Heritage’s Phillip N. Truluck Center for Leadership Development has graduated its inaugural class of the Speechwriters Fellowship. “Speechwriters are in demand,” said Kristine Bramsen, director of the Truluck Center. “We frequently get requests from the administration and the Capitol Hill for speechwriters, so we created this program to deepen the pool of talent in the conservative movement that is available to policymakers.”
In the six-session program, fellows learn the theory and practical skills they need to be knowledgeable policy resources and trusted communicators for their principals. Combining expert instruction and analysis of today’s hot-button policy issues, Heritage’s Fellowship delivers a unique professional development opportunity for burgeoning speechwriters.
“The fellowship could not have been a more valuable experience,” said program participant Charles Correll III, speechwriter for Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy. “It struck the right balance between high-quality instruction, expert policy analysis, and in-class practice, teaching the essential elements of effective policy speechwriting. It also introduced advanced techniques while reinforcing good fundamentals. We studied the structural elements of a strong policy speech, and I’ve found that having this mental checklist is useful, especially when writing under tight deadlines. Any speechwriter who wants to sharpen their ability to communicate complex policy ideas with clarity, brevity, and memorability should sign up for this excellent program.”
The selection process was extremely competitive. Heritage received a high volume of outstanding applications for 15 spots in the program. Participants came from the public sector as well as from allied, policy-oriented non-profit organizations, according to the program's coordinators.
“Heritage’s Jim Carafano has said that ‘speechwriters are the gatekeepers of policy.’ They shape the debate with their words, and plant flags for policy as they craft speeches for Members of Congress, Cabinet Secretaries, and public policy leaders. Of course, at Heritage, we want to be their go-to resource for good policy,” said Bramsen.