WASHINGTON, DC: The Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) is turning to PR to help the three-million-member organization become a more potent political force.
WASHINGTON, DC: The Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) is turning to PR
to help the three-million-member organization become a more potent
The group has tapped DC-based Bonner & Associates for a grassroots
campaign aimed at raising its profile with politicians during what
promises to be a lively election year.
’We think the campaign will help us achieve our goal of getting veterans
back on the agenda in Washington,’ said Ken Steadman, executive director
of the VFW’s Washington, DC, office.
The campaign has two major objectives: securing increased funding for
the Department of Veterans Affairs and becoming a very visible player in
the 2000 elections. ’The key word is ’visible,’ ’ said Bonner chief Jack
Bonner said his firm is planning to train and mobilize VFW leaders and
members, as well as tout the group’s sizeable political muscle.
’The VFW has a significant presence in all congressional districts, with
an average of 23 VFW posts and 5,500 VFW dues-paying members,’ he
’This presence gives them potential political clout that is unmatched
almost any other group - the AFL-CIO, AARP, Chamber of Commerce, you
According to Bonner, even the Republicans and Democrats ’cannot make a
similar claim’ about having as substantial a home-district presence as
The campaign, whose time-frame was not specified but will likely be
lengthy, will involve community outreach as well. VFW members plan to
work with allied veterans’ groups and others in their home districts to
grow a bigger base of political power.
Unlike other advocacy organizations, the VFW has never been shy about
flexing its PR muscle. Earlier this year, the group worked with
Fleishman-Hillard to promote its 100th anniversary celebration.