By Adam Finkel This article is a part of the July/August 2017, Volume 29, Number 4, Audiology Today issue. As we head into July, we anticipate the upcoming weeks will be busy as Congress works to tie up pressing legislative business before adjourning for the annual August congressional recess. The Academy will be on the Hill during this energetic time to push forward as many of our legislative priorities as possible before members of Congress return to their home districts for the month of August. When Congress is in session, Academy members serve as an integral part of the organization’s Capitol Hill efforts. In addition to Academy members reaching out to their members of Congress with e-mails, letters, and phone calls, we have already seen successful Capitol Hill lobby days from The Ohio State University, Northeast Ohio AuD Consortium, Nova Southeastern University, and the Student Academy of Audiology. We have also hosted individual members for days on Capitol Hill, including visits by Academy leadership and advocacy committee members, to help effectively lobby for key Academy priorities like the reauthorization of the Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Act, the Access to Frontline Health Care Act, and to bring the audiology perspective to discussions on the Over-the-Counter Hearing Aid Act. During the August congressional recess, the Academy must shift its strategy for communicating with members of Congress and their staff to take advantage of the unique engagement opportunities presented at this time. Many members of Congress hold town halls, “tele” town halls, fundraisers, and make other public appearances during recess. Members of Congress also may be holding office hours at their district offices. We encourage Academy members to use these opportunities and schedule a district meeting as a way to support the advocacy efforts underway in Washington. Proactively reaching out to your local congressional office during these times can help ensure that issues important to audiologists remain at the forefront of your elected officials’ minds. These personal conversations and contacts made in members of Congress’ home districts can be valuable when the members return to Washington, DC, in September. Most often, members of Congress will hear from interest groups and lobbyists on pressing issues, but the value of an actual constituent conversation carries the most weight in a Representative or Senator’s decision on a specific issue. In fact, a 2014 study from the Congressional Management Foundation showed that 94 percent of congressional staffers viewed a constituent visit to their boss’s district office as having “some” or “a lot” of influence on undecided lawmakers. Use the August recess as an opportunity to engage with your elected officials and make an impact on policy decisions taking shape in Washington. This content is an exclusive benefit for American Academy of Audiology members. If you're a member, log in and you'll get immediate access. Member Login If you're not yet a member, you'll be interested to know that joining not only gives you access to top-notch resources like this one, but also invitations to member-only events, inclusion in the member directory, participation in professional forums, and access to patient resources, tools, and continuing education. Join today!