- Policy Director, USA
Office: Affiliate Offices
The American Civil Liberties Union of Alaska is looking for a sophisticated and experienced policy advocate as our full-time Policy Director to create, manage, and implement a program of strategic policy advocacy to grow the ACLU of Alaska’s political power and advance its civil liberties and civil rights agenda. The Policy Director is primarily responsible for state legislative and executive branch advocacy but also engages with administrative agencies, local governments, ballot measure campaigns, our Congressional delegation, and collaborates with other staff on integrated advocacy initiatives. As a member of the ACLU of Alaska’s senior staff, the Policy Director will report directly to the Executive Director. The position is in Anchorage, Alaska but will require periodic travel throughout the state and to Juneau during the legislative session.
The ACLU of Alaska is the Alaska affiliate of the national ACLU, the nation’s oldest and largest protector of the Bill of Rights. We are Alaska’s premier civil rights and civil liberties advocate, and are a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that integrates litigation, public policy advocacy, public education, communications with the media and our members, and coalition building and grassroots organizing to defend and expand Alaskans’ constitutional rights and individual freedoms. As part of the ACLU’s 100th anniversary in 2020, and in the wake of the Trump administration’s daily assaults on civil liberties, the ACLU of Alaska is embarking on its most ambitious advocacy yet, which includes eliminating discrimination against LGBTQ individuals, dramatically reforming the criminal justice system, paring back the national security state and strengthening the right to privacy, ensuring that all Americans can freely and easily vote, and defeating perennial attempts to restrict women’s right to safe and legal abortions.
Anchorage consistently ranks as one of America’s top 10 cities: with 300,000 residents, it has typical big-city amenities of diverse restaurants, cultural attractions, good schools, and a major international airport with regular flights to Seattle (just 3½ hours away) and the rest of the Lower 48 plus summer flights to Asia and Europe. Surrounded by mountains and water, Anchorage offers hiking, boating, fishing, and skiing, and one can see moose, bears, eagles, and whales in town. With almost 20 hours of daily summer sunlight and winter’s northern lights, Anchorage offers the best of everything in the only state without any sales or personal income tax.
Job Description and Responsibilities
Manage the Policy Department: develop and implement a strategic legislative and policy program at the state and local levels to advance core civil liberties priorities, and supervise the Lead Organizer;
Execute the ACLU of Alaska’s legislative agenda utilizing appropriate strategies and tactics; lobby members of the legislature, their staff, and the Governor’s office, analyze and track legislation, draft amendments and prepare and deliver both written and oral testimony;
Prepare written materials in collaboration with the Communications Director, including action alerts, talking points, issue briefs, reports, op-eds, and website updates;
Build trusted relationships with lawmakers, agency decision-makers, staff, the Governor’s office, lobbyists, and other stakeholders by providing clear, fact-based analysis and resources; identify opportunities for bipartisan support on ACLU issues;
Represent the ACLU of Alaska in various community and stakeholder groups; build and lead coalitions with diverse stakeholders and work in partnership with other organizations;
Coordinate and collaborate with staff to plan and implement effective multi-disciplinary and integrated advocacy policy initiatives, involving a combination of policy, legal, communication, public education, and organizing strategies;
Participate in legislative interim activity, attend legislative hearings and participate in policy-related workgroups, coalitions, and meetings; and
Work collaboratively with the national ACLU and other ACLU affiliates to advance nationwide policy campaigns.
Serve as a spokesperson for the ACLU of Alaska, with the Communications Director and the Executive Director;
Work with fellow ACLU of Alaska senior staff to integrate litigation with policy advocacy, communications and public education, and philanthropy; and
Work with the Executive Director and Director of Philanthropy to participate in budget, donor, and planning meetings as needed.
Law degree strongly preferred and at least one year of state or national legislative, political, or policy advocacy work, preferably in Alaska;
Understanding of the legislative process, political strategic planning, and the ability to build respectful relationships across the political spectrum;
Demonstrated ability to build and sustain allies and work collaboratively across the political spectrum with diverse coalitions, including developing shared plans, coordinating external and internal communications, and navigating internal political dynamics among partner groups, and a personal approach that values and respects differences of race, ethnicity, age, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, ability and socioeconomic circumstances;
Exceptional initiative, vision, and ambition to build a strategic, integrated advocacy program through a broad range of short- and long-term political and lobbying tactics;
Passion for, and a well-articulated knowledge of, civil liberties and social justice, and a familiarity with the work and mission of the ACLU;
Exceptional analytical, research, writing, and oral advocacy skills, as well as the ability to articulate legal concepts and complex issues and to communicate them tactfully and effectively to a variety of audiences;
Experience supervising staff and leading teams; ability to listen, guide, and support people to achieve common goals;
Keen attention to detail; ability to work simultaneously on multiple projects at various stages of completion; good problem-solving skills and a positive, professional attitude with sound judgment, flexibility, determination, and good humor in a fast-paced, sometimes high-pressure office;
Ambitious, creative, and results-oriented initiative and a desire to learn, pitch-in, and anticipate new projects; ability to collaborate, including working closely with the Executive Director and colleagues at the ACLU of Alaska and national ACLU, as well as with board members and volunteers;
An absolute commitment to the highest ethical and professional standards;
Willingness to work beyond 9 to 5, particularly during the legislative session, and to travel throughout Alaska as needed; and
Fluency with computers, Microsoft Office, and Westlaw.
This is an exempt, full-time, at-will position. Salary is commensurate with experience and includes excellent benefits, including health, dental, life, and disability insurance, a 401(k) plan with an employer-match, and generous vacation, sick, and holiday leave.
The ACLU of Alaska is an equal opportunity employer and values a diverse workforce and an inclusive culture. We encourage applications from all qualified individuals without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, disability, veteran status, and record of arrest or conviction.
Job posted on 22nd May 2018
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