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Advocacy is a long game. Policy and systems change, organizing, and narrative shifts do not happen overnight. Rather, it takes years to build public and policymaker understanding of issues and develop authentic and meaningful partnerships. The Long-Game Award honors the advocacy resilience showcased by an organization and the dedication and leadership exemplified through ongoing efforts to create a more equitable workforce system.  

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2024 award winner:

Since 2019, SkillWorks has served as the lead of NSC’s Massachusetts SkillSPAN coalition, overseeing the network, its executive leadership team, state legislative and budget advocacy, and the activation of members at the federal level. For over 20 years, SkillWorks has successfully advocated for policies and investments that advance racial equity, disrupt poverty, and expand economic outcomes. They have led public education campaigns on the workforce needs of immigrants and people of color in partnership with state leaders like the Massachusetts Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development. Through participation in NSC’s Racial Equity Learning Group, the organization established a subcommittee on racial equity within the SkillSPAN coalition to determine the group’s racial equity vision for Massachusetts. As a result, under SkillWorks’ leadership, the coalition adopted a definition of racial equity to drive its policy agenda and developed a process to evaluate budget advocacy priorities to ensure all efforts are directed towards investments tied to tangible equity outcomes.

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