Local recruitment: Drinking Water Policy Coordinator

National Wildlife Federation

Ann Arbor, MI, USA 🇺🇸

Chicago, IL, USA 🇺🇸

Detroit, MI, USA 🇺🇸

Milwaukee, WI, USA 🇺🇸

Job category: Conservation

Requisition number: DRINK001398

Job details


Founded in 1936, the National Wildlife Federation has grown into America’s largest and most trusted grassroots conservation organization with 52 state and territorial affiliates and more than seven million members and supporters, including hunters, anglers, gardeners, birders, hikers, campers, paddlers, and outdoor enthusiasts of all ages and stripes. The mission of the National Wildlife Federation is to unite all Americans to ensure wildlife thrive in our rapidly changing world. We advance this mission through programming focused on conserving wildlife, restoring habitats and waterways, expanding outdoor opportunities, connecting children with nature, advancing environmental justice, and addressing the causes and consequences of climate change.

In the wake of the ongoing lead poisoning, wide-spread contamination from unregulated “forever chemicals” (such as PFAS) and structural inequities in access to clean, affordable water in the Great Lakes region, particularly for communities of color, the Great Lakes Regional Center (GLRC) is building and expanding our work to ensure that all communities in the Great Lakes region have access to clean, safe water.

The Drinking Water Policy Coordinator will coordinate campaigns focused on water infrastructure and affordability, access to clean water for all, and threats to drinking water and wildlife from emerging chemicals of concern (like PFAS) within the Great Lakes region. This work will include coordinating closely with the many Coalitions and Networks NWF is involved in, including the federal field campaigns, to ensure strategic alignment and collaboration on drinking water issues at the state and federal levels. The position will help develop as needed and coordinate the policy advocacy, robust relationship building and maintenance within the region and DC, centering of equity and justice as core principles of the GLRC’s drinking water campaigns, and increased communications around this work to NWF members, state and federal decisionmakers, and the media.

The position reports to the Associate Director and works closely with the Great Lakes Policy Director and the Regional Executive Director to develop and advocate for strong policies and practices to ensure safe, clean drinking water within the region and to provide strategic support on high priority drinking water policy needs for the GLRC.

Principal Duties (major areas of responsibility):

Coordinate the GLRC’s Clean Drinking Water campaign (40%)

  • Lead the implementation of our drinking water policy and program agenda, building off of recommendations from the 2021 drinking water convenings
  • Build and expand on robust, authentic relationships with on the ground community members, state and regional partner organizations, the NAC, and affiliates, all of whom are engaged in drinking water work.
  • Collaborate and serve as liaison with state affiliate partners, other coalition efforts (including the HOW Coalition, Clean Water for All, and the Michigan Water Table) focused on clean drinking water.
  • Provide policy, organizing, and other campaign support and coordinate GLRC’s activity to advance legislative and other campaigns led by impacted communities to implement water affordability.
  • Center equity and justice– providing vulnerable communities with the resources and tools needed to eliminate these threats to people and wildlife.
  • Work with the communications team to identify, develop, and execute opportunities for promoting our work and advancing campaign objectives.

Coordinate the GLRC’s PFAS Campaign (40%)

  • Grow and coordinate the PFAS campaign, including supporting the Great Lakes PFAS Action Network and coordinating closely with the NAC to continue to move NWF PFAS policy priorities forward at the regional, state, and federal levels.
  • Support the top priorities of the Great Lakes PFAS Action Network policy agenda.
  • Support the efforts of the GLRC to address impacts to fish and wildlife in the Great Lakes region.
  • Build and expand on robust, authentic relationships with on the ground community members engaged in chemicals work.
  • Collaborate with other NGOs, state affiliate partners, and coalition efforts (including GLPAN, Great Lakes Business Network, National PFAS Contamination Coalition) focused on PFAS.
  • Work with the communications team to identify, develop, and execute opportunities for promoting our work and advancing campaign objectives.
  • Center equity and justice – providing vulnerable communities with the resources and tools needed to eliminate these threats to people and wildlife.

 Policy/Emerging Issues Support (20%)

  • Remain nimble enough to provide rapid response policy and communications support for drinking water crises occurring within the Great Lakes region. This could include support of internal NWF teams (like the NAC Environmental Justice team) or impacted community members and/or organizations (both in the drinking water and/or PFAS sphere).
  • Support the NWF GLRC leadership team as needed on high priority water policy issues as they arise.

 Minimum Experience

  • Experience working on environmental or conservation advocacy and/or with water infrastructure/affordability and/or chemicals of concern
  • Demonstrated ability to develop and build relationships that can translate into working in various types of impacted communities
  • Familiarity or experience with an environmental justice approach in policy priorities, organizing, program development and partner engagement

Minimum Skills:

  • Ability to assess policy options and scientific data
  • Ability to utilize advocacy, organizing and/or campaign tactics to achieve strategic goals.
  • Excellent writing and communication skills
  • High level of equity and justice competencies
  • Ability to work within dynamic teams and independently, including taking initiative, prioritizing work and meeting deadlines
  • Ability to handle multiple demands and different priorities
  • Ability to connect with people from a diverse set of backgrounds and communities

NWF Values:

Your actions are expected to reflect the staff values of the National Wildlife Federation: collaboration, mindfulness, empowerment, inclusivity, and mission focus.  Your competencies should include:

  • Being motivated by values of equity and responsibility to those most marginalized;
  • Consistently bringing a high level of empathy and social skills to work and interpersonal interactions;
  • Being committed to deepening an environmental justice approach in policy priorities, program development and partner engagement;
  • Actively seeks feedback, direction, and guidance from all team members and keeps staff informed of decisions that impact them;
  • Being dedicated to advancing NWF’s internal equity transformation and compelling partners and allies to incorporate equity into their work; and
  • Passion for and commitment to NWF’s mission

Travel Requirements: 

Travel required for decision maker meetings, regional meetings, and for national leadership meetings as appropriate. Approximately 1-3 days per month once travel resumes for NWF. Frequent local travel to connect with staff working remotely and partner organizations. Approximately 2-5 days per month.

Location and Work Mode: 

This position is based out of our Great Lakes Regional Center in Ann Arbor, MI, Chicago, Detroit, or Milwaukee. Consideration for outstanding candidates in other locations in MN, WI, IL, IN, OH or MI. The National Wildlife Federation is committed to a flexible and empowered work environment with an authentic community of care for all staff. In this position, the employee may work in the office, in a hybrid manner, or fully remote, to be decided jointly with their supervisor in the final stages of the interview process.

Compensation and Benefits:

The salary range for this position is $50,000-$55,000, commensurate with experience.

We are proud of our designation by Mogul as a Top 100 Workplace with the Best Benefits!  We value work-life balance and a family-friendly atmosphere with flexible scheduling.  We want you to be able to integrate work and personal life with attention to your self-care, so that your work schedule is not depleting.  We offer benefits so you feel restored and fueled through the day and week.

We offer these supports to help manage your mental, emotional, and physical health: 

  • Paid time off: Vacation that starts off at three weeks accrual, unlimited wellbeing (this time can be used for physical, spiritual, emotional, cultural, religious or financial wellbeing for yourself, a partner, or family member – including pets), and 10 holidays.
  • We close down for a paid winter break between December 25 to January 1 to recognize end of-year stress, and time for reflection, rejuvenation, and spending time with family.
  • Up to 16 weeks of fully paid Family and Medical Leave
  • Low-cost health, dental, and vision insurance options – all outpatient mental health is covered at in-network rates
  • Therapist available at no cost
  • Pet insurance and discount perk program
  • Annual wellbeing allowance

In addition to your salary, we offer the following supports to your personal finances:

  • Retirement plan with immediate match and vesting
  • Annual year end retirement contribution
  • Tuition Reimbursement
  • Adoption and Surrogacy assistance
  • Pet adoption stipend
  • Student Loan management

Applicants are invited to learn more about National Wildlife Federation’s benefits package at https://www.nwf.org/About-Us/Careers.

COVID Consideration:

The National Wildlife Federation closely follows the 2019 Novel Coronavirus Disease and has implemented processes that promote the safety of our employees, candidates, and communities. Proof of vaccination will be required for employment at the National Wildlife Federation.


Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.  Candidates should submit a cover letter and resume.

We strive to increase diversity, equity, inclusion and justice (DEIJ) in all elements of our work and with our partners to support the interdependent needs of wildlife and people in a rapidly changing world. We recruit, employ, train compensate, and promote regardless of race, religion, creed, national origin, ancestry, sex (including pregnancy), sexual orientation, gender identity (including gender nonconformity and status as a transgender individual), age, physical or mental disability, citizenship, genetic information, past, current, or prospective service in the uniformed services, or any other characteristic protected under applicable federal, state, or local law. We are proud to be an equal opportunity employer. Applicants are invited to learn more about National Wildlife Federation’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion at nwf.org/equity.

We recognize that people come with a wealth of experience and talent beyond just the technical requirements of a job, therefore our job descriptions are guidelines, not hard and fast rules.  Your experience, which may include paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work, helps build the competencies and knowledge that translates to our openings.  Diversity of experience and skills combined with passion is a key to innovation and a culture of excellence.  Therefore, we encourage people from all backgrounds to apply to our positions.

Please let us know if you require accommodations during the application or interview process by reaching us at hrhelp@nwf.org or 703-438-6244.

If selected for this position, a background check will be conducted.




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