Legislative Strategy and Policy Development


The Sheridan Group has led and won some of the most innovative advocacy movements for social change.

We excel in creating top-down and bottom-up policy and legislative strategies by placing a premium on designing and executing bold, creative and sophisticated advocacy campaigns in order to activate stakeholders and deliver lasting and measureable results.

Our engagement strategies are based on nearly three decades of experience working with the nation’s top social change organizations, and are tailored to aid clients of every size and at every stage—from newly formed start-ups to mature multinational enterprises.  After working with our client partners to identify their policy goals and platforms, we translate those ideas into advocacy action plans to create effective legislative and executive branch outreach campaigns.

Successful advocacy work requires aligning an organization’s activities—including field operations, marketing and government relations—to more effectively target and educate policymakers and drive their priorities forward. TSG works within each client’s budget. Great strategies can be developed on a range of budgets because what matters is successful strategies need to be built on realistic expectations for resources.

TSG’s team members draw on their years of senior policy and political experience to ensure each client’s message and mission make it out of the conference room and into the committee room.


Policy Development & Legislative Strategy Case Study

Backed by a movement of more than 6 million members, the ONE Campaign mobilizes people and resources to hold world leaders accountable for the commitments they've made to fight AIDS, extreme poverty and preventable diseases, particularly in Africa. Cofounded by Bobby Shriver and U2’s lead singer and internationally known humanitarian, Bono, The Sheridan Group (TSG) has helped provide the winning legislative and political strategies that have earned ONE its reputation as an international change-maker in the areas of hunger, disease and poverty.


The Challenge

Africa has struggled due to a triple threat crisis that has kept its people poor and its nations weak: the burden of debt that has drained the financial resources necessary for health care and education; the epidemic of AIDS that has taken the lives of an entire generation; and the unfair trade policies that have kept Africans from being able to sell their products at world market prices to earn their own way out of poverty. Before ONE began its work, 70% of the people in Sub-Saharan Africa lived on less than $2 a day while 200 million men, women and children went hungry.  Every year, millions of mostly African children died of malaria and AIDS. This global crisis had little political organization, focus or leadership. That is, until the ONE Campaign stepped in.

The Process

In the early days of ONE, when it was known as the DATA Foundation, TSG designed the first advocacy campaigns that fully leveraged the celebrity status of Bono to raise awareness on the issues of Africa’s debt, AIDS and unfair trade practices. For close to 15 years, TSG has provided the strategic legislative counsel, targeted congressional and Executive Branch outreach, and political knowledge and firepower to build support for ONE’s mission. The results have been truly transformational.

The Result

TSG is incredibly proud of the results produced by its work with ONE. In 2003, after significant advocacy and support from ONE, Congress passed the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). As a result, today nearly 9 million Africans have access to life-saving AIDS medication, up from only 50,000 people in 2002. Malaria has been cut by 75% in eight African countries and 54 million more sub-Saharan children are now going to primary school.

In 2010, TSG partnered with ONE to help ensure the Cardin-Lugar Extractive Industries Transparency Amendment was included in the Financial Reform Act of 2010. This ruling increases transparency in resource-rich countries abroad and aims to decrease the corruption and conflict often associated with energy and mineral wealth.

More recently, TSG worked with ONE to gain support for the “Electrify Africa Act,” legislation which promotes private sector investment and government collaboration to increase access to electricity in some of Africa’s poorest countries. The Electrify Africa Act will promote affordable and reliable energy to provide electricity for at least 50 million people by 2020.