2013 LSS Professional Development Seminar Agenda

Below is the agenda for the 2013 LSS  Professional Development Seminar. The majority of sessions will be held at the Grand Hyatt Denver, except for late Wednesday afternoon, which will be at the Colorado State Capitol, and Thursday afternoon, when LSS will be offsite in Boulder, Colorado. LSS attendees are also welcome to attend sessions that are sponsored by the Legal Services Staff Section or the Research and Committee Staff Section. The Legal Services sessions will offer CLE credit.

View the Legal Services agenda. View the Research and Committee agenda.

Go back to the Meeting Homepage.

Tuesday, Oct. 8
Time Sessions

Noon-5 p.m.

Grand Hyatt Denver

Wednesday, Oct. 9
7 a.m.-5 p.m.


Grand Hyatt Denver
7:30-8 a.m. Breakfast
Grand Hyatt Denver  
8-9 a.m.

Leadership Staff Roundtable
Grand Hyatt Denver
Get to know your colleagues and hear from Colorado leadership staff on what it means to work for legislative leaders and caucuses in the Centennial State.
Faculty: David Oppenheim, Chief of Staff, Majority Office, Colorado House of Representatives
Bill Skewes, Chief of Staff, Minority Office, Colorado House of Representatives

9-10 a.m.

Reading, Decoding and Spinning Polls - A User's Guide  

Grand Hyatt Denver 
How many Wisconsinites lack health insurance? How long did Floridians wait in line to vote in 2012? How many Coloradans own firearms? These kinds of data can play an important role in lawmaking - and polls are an increasingly popular way to promote information. The most familiar use of polling is gauging public opinion about a candidate or public policy issue. But polls can also be used to gather policy-relevant data. Learn how to draw accurate, useful and politically savvy data from both types of polls.

Faculty: Karen Shanton, NCSL 


Crossing the Communication Chasm

Grand Hyatt Denver
It is not unusual to find several different agencies working on the same issue each from their area of strength. With all these different groups, it’s also not unusual to find significant holes in communication and lots of duplicated effort. How can these groups  work together in order to make real progress on a problem? This interactive session will challenge participants to engage in the art of play in order to look at the common assumptions, behavioral habits, and challenges that hamper communication across departments, workgroups and divisions.
Speaker: Tim Murray , ODL Consultant, Organization Development and Learning, Mountain States Employers’ Council, Inc.

Noon-1:15 p.m. Luncheon
Grand Hyatt Denver
Welcome: Thomas Wright, Chief of Staff, Office of the Speaker of the House, Alaska and NCSL Staff Chair
1:30-2:45 p.m.

The Power of Persuasion: Concepts and Techniques for the Legislative Workplace
Grand Hyatt Denver
Learn how to make your points effectively and gain support for your point of view in strategy meetings, policy discussions, positional papers--and even out at the pub--when you need to rally people to your cause. Find out what the latest neuroscience research tells us about how people make decisions and practice your powers of persuasion on your peers.
Faculty: Curt Stedron, Speech and Debate Coach and National Forensic League Diamond Coach, Colorado

3:15-5 p.m.

Colorado Legislative Staff Roundtable and State Capitol Tours

Colorado State Capitol
Attendees will hear anoverview of how Colorado's legislature is staffed, followed by a roundtable discussion, moderated by Colorado staff, concerning how other legislatures are staffed and the impacts that those staffing decisions (partisan vs. nonpartisan, different types of agencies, etc.) have on the functioning of state legislatures.
Faculty: Dan Cartin, Director of Legislative Legal Services, Colorado
Mike Mauer, Director of Legislative Council, Colorado

Program includes a tour of the Colorado State Capitol.

5-6 p.m. Opening Reception
Colorado State Capitol
Thursday, Oct. 10
7:30-8:30 a.m. Breakfast
Grand Hyatt Denver
8:30-10 a.m.

Employment Law 201
Grand Hyatt Denver
Raise your awareness of fundamental employment law concepts, issues and trends for at-will employees and discuss how they apply in the unique legislative workplace.

Faculty: Jonathan Segal, Duane Morris LLP

10-11:15 a.m. 

Effective Use of the Interim

Grand Hyatt Denver
During sessions, legislative staff work long hours at a hectic pace, facing short deadlines and rush assignments.  Between sessions, the pace changes, as does the workload and focus.  Learn how other states make effective use of interim sessions to develop in-depth subject matter expertise, participate in training, enhance services to members and the public, develop innovative products and publications, and anticipate needs for the coming session. 

Faculty: Bryant Howe, Deputy Director, Utah Office of Legislative Research and General Counsel
Sharon Wenger, Principal Research Analyst, Kansas Legislative Research Department

11:30 a.m. Bus Departs for Boulder
12:30-4 p.m.

Leadership Challenge Course
Boulder, Colorado

This interactive half-day workshop, exclusive for the Leadership Staff Section, will challenge teams to explore beautiful Boulder while focusing on building leadership, teamwork, and problem-solving skills.
Faculty: CBST Adventures

4-6 p.m. Free time in Boulder  
6 p.m. Bus Departs for Denver 
Friday, Oct. 11
7:30 a.m.-Noon Information Desk    
8:30-10 a.m. LSS Breakfast and Business Meeting
10:15-11:30 a.m.

Governing in a Purple State

Grand Hyatt Denver
Tom Cronin and Bob Loevy, are the co-authors of the book Governing a Purple State.  What is it like to govern in a state where either party can win?  Drawing on their years of polling and studying politics in Colorado and nationally, they will talk about: The trends that are causing shifts from one party control to the other.  What happens when both parties have trouble "managing their tents"? What is the impact of social conservative issues on the parties?  How does polarization in the country affect the political parties?

Faculty: Tom Cronin, Professor of American Government & Leadership, Colorado College
Robert Loevy, Professor of Political Science (Retired), Colorado College