The Opportunities and Challenges of Nonprofit Advocacy


The Opportunities and Challenges of Nonprofit Advocacy

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Minnesota nonprofits have a long history of participating in public advocacy and thinking about how it fits within their missions. With the start of the legislative session, nonprofits are once again poised to play a vital role Minnesota's policy process. This event will place the work of Minnesota nonprofits in the context of national developments and compare the experiences of nonprofits around the state. The panelists invited to initiate the discussion include leading academic, Jeff Berry, Ph.D., Tufts University; Marcia Avner, Director of Public Policy, MCN; and Susie Brown, Public Policy Director, Family & Children Services. Professor Jeff Berry specializes in the areas of interest groups, citizen participation, nonprofits, and public policymaking. He is the author of several books, including The Challenge of Democracy, A Voice for Nonprofits, The Rebirth of Urban Democracy, and The New Liberalism: The Rising Power of Citizen Groups. Recognized as a leading political science scholar, Berry is the recipient of numerous prestigious awards, including the Tufts Distinguished Scholar Award. Marcia Avner is the Public Policy Director with the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits, a statewide association of nonprofits with over 1300 member organizations. Her work includes training, educating, and lobbying on issues that are important to nonprofits and the people they serve. Ms. Avner authored The Lobbying and Advocacy Handbook for Nonprofit Organizations: Shaping Public Policy at the State and Local Level. Susie Brown is the public policy director for Family & Children's Service, a Minneapolis-based nonprofit family service agency. In this role, she participates in the AFFIRM coalition, leading legislative committee and state immigration policy efforts. She is also adjunct faculty at Hamline University in the Graduate School of Management.

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This event was co-sponsored by the Public & Nonprofit Leadership Center, the Center for the Study of Politics & Governance, and the Cowles Endowment for the Study of Public Service.

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Jacobs, Lawrence R.. (2008). The Opportunities and Challenges of Nonprofit Advocacy. Retrieved from the University Digital Conservancy,

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