Participants in the Society of American Florists’ 39th Annual Congressional Action Days, March 11-12, will head to their congressional appointments prepped with persuasion tactics from an expert with decades of Capitol Hill experience.
Hunt Shipman, part of the Cornerstone Government Affairs team that represents SAF, will speak at the Grassroots Breakfast offering the crowd dos and don’ts when voicing their legislative priorities and concerns.
“He has great advice— all true stories from his time listening to constituents lobby,” said Shawn McBurney, SAF senior director of government relations.
Shipman’s advice reflects his experience in Washington, D.C., in legislative, regulatory and policy positions. In the 1990s, he served on the staff of former Sen. Thad Cochran (R-Mississippi), and listened in on numerous lobbying sessions with constituents.
Additionally, he was staff director of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry and a staff member of the Senate Appropriations Committee. From 2001 to 2003, he was the USDA’s deputy undersecretary for farm and foreign agricultural services and acting deputy undersecretary for marketing and regulatory programs.
Since then, Shipman has served on the USDA’s Agricultural Policy Advisory Committee for Trade and the U.S. Committee for the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations’ Board of Directors.
SAF taps experts such as Shipman to give CAD participants insider knowledge to empower them to speak confidently during their Congressional visits, McBurney said.
Educating lawmakers about floriculture’s legislative priorities and their businesses is what brings retailers, wholesalers, importers, suppliers and growers to CAD.
“Advocating for our employees and businesses and sharing our stories in person is an important way to for us to connect with our legislators,” said Karen Fountain, AAF, of Flowers ‘n’ Ferns in Burke, Virginia. “SAF CAD helps makes that possible.”
For CAD details and to register, click here. The SAF room rate is $239 single/double per night plus tax. The cut-off date for guaranteeing the rate is Monday, Feb. 18. (Note: The CAD hotel sold out last year.)
Early bird registration ends Friday, March 1. It offers a $55 discount ($295 for members, $395 for non-members). CAD registration includes an additional free registration for a second person from the member’s company who has never attended before. To take advantage of this offer, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.