BACKGROUND AND MISSION
Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Chicago builds power through collective advocacy and organizing to achieve racial equity.
For over 30 years, Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Chicago (“Advancing Justice | Chicago”) has worked to bring together the Asian American community and create change in our communities. We are deeply committed to grassroots community organizing and we invest in the leadership of grassroots community members through trainings, community education, civic engagement, and collaborative issue-based campaigns. In order to strengthen our work and transform the inequities in our city, state, and Midwest region, we work with multiracial coalitions that emphasize racial equity, accountability to those most impacted, and an infrastructure of grassroots leadership. Our advocacy work focuses on promoting racial, economic, and immigrant justice, including initiatives in the areas of voting rights, language access, education equity, criminal justice, and immigrant rights.
As part of the national Asian Americans Advancing Justice affiliation, Advancing Justice | Chicago is a leader in the nationwide Asian American movement. Regionally, Advancing Justice | Chicago is prioritizing the Midwest region and collaborating with partners across Midwestern states to tackle common struggles and build collective power.
Founded in 2018, Asian American Midwest Progressives (“AAMP”) endorses progressive candidates, mobilizes Asian American voters, and holds elected officials accountable through issue-based campaigns. Currently, AAMP organizes in Illinois and Ohio.
This role is an exciting opportunity for a strategic organizer and relationship-builder to serve as the Campaigns Director for Advancing Justice | Chicago and AAMP. The Campaigns Director will co-lead the Organizing Team and co-create strategy for issue campaigns with the Organizing Director. In addition, the Campaigns Director will serve as the primary lobbyist for both organizations, represent Advancing Justice | Chicago and AAMP in coalition spaces, lead political education and lobbying trainings for grassroots leaders and coalition partners, and create external communications and talking points for priority issue campaigns. As a member of the leadership team, the Campaigns Director will also be responsible for guiding organization-wide decisions, maintaining healthy organizational culture, and supervising the Communications Manager. This position reports to the Executive Director.
This position will fall under the staff sharing agreement between Advancing Justice | Chicago and Asian American Midwest Progressives (AAMP) so a portion of time will be spent on 501(c)(4) activities including partisan political work.
Key Advancing Justice | Chicago Responsibilities:
- Build strong relationships and advocate with elected officials and other decision-makers at the city, state, and county levels to advance advocacy efforts;
– Organize regular meetings with the Asian American Caucus and Asian American Legislative Caucus;
– Serve as Advancing Justice | Chicago’s primary lobbyist in Springfield and complete all required reporting for registered lobbyists;
- Co-lead priority issue campaigns with the Organizing Director, including developing campaign strategy, coordinating with legislative sponsors, managing coalition partners, and coordinating with Organizing Team staff;
- Supervise the Communications Manager;
- Lead Advancing Justice | Chicago’s democracy and voting rights work, including a poll monitoring program and advocacy with local election authorities;
- Convene and lead the Pan-Asian Voter Empowerment (PAVE) Coalition, including coordinating the Steering Committee, organizing full coalition meetings three times per year, and developing the PAVE Coalition’s annual legislative agenda;
- Track and analyze legislation relevant to Advancing Justice | Chicago’s priority issue areas, including immigration, language access, voting rights/democracy, education equity, and criminal justice;
- Support the Pan-Asian Voter Empowerment Coalition’s annual lobby day (Asian American Action Day) by leading all lobbying preparation and training;
- Draft talking points and external communications for issues campaigns, including press releases in collaboration with the Communications Manager;
- Represent Advancing Justice | Chicago in external coalitions, including the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights and Just Democracy Illinois;
- Collaborate with the other Advancing Justice affiliates on national campaigns or joint projects, such as the biannual Asian Americans Advancing Justice National Summit;
– Partner with fellow Advancing Justice affiliates on immigration and voting rights and participate in monthly calls for each issue area;
- Provide media interviews on key issues and current events, as needed;
- Educate our staff, grassroots leaders, and others on policy issues, as needed;
- Support and when appropriate take lead on organization-wide events and activities including direct actions, press conferences, rallies, lobby days, and other events as needed;
- Provide regular updates to the Advancing Justice | Chicago Board of Directors;
- Other duties as assigned.
Key Asian American Midwest Progressives Responsibilities:
- Lead and execute AAMP’s grassroots endorsement process, which typically takes place during state-level primary elections and Chicago municipal elections;
- Steward co-governing relationships with endorsed candidates and key decision makers at city, county, and state levels;
- Serve as AAMP’s primary lobbyist in Springfield and complete all required reporting for registered lobbyists;
- Represent AAMP in external coalitions, including the Illinois Alignment Table;
- Provide support for political events, such as public meetings, forums, etc.;
- Assist in fundraising for AAMP, including but not limited to contributing to grant proposals/reports and participating in site visits with funders;
- Provide regular updates to the AAMP Board of Directors;
- Other duties as assigned.
As both a Senior Staff member and a public face of Advancing Justice | Chicago, the Campaigns Director should be a strategic thinker and excellent communicator with impeccable follow-through and time management. The Campaigns Director should demonstrate a unique blend of qualities and skills that reflect a passion and commitment to the organization’s mission, including the following:
- Strong belief in the mission of the organization and uncompromising commitment to advancing racial equity;
- 3-5 years of experience in policy advocacy or lobbying elected officials or government policy makers, including a deep knowledge of state, local, and/or federal legislative processes;
- Significant experience with issue-based campaigns, including campaign strategy and tactics;
- Excellent oral and written communications skills and ability to persuade others;
- Excellent follow-through on commitments and ability to hold others accountable;
- Highly effective interpersonal, leadership, consensus-building, and coalition-building skills, with the ability to forge new relationships and foster existing ones;
- Ability to juggle multiple projects, work well with others under pressure, set and meet deadlines, and manage time effectively;
- Ability to communicate complex policy with multiple audiences, especially grassroots community members;
- Commitment to proactively sharing and thoughtfully receiving feedback;
- Openness and ability to adapt and respond to changes in the environment, and creatively adapt strategies and tactics as needed;
- Knowledge of Asian American and/or immigrant/refugee issues;
- Willingness to travel out-of-town and work evenings or weekends as needed (flex time is offered for evening and weekend work) – during the busiest part of the Springfield legislative session (February to May), out of town travel is typically 2-4 times per month for 1-3 nights per trip.
- Proficiency with online platforms such as Zoom, Microsoft 365/Microsoft Office Suite, and Google Drive.
- Strong understanding of the role that communications and media play in grassroots organizing and advocacy;
- Experience supervising staff;
- Familiarity with administrative aspects of a non-profit organization, including resource development;
- Reliable access to a vehicle for local and out-of-town work travel
Exempt, full-time position. As a member of our leadership team, this role has a salary range of $85,000-95,000. However, we are open to filling this role at a non-leadership team level if necessary, so we encourage individuals to apply even if you don’t meet all the qualifications listed. The salary range for a non-leadership team director role would be $75,000-85,000. Advancing Justice | Chicago and AAMP offer a generous full benefits package.
INQUIRY AND APPLICATION PROCESS
Applications should be submitted electronically via email to email@example.com and include:
- Cover letter describing interest in the position, qualifications, and expectations,
- 2 writing samples of your choosing; and
- Names of three references who can speak to the range of qualifications sought.
– If you have supervision experience, please include a recent supervisee/direct report as one of your references
Please include “Campaigns Director” in the subject line of your email. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis, but applications received by Sunday, March 3rd, 2024 will be prioritized.
Note: Given the COVID-19 pandemic, Advancing Justice | Chicago and AAMP staff are currently working in-person at our Uptown office two days a week (Tue/Thu) with optional work-from-home three days a week (Mon/Weds/Fri), which is subject to change. If you are invited for an interview, the interview may be held in person or over video conference.
Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Chicago and Asian American Midwest Progressives are equal opportunity/affirmative action employers. All qualified persons are encouraged to apply, regardless of race, color, creed, ethnicity, national origin, ancestry, age, height, weight, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, marital or domestic partner status, or religious affiliation.