We as a profession need to develop an ongoing relationship with our elected representatives at all levels of government – city, state, and federal – since they are the ones who enact legislation, set policy, and appropriate money that impacts archives and the communities we serve.

It is not good enough to simply engage them during annual budget battles over funding for the humanities or when a specific policy issue flares.  How can we be taken seriously if we reach out only during times of archival crises?  Rather we encourage members to begin a dialogue early and often, long before we need to influence legislation.  Tell your elected representatives how your archive impacts their constituents and communities – how your archive makes a concrete difference in the lives of real people.  

We encourage you to contact the officials that represent the district your repository is in, as well as those who represent you as a private individual. And let the ART Advocacy Committee know of your efforts as well so we can continue to shape and grow our advocacy agenda.

Below are ways to contact your representatives as all levels of government, as well as important legislators who sit on appropriations and oversight committees that impact archives.

Some ideas for contacting elected officials:

  • Invite elected officials to your archives, programs, and events -- not only for big events, but to see a program in action, such as a school group visiting your archive. Give them a photo op in your archive with their constituents.
  • Ask to be included on the “about the district” page of their website.
  • Provide copies of brochures, publications, and printed materials to city council members, state legislators, and members of Congress.
  • Share testimonials with your elected officials. If teachers or students provide thank you notes or pictures after a school group visit, share them.
  • Serve as the location for a legislative briefing or town hall meeting.
  • Take a picture showing how your archive is serving constituents and send the picture with a handwritten note to your elected officials.
  • Share positive news stories and other media coverage with elected officials.
  • When you get government grants (NHPRC, NEH, IMLS, NY State DHP, LGRMIF), let elected officials know, and share the tangible results of the projects.
  • Share with elected representatives your celebration points and achievements such as anniversaries, significant projects or programs, important grants, and significant donations.

Congressional History Caucus - Contact your Representative in the House and urge them to join the Congressional History Caucus.  More information is on the website of the National Coalition for History: http://historycoalition.org/congressional-history-caucus/

Here are some helpful links to assist you in determining who your legislators are:

New York City Council: http://council.nyc.gov/html/members/members.shtml

New York State Assembly: http://assembly.state.ny.us/mem/search/
New York State Senate: http://www.nysenate.gov/senators

U.S. House of Representatives: http://www.house.gov/representatives/
U.S. Senate

And don't forget elected executives:

New York City Mayor: http://www1.nyc.gov/office-of-the-mayor/contact-the-mayor.page
New York City Public Advocate: http://pubadvocate.nyc.gov/constituent-help-desk

New York State Governor: https://www.governor.ny.gov/contact

U.S. President: https://www.whitehouse.gov/contact/

Influential Legislators:

NEW YORK CITY COUNCIL

Committee on Governmental Operations (Public Information Commission, DORIS)

Ben Kallos, Chair

District 5

Upper East Side, Yorkville, Roosevelt Island

David Greenfield

District 44

Bensonhurst, Borough Park, Midwood

Mark Levine

District 7

Morningside Heights, Hamilton Heights, West Harlem, Upper West Side

Ritchie Torres

District 15

Central Bronx, Fordham, West Farms, Belmont, Bathgate, East Tremont, Crotona

Steven Matteo

District 50

Mid-Staten Island, including Bulls Head, Castleton Corners, Dongan Hills, Fort Wadsorth, Midland Beach, New Dorp, Richmondtown, Todt Hill, South Beach

Committee on Cultural Affairs (Department of Cultural Affairs, Libraries, Museums, Art Commission)

Jimmy Van Bramer, Chair


District 26

Sunnyside, Woodside, Long Island City, Astoria and Maspeth

Elizabeth Crowley

District 30

Glendale, Ridgewood, Maspeth, Middle Village, Woodhaven

Julissa Ferreras

District 21

Elmhurst, East Elmhurst, Corona, and Jackson Heights

Peter Koo

District 20

Flushing, Queensboro Hill, Mitchell Gardens, Kissena Park, Harding Heights, Auburndale, Whitestone

Stephen Levin

District 33

Brooklyn Heights, DUMBO, Williamsburg, Greenpoint, Boerum Hill, Vinegar Hill, Downtown Brooklyn, and Bedford–Stuyvesant

Andy King

District 12

Edenwald, Co-op City, Wakefield, Baychester, Williamsbridge

Costa Constantinides

District 22

Woodside, East Elmhurst, and Jackson Heights

Laurie Cumbo

District 35

Fort Greene, Clinton Hill, Crown Heights, Prospect Heights, Bed-Stuy

Helen Rosenthal

District 6

Upper West Side

Committee on Finance (Budget)

Julissa Ferreras, Chair

District 21

Elmhurst, East Elmhurst, Corona, Jackson Heights

Ydanis Rodriguez

District 10

Washington Heights, Inwood, Marble Hill

Jimmy Van Bramer

District 26

Sunnyside, Woodside, Long Island City, Astoria, Maspeth

Vanessa Gibson

District 16

West Bronx, Morrisania, Highbridge, and Melrose

Robert Cornegy

District 36

Bed-Stuy, Crown Heights

Laurie Cumbo

District 35

Fort Greene, Clinton Hill, Crown Heights, Prospect Heights, Bed-Stuy

Corey Johnson

District 3

Soho, West Village, Chelsea, Flat Iron, Times Square, Hell’s Kitchen, Mid-Town West

Mark Levine

District 7

Morningside Heights, Hamilton Heights, West Harlem, Upper West Side

I. Daneek Miller

District 27

St. Albans, Hollis, Cambria Heights, Queens Village, Addisleigh Park, Jamaica, Springfield Gardens

Helen Rosenthal

District 6

Upper West Side

Joseph C. Borelli

District 51

Arden Heights, Annadale, Bay Terrace, Tottenville, Oakwood, Great Kills, Richmondtown, Charleston, Rossville, New Sprinville, Eltingville, Woodrow, Richmond Valley, Huguenot, Princes Bay, Pleasant Plains



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