Ana María Archila is an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Public Service at NYU's Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service.
Ana María is the Co-Executive Director at the Center for Popular Democracy, she immigrated to the U.S. from Colombia at the age of 17 and has become a leading national voice for immigrant justice, and the urgency of building people power in order to transform our country into one where we can all live with dignity.
Ana María has helped build CPD into one of the largest community organizing networks in the country, with 54 affiliate organizations in 32 states and Puerto Rico. At CPD, Ana Maria oversees campaigns to advance justice for immigrant communities, helping lead the resistance to Trump’s anti-immigrant agenda, and supporting Puerto Rican communities in the wake of Hurricane Maria.
In 2018, Ana Maria made national headlines as one of two women survivors of sexual violence who confronted Senator Jeff Flake inside an elevator during the Kavanaugh fight, an interaction that was broadcast live on CNN and immediately went viral. That confrontation was widely credited with Senator Flake’s demand to delay the nomination pending a weeklong FBI investigation.
Advocacy Lab is for those who could imagine working in national or local advocacy organizations that make change happen or anyone who wants to understand the art of issue advocacy as a theory and method of social change. An advocacy campaign attempts to impact public policy, most often through changes in regulations and/or legislation. There are a wide range of roles advocacy campaign workers, organizers, community leaders or think-tank experts can play from research and policy analysis to education, lobbying, public relations and organizing constituencies to reaching out to a wide range of influentials, legislative offices and other government officials. At the same time, the skills of public advocacy– listening, fund raising, finding areas of consensus and building on that consensus, finding ways to make change happen – are skills that can be applied to all professional and life settings.
The course will provide an overview of and training in how to affect public policy through advocacy campaigns, legislative lobbying, issue branding, coalition building and community organizing in the United States with experts and practioners providing us real life scenarios and case studies.
This two-semester course will explore the role of issue advocacy as a theory and a method of social change. In the fall semester, students will learn how advocacy campaigns, legislative lobbying, issue branding, coalition building, and community organizing affects public policy through changes in political power, regulations, and/or legislation. Experts and practitioners will explain scenarios and review case studies. The course will also examine how campaign workers, organizers, community leaders, and think-tank experts can influence research and policy analysis, lobbying, and public relations via interactions with thought leaders and legislative offices or other government officials. In addition, students will learn about the varied skills of public advocacy – from finding and building consensus, making change happen, to fundraising.
In the spring semester course, taught by Daniel Altschuler, director of civic engagement and research at Make the Road NY, students will gain training in a Make The Road advocacy campaign in the area of immigration and access to health. This portion of the course will explore the intersection of immigration issues—especially immigrants’ rights and efforts to organize to protect and advance them— and health care. Students will have the opportunity to get directly involved in an active campaign to expand health care access for immigrants in New York and learn the ins and outs of developing campaign strategy, identifying and activating supporters, conducting campaign-specific research, and lobbying legislators.
Note: The course is a two-semester course spanning the fall and spring (students earn 1.5 credits each semester). The fall semester course (PADM-GP 4407) is a prerequisite for the spring semester course (PADM-GP 4408). As an elective, students can choose to complete the fall semester course only.