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Education Policy Fellowship Program

The Role of Advocacy in Shaping Public Opinion

January 24, 2011
12:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Kellogg Center, MSU

This session will examine how public policy is shaped by focus group research, opinion polling, issue management, image consulting and creative marketing, and how organizations, business and political leaders use this information in the policy debate. The Fellows will have an opportunity to reflect on the work of various organizations that serve as advocates at the local, state and national levels and their impact on the policy making process.  The second part of the program agenda is designed to advance the development of this year's EPFP Learning Teams.


Resource Person:

Mr. Ed Sarpolus

Founder and Director

Target Insyght
P.O. Box 80505

Lansing, MI  48908-0505

(517) 927-9776

Ed Sarpolus, founder and director of Target Insyght is recognized as one of Michigan’s most notable pollsters, analysts and strategists. Ed is a strategist, entrepreneurial thinker and deal-maker who has had great success crafting and implementing strategies to influence legislation, political action and public policy discussions in Michigan, throughout the U.S., Europe and the Pacific Rim.  From 2008-10 he served as the Director of Government Affairs for the Michigan Education Association where he was the lead advocate for the advancement of educational initiatives across the state.  From 1985-2008 Ed was Vice President of EPIC/MRA, a leading provider of market survey and strategic consulting research services and one of the most quoted sources of survey research in Michigan. His client list includes the Detroit Free Press, 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.  Ed Sarpolus has appeared as a commentator on PBS, CNN World News, Inside Politics-CNN, MSNBC, Nightline, ABC and NBC News. He 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. His research results and commentary have also been a regular contributor to the Polling Report, The Hotline, and Congress Daily. Because of his extensive experience on international trade issues, Mr. Sarpolus has been a featured speaker for groups such as the Council on Foreign Relations and Consumers for World Trade.

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