The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of North Carolina seeks to hire a Director of Political Strategy & Advocacy. This is a full-time, exempt position based in our Raleigh office that reports directly to the Executive Director.
Since 1965, the ACLU of North Carolina has been our state’s guardian of liberty – working in courts, the General Assembly, and communities to protect and advance civil rights and civil liberties for all North Carolinians. A nonprofit, nonpartisan organization with more than 21,000 members across the state, the ACLU of North Carolina is a state affiliate of the national American Civil Liberties Union.
The Director of Political Strategy & Advocacy is a member of the ACLU-NC’s senior leadership team and provides vision and direction for its policy and legislative program. The position is primarily responsible for building a statewide political advocacy infrastructure that leverages our policy prowess together with established legal assets; shaping and leading multi-faceted, non-partisan campaigns that achieve critical policy priorities of the ACLU-NC; and connecting campaign work to all aspects of the organization and to all levels of political action – state as well as local. Campaigns will include lobbying, communications, litigation, and grassroots organizing, and will demand strong partnerships with the communications, development, and legal staff. Priority issues over the next five years are criminal justice reform, reproductive freedom, LGBTQ equality, immigrants’ rights, and racial justice including voting rights.
The Director of Political Strategy & Advocacy oversees the policy department, which currently consists of eight staff - a senior policy counsel who serves as the ACLU-NC’s point person in the statehouse and other governmental bodies, a policy analyst, two campaigns managers, a field manager, and 3 organizers. The Director may also engage vendors, consultants, and contractors in the design and execution of campaigns.
- Design and oversee strong, well-defined campaigns that bring together legislative, organizing, communications, and legal strategy to meet strategic policy and organizational capacity goals outlined in our strategic and annual plans;
- Manage the ACLU of North Carolina’s policy and advocacy staff and a growing cohort of ACLU political/campaign staff, lobbyists, contract lobbyists, and communications experts, including developing individual staff work plans, ensuring recognition of staff, managing difficult personnel situations as they arise, and holding campaign and organizing staff accountable;
- Facilitate a collaborative, strategic, and efficient workflow among the legal, legislative, communications, organizing, and development departments;
- Develop and implement a grass-tops deployment strategy to engage policymakers, stakeholders, and opinion leaders from all along the political and ideological spectrum;
- Collaborate with ACLU National staff and consultants on national and statewide issues and campaigns;
- Build the current network of card-carrying ACLU members, supporters, volunteers, and engaged activists into an effective grassroots advocacy force;
- Oversee the ACLU’s legislative program, including developing and implementing strategies to engage policymakers from both sides of the political aisle;
- Coordinate a political communications strategy in collaboration with the Communications Director to leverage traditional and new media to advance policy changes; oversee the alignment of field and digital advocacy;
- Coordinate with the legal program to ensure that advocacy strategies support, and in turn are supported by, legal strategies; and
- Serve as a major ACLU-NC spokesperson and persuasive advocate in public.
Other Required Functions
- Facilitate resource allocation – both financial and human – while balancing and mediating amid the range of priorities;
- Implement strategies for programs to engage donors as grass-tops in campaign activities and participate in donor meetings as assigned;
- Coordinate with the Director of Philanthropy to secure/submit/edit foundation grants;
- Become familiar with, track, and evaluate all grant deliverables/outcomes that are related to grant-funded campaigns;
- Maintain and analyze political assets (including voter lists, grass-tops lists, grassroots lists, coalition partners, past messaging and campaign materials) to build a political infrastructure and memory.
- Participate in senior staff management and planning, and assist staff with budgeting.
- Expertise running successful political, ballot, issue and/or legislative campaigns
- A sophisticated understanding of how to be effective in the public policy arena, and experience formulating strategies that tie together research, legal analysis and litigation, lobbying, communications, and organizing strategies
- Demonstrated and proven leadership experience working in an organization with both professional staff and volunteers
- Experience recruiting, developing, and managing a team comprised of a highly talented and diverse staff
- Experience overseeing budget and administration.
- Knowledge of the legislative and administrative processes at the state level.Knowledge of current political alignments and opportunities for collaboration with a broad range of groups.
- Learning and development orientation with a drive to improve over time.
- Ability to work collaboratively and successfully with all key external constituencies and policy makers from diverse backgrounds and ideological positions.
- Ability to work collaboratively with colleagues in the national office and other state affiliates.
- A commitment to the mission and goals of the ACLU.
- Experience working closely and effectively with all media platforms and familiarity with social media as a communications and organizing tactic.
- Exceptional written and oral communications skills.
- Superb organization skills; detail-oriented with strong follow-through and the ability to meet tight deadlines.
- Creative, results-oriented, self-starting, and willing to learn.
- Strong task and time management skills.
- Ability to travel across the state, as necessary, and participate in occasional evening and weekend meetings.
The hiring range for this position starts at $69,000. Salary is commensurate with experience. Excellent medical and dental insurance; disability insurance; 401(k) retirement plan; reimbursements for travel & phone use; and generous time off policies.
To apply, email a letter of application and resume to firstname.lastname@example.org with your last name in the subject line. In your letter, please indicate where you learned of the posting.
Applications will be reviewed on an ongoing basis beginning immediately.
The ACLU of North Carolina is an equal opportunity employer. We value a diverse workforce and an inclusive culture. The ACLU-NC encourages applications from all qualified individuals without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, disability, veteran status, or record of arrest or conviction.