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2018 DC Forum Schedule

AGRM’s 2018 DC Forum will be held March 12–14, beginning with dinner on Monday, the 12th, and officially concluding after Capitol Hill appointments end on Wednesday, the 14th. A detailed schedule follows. Note that some meeting locations may change, depending on availability and group size.

If you are flying to Washington, D.C., try to make Ronald Reagan National Airport (DCA) your destination as it is relatively close to the government offices where we will be spending most of our time. While Dulles International Airport (IAD) is significantly larger, it is approximately 30 miles from Capitol Hill. Also, we do NOT recommend renting a car for this event. Parking is hard to find and extremely expensive in the areas where we will be staying and working. Taxis, Uber, and Lyft cars are abundant. Plus, our hotels are within comfortable walking distance from Capitol Hill.


Monday, March 12

5:30 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.   Registration
Holiday Inn Capitol, Capitol II Foyer

Lisa Miller, AGRM Meetings
& Events Manager
6:00 p.m. – 6:45 p.m.   Dinner
Holiday Inn Capitol, Capitol II Meeting Room
Connect with other AGRM members and start to engage informally on the issues most important to you.

7:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.  

Session I: What the Current Climate in D.C. Means for Missions
Holiday Inn Capitol, Capitol II Meeting Room

This session will be an overview on the current state of affairs in the nation’s capital. We’ll cover President Trump’s first year in office and what has changed and what has stayed the same. We’ll also talk about the agendas of the President, Congress, and the Supreme Court, and what might be happening over the next several months—things to prepare for and things to watch for, particularly as they affect nonprofit and faith-based organizations. This session will set the stage for our meetings on Tuesday and Wednesday.


John Ashmen, AGRM President

Brian Walsh, President and Founder of the Civil Rights Research Center

8:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.  

Capitol Hill Orientation Walking Tour (optional)
We’ll walk one block to the National Mall, then one more block along Independence Avenue and onto the Capitol grounds, near the Reflecting Pool. We’ll follow Southwest the Southeast Drives past the House office, and then take First Avenue past the Library of Congress and the Supreme Court. Our return route will take us back to the National Mall and then down 4th Street, back to the hotels.  This will be a great (re)orientation and time of fellowship. If you’re not familiar with D.C. it’s worth braving whatever the elements might be.




Tuesday, March 13

Note:   Breakfast is on your own. The Hyatt Place accommodations include breakfast. Holiday Inn does not. There are several places open early within a three-block area.

Meeting room locations for Tuesday will be provided in the final schedule.


Please note that there is no charge for any activity on Capitol Hill on Tuesday and Wednesday. Registration fees are related to evening meetings, meals, and activities taking place at other locations.


 8:45 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.   Session II: The Role of Christ Followers in a Fractured Society
Consider this morning exercises: We’ll stretch your thinking. We might have two major political parties, but we have a plethora of political views, all with Christian voices. But which one(s) echo Christ? Where should followers of Jesus come down on DACA and immigration, healthcare, the deficit, the environment—and why? Hear about the work of the Circle of Protection and what it is trying to achieve. 


Adam Taylor, Executive Director, Sojourners


9:30 a.m. – 10:15 a.m.   Session III: The Startling State of Youth Homelessness in America
Runaway youth and young people aging out of the foster-care system are attributing to the growing problem of youth homelessness in America. Sexual identity issues factor into this significantly. The most current statistics will probably surprise you. Find out where the government is focusing its time and efforts and where you might have a part to play.

William Wubbenhorst, Associate Commissioner, Family Youth Services Bureau, HHS (INVITED)
10:15 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.   Snack & Beverage Break 

10:30 a.m. – 11:15 a.m.   Session IV: Whatever Happened to the Push to End Veteran Homelessness?
Ending veteran homelessness was a front-and-center cause for several years, even getting a huge impetus from the White House. What progress has been made? What still needs to be done…and is it possible? If one of your programs focuses on veterans, you need to hear this information, particularly as it relates to hiring veterans.

Kathryn Monet, Executive Director, National Coalition for Homeless Veterans
11:15 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.   Strategy Session for Wednesday
Capitol Visitor Center – Congressional Meeting Room South

11:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
  Session V:  A Meeting with the House Majority Leader
The House Majority Leader is second to the Speaker of the House in the party hierarchy. He or she helps plan daily, weekly, and annual legislative agendas; consults with members to gauge sentiment on issues; urges colleagues to support or defeat measures on the floor; and, in general, works to advance the goals of the majority party. 

Congressman Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) 
12:15 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.   Lunch Break  
Lunch is on your own. Recommended locations will be mentioned prior to dismissal.

1:15 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
  Session VI: How Tax Reform Will Affect You—And What to Do About It
Tax Reform legislation has passed—and there are major changes. Talking heads are divided on what the ramifications could do to charitable contributions, but credible research shows that future giving to nonprofits will likely be down. And if cuts to Medicaid and programs like SNAP become reality, the country will see more need and less money for charities making a difference. We may still have a way to remedy this. Come hear what it is and learn how to communicate it effectively.

Sandra Swirski, Executive Director, Alliance for Charitable Reform
2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.   Pending Off-Site Meeting

3:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.  

Museum of the Bible Tour 
The newly opened (November 2017) Museum of the Bible was set up to share the historical relevance and significance of the Scriptures in a nonsectarian way. It has thousands of pieces of biblical artifacts and lore, including fragments from the Dead Sea Scrolls, pieces of papyrus displaying early copies of the New Testament, and even Elvis Presley’s personal Bible. The museum wants to be an “educational institution whose purpose is to invite all people to engage with the history, narrative, and impact of the Bible.”

5:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

Dinner at Manna (Museum of the Bible)



Wednesday, March 14

Note:   Breakfast is on your own. The Hyatt Place accommodations include breakfast. Holiday Inn does not. There are several places open early within a three-block area.

 8:35 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.  

Capitol Hill Meetings
This day is filled with pre-arranged appointments (which AGRM can arrange, if you can’t—see box below) with lawmakers and/or their staff in Senate and House office buildings. In most cases, you will meet with staff members (e.g., legislative directors, legislative assistants, etc.) who have the job of clearly articulating both your thanks and concerns to the elected representative for whom they work. If AGRM handles this for you, your schedule will be arranged after you register and provided to you upon arrival at the DC Forum. 

Proceed directly to the location of your first meeting. AGRM staff will be available to assist you and accompany you, as requested. Meeting and connection points throughout the day will be given.

ARRANGING YOUR OWN APPOINTMENTS: Some mission leaders already have great relationships with their elected representatives. In such cases, mission-arranged appointments might be a better way to go.  And even if the relationship is not strong, you still might want to do this as it is a way to get to know the people who represent you. Keep in mind that if you need to schedule an appointment on a day other than March 14, you will miss some of the AGRM sessions.






4:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Debrief and Parting Remarks (optional)

East Side of the Capitol

5:00 p.m. – Whenever
  Dinner on Your Own (optional)
Various Locations

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