How do we get our message out?

Colleagues and co-members,  One of the great parts of AFCC-MN for me has been, and continues to be, the camaraderie we share. This camaraderie stems from the passion we share around helping to navigate families through difficult times. Although certainly there are times when we all may not share the same exact position on a particular case, I rest easy knowing that we share the same overriding interests in this work that we do. To put it quite simply, Minnesota has the best community of family law professionals, bar none. 

In the wake of the equal parenting time presumption debate at the state house last year, one of the questions that has come up in conversation with many of you has been: “How do we get our message out?”

First, please rest assured that there have been valiant efforts made by some of the membership to educate legislators, media, and the public at large. However, given the fondness that many of us have for talking and the downright niceness of all of you, it became clear to me and the leadership team that there must be another reason why legislators, the media, and the public are still misinformed regarding issues related to family law. After many conversations the reason was discovered; many times we are having conversations about these issues with each other, that is other family law professionals. So the question becomes, how do we speak about these issues in terms that are accessible?

In the interest of becoming better at articulating our positions to individuals who don’t speak family law-ese; on behalf of the Legislative and Public Policy Committee, I cordially invite you to attend our FREE-to-members half day seminar the morning of November 15th. We have worked hard to secure a slate of speakers that are experienced in all things legislature. In addition to Associate Justice Paul Thissen and Michael Dittberner, I am happy to announce that Sheppard Harris will be speaking as well. Mr. Harris is a senior government relations specialist at Fredrikson & Byron, P.A. and Mayor of Golden Valley. He will bring the unique perspective of someone who aids people in approaching government officials, while at the same time being a government official himself. Oh and did I mention…it is FREE to members?

I hope to see many of you on November 15th and look forward to continuing to work with you towards effectively articulating our organization’s positions and educating the public. As always, if any of you have any questions on these matters, or just want to drop me a line, please feel free to email me at