Policy Associate

Center for Rural Affairs Published: July 14, 2023
Eastern Rural Nebraska and Western or Southern Rural Minnesota, NE
Skill Level
Mid Level
Job Type
Energy / Outreach / Advocacy / Policy
(Number of Job Posting Views: 3)

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The Center for Rural Affairs is seeking two Policy Associates; one based in Eastern Rural Nebraska and one in Western or Southern rural Minnesota who will work to identify policy gaps, conduct research on potential solutions, and work to promote policy priorities related to clean energy issues.

The ideal candidate will be passionate about clean energy and economic development. They will be adept at community outreach and comfortable building relationships. They will engage with constituents and other stakeholders to understand challenges and develop solutions.

Location: Eastern Rural Nebraska and Western or Southern Rural Minnesota

Who We Are

The Center for Rural Affairs is a dynamic, energetic non-profit organization working to build a better rural future for all. We’ve done this work for more than 49 years and we do it from rural places with a flexible work environment. Our work creates opportunities for beginning farmers, new business owners, and first-time advocates. The Center’s work is rooted in principles of diversity and inclusion. We believe that a diversity of people and ideas strengthens our work, our workplace, and our communities. We celebrate this diversity and we are committed to advancing practices that create an equitable and inclusive workplace. We take equal opportunity seriously and we welcome and support all applicants and team members.  Additional information can be found at www.cfra.org. Check to see if our Mission and Values match yours, and read about our work demonstrating how awesome the Center is!

What You’ll Do

The Policy Associate reports to the Policy Manager and will work to identify policy gaps, build relationships, and solve challenges through collaboration. The Policy Associate is responsible for the following:

  • You will identify policy gaps and potential solutions.
  • You will track clean energy development in your target region.
  • You will engage with constituents and other stakeholders to gather input and feedback.
  • You will engage with elected officials and their staff to educate and promote policy priorities.
  • You will author reports, fact sheets, blogs, opinion pieces, and action alerts.
  • You will build and maintain relationships with partner organizations and other key stakeholders.
  • You will contribute to work plan development and grant proposals to support policy work.
  • You will draft organizing appeals to grassroots constituents including an initial contact email, action alert, or call script.

Who You Are & Keys to Success (the must-haves)

To be successful in this job, you will excel in five areas:

  • Relationship-building: You develop and maintain strong, collaborative working relationships with team members in the program, across the organization, and with a diverse group of stakeholders. You know how to build alliances with marginalized communities, such as people of color, people with disabilities, low-income families, military veterans, and immigrants, and find points of collaboration even when there are competing interests.
  • Drive to achieve results: You have a track record of accomplishing ambitious goals and getting results even when there are obstacles. You set a high bar and meet it because you think three (or 30) steps ahead to anticipate hurdles and come up with pragmatic solutions. You plan backward and involve stakeholders appropriately.
  • Inclusive leadership and management: You approach leadership with a collaborative mindset-mindset of “power with” rather than “power over” and regularly include others in decision-making. You seek out those who have the experience to guide, advise, and plan how you approach the work.
  • Setting and managing priorities: You have experience managing multiple projects and keeping tasks from slipping through the cracks. You use resources wisely and can provide clear direction to staff, partners, consultants, and volunteers to leverage time and talent for impact.
  • Commitment to racial equity and social justice: You recognize the role of race, income, age, immigration status, and other identities in addressing disparities, and you consistently amplify community voices to advocate for more equitable policy solutions. You recognize how your own identities show up in the work, and welcome, reflect on and act on feedback with an eye toward continuous learning about race, ability, and other lines of difference.

If you were here right now, you would be:

  • Meeting regularly with the Policy Manager to develop strategies to meet program priorities and work plan goals.
  • Using your advocacy skills to influence key policy-making decisions.
  • Providing clear communications to unique audiences through reports, white papers, and opinion pieces that you researched and authored.
  • Building relationships with key stakeholders, partners, and grassroots constituents.
  • Meeting with and educating elected officials and their staff.

You have experience with the following:

  • Keeping up-to-date on developments and diving into the details.
  • Researching, uncovering resources, and getting answers that impact issues.
  • Writing opinion pieces, white papers, and/or reports.
  • Educating, advocating, and advancing ideas or issues.

What Else You Should Know

This is a full-time non-exempt position based in an existing, newly established, or home office in Eastern Rural Nebraska or Western or Southern Rural Minnesota. This position will require occasional travel by car throughout the state of Nebraska or Minnesota to meet with communities and individuals and include both overnight and out-of-state travel on occasion. This position has a salary range of $46,000-$55,000 with top-notch benefits that have a cash value of $10,000 to $29,500, depending on family status and tenure with the Center.  Benefits such as: 97% employer-paid family health insurance that includes a contribution to a Health Savings Account, retirement options, a fantastic Employee Assistance Program, 12 paid holidays plus paid time off between Christmas Eve and New Year’s Day, Friday Summer Hours, and vacation and sick pay.

How to Apply

If you would like to work for an organization that has a national reputation as one of the top organizations in the country working to make rural communities more vibrant, apply by sending your resume, cover letter, and three professional references. (please indicate which position location in the first field). In the cover letter, please include how your personal and/or professional experiences have positioned you for success in this role and any Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion or Racial Equity-related work, skills, or expertise you want us to know about. Let us know how you heard about this position and why you want to work for the Center.

The Center for Rural Affairs is an Equal Opportunity Employer and participates in E-Verify, is committed to the full inclusion of all individuals, and takes steps to ensure that individuals with disabilities are provided reasonable accommodations.

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

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