This week’s ABC Newsletter details our active advocacy agenda developed by the Government Affairs Committee, based on your input. We have an ambitious agenda designed to tackle some long-standing issues, as well as emerging opportunities. Our overall intent is to shape the legislative and regulatory environment in a way that enhances our members’ ability to succeed in a challenging and fluid era. The ABC staff is capable and prepared to drive this agenda, but of critical importance is the active engagement by all of us in educating our national and local elected and administrative officials about the importance of these initiatives.
I am a self-professed neophyte in governmental affairs. As is the case with many, I have responded to requests from ABC to contact elected and regulatory officials on specific issues. I have been to the Hill to meet with my congressmen and senators and have shared the “message” of community blood centers. But at the same time, I have marveled at the degree of connection some of our members have with their respective officials – the influence and respect they garner because of the long-standing relationship they have developed over time.
I am similarly impressed with the confidence and knowledge of ABC’s executive leadership in navigating what appears to be a complex landscape of rules, alliances, and relationships in order to build the necessary framework to achieve desired outcomes in advocacy. Much progress is being made in this regard, but I believe my fellow “neophytes” and I need to step up our advocacy game to achieve the success we desire. We need not only to embrace the “agenda,” but more importantly perhaps, we need to model our style of engagement after those ABC members who lead the way.
Our Government Affairs Committee is comprised of such leaders and ABC’s CEO Christine Zambricki, DNAP, CRNA, FAAN, and other staff are seasoned advocacy professionals. We certainly have others forging the way in advocacy throughout the ABC membership who are well known for these skills and talent. I encourage those of us less experienced to seek out the seasoned veterans and learn their craft. I look forward to joining you in the movement.
Dave Green, Board President; firstname.lastname@example.org