Advocacy, Community Engagement, and Deputy Director for ACLU of Wisconsin

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The ACLU of Wisconsin (ACLU-WI) is facing a historic opportunity to take an intersectional approach to growing and rebuilding a dedicated leadership team, with a special emphasis on Advocacy and Community Engagement to better serve our communities and protect our civil rights and civil liberties. We currently have three director-level leadership positions available to lead us through current, pivotal political and cultural shifts. The three new Directors: Advocacy, Community Engagement, and Deputy Director will individually and collectively play a key leadership role in the ACLU of Wisconsin and our focus on key areas of interest and communities impacted. The ACLU-WI is a statewide non-profit, non-partisan, private organization with about 13,000 members. The ACLU-WI faces the challenge of protecting civil liberties in an era of increasing threats. The ACLU-WI is widely recognized as a cutting-edge and leading advocate for civil liberties and civil rights, and it works closely with other state organizations that share compatible goals. To achieve our mission, we manage legal, legislative, advocacy, and public education programs on a broad range of constitutional issues including discrimination, voting rights, free speech, religious freedom, reproductive rights, LGBTQ+ rights, and information privacy. The ACLU-WI is composed of both a 501(c)(4) (the “Union”) and a 501(c)(3) (the “Foundation”). The separate non-profit entities share the same overall mission, office space, and employees. Both are governed by boards of directors. The ACLU and the Foundation’s operating budgets are approximately $2.5 million, and headquarters are in Milwaukee’s historic Third Ward. The organization has a diverse staff of up to 30 individuals.

To learn more about the work of the ACLU and the civil liberties principles we uphold, please visit at: www.aclu-wi.org .

Position Overviews

Advocacy Director

This moment presents unprecedented challenges to the civil rights movement. The advocacy program in Wisconsin, a critical battleground state, is uniquely positioned to lead the fight both locally and nationally. The Advocacy Director (AD) will lead a highly dynamic and fast-paced team with resolve, tenacity, and resilience to build networks on a national level. The AD will work closely with the Executive Director to lead nonpartisan political efforts for policy reform and will also partner strategically with the Deputy Director. The AD will help staff, Board members, and volunteers work effectively in a strategic manner on our affiliate’s core programs and current campaigns. The AD is a strong collaborator who holds a vision for the advocacy program. They will be aware of the priorities of the organization and will offer ideas for impact to the executive team. The AD will spend considerable time planning how to best accomplish administrative and program objectives, routinely working in collaboration with the legal team and communications team, with capacity- building work in concert with the Community Engagement Director. The AD will have excellent communication, interpersonal, and relationship building, and stewardship skills. Though the position will be mostly remote through COVID, there will be some in-person community events and interactions as safety permits. This leadership position also requires dynamic working hours, including some evening and weekend hours.

To strategically respond to shifts in the political landscape, the AD must be a skilled writer, collaborator, and be familiar with budgeting and accounting procedures. They will possess a depth of understanding of the relationship between Wisconsin state politics and national political priorities, debates, discourse, and dynamics.

The Advocacy Director will:

  • Lead multiple legislative campaign at a time to achieve an important organizational goal and organize our community engagement and communications efforts to achieve it.
  • Remain proactive and responsive on a variety of civil rights issues as they move through Wisconsin legislative bodies including the state, county, and federal levels.
  • Envision, develop, and manage the ACLU’s advocacy infrastructure —which may eventually include political/campaign staff, lobbyists and contract lobbyists, and communications experts—to bolster support for the organization’s legislative campaigns.
  • Maintain robust engagement and relationship-building with policymakers from both sides of the political aisle on the state, county, and municipal levels.
  • Directly supervise organizers and staff including managers.
  • Partner with the communications staff on strategy for direct communication with ACLU supporters via email and social media, as well as themes to emphasize in traditional media.
  • Oversee the evaluation of programs and campaigns, and developing reports to the Executive Director, the Board, other funders, and collaborators.
  • Work in coalition with diverse groups and individuals on a variety of issues, across varied positions.
  • Travel around the state, even though the position is based in greater Milwaukee.
  • Oversee the recruitment, supervision, and management of volunteers as needed.
  • Assist staff with design and implementation of programs, campaigns, and organizing strategies.
  • Develop and manage departmental and program budgets.
  • Coordinate with Development team to coordinate grant proposals, management, and reporting.
  • Oversee the maintenance of key partnerships, coalitions, and relationships with other advocacy, community, grassroots, grass tops, and movement organizations.
  • Work closely with the communications department to provide information and clear goals that will help shape and inform marketing and other campaigns.

Advocacy Director Qualifications:

  • Deep understanding of the Wisconsin state legislative process and other policymaking,
  • Familiarity with Wisconsin’s political landscape.
  • Campaign organizing experience around legislative and policy goals.
  • Depth of understanding of the relationship between Wisconsin state politics and national political priorities, debates, discourse, and dynamic landscape,
  • Excellent written, research, analytic and interpersonal and verbal skills. Ability to explain complex social issues to the public and media with clarity.
  • Excellent tech knowledge, including the ability to learn new programs and work on several platforms (Google, Microsoft, Zoom, etc.).
  • Ability to work independently with attention to detail and strong organizational skills.
  • Ability to manage multiple projects under deadline.
  • Supervision experience with volunteers, interns, or employees.
  • Skilled with working in coalition with diverse groups and individuals on a variety of issues, across varied positions.
  • Ability to comply with employment policies including the ACLU of Wisconsin’s employee handbook and organizational policies.

Community Engagement Director

An integral member of the leadership team, the Community Engagement Director (CED) will promote and protect the civil liberties and civil rights of all residents of Wisconsin through education, outreach, advocacy, organizing, direct action, and programming for adults and youth. They will be responsible for both managing staff and being a visible leader who will create relationships and coalitions to advance our work. The CED provides leadership and vision for a variety of highly visible and wide-reaching projects and initiatives. The CED will engage in meetings and discussions of a highly strategic and confidential nature, will liaise with staff regarding team and organizational initiatives, and will create and manage the structure, schedule, and internal communication plans for related projects to drive their successful completion. The CED will report directly to the Executive Director. They must be able to prioritize strong community relationships and should strive to be a well-respected and highly visible community leader. The CED will have excellent communication, interpersonal, and relationship building and maintenance skills. The position also requires dynamic working hours, including some evening and weekend hours to connect with community leaders, stakeholders, volunteers, and manage campaign work. Though the position will be mostly remote through COVID, there will be some in-person community events and interactions as safety permits. The CED will have grant writing and reporting, as well as donor communications and engagement skills.

The Community Engagement Director will:

  • Have a deep commitment to, and appreciation for, the needs and nuances in Greater Milwaukee and in the state of Wisconsin.
  • Lead the development of a wide range of statewide programs and campaigns in coordination with the CE staff and the Executive Director.
  • Evaluate and enhance efficacy and impact of campaigns, trainings, and programs, like ACLU’s Student Alliances, Youth Social Justice Forum, Summer Justice Institute, Legal Observing, and ElectionProtection.
  • Establish objectives, develop budgets, create staffing plans, determine priorities, identify risks, manage progress, gain cooperation of others, resolve potential conflicts, and manage communications in collaboration with the Communications and Advocacy Departments.
  • Represent the ACLU with diverse organizations, elected officials, board members, stakeholders, media, coalitions, and more broadly as necessary.
  • Lead the public engagement and grassroots organizing efforts, driving member and volunteer activation, education, and organization.
  • Build and manage a team to develop connections with community leaders and organizations to assist litigation efforts by identifying civil rights issues, recruiting potential clients, and facilitating communication between attorneys and the community.
  • Quickly develop a broad understanding and depth of knowledge about ACLU issue areas and positions to become a respected leader and advocate.
  • Engage in direct state and local level lobbying to advance organizational policy and legislative goals.
  • Design and implement methods for tracking deliverables, schedules, and metrics for projects, providing clear tasks and accountability for project workstream leaders and team members.
  • Create and maintain comprehensive project documentation, providing a clear historical record of decisions, systems, procedures, and communications involved in each project’s completion.
  • Create and implement effective roll-out plans, conduct post-completion evaluations to determine successful/unsuccessful project elements, and train project stakeholders accordingly.
  • Execute specific tasks within projects, including drafting communications, systems build-out and testing, and creating project evaluation and presentation materials.
  • Provide strategic vision and leadership for the ACLU’s CE initiatives throughout the state of Wisconsin.

Community Engagement Director Qualifications

  • Exceptional organizational, planning and project management skills; Demonstrated ability to manage large, complex projects and coordinate collaborative work processes involving multiple stakeholders.
  • Coordinate with Development team to coordinate grant proposals, management, and reporting.
  • Proven experience organizing and grassroots movement building.
  • Experience communicating with others through a variety of platforms like email, Facebook, Slack, Twitter, Instagram, or others.
  • Demonstrated ability to successfully run concurrent programs, campaigns, and events.
  • Willingness to register as a licensed lobbyist in the State of Wisconsin.
  • Bilingual skills a plus.
  • Bachelor’s degree and/or project management certification is a plus.

Deputy Director

The Deputy Director (DD) will work closely with the Executive Director on three overarching areas: managing the administration and finances of the organization, leading nonpartisan political efforts for policy reform, and board support and management. The DD will help staff, board members, and volunteers work effectively in a strategic manner on the affiliate’s core program and current campaigns. The DD will partner with the Executive Director in the leadership and the day-to-day management of the organization and facilitate cross-department activities. They will create robust systems and operations, including as a liaison between departments that will undergird and facilitate their vision. In addition to these leadership roles, the DD will serve as a trusted adviser to the Executive Director and serve as a key liaison to the Board of Directors. The DD role demands excellent communication and interpersonal skills. The DD must be a skilled writer and be familiar with budgeting and accounting procedures, people management and best practices of supporting staff. In addition to supervising staff, the DD will coordinate annual budgeting activities, financial reporting with auditors, board and committee relations, and coordinate with vendors for purchasing and contracts.

The Deputy Director will:

  • Engage in troubleshooting any overall problems as needed.
  • Manage annual staff evaluations, ensuring that a mid-year review of goals and objectives occurs.
  • Oversee staff time study at least twice per year.
  • Staff the Executive Committee and help to set the agenda for upcoming Board meetings.
  • Keep important policies up to date and ensure they are followed by staff.
  • Provide support for other Board committees as needed.
  • Develop an impact evaluation plan.
  • Make priorities and their rationales clear to other department directors.
  • Ability to work in coalition with diverse groups and individuals.

Deputy Director Qualifications:

  • A commitment to the mission of the ACLU and the advancement of social justice.
  • Understanding of the Wisconsin state legislative process and other policymaking,
  • Familiarity with Wisconsin’s political landscape.
  • Experience with campaign organizing around legislative and policy goals.
  • Ability to work well with colleagues both inside and outside the ACLU to choose and advance goals.
  • Excellent written, research, analytic and interpersonal and verbal skills. Ability to explain complex social issues to the public and media.
  • Knowledge of nonprofit planning, programming, budgeting, human resources, and evaluation,
  • Demonstrated facility and experience with fiscal management, budgeting, strategic planning, familiarity with nonprofit financial reports, including reports generated in Quickbooks.
  • Supervision experience with volunteers, interns, and/ or employees.
  • Ability to comply with employment policies including the ACLU of Wisconsin’s employee handbook and organizational policies.
  • Experience managing staff and volunteers.
  • Bachelor’s Degree is necessary to demonstrate a basic level of skills in such areas as budgeting, accounting, and personnel management; Master’s Degree is preferred.
  • Educational background in nonprofit management, political science, social sciences, and/or business management is a benefit.

Qualifications for all Director positions:

  • A strong commitment to the ACLU’s mission and goals toward the advancement of social justice, racial equity, dismantling white supremacy and incorporating a structural power analysis into work, with knowledge and understanding of how power is manifested in matters of race, ethnicity, age, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, religion, ability, and socio-economic circumstances.
  • Extraordinary leadership skills and ability to quickly establish relationship.
  • Successful Experience managing diverse teams with varied skill sets.
  • Experience developing and implementing strategic plans.
  • Substantial programmatic or project management experience.
  • Demonstrated ability to speak and write in a clear, succinct, and persuasive manner.
  • Experience in a project/program management role, preferred.
  • Ability to travel within Wisconsin, as well as availability to work some evenings and weekends.
  • Wisconsin residency is required.

This job announcement provides a general but not comprehensive list of the essential responsibilities and qualifications required. It does not represent a contract of employment. The ACLU of Wisconsin reserves the right to change the description and/or posting at any time without advance notice. The ACLU of Wisconsin is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and strongly encourages people of color, people with disabilities, members of the LGBTQ+ community, and formerly incarcerated people to apply. The ACLU undertakes affirmative action strategies in its recruitment and employment efforts to assure that persons with disabilities have full opportunities for employment in all positions. We encourage applicants with disabilities who may need accommodations in the application process to contact us at jobs@aclu-wi.org. The ACLU of Wisconsin is comprised of two separate corporate entities, the American Civil Liberties Union of Wisconsin, and the American Civil Liberties Union of Wisconsin Foundation. Both are organizations with the same overall mission; they share office space and employees. We value a diverse workforce and an inclusive culture.

  • The ACLU of Wisconsin offers excellent benefits including paid vacation and sick leave, medical, dental, and vision coverage for staff members, a pension plan, life insurance, short-term and long-term disability insurance, a generous number of paid holidays, and an optional 401(K) are also included.
  • Compensation is based on relevant experience and skills, starting at approximately $75K depending on experience and skills. All Director positions are full-time and exempt.
  • Remote work opportunities through COVID with in-person interactions as safety permits, then a remote/in-person hybrid office environment.
  • Benefits include paid vacation and sick leave, 12 weeks paid family medical/parental leave, and optional medical for employee and family (includes one plan at no cost to the employee), vision, dental coverage, life insurance, short and long – term disability insurance, and a 401(k) / retirement fund with a stepped employer match.
  • While the ACLU of Wisconsin does not currently require proof of vaccination for employees, vaccination is highly recommended for all applicants. Moreover, fulfillment of certain job duties such as attendance of community events, may require proof of vaccination. The ACLU of Wisconsin reserves the right to change this policy at any time.

DIRECTOR APPLICATION INSTRUCTIONS

Please email all items below, combined into one document, no later than 1:00 p.m. CDT on July 7, 2022, to ACLU@leadingtransitions.com: 1) Letter of interest describing your qualifications for the position, addressed to: Mindy Lubar Price, 2) Detailed and updated résumé and 3) Names of, your relationship to, and contact information for, three professional references.

** Please indicate in the subject line of your email which Director position you are applying for: ADVOCACY, COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT, or DEPUTY DIRECTOR.

PLEASE NOTE:

  • References will not be contacted until a candidate has been notified.
  • All offers of employment are contingent upon clear results of thorough background and reference checks.
  • All inquiries about and interactions with candidates are kept in strict confidence.
  • These positions will remain open until filled.

** Please check here for other exciting opportunities available at the ACLU – WI: www.aclu.org/careers/

The following two positions are currently available:

Youth Coordinator position: www.aclu-wi.org/en/jobs/youth-coordinator

Campaign Manager position: www.aclu-wi.org/en/jobs/campaign-manager .

Leading Transitions is committed to the vitality of mission-based, nonprofit, philanthropic and community-centered organizations, and their leaders. The firm’s inclusive practices provide the flexibility and creativity necessary to conduct transparent leadership transition and search processes.

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