Government Relations & Public Policy

NCDA established its first legislative agenda during the 2008 annual Global Conference in Washington, DC.  Since then, NCDA has made public policy an important cornerstone of its work, as described in NCDA's Philosophy on Public Policy: Advocating for Career Development. NCDA is represented in Washington, DC by the Government Relations Committee. The Committee’s members represent NCDA’s diverse membership. Its goal is to identify and advocate legislation and policies which support the mission of NCDA and its members. The Government Relations Committee communicates and collaborates with NCDA committees, including the Veterans Committee and the CDF Advisory Council, and related professional organizations including the American Counseling Association, the Automation Federation and the State Directors of Career and Technical Education. Communicating with and collaborating with key federal departments, including the Departments of Education, Labor and Veterans Affairs is an important part of the Committee’s work. The Committee encourages NCDA members to become actively involved in communicating with their elected representatives, informing them of the services they provide, and of the support they need to provide those services.

Legislative Alerts, Updates & News


EDUCATION FUNDING for 2017 - Become informed and get involved now:

The Current Status: The Appropriations Committees of the House and Senate have recommended 2017 education budgets that include reductions on education. The House Committee recommended funding $1.6 billion below the funding for 2016 level and $2.4 billion below the President’s budget. The Senate Committee recommended funding $220 million below the 2016 budget. With the upcoming election, it is predicted that both the House and senate will pass a Continuing Resolution (CR) which would maintain 2016 levels of funding until after the election when the full House and Senate would vote on their Committees’ recommendations.

What to do now: With the approaching election, this is a good time to encourage your Representative and your Senators to first, vote for the Continuing Resolution which would maintain current levels of funding. Then encourage them to support amendments which would increase 2017 funding for education. Let them know how important education is to provide our students with the skills and knowledge needed to be prepared for further education or a career in the current high tech oriented workforce. Tell them about your involvement in career development and why funding is needed to continue your work. Communicate by e-mail or better still with a personal contact with staff in your Representative or Senators’ local offices.

We can help: You probably already know how to contact your Representative or Senators (just follow those links or read more about Knowing Your Elected Officials). Then after you have made a contact, let us know the response you got.

This is important – Thanks for your help!

Rebecca Dedmond, Co-Chair, Government Relations Committee
Charles Lehman, Co-Chair, Government Relations Committee
Lobbyit, NCDA's Washington advocate






  • HOUSE PASSES PERKINS REAUTHORIZATION BILLSept. 13  2016 - The U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 5587, the Strengthening CTE for the 21st Century Act, by a vote of 405 to 5. Perkins reauthorization efforts now shift to the Senate. Read more.
    The Congress has passed and the President has signed into law the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).  This is the elementary/secondary legislation, previously referred to as No Child Left Behind, that the NCDA Government Relations Committee and our lobbyist, Luke Wallwork, have worked diligently to see enacted. Since this legislation places the primary responsibility for education on state and local school systems, there will be increased opportunities for state divisions to become actively involved in implementing it, with an emphasis on strengthening career development and counseling programs for all students. The legislation includes references to:

    • college and career guidance and counseling programs;
    • post-secondary education and career awareness and exploration activities;
    • training for counselors to effectively use labor market information in assisting students with post-secondary education and career planning.

    We encourage all NCDA members to become informed and actively involved.  Contact your state and national elected representatives to let them know how you are helping students become aware of and prepare for the wide range of career options and opportunities that maybe of interest to them. For more information, view the NCDA Advocacy webpage or contact Rebecca Dedmond or Charles Lehman, Co-Chairs, NCDA Government Relations Committee or Ray Davis, NCDA Board Liaison.

  • In addition to advocating for ESSA legislation, NCDA leaders are actively involved with Bill Symonds’ Pathways to Progress initiative on increasing career literacy in American education. Mark Danaher, Ray Davis and Niel Carey are working with Bill and representatives from several other business and education organizations to plan a major meeting February 2016 at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce headquarters to discuss plans for strengthening career literacy and career counseling in American schools.  Organizations that will be involved include the National Governors Association, the Council of Chief State school Officers, ACTE, and the State Directors of CTE. 

  • On September 1, 2014, Rebecca Dedmond and Charles Lehman became  Co-Chairs of the NCDA Government Relations (GR)  Committee.  In addition to being active GR Committee members, they bring extensive professional experience and leadership to this important position.  Rebecca is the Director, MA in School Counseling at George Washington  University, Alexandria Center,  and has served as NCDA Board member and liaison to the CDF Council.  Charles administers workforce development programs in New Mexico, long-time CDA member, Co-Chairs the NCDA Veterans committee, and has served as NCDA Treasurer and Regional Trustee.  Rebecca’s wide range of experience and leadership in education at all levels, and Charles’ leadership and active involvement in workforce development at the local, state and national levels will enable them to serve effectively as Co-Chairs of this important NCDA Committee
  • LobbyIt staff continue to arrange and facilitate meetings with Members of Congress.These meetings often result from communications with the Members of Congress by NCDA members or GR committee members. They are very helpful, because they give us the opportunity to explain NCDA’s diverse membership and its mission and services, and to ask for the legislative and funding support needed to continue those services. These meetings are the result of grassroots advocacy at work!
  • List of committee assignments for the 113th Congress
  • Legislative Matrix - House and Senate bill status (as of 7/2013)
  • The Automation Foundation and NCDA are working together to convey the message to students, job seekers, returning Veterans, and those in career transition that pursuing a career in the automation profession can be rewarding, and is essential to the long-term viability of our nation's and the world's advanced manufacturing effort. Click here to read the current AF/NCDA Workforce Position Statement.