The Inauguration's Over: Time for Citizens to Take Action

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With Obama safely sworn in as our 44th President, the attention of the nation turns to the implementation of his policy agenda, as well as government efforts to solve our economic problems. In her new book "Citizens in Action: A Guide to Influencing Government," former Congressional staffer and "Advocacy Guru" Stephanie Vance shows citizens how they can be part of this process by effectively advocating for the causes they believe in.

With Obama safely sworn in as our 44th President, the attention of the nation turns to the implementation of his policy agenda, as well as government efforts to solve our economic problems. In her new book, "Citizens in Action: A Guide to Influencing Government," former Congressional staffer and "Advocacy Guru" Stephanie Vance shows citizens how they can be part of this process by effectively advocating for the causes they believe in.

"With trillions of dollars and the economic survival of the nation at stake, it's clear that citizens must become actively involved in monitoring and advising their elected representatives," said Vance. "Fortunately, the 2008 elections confirmed what has been brewing around the country for awhile: citizens actually want to be involved in the policy decisions that impact their work and daily lives. At the same time, they've been disappointed by past and recent examples of political corruption and greed and aren't sure what to do to have their message heard. This book shows them the way."

Without apologizing for the many ridiculous things that go on in D.C. and in state capitols around the country, "Citizens in Action" shows advocates how to rise above politics and make a difference without resorting to underhanded tricks. Armed with the practical and down-to-earth tools and techniques in this book - developed by the author through years of experience as a lobbyist and elected officials' aide - citizen advocates will learn the ins-and-outs of getting what they want out of their elected leaders.

"Believe it or not, it is possible for citizens to get heard by their government without making a big campaign contribution. They just need to know how to use their amazing power of constituency to their advantage," stated Vance, a nationally known speaker and trainer on the topic of effective advocacy. "The "Citizens in Action" approach complements the current trend in D.C. and around the country toward citizen involvement in policymaking."

In "Citizens in Action," readers will discover:
--     The factors that influence elected officials - beyond the cash
--     Citizens' "power of constituency" and how to utilize it effectively
--     The four keys to effective advocacy, including: knowing what you want; who you're talking to; how to talk to them; and, how to follow-up
--     The top 10 things elected officials and their staff HATE to hear
--     The one thing that always works in effective advocacy (shh… it's a secret)

"Citizens in Action shares the secrets of how to get things done in any policymaking environment," said Joel Poznansky, President of Columbia Books. "As such, we believe that anyone involved with or leading an advocacy campaign will find value in this publication, and we're proud to be associated with a volume that matches so well with our mission to provide resources to the lobbying community."

"Citizens in Action" is a companion volume to "The Advocacy Manual: A Practitioner's Guide to Achieving Policy Goals Through Organization Networks." Targeted toward those leading advocacy campaigns, whether at associations, corporations or as part of the general public, this guide offers a step-by-step process for building, communicating with and activating an advocacy network.

About the Author:
With 20 years of experience in Washington, D.C., Stephanie Vance, known nationally and internationally as the Advocacy Guru, knows the insider's secrets to influencing government. She has worked at a prominent DC law firm, as a lobbyist for National Public Radio and as a Congressional aide, holding positions as Legislative Director and Staff Director for three different members of Congress. She is the author of "Government by the People: How to Communicate with Congress" and the fabjob.com guide "Get a Job on Capitol Hill."

About the Publisher:
For more than 40 years, Columbia Books & Information Services has provided users with information on the associations, government relations, lobbying and public relations communities. As a publisher of print directories, online databases, mailing lists, and audioconferences, we have extensive experience capturing and delivering relevant and accurate information on the above topics in easy-to-use formats. Whether you are interested in lobbyists and their clients, associations and their executives, or public affairs professionals they have a resource that will fit your needs.

For a review copy of Citizens in Action, please contact: Christy Talbot, Columbia Books & Information Services at ctalbot (at) columbiabooks (dot) com or at 202-464-1662 ext. 115. The table of contents is also available at http://www.uscongresshandbook.com/Files/CIA_Table_of_Content.pdf.

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