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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is one of several freshmen in Congress who were named finalists in the Democracy Awards competition, which highlights congressional offices that are well run and offer exceptional constituent service.

Ocasio-Cortez, Shalala lead finalists for democracy awards

Freshman members of Congress, particularly the newest female lawmakers, are leading the way on Capitol Hill in how they run their offices and serve constituent needs.

The Congressional Management Foundation announced Thursday the finalists for its Democracy Awards and nine people in their first terms — the most in the three years the awards have been handed out — made the cut.

Seven women are among the finalists, again the most in the short history of the awards, which honor members of Congress for their work in four categories: constituent service; workplace environment; transparency and accountability; and innovation and modernization.

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Online Town Halls for the COVID-19 Crisis: Proven Methods to Connect, Learn, and Lead

Organizer: Congressional Management Foundation

Now more than ever, it is critical that Members of Congress use the most effective methods for communicating with their constituents. The Congressional Management Foundation has been working with Member offices and political scientists for more than a decade to develop online and telephone town hall meetings that lead to civil and thoughtful dialogues on pressing issues before Congress. Constituents learned a lot through these events, and they changed people's attitudes towards Members and policy, as well as their voting behavior. These now proven methods could be used to help constituents learn about the crisis and change their behavior to slow the spread of COVID19.

This webinar will present the research demonstrating the influence of high quality online town hall meetings. Presenters also will walk staff through how to enhance the likelihood that public opinion and behavior can be changed through these forums. Participants will learn how to:

  • Explain how to recruit and prepare constituents for successful remote town hall meetings.
  • Demonstrate the power of engaging with informed constituents.
  • Provide guidance on how to change constituents' minds.
  • Give you the knowledge you need to have great remote town hall meetings.

Location: Webinar

How to Manage a Congressional Office Remotely During a Crisis

Organizer: Congressional Management Foundation

Congress just made a massive change to how it functions: moving to remote operations. This change was rapid and unexpected. It is likely that many congressional managers have questions about how to manage the team during this crisis; how to re-orient constituent engagements; and how to conduct contingency planning if something else happens (like the Member/Senator or key staff become ill).

To help congressional offices at this time, the Congressional Management Foundation (CMF) will be hosting a webinar "How to Manage a Congressional Office Remotely during a Crisis."

The Congressional Management Foundation has developed this program based on our previous research after 9/11 and the anthrax attack, and combined it with recent research from leading authorities in the U.S on managing in a telework environment. We have combined helpful advice from Harvard Business Review, Forbes, the Society for Human Resource Management and CMF's own best practices to bring you an informative presentation. By the end of the program, you should expect to gain information on the following:

  • 5 changes you should immediately consider for office operations.
  • 4 rules for managing staff in a teleworking environment.
  • How to make a "virtual" meeting seem "real."
  • 6 mistakes managers often make in a crisis.
  • Helpful and REALLY silly things you can do remotely to help everyone maintain their sense of humor...and their sanity!

Location: Webinar

Congress
Continuity of Congress in the Wake of COVID-19

Congressional experts call for emergency, remote legislative operations

With a senator and two House members now testing positive for the novel coronavirus, calls for Congress to shift to emergency, remote work are escalating.

A group of congressional experts gathered (virtually, of course) last week to talk through how lawmakers could ensure continuity of the legislative branch while protecting the health of lawmakers.

Guest speakers included two experts on continuity of government: Norman Ornstein, resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, and John Fortier, director of the Bipartisan Policy Center's Democracy Project.

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