Direct Connect to Congress

with the legendary Judy Schneider

WGR is well-known in Washington for this popular event, designed to give government relations professionals’ unique insights and perspectives on the inner workings of Congress.

WGR’s “Direct Connect to Congress” features a DC legend, Judy Schneider, a specialist on Congress and a former House and Senate committee staffer.  She has taught hundreds of Members of Congress and their staff on Congressional procedure. Schneider is also co-author of Congressional Deskbook, a comprehensive resource tool frequently used by Congress and lobbyists.

“Judy is in a class by herself. She is as entertaining as she is knowledgeable. And she knows her topic better than anyone.” – Member


Direct Connect is typically offered twice a year in two formats. The full session consists of six morning classes that will examine congressional procedure by focusing on procedures used by Members of Congress in the House and Senate as well as an in-depth view of the budget and appropriations process. The mini-session is a onetime morning class and only covered House and Senate Procedure.

Session Descriptions

Committee Procedure
Congressional committees formulate legislative language through various
procedures in sub- and full- committee. Learn about bill referral strategies,
mark-ups, committee politics, the role of the chairman and ranking member
along with an overview of committee staff roles in committee proceedings.

House Procedure
“Germaneness,” “committee of the whole,” “suspension,” - these terms and
many more will be explained in this section of the institute. Learn about the
role of the Rules Committee and the procedural processes used to pass a bill
on the floor.

Senate Procedure
Learn why the founding fathers created procedures on the Senate floor in
order to make the Senate “the deliberative body.” This session will discuss
such subjects as: “motions to table,” “quorum calls,” “filibusters,” “cloture,”
“post cloture,” the role of the Vice President and presiding officer, time
agreements and all other features that govern debate on the Senate floor.

Amendment Process
The amendment process can be used by members of Congress to change
legislation to reflect their interests and views. In this session, you will
learn about the amendment tree and the many layers of the amendment

“Earmarks,” “302(B) allocations,” “cardinals,” “reconciliation,” - learn these
terms and the many others that constitute the process by which Congress
allocates funds. This class is an in-depth look at the funding cycle from the
President’s budget to the Omnibus Appropriations bill.

Conference Procedure
Learn the importance of the joint committee comprised of House and
Senate members appointed to resolve differences between the chambers
on a particular measure.

Upcoming Sessions


Register for Direct Connect to Congress Mini Session on House and Senate Procedure on November 16, 2018 here.

Registration Fees:
WGR Members:
$75 Member
$35 Student Member
Non Members:
$125 Individual Course

Please contact the office for additional information.

As a CAE Approved Provider educational program related to the CAE exam content outline, this program may be applied 12 credits for the entire Direct Connect Series (2 credits per session) toward your CAE application or renewal professional development requirements.