Reporting to the Executive Director of Audubon Arizona, the Policy Manager is responsible for leading the policy efforts and overall governmental affairs functions for the state office with a major focus on water issues. As part of the senior leadership team, s/he will collaborate with the Executive Director and senior conservation policy leads for Western Water and DC Policy to develop a policy agenda for both state and federal issues, and follow that agenda with focus, as well as produce timely work products throughout the year. Additionally, the Policy Manager effectively oversees specific projects pertaining to policy objectives for Arizona and interacts with the Science and Policy Committee on the State Board. S/he will work in partnership with other like-minded organizations in pursuit of Audubon’s objectives; and s/he will also advocate on behalf of Audubon to local, State, and federal government officials, including agency staff and appointed and elected officials.
The Policy Manager may be based out of the Audubon Arizona Office in Phoenix or from an agreeable remote location.
- Under the guidance of the Executive Director, develop and coordinate annual Policy Priorities for Audubon at both state and federal level by working closely with state staff and like-minded organizations.
- Serve as Audubon's project lead for participation in coalitions working on water policy priorities, with a focus on Colorado River issues.
- Provide periodic updates to state and national board and staff, identifying important issues that need to be addressed across the range of priority conservation programs.
- Provide real time content in support of Audubon policy objectives for web and social media platforms; be active in the communication and dissemination of Audubon objectives and successes in the policy arena.
- Develop productive relationships with key state-elected and agency officials/leaders, as well as the Arizona Congressional delegation and federal agencies critical to Audubon goals.
- Along with internal and external partners, participate and coordinate Colorado River efforts targeted toward the protection of riparian habitats throughout the Southwest.
- Research and guide framing of Arizona and related public policy positions, including development of briefing papers and talking points, and work to advance those positions externally.
- Provide policy-related resources, guidance and communications to the Network, including Arizona's eight Audubon chapters.
- Work closely and effectively with consultants that Audubon retains for policy work; act as a liaison on projects and report updates to the Executive Director following meetings.
- Collaborate with the Audubon Development Team to identify, cultivate and make requests to donors and foundations. Be an active partner in helping to brainstorm engagement strategies for current and new members interested in the state’s advocacy work.
- Develop effective relationships with media outlets who can feature Audubon, in close partnership with communications staff, and identify opportunities for strategic media features.
Qualifications and Experience
- Bachelor’s degree in public policy, political science, water policy, natural resources or related field required; Master’s degree preferred.
- 3-5 years professional experience as a public policy advocate, to include demonstrated success on the federal, state and/or local level.
- Outstanding writing, editing and presentation skills required, as well as superior communication and interpersonal skills.
- Ability to work independently and in a team-based environment; experience leading teams or supervising others a strong plus.
- Experience working within or managing diverse stakeholder coalitions.
- Keen understanding of western water policy and water management issues in the West, particularly Arizona, and experience applying this knowledge to policy advocacy and implementation strongly preferred.
- Experience evaluating and communicating the impacts of public policies on birds and wildlife habitat.
- Must be comfortable working with diverse public audiences, and possess a keen interest in engaging new constituents.
- A self-starter, one with strong organizational and time/project management skills.
- External relations experience with media a plus.
- Fundraising or donor cultivation a plus.
- Proficiency with Microsoft Office applications, as well as web-based and social media tools.
- Experience working with Salesforce a plus.
- A flexible approach to work, and ability to occasionally travel for work when needed. A valid driver’s license is necessary.
- Demonstrated interest in conservation and the mission of the National Audubon Society.