It’s not just luck that makes NAIFA the leading political advocacy association for insurance and financial professionals in the United States. It takes hard work, a dedicated and informed membership and strong leadership throughout our association chapters. Today’s NAIFA Leadership Blueprint training focused on advocacy to ensure that chapter volunteer leaders have the training and resources they need to empower their states’ NAIFA members and build on NAIFA’s advocacy strength.
Robert Miller, a Partner at Miller-Pomerantz Insurance and Financial Services and a past NAIFA President, kicked off the event and introduced keynote speaker Michael Dunn. Miller is a NAIFA advocacy leader and a top donor to IFAPAC. He is currently serving on the NAIFA-New York Transition Team.
Dunn, Chairman and CEO of Dunn Associates and a leading expert and thought leader on political involvement strategies, presented “Politics, Political Involvement and You: Now More Than Ever” and explained how the political landscape and effective advocacy are changing.
“The reason you are here today with NAIFA advocacy is because you are a part of that change in the approach to government relations,” Dunn said. “And I give NAIFA a lot of credit. They were one of the very first to recognize that not only is the PAC important, but the grassroots involvement of this membership is going to be key. Continuing to adapt to change is how you survive in this political worked.”
When it comes to political decisions, Dunn said, there are always winners and losers. You’re going to be a player or a victim, he said, and that applies to individuals, companies and industries. Advocates with the most influence are those who contribute money to campaigns and give their time and talent to work on campaigns as well as those to recruit other contributors and campaign workers. NAIFA leaders are responsible for getting members actively involved and making sure NAIFA continues to be a player and a winner.
NAIFA’s Government Relations Team, led by NAIFA Senior Vice President of Government Relations Diane Boyle, provided specific actions state leaders can take to bolster the association’s grassroots work and increase contributions to its political action committee. “The Power of You. The Power of Us” is a NAIFA advocacy campaign that capitalizes on every individual NAIFA member’s connections with their local community and ability to influence lawmakers (the Power of You) and the collective power of NAIFA as an advocacy force (the Power of Us).
NAIFA has members in every U.S. congressional district. Our grassroots army is the voice of the industry, working on behalf of all agents and advisors and their clients, not just in Washington, D.C., but in every state capital as well. Engaging in political advocacy is part of being a “good NAIFA citizen,” allowing members to support their industry, benefit their own businesses and promote the best interests of their clients.
NAIFA and our members are well known among the policymakers who shape the laws and regulations that either help or hinder agents and advisors as they provide pathways to financial security for American families, workers and business owners. Training sessions, like the one offered today, allow NAIFA to amplify its advocacy voice and increase our influence.