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Education Policy Fellowship Program

The Power of Polling &
Leadership for Bipartisan Policy Making

January 08, 2001
12:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Kellogg Ctr., MSU

This session will examine how public policy is shaped by opinion polling, how organizations sample public opinion, and how business and political leaders use this information in the policy debate. Part of the discussion will focus on exit polling and explore how elections can be "called" prior to the polls closing. We will also examine the results of the recent state and national elections and discuss how this has impacted relationships between the majority and minority parties in Congress and in the Michigan Legislature.


Session A Resource Person:

Mr. Ed Sarpolus
Vice President
4710 W. Saginaw
Lansing, MI

Ed Sarpolus is credited with playing a major role in making EPIC x MRA the most quoted source of survey research in Michigan, as well as a regularly quoted source by national media outlets and publications, particularly on issues of international trade. Major clients include the Detroit Free Press with more than 600,000 daily readers, the Lansing State Journal, Oakland Press, the Flint Journal, as well as most television news outlets in Michigan, including WXYZ- ABC TV-7 in Detroit, ABC TV-12 in Flint, WOOD TV-8 in Grand Rapids, TV-5 in Saginaw, WLNS TV-6 in Lansing and WILX TV-10, also in Lansing. Election day exit polling conducted by EPIC x MRA is not only covered by print media clients, but television coverage of election day survey results covers more than three quarters of Michigan's viewing audience.

Other EPIC x MRA research on major topics of public interest, as well as election polling results, are regularly covered not only by Michigan media outlets, but also by national outlets. Sarpolus has appeared as a commentator on PBS, CNN World News, Inside Politics-CNN, MSNBC, Nightline, ABC and NBC News. Sarpolus has also been regularly interviewed by Michigan radio stations and NPR, quoted in most major national publications including Time, U.S. News and World Report, Business Week, the Washington Post, New York Times, Boston Globe and the National Journal. EPIC x MRA research results and commentary by Sarpolus has also been a regular contributor to the Polling Report, The Hotline, and Congress Daily. Finally, because his extensive experience on trade issues, Sarpolus has been a featured speaker for groups such as the Council on Foreign Relations and Consumers for World Trade.
Session B Resource Persons:
State Representative Pan Godchaux
40th House District 
(517) 373-0824
Professional Experience:
  • House of Representatives, Member House Appropriations Committee.
  • Subcommittees: Consumer & Industry Services/Department of Career Development/Michigan Strategic Fund Agency, Chair; Community Colleges Vice-Chair; School Aid & Department of Education; Higher Education; Family Independence Agency.

Caucus/Task Forces:

  • Cultural Tourism and Heritage; Urban Caucus; Child Care, Co-Chair; Fiscal, Oversight and Intergovernmental Affairs Committee, Appointed.
  • Co-convener: Children's Caucus; SEMCUS (Southeast Michigan Caucus); Women Officials Network.


Legislator of the Year- Michigan Association of Regions (1999), Michigan Maternal and Child Health (1999), and CAUSE (Citizens Alliance to Uphold Special Education)(1998); Wonder Woman (1998), Women's Survival Center.

Advisory Board Memberships:

Oakland County Coordinating Council Against Domestic Violence; Wayne State University School of Education; Birmingham Junior League: Community Advisory Council; Birmingham Historical Museum; Oakland County Child Watch; National Board of Women's Actions for New Directions (WAND); and Women's Legislative Lobby (WiLL).  Birmingham Board of Education, served for ten years and held the offices of President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer; Directed the search for Birmingham Schools Superintendent; Member of Central Strategic Plan Committee; Recognized by the Michigan Association of School Boards for outstanding service.
  • Mother of three children: two in college, one in high school
  • Religion-Unitarian Universalist.
  • Former third grade teacher in the Detroit Public Schools, former print and broadcast journalist, and returned Peace Corps Volunteer serving in Bolivia.


  • Wayne State University, Detroit, MI, Studying for Masters of Arts in Teaching
  • The American University, Washington D.C., Bachelors of American Government.


  • Fellow of the Michigan Political Leadership Program at Michigan State University
  • Alumnus of Leadership Detroit
  • Alumnus of Flemming Fellows
  • Founding Board Member of The League of Women Voters, Oakland County area and editor of the newsletter.

Former State Representative Lynne Martinez
69th House District


  • House of Representatives, 69th District State Representative 1994-2000.  Assignments: Appropriations and Democratic Whip.  Sub-committees: Community Health (MVC), General Government (MVC), Family Independence Agency, School Aid and Department of Education
  • 1992-1994 Manager, Franklin Street Housing Cooperative, Lansing, Michigan, Incorporating Member 1987
  • 1985-1994 Ingham County Commissioner
  • 1981-1993 Self Employed, Gentlewood Landscape Designer and Contractor, Lansing, Michigan


  • Lansing Community College, Landscape Architecture Technology, Associate of Science Degree, 1981

Public Service & Community Involvement:

  • Capital Area Health Alliance
  • Coalition for Community Concerns
  • Youth in Government Board Member
  • Downtown Neighborhood Association
  • East Side Neighborhood Organization

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