The Importance of Being Civil – Leadership Through Civility

Friday, May 12th, 2017

May is Civility Awareness month, and NFWL is committed to the cause.

NFWL is proud to be a part of the Bridge Alliance, a growing movement of more than 70 civic action organizations working individually and together to transform the political terrain. We have joined together to put country before self-interest and ask our friends, neighbors, colleagues, competitors and elected officials with varying political beliefs and backgrounds to do the same. As a grantee of their collective impact project, NFWL Executive Director Jody Thomas and NFWL Policy Director Brenna Kehew Sculley recently traveled to Dallas to connect with leaders in the civility space. They left inspired by the sheer number of people dedicated to finding a way to discuss difficult issues and find solutions by working together.

NFWL is co-hosting an event, Leading with Civility, with the State Legislative Leaders Foundation and the National Institute for Civil Discourse – Next Generation in August on Cape Cod to bring legislators with diverse viewpoints together to develop leadership skills centered on civility. We will continue to be dedicated to the initiative throughout the year and will look to find ever increasing opportunities to give women tools to lead civilly.

NFWL is fortunate to work with women who excel in reaching across the aisle, like our Chair, Senator Carrie Ruud, who regularly crosses party lines and is passionate about common sense legislation and evidence-based policy. Our partner, The Pew Charitable Trusts, has up-to-date information that evaluates how states utilize evidence in their policy making, a great way to focus discourse on facts and not personal disputes. NFWL recently hosted a Policy with Pew call to connect legislators with research and policy experts on best practices in the evidence based policy space, and continues to support these initiatives.

Civility is so important, and women are critical to that conversation. As the New York Times recently reported, there is powerful data that shows that women are often more compassionate, better at working across the aisle, and more willing to compromise—all qualities intricately bound in successful policymaking. NFWL is dedicated to finding ways to boost this powerful presence of elected women, and find ways to better highlight their success.

What can you do to improve civility in your state? Access NFWL’s Grab ‘n Go page on evidence based policy, share your story, and connect with NFWL on social media and at all of our upcoming events to get involved on the issue of civility.