Plain Language Summit 2019

A day of talks and conversations on how to advance plain language in government communications

Thursday, September 05, 2019 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM ET

Hosted by and the Plain Language Community of Practice

On Thursday, September 5th, 2019, the federal Plain Language community brought together some of the brightest individuals involved in government communications for a one-day series of talks and conversations on how to advance plain language in government communications.

Plain Language /

We believe the public deserves plain language communication from its government, and it’s the law. The benefits of plain language are both tangible and intangible:

  • Plain language gets your message across in the shortest time possible.
  • More people are able to understand your message.
  • There is less chance that your document will be misunderstood, so you spend less time explaining it to people. And if your document gives instructions, your readers are more likely to understand them and follow them correctly.

Our Plain Agenda

Time Speaker
9:00am Welcome from Federal Plain Language Community of Practice, Co-Chairs - Katherine Spivey, GSA and Kathryn Catania, USCIS
9:15am Welcome from GSA’s Senior Plain Language Official
9:25am - 9:30am PLAIN training update - Jamie Stark, USCIS
9:25am - 10:00am Health Literacy - Cynthia Baur
10:00am - 10:15am Break
10:15am - 11:15am Science Panel - Jana Goldman and Susanna Murley
11:15am - 11:45am Plain UX — John Whalen
11:45am - 12:50pm Break for Lunch
1:00pm - 1:45pm International Plain Language Standards — Annetta Cheek
1:45pm - 2:30pm Center for Plain Language Federal Report Card — David Lipscomb
2:30pm - 3:00pm Customer Experience - Camille Tucker
3:00pm - 3:15pm Wrap Up & Closing - Kathryn Catania, USCIS and Katherine Spivey, GSA
Let others know and use our hashtag #PlainSummit2019! Here’s what people are saying on Twitter or follow @govplainlang on twitter.


The Plain Language Action and Information Network (PLAIN) is a group of federal employees from different agencies and specialties who support the use of clear communication in government writing.

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