LEARN TO LEAD IN YOUR COMMUNITY!

The Policy Circle provides a path for you to be engaged in your community through CLER--our Civic Leadership Engagement Roadmap. CLER empowers you to become a confident leader in your home town, and provides connection with powerful, civically minded women nationwide. Space is limited so apply today!

Civic Leadership Engagement Roadmap

The Civic Leadership Engagement Roadmap (CLER) is a proprietary, experiential leadership program that takes women from having general civic knowledge to becoming civic leaders.

We work with emerging women leaders to grow their impact through civic engagement. This innovative, action-oriented curriculum was designed to educate, prepare and build the next generation of public leaders. The curriculum facilitates an understanding of the American founding and the principles that live on today and features one-on-one coaching, mastermind peer groups, networking opportunities and specific activities designed to build local connections with policy leaders and decision-makers.



Graduates will take intentional actions over the three-month program to become more knowledgeable and engaged citizens: 

Attend at least three local government meetings (city council, for example)

Schedule a meeting with their local council representative

Discover key leaders who influence elections

Write, submit and publish an oped

Women who graduate from CLER gain valuable insights and perspectives through active and strategic participation in their community. Graduates represent a diverse range of business experience, backgrounds and community involvement.

Graduates will: 

  • Build the confidence to engage with leaders in your community and drive action
  • Overcome personal barriers by stepping into the unknown spaces in the civic square. 
  • Identify personal areas of growth and develop leadership capacity through world-class training 
  • Connect with other women leaders and special guests from across the country
  • Build on their civic knowledge base, with a demonstrated awareness of the policies and issues that impact individuals and communities
  • Engage in complex conversations and learn how to navigate diverse perspectives
  • Gain focus on personal values and passions to take action

What Graduates Say

“The CLER program has helped me understand the fundamentals of the U.S. government, and instilled enough confidence to lead and influence for the betterment of my community. I recommend this program to the people who are immigrants, and have a passion for public service, but do not have a clear understanding of U.S. Constitution and the way government functions.”

Vasavi, Illinois Circle Leader and CLER Graduate

“The depth of material provided through the CLER program strengthened my political knowledge base more than I could’ve imagined. As one who desires to run for political office someday, this program built confidence, knowledge and connections that will last a lifetime.”

Lindsay, Indiana Circle Leader and CLER Graduate


Meet our Curriculum Advisory Committee

The curriculum advisory committee provides input and advice to curriculum content to the CLER program. We’re thrilled to have these strategic advisors who bring invaluable support to the CLER program.

Leslie Geissler Munger

Leslie Geissler Munger is the former Illinois State Comptroller and Deputy Governor. Munger is a 1978 graduate of the University of Illinois, and she received her MBA in 1982 from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. Munger is an active leader in her community. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Illinois Chamber of Commerce and as Co-Chair of the Vernon Area Policy Circle.

Sarah Shipman

Sarah Shipman served as Secretary of Administration for Kansas Governors Sam Brownback and Jeff Colyer.   She had also been Chief Counsel and Deputy Secretary.  In the private sector, Sarah’s law practice focused on the areas of banking and commercial real estate in Topeka, Kansas. Sarah graduated magna cum laude from Washburn University School of Law  where she was editor in chief of the Washburn Law Journal and later an adjunct faculty member.

Leah Vukmir

Leah Vukmir is the Vice President of State Affairs for National Taxpayers Union – the oldest  nonpartisan taxpayer advocacy group in the United States. In March 2019, she joined NTU  where she educates and lobbies state lawmakers to adopt policies that lower taxes,  streamline government inefficiencies, and promote private markets. Leah draws on her 16- year experience as a state lawmaker in Wisconsin where she was on the frontlines of the  education, labor and healthcare reform.  


Do you know a woman who might be interested?

We’re accepting applicants for 2021!

Applications are being accepted now through August 13th for our Fall Cohort. Space is limited. Apply today!


CLER 2.0

CLER 2.0 takes graduates of the first module of our CLER curriculum to the next level of civic engagement. 

Advancement to this level of the program will provide members the opportunity to understand the workings of state political parties, all levels of state government at the executive, legislative and judicial branches, and a brief overview of the federal government.

Upon completion of this program, participants will be inspired to become more engaged at the state and federal level.  


CLER 3.0

After completion of our first two modules, CLER 3.0 provides the opportunity for participants to become more engaged in their local school district.  This program provides knowledge on the role of the federal government in public education along with engagement opportunities and local action steps on how to be an effective school board member, while ensuring that excellence in education is the top priority in local school districts.