WASHINGTON (9/17/09)—Leaders—whether on K Street or in Congress—earn constituents’ respect by making the tough decisions, even when that decision demands a ‘no’ answer to the constituent’s request, advised Dan Mica, president/CEO of the Credit Union National Association (CUNA). Mica, with decades of experience both as a leader on Capitol Hill and as a lobbyist, said strong leaders will ultimately earn the respect of constituents and gain credibility if they ultimately push back to clear the way to do what is right. Mica made his observations in his most recent “K Street Insider” column penned for The Hill. Mica said he has successfully practiced his own advice both as a federal lawmakers and association executive. For instance, he noted that early on as head of CUNA the credit union world faced a tremendous battle to over turn a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that limited consumer’s ability to join credit unions. There was heady pressure to move quickly but Mica said no to acting rashly and instead pursued a strategy that took more time and ultimately gained the credit union movement what it sought. Constituents may object and “even yell and send you some sharp e-mails, “but, Mica said, by and large they will support the leader because he/she is doing what is best. As its name implies, The Hill's “K Street Insider” column focuses on the lobbying business rather than credit union issues. For the past two years, Mica has been one of a select number of former policymakers who became lobbyists that write the widely read column in rotation. Use the resource link to access the column.