Director of Governmental and Political Relations

Western Native Voice Published: February 17, 2023
Billings, Montana
Skill Level
Senior Level
Job Type
CEO/ Senior Mgmt/ Exec Director / Policy

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Western Native Voice Inc. (WNV) is a non-profit organization under Section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code, formed in July  2022. We are committed to inspiring Native leadership, so our communities flourish. We provide the information and tools necessary to empower citizens to have a voice and an impact on the decisions affecting their lives. 

We strive to protect the rights of Native American tribes and individuals through leadership development, education, advocacy, and civic engagement to promote social, racial, gender, economic, and environmental justice to preserve our land, culture, and way of life for future generations.  All WNV employees are expected to adhere to this mission.

We are looking for energetic, motivated individuals to join our team!

Job Summary

The Director of Governmental and Political Relations is responsible for overall government affairs, lobbying, and public policy activities of the organization. This includes directing the effort to plan, develop and carry out the organization’s policy, legislative, and lobbying programs at the federal, state, and local levels, including overseeing field and other staff as necessary. 

Director of Governmental and Political Relations is a full-time salaried exempt position.  The Director of Governmental and Political Relations plays a leadership role in developing collective, collaborative, coherent strategies to achieve the organization’s goals. The Director of Governmental and Political Relations is a Western Native Voice’s Staff Management Team member, assisting the Executive Director in strategizing, problem-solving, and allocating resources to accomplish the goals the Board of Directors set. The Executive Director supervises the Director of Governmental and Political Relations.

While each employee at Western Native Voice has individual work assignments, the entire staff works together as a team to accomplish the goals set in the strategic plan.  The Director of Governmental and Political Relations is key to the success of Western Native Voice because they represent the organization’s interests in matters involving federal, state, and local governments for WNV.  

Staff Role Within the Organization:

The Board of Directors hires the Executive Director and oversees the organization, including approving budgets and annual operation plans. The staff are under the overall direction of the Executive Director, who assigns the tasks necessary to carry out organizational goals, programs, and work plans.

Necessary Qualifications

The Director of Governmental and Political Relations must have the following: 

  • Leadership and supervisory skills and being able to work without direct supervision.
  •  A desire to work in a highly collaborative team environment.
  •  They must be able to think creatively, strategically, and practically. 
  • They must be organized, able to work on many varied issues and tasks at one time, and able to delegate responsibilities. 
  • Ability to analyze and articulate complex regulatory policy issues. 
  • Lobbying experience preferred.
  • Quality management experience, including preparation of budgets and supervision of staff.
  • Demonstrated successfully integrating policy advocacy and lobbying with direct voter engagement and communications. 
  • Experience working with membership organizations and desire to engage members.
  • Experience managing high-level coalition relationships and strategic partnerships.
  • Deep attention to detail and excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Proven leadership skills and ability to manage collaborative teams working on complex, time-sensitive, and detail-oriented projects. 
  • Experience contributing to healthy teams that allow each team member to contribute to their fullest and thrive.
  • Commitment to WNV’s mission and goals. 
  • Bachelor’s degree in Political Science or related field and/or four years of effective nonprofit or governmental service at the Tribal, Federal, and/or State level, legislative advocacy, and/or political campaigns.
  • Required to live in Montana at a location agreeable to the employee and the Executive Director.
  • Able to live in Helena, MT, for the legislative session (January- April). 

Specific Duties/ Responsibilities

The Director of Governmental and Political Relations is responsible for the following:

  • Oversees all aspects of WNV’s state and federal lobbying efforts as well as federal and state policy work.
  • Work with senior leadership to develop WNV’s near and long-term strategies to use governmental levers to achieve policy goals.
  • Build and leverage strong strategic relationships at the federal and state levels, and direct team members in doing the same; represent WNV with policy-makers and their staff, as well as the staff and leadership of government agencies and departments.
  • Develop and implement strategies to advance the WNV policy agenda at the federal and state level and defend against adverse legislation and executive actions
  • Continually monitor and assess policy and political landscape
  • Identify opportunities to push priority legislation at the state level, with an understanding that state trends are national trends. 
  • Design and manage all aspects of the overall legislative programs and activities of WNV, including managing budgets, evaluating effectiveness, and setting overall goals with plans, targets, and timelines. 
  • Assist in representing WNV at legislative and policy tables and coalitions
  • Manage, supervise, develop and evaluate staff
  • Work cross-departmentally to develop campaigns that lead to policy outcomes that improve the lives of Native Americans across Montana and elsewhere. 
  • Closely coordinate with the team on elected political outreach and endorsement conversations.
  • Coordinate with the organizing, campaigns, and political teams to support effective legislative advocacy campaigns.
  • Work with the Executive Director and/or Deputy Executive Director to showcase WNV’s governmental strategies with donors and provide material for donor proposals and reports.
  • Work with the communications team to increase visibility for WNV’s governmental relations work and priorities, including talking to the press as needed and establishing a legislative communications plan to ensure unified messaging efforts.
  • Assist in representing WNV in high-level speaking engagements and prepare others to do so as well.
  • Occasional travel to work with partner organizations, allies, and coalitions. 

The Director of Governmental and Political Relations may be assigned to one or more staff teams and may be designated the leader of one or more staff teams. Duties include:

  • Participating in staff team meetings and collaborating with other staff to develop and implement plans; 
  • if designated the team leader, convening meetings and ensuring that an implementation plan is developed and then following up with fellow staff members to ensure that the assigned tasks are completed; 
  • as a team leader, keeping the Executive Director informed of progress, problems and potential solutions, and other issues involving membership and personnel; and 
  • as a team leader, assisting the Executive Director with strategizing and managing the smooth functioning and success of Western Native Voice.

Like all other staff, the Director of Governmental and Political Relations is responsible for performing the administrative tasks necessary to accomplish the job. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • filling out monthly time sheets and other office paperwork, as appropriate (e.g., requests for leave, sick leave, reimbursements);
  • writing newsletters and media articles (on subjects appropriate to the position);
  • helping with mailings;
  • helping with membership recruitment;
  • participating in and assisting with training for staff, member leaders, and other members for their leadership development;
  • attending staff meetings, Board meetings, and other meetings and events as requested; and
  • taking on additional assignments when other staff persons are absent and as requested.

Salary and Benefits

$60,000- $65 ,000 D.O.E

  • Health & Dental Insurance
  • Sick leave (no waiting period)
  • Annual leave (no waiting period)
  • Ceremonial leave (no waiting period)
  • Parental leave (no waiting period)
  • Cell phone stipend up to $75/month
  • Pension eligibility after one year  

To Apply

Please click "Apply" below to email a resume, a writing sample (1 to 3 pages in length), and three professional references. Phone inquiries are encouraged at (406) 869-1938. Applications will remain open until the position is filled.

WNV is an equal opportunity employer. 

When you apply for this position, please say you saw this job on Green Dream Jobs!!