David Shorr is a seasoned advocate who enjoys helping organizations that work in federal, state, and local policy arenas. His newly named AdvocacyCraft consulting practice—focused primarily on evaluations— draws on extensive experience shaping debate and decisions in settings from high-level diplomacy and presidential politics to local land-use. David has gauged the performance of Hewlett Foundation grantees working to improve bipartisan cooperation in Congress and served as outside evaluator for three Aspen Institute program reviews. Most recently he collaborated with frequent partner Kathleen Sullivan on a portfolio review of the Ford Foundation's $118M in grants to reverse the over-enforcement of immigration. David and Kathleen outlined their grantee-centered approach to evaluating policy change work in a blog post for Center for Effective Philanthropy. David's other recent projects looked at the TechCongress Innovation Fellowship and helped revamp the Andrew Goodman Foundation Vote Everywhere program's internal evaluation systems. David served in senior roles with an array of leading philanthropies, think tanks, and advocacy groups: William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, Stanley Center, Human Rights First, Refugees International, Search for Common Ground, British American Security Information Council, Arms Control Association, Physicians for Social Responsibility, and NYPIRG. In his side gig as a local politician, David serves on city council and founded an environmental issues caucus of his state party. which he chaired for three years.
What can we learn about making social and political change from talking to people who've made their careers in those fields? The work takes a combination of persistence, shrewdness, and luck. On David's new podcast, The Battles We Pick, accomplished advocates and organizers talk about how these elements played into their efforts over the years. CLICK ON THE LOGO TO FIND EPISODES
"During his term as part-time consulting program officer for the Hewlett Foundation, David effectively commissioned and managed a summative evaluation of the Foundation’s Nuclear Security Initiative. David’s management and leadership on this effort were stellar, contributing to the use of, and learning from, the findings in myriad ways for multiple audiences."
— Amy Arbreton, Evaluation Officer
William & Flora Hewlett Foundation
“We worked with David to evaluate a program to build bipartisan relationships and negotiation skills among senior congressional staff. The project was fast-tracked with a tight deadline. David's high-level knowledge of the policy arena, excellent data collection and writing skills, and conscientiousness and professionalism ensured the evaluation came in on time and delivered useful insights to the client.”
— Julia Coffman, Director
Center for Evaluation Innovation
“I have engaged David as a consultant to our policy program administration team at the Aspen Institute as part of our program review process. David worked with directors of three disparate Institute programs to understand their learning questions and develop thoughtful, sometimes individualized interview protocols. He interviewed Members of Congress, prominent legal scholars, fellow evaluators, and foundation program officers. His summary reports contributed to the internal review process and helped strengthen the programs' strategies and tactics. He is thorough, conscientious, and an easygoing partner in what can be challenging and potentially tense review processes.”
— David Devlin-Foltz, VP, Impact Assessment
"I first learned about David Shorr’s evaluation practice through the Democracy Fund. At the time, the Andrew Goodman Foundation was looking to conduct an external review of its monitoring and evaluation tools for its national student voting program. David was a great fit given his practical understanding of organizing and advocacy, appreciation of smaller NGOs, and his commitment to mainstreaming a focus on learning into monitoring and evaluation systems. He skillfully identified priorities within the project’s expansive scope, provided keen guidance on stakeholder engagement, and ensured the project stayed on track. His thoughtful interviews and analysis illuminated design improvements, which were adopted. Beyond this, his engagements surfaced strategic insights related to program enhancement, growth, and sustainability. He was a pleasure to work with."
— Karena Cronin, Program Director,
Andrew Goodman Foundation