Selected Testimonials from Meeting Planners and Executives


National Organizations

State-Level Organizations

National Organizations

“Thank you for an excellent presentation!! I have received many emails from my members during the call and immediately following saying how helpful the material is and that they look forward to receiving the slides to follow up. You are a very talented presenter and your knowledge and use of technology is very impressive.” – Lisa Carr, Senior Director of Public Policy, Lutheran Services in America

“Stephanie’s presentation to our trade association was precisely as promised. She drove home the point of the ‘ask.’ Our members headed to Capitol Hill ready to ‘close the deal’ with their elected representatives.” – Magenta M.R. Ishak, Director of Political Affairs, National Association of Insurance & Financial Advisors

“Stephanie was great and I think our advocacy workshop attendees learn a lot of useful techniques. Her approach was perfect by understaning our audience, speaking on their level and using examples to demonstrate how they can advocate in their local communities.” – Jay Richardson, National Recreation and Park Association

“Stephanie was the perfect fit for our group. She motivated them, energized them after a long day of learning, and I even heard them quoting her acronyms! I highly recommend Stephanie – she’s the right blend of expert knowledge and humor.” – Laura Vogel, National Association of REALTORS

Your time with us was informative, entertaining and so helpful in preparing us for our visits on the Hill yesterday. More than once, people commented on how well prepared they felt to make their visits. This is, in large part, because of your efforts and we are grateful to you for this.” – Janet Hieshetter, Executive Director, Dystonia Medical Research Foundation

“As always, your advocacy training was very well received and was an excellent kick-start to our Hill Day. Your knowledge and presentation style are second to none.” – Christopher Eastlee, Government Relations Manager, Association of Air Medical Services

I can assure you that our participants were grateful you could attend and provide us with the tools they needed to make valuable Congressional visits the next day.” – Krysta Harden, National Association of Conservation Districts

“You put [our group] at ease in getting around Capitol Hill and in their discussions with their Senators and Represenatives. You made their experience in Washington, DC, enjoyable for [our group] and educational for the elected officials with whom they met.” – Tristan North, Vice President of Government Affairs, American Ambulance Association

“Stephanie’s presentation was perfect and exactly what our advocates needed. Most of them were brand new to advocacy and she gave an excellent overview of the process… Stephanie’s humor kept the discussion light and made (what can be) a boring topic interesting. She clearly did her homework.” – Kelly Taranto, Advocacy & Development Manager, Reach Out and Read

Your contribution was exactly what we needed, and it played a major role in ensuring that our attendees were able to “package” the panelists’ remarks into realistic and actionalbe goals. Thanks for sharing your talents with this group!” – WGR Grassroots Conference Co-Chairs

“Stephanie’s presentations were outstanding. Not only did she convey specific and useful information targeted for our particular membership in a concise and logical fashion, but she also made the learning process fun.” – Debbie Campbell, AACN

Your comments about how to be an effective advocate were exactly what our members were looking for. Since this was our first time to send ACHCA members to Capitol Hill, we wanted to be sure they were prepared.” – Marguerite Leishman, Meetings Manager, American College of Health Care Administrators, Chapter Development Institute

“Your presentation on effective lobby techniques was educational, interesting and well-received by our resident members.” – Willie Underwood III, MS, MD Chair, Resident and Fellow Section, American Medical Association

The advocacy techniques you shared with the group were not only highly relevant for American Associations Day, but are also applicable for our members’ industry-driven advocacy efforts throughout the year… You’ve presented to the same group twice now, and on both occasions, you were able to fully engage the audience. We received nothing but extremely positive feedback on your program.” Jim Clarke, Senior Vice President, Public Policy & Strategic Relations, American Society of Association Executives, Legislative Fly-In (2004)

“Your insight into how things really work in Congress and tips on communicating effectively were just what we needed… Many of our members have been in the industry for quite some time and are seasoned in speaking with their elected officials. I heard many say they found your program valuable in bringing them a renewed focus and a new approach to their work in advocating for public transportation funding. Knowing what to say is just as important as knowing what not to say, and your presentation highlighting the right approach with the right words was beneficial to all our program participants.” – Martha Pierce, Executive Director, Pennsylvania Public Transportation Association

Your presentation was outstanding! . . . [it] was not only very informative but you made it fun and enjoyable. The participants were very pleased. Thank you!” Rebecca Strom, American Society of Radiologic Technologists

When all else fails go back to the basics with Stephanie’s effective, matter-of-fact approach on successful advocacy.” – Fred Brown, participant, PAGR Lobbypalooza 2004

“Thank you for leading a terrific luncheon presentation and discussion last week . . the group really appreciated your insight and judging from our evaluations of the week, they came away with a lot of valuable information from your presentation.” Ann Ochsendorf, Manager, Business Development, Brookings Institute

“Stephanie Vance has addressed a number of Brookings Seminars, and she ably explained the mysterious and hidden inner workings of Congress. She provided very useful advice and effective suggestions on how to communicate more successfully with the members of Congress. She knows what she’s talking about – she’s been there.” – Peter Schoettle, Program Manager, Brookings Institute

“Our members really enjoyed your presentation! I’ve heard attendees mention (after the fact and away from the event — so it wasn’t just “in the moment”) how much they enjoyed your perspective on their visits to the Hill. NACM has been hosting an annual Legislative Conference for years; we haven’t found a way to put our members — who accept the awesome responsibility of making calls on their elected officials — at ease. You did exactly that for us! Your presentation helped our members understand that Members of Congress — and their staff — are people. Thanks for making NACM’s member visits to the Hill more productive and, more fun.” – Robin Schauseil, NACM President, National Association of Credit Managers, Annual Legislative Conference

“We heard nothing but positive feedback about your presentation. Your presentation helped our members prepare fully for their meetings and made our message clearer.” Jim Clarke, Senior Vice President, Public Policy and Strategic Relations, American Society of Association Executives, Legislative Fly-In (2003)

“Not surprisingly, preliminary review of the conference evaluations indicates that attendees found your advocacy training both informative and entertaining. One of the comments really wrapped it up ‘Stephanie is always enjoyable.'” Barbara West, Executive Director, National Association of Veterans’ Research and Education Foundations (2003)

“. . . thank you very much for speaking during the NAVREF Annual Conference despite the terrible weather, the early hour, a cold and a blown projector! That is true professionalism. Once again, your session consistently received “excellent”marks. Comments included, “Didn’t think I would learn much, but I was wrong. Great session.” “Stephanie does a great job.” “Gets the point across well.” Barbara West, Executive Director, National Association of Veteran’s Research and Educational Foundations (2002)

“Your voice will be heard on Capitol Hill with the assistance of Ms. Vance’s book and seminar that offer clear, practical strategies for communicating with Members of Congress.” – Jamie Whitcomb, National Affairs Associate, National Public Radio

“During our legislative fly-in, Stephanie Vance lightened our load considerably by giving our participants a fun way to learn how Congress works. Stephanie’s enthusiasm and humor kept the crowd totally engaged. We were impressed by how AdVanced Consulting personalized their presentation for our group.” – John Goodwin, Grassroots Outreach Coordinator, The Humae Society of the United States

“Stephanie, you were a huge hit. Thanks!” – Robyn Henderson, VP, Program Services, National Rural Health Association

“I am pleased to recommend Stephanie Vance of AdVanced Consulting without reservation… My members came away from the session with a better understanding of congressional communications and operations as well as increased motivation to participate in grassroots efforts… [Stephanie] is an outstanding resource…” – Susan West Montgomery, President, Preservation Action

“How wonderful to see a person at the podium who makes knowledge so accessible to an audience. To do it with charm and great humor is even more rare…” – Marilyn Hinshaw, ALTA Liason from the Public Library Association, Public Library Association

“Stephanie Vance is a real professional. During our Washington conference, we faced some last minute speaker changes that threw off the entire program schedule. Stephanie completely customized her presentation at the last minute to accommodate the new plan. When you’re dealing with public figures whose schedules can often change at the last minute, it’s good to know that you count on Stephanie to be so flexible!” – Victoria Kuhns, UFFVA VP, Education, United Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Association, Washington Public Policy Conference

“Our conference participants gained a thorough understanding of the most effective ways to advocate on Capitol Hill.” – Katherine Reilly, Policy Associate, WomenWork!

“Excellent, very useful. Thought provoking, fun and informative.” – United States Tennis Association

“Very relevant… Engaging and dynamic speaker… She presented an excellent account of why we should persevere with our legislative efforts… giving old concepts new life.” – American Academy of Family Physicians

“We only received great feedback from our attendees about your session. Although all thought the morning event was entertaining and informative, it was on their Hill visits that the real value of the session came through. Both veterans and those new to advocacy felt more comfortable and confident in their meetings. In fact, our attendees were able to at least four new co-sponsors for our key bill in the House. Thanks for helping to make our event a big success and I will certainly keep you in mind for future meetings.” – Tracy Taylor, National Nutritional Foods Association

State-Level Associations

Ms. Vance was very entertaining and more importantly very informative. As a med student she gave me a great foundation to build on for future political advocacy.” ” Stephanie was high energy and very interactive. I learned a lot of new info and I have been to advocacy sessions before.” ” Stephanie Vance: Very energetic. Kept interest even in afternoon.” ” Stephanie is very entertaining and informative. The time went by so fast.” – Attendees from the Ohio Association of Family Physicians

“We were just talking about how much we loved the workshops you did… You successfully kept everyone engaged for the full 4 hours, which is an incredible accomplishment. I will gladly recommend your services to others.” – Ann Spicer, Ohio Association of Family Physicians

I must tell you that as I’ve gone through the evaluations for the 2008 Kansas Library Conference your name appears more than anything else on the ‘what did you like most about this year’s conference’ question. You even beat out the refreshment breaks! Thank you so much for a wonderful event.” – Laura Loveless, Kansas Public Library
“Stephanie Vance makes effectice advocacy understandable and attainable. Her message is clear, direct and forceful – exactly what we needed to hear.” – Peggy Cadigan, New Jersey State Library

“The Kansas Library Association (KLA) conference in Wichita just had Stephanie Vance for its opening act. She probably has done more to spark advocacy in Kansas than all the CE programs done around the state in the last 10 years. She’s a marvelous communicator.” – Harry Willems, Director, Park City Public Library

“And you thought advocacy couldn’t be fun! Stephanie Vance provides her audience with effective tools and strategies to encourage ‘government by the people,’ and does so with humor, a great deal of fun, and a message that hits home.” – Genny Ferri, Prevent Child Abuse West Virginia

“One of the participants told me she had always been interested in what went on with the General Assembly, but really did not know how to communicate to the legislators. Your presentation gave her great motivation; she told me that at lunch, she applied every suggestion you made and said, ‘It works!‘ …The interactive presentation and the modeling of behaviors to use when discussing issues were priceless.” – Kathryn Ames, Chair, Georgia Library Legislative Day

“A library board member commented that this was the best of several advocacy workshops she’d attended. Your legislative experience gave me insight into how elected officials view advocates and their messages. You did an amazing job demonstrating to us how to advocate and frame our message. I feel much more capable after this training of doing a higher level approach that will be heard.” – Donna Brazzell, Executive Director, DeKalb Library Foundation

The session was exactly what we needed to hear, and I know the group was better prepared to meet with their elected officials after our meeting with you. The session was fun and lively, which was a great start to our morning. I am truly grateful for the insight you shared with our group.” – Tiffany Fulmer, Administrator, Georgia Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives

“I received nothing but compliments and perceived nothing but satisfaction from all the participants. Your ability to share your experiences as a consultant, and particularly as a Congressional staff person, made the experience very real and valuable. Your friendly manner of dealing with the group and breaking the ice to get them involved worked from the very beginning, all the way through the group exercises at the end.” – Kent McDaniel, Executive Director, Indiana Public Transportation Association

“Stephanie once again brought much knowledge forward to people who otherwise may have been uncomfortable meeting with their legislators.” – Dominic Liberatore, Executive Director, The Ohio Association of Railroad Passengers

“Your insights into the political process were most enlightening and your tips were good reminders of things we might have known but tend to forget.” – Betsy Kachmar, Assistant General Manager, Citilink

“Your message was exactly on point with what we would like our advocates to understand!” – Shannon Strickler, Director, Government Relations/Staff Legal Counsel, Iowa Hospital Association

“Thanks for all the tips and encouragement throughout the last year. I have quoted you several times when talking with members of our local and state elementary principals associations, especially when they are frustrated about the apparent lack of progress we are making on our resolutions/priorities. Your sense of humor and commen sense approach are really appreciated.” – Dean Warrenfeltz, WV Federal Relations Coordinator, NAESP

“From scheduling her session to applauding her performance, I was delighted with Stephanie’s professionalism and talent. At the conference, Stephanie shined when asked at the last minute to give another presentation at a moment’s notice . . . I recommend Stephanie to any group who wants its audience to experience an out of the ordinary conference session packed with fascinating information about effective advocacy at every level.” – Bill M. Welch, President/CEO, Nevada Hospital Association

“Many people commented that they will take ideas they learned from your session and apply them to their organizations. This is exactly what we wanted people to get out of the Institute and you helped make that possible.” – Michelle Park, Executive Director, Ohio Parks and Recreation Board Development Institute

“The extra time you took researching the credit unions and the particulars of the Washington Credit Union League really made the program personal.”Washington Credit Union League

“Your presentation was excellent, and got the highest marks of all speakers by our participants.” – Barbara Duerst, Wisconsin Office of Rural Health, Wisconsin Rural Health Association

“The session was exactly what we needed to hear, and I know the group was better prepared to meet with their elected officials after meeting with [Stephanie]. The session was also fun and lively which was a great start to our morning. I am truly grateful for the insight you shared with the group!” – Tiffany L. Fulmer, Administrator, Georgia Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives