Share Your Wisdom
Greetings,
When I talk with city staff and council members during my travels, one of the consistent themes I hear is that a significant portion of the public is not familiar with basic civics. This challenge manifests most commonly as:

  1. An inability to recognize the different roles of local, state and federal government.
  2. Unfamiliarity with founding principles and rights (like freedom of speech) that are central to society.
  3. A misunderstanding of how government funding works.

All of this can lead to mutual frustration in interactions between the public and government.

California leaders recognized this problem and created an entire initiative within the California Department of Education to address it in our schools. I am hopeful it will help future generations, but we still face the challenge today.

Many of the issues we help our public agency clients address through communications are rooted in this lack of understanding basic civics. I am humbled and reminded that often, before we explain a policy, the civic principles that underlie its decision must first enter the dialogue. I would even go so far as to say that the foundation of a strong communications effort must include a lesson in civics to best serve the public.

If your agency already educates your public via a citizen academy, consider intertwining components that relate fundamental civics to the function of each department. Your participants are likely already engaged if they are in the citizen academy, but you can’t ‘go too basic’ when covering the expansive topic of civics.

In a different scenario, when a member of the public runs into an issue that galvanizes him–in anger or support–it presents an opportunity to educate on the policy at hand.

Do your part and harness opportunities to share your wisdom. Together, we can help close the civics understanding gap.

Onward,
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Client Highlight
CalChoice offers support for local governments in every phase of the CCA program implementation process, providing feasibility services to determine whether a CCA program is appropriate, developing implementation plans for members to submit to the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) and managing the implementation process to launch the CCA program, as well as continuing to support members once their CCA program becomes operational.

CalChoice engages Tripepi Smith for ongoing communications support, spanning our content creation, business development, graphic design and video production services.

Spring Conference Plans
The Tripepi Smith team can frequently be found on the local government conference circuit. Come find us at the following events this spring!

  • NW Regional Managers Conference (Hood River, OR)
  • CCCA Annual Municipal Seminar (Indian Wells)
  • MMASC Women's Leadership Summit (San Marino)
  • LoCC Mayors and Council Members Executive Forum (Newport Beach)
Service Spotlight: Metrics & Analytics Reporting
What's in a communications campaign but the investment it returns?

At Tripepi Smith, we believe in capturing key performance indicators that demonstrate success and inform strategy in communications. By analyzing metrics gathered from assets like your social media and website, we help you understand your audience so you can confidently invest in efforts that will leave an impact.

Talent On Tap
Katherine Griffiths
With more than 15 years of experience in nonprofit advancement, Director of Operations Katherine Griffiths' expertise entails written and verbal communication. As the former Director of Creative Services at Claremont McKenna College, Katherine offers an innovative approach to communications and professional dedication to her clients here at Tripepi Smith.

Katherine offers her insights to CalChoice, City of La Cañada Flintridge, Renee Public Law Group, Bayshore Consulting, Pivot Charter Schools, City of Snoqualmie, California Joint Powers Insurance Authority, Inland Empire Utilities Agency and more.
Click/tap here or the video to the right to learn more about Katherine.

In this interview, Katherine shares what it's like working with #TeamTS and how Tripepi Smith adds value in crafting a narrative unique to your organization.

Meet the entire Tripepi Smith team in our 'Meet Tripepi Smith' series .
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