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


  •  April 2016
  • March 2016
  • February 2016 - Lobbyit interviewed Eric Seleznow, Assistant Secretary of the Employment and Training Administration. Lobbyit also attended an event at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce on behalf of NCDA. Read more.
  • January 2016 - During this month, Lobbyit worked with Karisham Merchant, Legislative Assistant to Senator Kaine, to see if the Senator will write a feature article for NCDA's Career Developments Magazine.  Lobbyit also spoke with Alec Hinojosa to gauge the progress of the CTE Act. Read more January 2016 Stakeholder And Legislative Activity
  • October 2015 
  • September 2015 – Members of the Government Relations Committee attending the Senate CTE caucus briefing, “Postsecondary Pathways to Success: Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the Higher Education Act.” Building on the existing strengths and resources of career and technical education today, the Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) presents “ Recommendations For The Reauthorization Of The Higher Education Act. Read all Legislative Activity For September 2015.

  • July 2015 - During the month of July, Lobbyit staff presented at the 2015 NCDA Global Career Development Conference, met with staff at the office of Rep. Chuck Fleischmann (R-TN), and worked to include career counseling language in the Senate version of the ESEA reauthorization. Read more Legislative News And Stakeholder Activity In July 2015.
  • June 2015 -  Legislative News And Stakeholder Activity
  • June 2015 -  DOL Letter - These comments are being submitted to the US Department of Labor in response to their publication of proposed rules for the new Workforce Innovation and Opportunities Act (WIOA) effective July 1, 2015. The intent is to strengthen career counseling for WIOA unemployed adults at one stop centers and youth program clients. Further information is available from the NCDA Government Relations Committee or NCDA President Mark Danaher.


    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.