guaranteeing the SAF room rate at the CAD hotel is Feb. 16. The early-bird registration fee is $295 for members and $395 for non-members by Feb. 23. Your CAD registration includes an additional FREE registration for a second person from your company who has never attended CAD before. This offer is not available online; please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
SAF’s 38th Annual Congressional Action Days is underwritten by Platinum Partner CalFlowers and Gold Partners BloomNet, FTD and Teleflora.