Reports to: Executive Director
About the ACLU of Louisiana
At the ACLU of Louisiana, we envision an equitable Louisiana that upholds the rights, dignity, and safety of all people and courageously acknowledges and endeavors to repair historical injustice that continues to harm marginalized communities. Our team seeks to protect the civil rights and civil liberties of all Louisianians by working to dismantle systems of oppression that harm the most vulnerable members of the community, specifically Black, Brown, Immigrant, and LGBTQ+ communities.
Our work reflects the ideals of peace, justice, and love.
We fight for change through a vigorous legal, policy, and community-centered strategy dedicated to ending white supremacist policy and law. We are engineers for real social change. We steep ourselves in a thorough understanding of Louisiana and American history to free ourselves of bias and ignorance.
It has been said that the fight for civil liberties never stays won; as cynical as that may sound, the ACLU of Louisiana remains confident that we—and justice—will prevail.
Currently, our team includes 15 individuals that are deeply passionate about doing the work and embodying the values of our organization each day. We invite individuals who have experience in and share our passion for social justice to join our team.
The Advocacy Director provides vision and direction for the organization's public policy advocacy. Grounded in a comprehensive view of the civil rights and civil liberties landscape in Louisiana, the Advocacy Director is responsible for developing the organization’s advocacy infrastructure and advancing the organization’s policy priorities through short- and long-term campaigns at the state, municipal, or parish level. Our Advocacy Director is a strategic and dynamic relationship builder who is comfortable in any room and understands how to pool influence from across the political spectrum and organize community members to take action. They will collaborate internally and externally to develop sustained and scalable advocacy strategies involving legislative, political, legal, communications, and organizing tactics.
The Advocacy Director is a member of the senior leadership team and reports to the Executive Director. The Advocacy Director will also collaborate closely with the Deputy Director, Legal Director, Communications Director, Development Director, or others, and will participate in organizational planning, setting priorities, and managing the Advocacy Team’s budget.
- Manage and provide vision for the ACLU of Louisiana’s year-round legislative and policy advocacy, including by identifying policy options to advance organizational priorities and designing campaigns to achieve those goals.
- Shape and manage the direction of the policy team, ensuring a purposeful and collaborative approach to using an integrated set of legislative, legal, electoral, communications, and grassroots mobilization tactics that will build political power, elevate community demands, bring together partners, and make continuous progress toward organizational goals.
- Implement systems that support the policy team’s collaboration with other functional-area teams, promote accountability to short- and long-term goals, and define clear benchmarks and measures of success.
- Manage and develop the skills of ACLU of Louisiana policy staff, including by developing work plans that support the organization’s policy goals and coaching staff on designing, executing, and evaluating policy campaigns.
- Represent the ACLU of Louisiana in various community and stakeholder settings, build and lead coalitions with diverse participants to identify and advance shared policy goals, and work in partnership with other organizations.
- Work closely with Communications staff to plan communications strategies that support policy campaigns and elevate directly-impacted people, including sustained messaging to educate and influence targets and rapid-response communications.
- With the Executive Director and Operations Team, develop and manage the policy team’s budget.
- Serve as the Advocacy Team’s representative to the Board of Directors.
- Assist Development staff, as needed, with fundraising activities.
To be successful in this role, the candidate will have:
- A Bachelor of Arts.
- At least five years of experience in state or national-level legislative work, community organizing, or issue advocacy campaigns.
- At least three to five years of experience supervising staff.
- Broad knowledge of state and local-level legislative and administrative processes, including a specific knowledge of Louisiana processes or an articulable approach to learning Louisiana processes.
- Demonstrated ability to build respectful and constructive relationships across the political spectrum and with diverse coalitions, including navigating internal political dynamics among external partners.
- Exceptional initiative, vision, and ambition to manage a year-round policy program that creates scalable progress toward priority reforms while opposing threats to civil rights and civil liberties.
- Demonstrated ability to apply an expansive toolbox of strategies to move decision-makers and voters and to work within an integrated advocacy framework with legal, communications, organizing, and mobilization tactics.
- A demonstrated commitment to the mission and values of the ACLU of Louisiana, including an understanding that the protection and advancement of racial and gender justice is central to the overall protection of civil rights and civil liberties.
- Strong self-starter with a keen attention to detail, an ability to work simultaneously on multiple projects at various stages of completion, and demonstrated ability to independently set priorities and meet deadlines.
- Ability to work independently and collaborate with others as part of a team, and to supervise staff who may work both independently and as members of a team.
- Demonstrated ability to give clear direction and hold staff accountable to benchmarks and deadlines on concurrent projects in a fast-paced, occasionally stressful environment.
- Ambitious, creative, and results-oriented initiative and a desire to learn, pitch-in, and anticipate new projects. Demonstrated ability to collaborate, including working closely with the Executive Director, Deputy Director, and colleagues at the ACLU of Louisiana and National ACLU.
- Willingness and availability to work beyond the normal workday, on weekends, and/or more than 40 hours per week as necessary to support the Policy Team’s goals.
- Willingness and availability to travel throughout Louisiana, including the ability to be present in Baton Rouge during the entirety of legislative session, and occasionally to travel to other states for conferences, trainings, and ACLU events as needed.
- An absolute commitment to the highest ethical and professional standards and a personal approach that values and respects differences of race, ethnicity, age, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, ability, and socioeconomic circumstances.
- Exceptional analytical, research, writing and oral advocacy skills, including the ability to articulate complex issues and to communicate them tactfully and effectively to a variety of audiences.
- Proficiency with office technology and information systems, including state legislative information systems and bill trackers, online communications, and word processing.
- Proficiency with programmatic budgeting or willingness to learn
- Must reside within driving distance of the ACLU of Louisiana offices in New Orleans. This is a hybrid position with some required in-office days.
- Access to reliable transportation.
To stand out from the others, you will have:
- Passion and experience building diverse, inclusive, and positive team cultures.
- Experience in public policy advocacy, policy research and analysis, civil liberties law, government relations, or related field.
- Significant management experience planning and leading policy or issue advocacy campaigns related to criminal legal reform, voting rights, immigrant rights, or police accountability.
- In addition to proficiency in English, an ability to speak and/or write in Spanish or Vietnamese.
What else should you know?
You are welcome here! The ACLU of Louisiana is proud to provide a workplace environment that is representative of the communities we serve. We value a diverse workforce and an inclusive culture. We encourage and eagerly anticipate 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, previous criminal conviction and/or veteran status.
The salary range for this role is $85,000-$95,000. The ACLU of Louisiana offers a generous and comprehensive compensation and benefits package, including medical, dental, and vision insurance, a 401K plan, paid holidays, vacation, and sick leave, and professional development opportunities.
Applications may be submitted via this link and should include a cover letter explaining your specific interest in working for the ACLU of Louisiana and a resume. Please note that we will only be able to follow up with those candidates under consideration. Applications will be accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis until the position is filled.
This job description provides a general but not comprehensive list of the essential responsibilities and qualifications required. It does not represent a contract of employment. The ACLU reserves the right to change the job description and/or posting at any time without advance notice.