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Advocacy

The Rural Center is in the business of working with our state’s rural citizens to help our communities flourish. Much of this work happens on the local level. We train local leaders, lend to budding entrepreneurs, and coach community groups. Some issues, though, extend beyond the local level. Some of our challenges are big enough and complex enough that they will take us all working together to solve.

That is where advocacy comes in. The Rural Center is committed to working with rural champions from across North Carolina to make significant statewide progress around our 10 Rural Counts strategies for rural economic development. We believe if we dream big, plan smart, and work together on these strategies, we will see our communities thrive.

The issues are big, but the key to solving them hinges on one thing: you.

We hope you will take some time to learn more about all 10 strategies and how they impact our rural communities. Explore our Advocacy in Action feed to see what we are doing right now to tackle them at the state and federal levels. Rummage through the Advocacy Toolkit to get the basics about how to engage with your elected officials, view webinars and other training materials, and dig deep into our theory of change to plan how you can take your own action.

Want even more up-to-the-minute info? Follow us on Twitter at @RuralCounts.

Latest Advocacy Updates

Dispatches From DC

2018 Farm Bill Reauthorization  April 20 The current Farm Bill (Public Law 113-79) expires September 30, 2018. The measure authorizes various commodity, trade, rural development, agricultural research, and food and nutrition programs. Some programs are assured...

Rural Road Trip Update

Last spring, Patrick Woodie and John Coggin set out on a quest: visit each of the 80 counties served by the Rural Center and meet with community leaders - elected officials, business leaders, health care workers, educators, and civic champions - to hear what was going...

Advocacy Toolkit

Who Represents Me?

Our government officials are elected to represent you, so it is up to you to make sure they are doing that well. See below for ways to find and contact your elected officials.

 

Federal

President Donald J. Trump

  • Use this form to contact the White House with messages for President Donald J. Trump or for assistance from a federal agency. You can also call the White House switchboard at 202-456-1414 or the comments line at 202-456-1111.

US Senator Richard Burr

  • To comment on federal legislation or to schedule a meeting with Senator Burr in DC, fill out this form, or call 202-224-3154.
  • For help with a federal agency, you can start the process online, or call toll free at 1-800-685-8916.
  • Senator Burr has office locations in Asheville, Rocky Mount, Winston-Salem, and Wilmington. You can find contact information for all offices here.

US Senator Thom Tillis

  • To comment on federal legislation, fill out this form, or call 202-224-6342.
  • Click here to learn how to schedule a meeting with Senator Tillis in DC.
  • For help with a federal agency, you can start the process online, or call 704-509-9087.
  • Senator Tillis has office locations in Charlotte, Greenville, Hendersonville, High Point, and Raleigh. You can find contact information for all offices here.

US Representatives

  • The state of North Carolina is represented by 13 Representatives in the US House. You can find a map of the federal legislative districts here.
  • Click here to find your representatives contact information.
  • You can find the 2018 Congressional Calendar here.

Federal Contacts by Topic

  • Want assistance on a particular issue? Find contact information here for a variety of federal government programs, including military and veterans affairs, transportation, health, and government benefits.

 

State

Governor Roy Cooper

  • Use this form or call 919-814-2000 to contact Governor Cooper’s office with general or policy comments or concerns.
  • To request a meeting with the Governor or to invite him to attend an event, please fill out this scheduling request.

Lieutenant Governor Dan Forest

  • Call 919-814-3680 to contact the Lieutenant Governor, or use this scheduling form to invite him to attend an event.

NC Senate

  • Find who represents you in the NC Senate here by typing your address in the search bar on the map labeled “North Carolina Senate.”
  • Find contact information for NC Senate Leadership here.
  • Find a full list of Senators here, sortable by name and district.

NC House of Representatives

  • Find who represents you in the NC House here by typing your address in the search bar on the map labeled “North Carolina Senate.”
  • Find contact information for NC House Leadership here.
  • Find a full list of Representatives here, sortable by name and district.

State Contacts by Topic

  • The State of North Carolina offers numerous local offices and state hotlines on a variety of issues. Find contact information by area of concern here.

 

Local

  • Our local governments arguably do the most to affect our daily lives, though, because of the decentralized nature of our local government, it can sometimes be difficult to find the best contact information for the local level.
  • The North Carolina Board of Elections provides a voter search tool, so if you are registered to vote, you can find a list of all of the districts in which you reside – from the federal through the local.
  • You can then visit your county and city websites to match your district to your elected official.
  • The NC Association of County Commissioners provides a complete listing of county websites, county managers, and phone numbers.
  • The NC League of Municipalities provides a directory of each member city and town. This listing provides the municipal website, mayor, and phone number.

Legislative Tracker

When the General Assembly is in session, check here for weekly updates on the progress of bills important to the Rural Counts strategies.

Get Involved

Register as a Rural Counts Advocate to endorse the strategies and receive our Rural Counts monthly newsletter that will give more opportunities to learn and engage with Rural Center advocacy.

Check out this list of 10 ways that you can show your support for Rural Counts.

Visit our News & Updates page for information about in-person meetings in your area, webinars and online trainings, and statewide advocacy events.

To request a Rural Center speaker to talk with your group about Rural Counts or conduct an advocacy training, please contact John Coggin, director of advocacy, at jcoggin@ncruralcenter.org.

 

Rural Counts Newsletters

Advocacy Resources

2018 Advocacy Priorities

Check out our 2018 Rural Counts Advocacy Priorities.

North Carolina Advocacy

Not sure what you’re allowed to do when talking with your elected officials? Read up on North Carolina’s lobbying law.

Federal Advocacy

See our list with contact info for each member of the NC Congressional Delegation along with a guide to the federal appropriations process and a 2018 Congressional Calendar.

Mark your calendars now for the second annual Rural Day, coming May 29-30.
 
You don’t want to miss this opportunity to stand with rural citizens from across the state and let your voice be heard by our state leaders.
 
This year’s event will feature even more content about the most important policy issues facing rural North Carolina. Join us on Tuesday, May 29, to hear from top state leaders and dig deep into topics like broadband, health care, and entrepreneurship. Then join us for a celebration at our place on Tuesday evening and then meet with your representatives on Wednesday, May 30, to let them know how these issues matter to you.
 
Stay tuned: More details coming soon, along with registration info, but for now, save the date!
 
Missed last years Rural Day? Check out some of the highlights here