National Conference Advocacy

Become an ESOP Advocate

On this page you will find resources and materials to help you to identify your representatives, schedule your meetings, learn about our top policy issues, see how to navigate the Capitol and its office buildings, learn what to expect during the meeting, and find out how to follow up after it’s over. Check back again frequently before your trip to Washington, as we will be updating the content here as the National Conference gets closer.

Your First Step

The first step to setting up your meetings is to identify your Senators and Representatives. We’ve made it easy for you—just enter the zip code for your company below and we will provide you with the name and contact information for the correct officials. If you are feeling ambitious, do it for every location where your company has an employee presence and grow your list of visits!

Your Second Step

Once you’ve identified the offices you want to visit, send in your meeting request! You can download here a sample meeting request that you can edit and send from your company. Be sure to include all the details about the dates you will be in town, why you will be here, what you would like to discuss, and most importantly how you can be reached.

We recommend sending the request in via e-mail and then following up with a phone call to make sure it was received. In your e-mail subject line be sure to include: Meeting Request for Scheduler on Behalf of [Your Company Name OR Your Name if you have a relationship already]. That way it is more likely to be quickly routed to the right person on the staff. Of course, if you have already established a relationship with somebody in the office, use that point of contact.

Keep in mind that the average member of Congress receives over 10,000 meeting requests every year—far more than they could ever fulfill. So, if the member is busy and you are offered a meeting with a staff member, it is still an excellent opportunity! Members of Congress rely deeply on their staff to know the details of the issues and their constituencies, and sometimes meeting with the staff can lead more directly to a positive result because the staff is often making the first call on what to support or not support.

Preparing for the Meeting

Once you have scheduled your meetings, it is time to prepare. Your first step in this process is to gather important information about your company and the impact it has in your community. Members of Congress are always looking for ways to better understand their constituents, the businesses that create jobs, and the way federal laws and policies could make it easier or harder for you to do business.

Come ready to describe what your company does or what you make. Elected officials may want to know about your customers and what markets you serve; they almost ALWAYS want to know how many employees you have. But the most important part is telling your employee ownership story. For some inspiration, you can watch these videos from past Annual Awards for Communications Excellence (AACE) winners, who tell the ESOP story.

Check back here soon: We will finalize more materials, including ones you can take to your meetings that will describe important legislation to be considered this Congress, some specific “asks” you can make during the meeting, and other materials you may find helpful.

Help Us Follow Up

If you plan to make Congressional visits, please e-mail here: ESOPADVOCATE@esopassociation.org and let us know about your scheduled visits and then how the meetings went. That way we can better track and follow up on any questions your elected officials may have or commitments made to you (like co-sponsoring a bill, or signing a letter).