Case Studies: Big Results for Difficult Challenges
Here are just a few examples of how Laurie Westley has worked constructively
across a range of issues for major social change.
Blue Sky Partners can help create change for your organization too.
Technology in Schools
In the 1990's, we began to realize technology would change our educational system -- we just had no idea how profoundly. Public schools across America lacked local funds for computers, wiring, software, and teachers.
I was one of the creators of the E-Rate, a $2.25 billion public-private annual fund.
As one of six initial designers and political strategists of this program, we assembled a broad coalition to create and pass the E-Rate in Congress and successfully develop a new regulatory mechanism at the Federal Communications Commission.
A Universal Struggle for Women and Girls
Research told us that nine out of ten girls say the media place a lot of pressure on them to be thin. For some girls, the results can be fatal.
I developed and ran a comprehensive campaign to address healthy media images that was delivered nationwide.
With research in hand, we forged key partnerships, created a coalition, and hosted a summit to raise awareness. The campaign developed an award-winning PSA, introduced legislation in Congress, and created a diverse national commission of 52 media companies -- headed by a former FCC commissioner and actress and philanthropist Geena Davis. Together, we launched multiple initiatives to change media images for girls and women.
New Friends on Capitol Hill
The Girl Scouts of the USA wanted to increase its profile on Capitol Hill and find a fun and effective way to connect with women members of Congress.
I created Troop Capitol Hill with every woman member of Congress and with co-leaders in both the Senate and the House of Representatives and on both sides of the aisle.
The Girl Scouts had new and committed supporters for events, legislation, and strategy discussions, and the news media regularly covered the group.
In 1995, the new Speaker and his House committee chairs wanted to cut federal education spending by 22 percent. But public schools couldn't serve at-risk students without those funds.
I developed a comprehensive plan that galvanized a broad-based education coalition to mobilize grassroots and grasstops, research findings, communications efforts, and lobbyists to fight the proposed cuts.
The plan turned a 22 percent cut into a 15 percent increase in the federal education investment. Schools had the resources they needed to serve all students.
The dreams of today’s entrepreneurs and innovators are America’s reality tomorrow. Yet nowhere in our nation's capital are entrepreneurs celebrated and their stories told.
As the founding CEO of the National Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, I built the organization’s governing and advisory boards, crafted new partnerships, raised funds, and established the brand and website.
The National Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation launched on the main stage of the Clinton Global Initiative America meeting in 2013.