Job Description: Movement Politics Director

Job Description: Movement Politics Director

Objective: Citizen Action of Wisconsin seeks a dynamic and socially committed person to join our management team and lead an innovative electoral and multi-issue membership organizing program. This is a full-time (40-50 hrs/week) salaried permanent position located in Wisconsin. Some evenings and weekends are required, as well as semi-frequent in-state travel and occasional out-of-state travel. Applicants must have solid electoral campaign experience. Women, Bi-racial/People of Color, Members of the LGBTQ+ community, and Formerly Incarcerated Individuals are strongly encouraged to apply.

Description of Work: This position reports to the Deputy Director, and works closely with the rest of Citizen Action’s management team and grassroots organizers.  The successful applicant will lead Citizen Action’s cutting-edge  Movement Politics program which fully integrates candidate recruitment and training, member-driven and independent electoral programs, and Citizen Action’s permanent issue campaigns.

The Movement Politics Director will work in collaboration with the Deputy Director and other managers to lead a BIPOC-centric candidate recruitment and training program to develop true progressive champions who will co-govern with Citizen Action to pursue bold structural reform at the local, state, and national level.

As this Program is unique to Citizen Action of Wisconsin, new Directors are expected to learn new skills on the job, and are provided with training and on boarding that may take up to 12 months, while also “jumping in” to the work to gain lived experience. After 6 months to a year, the successful Citizen Action of Wisconsin Movement Politics Director will be highly skilled in Non-profit compliance as it relates to elections, lobbying, and reporting, development and implementation of short and long term issue and electoral campaigns; and at least at an intermediate level in regards to all technology and tools they have at their disposal; as well as crafting organizing messaging and maintaining our social media presence as it relates to Movement Politics.

More information about Citizen Action of Wisconsin, our Platform, our Movement Politic Academy, and our Organizing Cooperatives.

Organizational Background:

Founded in 1983 as a community/labor coalition, Citizen Action of Wisconsin was an early anchor affiliate of Citizen Action/USAction. From its inception, Citizen Action has always prioritized on-the-ground organizing capacity that builds a strong membership organization from one-on-one personal interactions. The organization has also prioritized year-round civic engagement on progressive issues and mobilizing electorally in support of candidates who back our agenda.

Most recently, Citizen Action played a leading role in organizing the network merger that created People’s Action, and has a leading role in the strategy and governance of this fast-growing organizing network. We are also affiliated with Power Switch Action (formerly the Partnership for Working Families).

Citizen Action is a social justice group organizing a deep and multiracial membership base across the entire spectrum of urban, rural, and suburban Wisconsin. Citizen Action’s theory of building influence is to work on big issues that can be the basis for creating a community of interest across the state.

Citizen Action of Wisconsin is dedicated to economic, racial, and environmental justice, and achieving a Wisconsin and an America where every human being has an equal opportunity to live a meaningful and fulfilling life. We believe that organizing is the only pathway to unlocking the true potential of democracy to fundamentally transform our society in the human interest and overcome structural racism, sexism, xenophobia, corporate domination, and other forms of oppression.

Citizen Action employs an integrated strategy of grassroots organizing, educational programming, earned media, voter engagement, and political lobbying to advance progressive solutions and shape the public and political debate around health care, economic development, climate equity and racial justice.

Citizen Action is spearheading the development of innovative new grassroots organizing and electoral techniques and seeks candidates who are interested in embracing new dynamic approaches.

Primary Responsibilities:

  • Work with Citizen Action Deputy Director and management team to lead year-round candidate recruitment and training work, including leading the Citizen Action Movement Politics Academy with our national network, People’s Action, to train potential candidates, candidates, and activists.
  • Work in close collaboration with Organizing and other Program Directors/members of management team to design and provide Movement Politics related training to organizing staff, members, and activists, as well as work alongside of Citizen Action of Wisconsin’s Organizing Director to develop and implement member-based volunteer electoral programs that support our endorsed candidates, and integrate Movement Politics work into the day-to-day work plans of organizing staff.
  • Work in close collaboration with Executive Director and Board(s) of Directors to revise and update Citizen Action of Wisconsin’s 8 Year Issue Platform as needed as well as foster member input prior to gaining approval from the Board(s) of Directors.
  • Lead Citizen Action’s candidate endorsement process, working with the Citizen Action management team and Board of Directors.
  • Lead Citizen Action’s legislative lobbying activity in coordination with the management team.
  • Represent Citizen Action of Wisconsin at progressive partner electoral tables (People’s Action, America Votes, etc.), and civic engagement tables and coalitions in a manner geared towards seeking opportunities for program design and funding, in addition to coordination and partner stewardship.
  • Embrace Citizen Action’s Management Culture and Accountability Structure and manage 1-5 organizing staff and/or field organizers and staff in the implementation of issue, legislative, and electoral campaigns.
  • Work to form productive working and co-governing relationships with candidates, sitting Elected Officials and their staff, maintain a contact list, and at times, facilitate elected officials’ participation in Citizen Action of Wisconsin meetings and events, as well as coordinate program and logistics for public events, mobilizations, and other grassroots and civic engagement activities.
  • Participate in small and large dollar fundraising in collaboration with Citizen Action staff, and in collaboration with management, assist with large donor relations, funding proposals, and reporting.
  • Implement design and implementation of written strategic campaign plans (short and long term), as well as conduct interim and post-program reporting on progress to goals and program evaluation.
  • Participate in a meaningful way as a part of the Management and Strategy team to contribute to the success of the organization as a whole.


Desired Experience:

  • Leading successful election (candidate and/or Independent Expenditure) campaigns.
  • Community, labor, political or faith-based organizing.
  • Commitment to working on racial justice issues, working with communities of color, and with a multicultural base of individuals.
  • Experience with large and/or small-dollar fundraising.
  • Experience working with a broad array of organizations in a coalition on issues of social and economic justice.
  • Experience managing program and field staff to achieve goals
  • Experience with long term and short term strategic campaign planning
  • Ability to play a leadership role in developing and implementing paid phone and field canvass operations is a plus.


Required Qualifications:

  • Demonstrated commitment to true structural reform at every level of government needed to create a just and sustainable multiracial democracy.  This means not only supporting but working effectively to realize in the world the progressive values of economic, gender, racial, environmental justice, and equity for all.
  • Either paid or volunteer experience on at least one candidate campaign, and or experience running for office.
  • A minimum 1 year of cumulative experience in managing volunteers and/or staff
  • Experience training either staff or volunteers to implement tactical or leadership aspects of political campaigns.
  • Experience with designing and implementing strategic legislative and electoral issue campaigns.
  • Experience working with a broad array of organizations in a coalition on issues of social and economic justice.
  • Ability to understand public policy issues and translate them into organizing issues that motivate average people to act.
  • Strong creative strategic thinking skills and willingness to innovate in fast-moving issue campaigns and meet deadlines.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills, including the ability to produce effective flyers, email alerts, coalition reports, blogs, effective social media posts,  as well as coherent, strategic, and trackable written campaign plans, and use email and google suite.
  • Excellent listening, interpersonal and problem-solving skills, strong personal time management skills, organization skills, the ability to work under pressure, and the ability to resolve conflicts while maintaining effective relationships. We are looking for team players who work effectively to create the internal and external solidarity needed to win transformational reforms.
  • Intermediate computer skills including email, composing documents, designing flyers, working with databases, and social networking (Familiarity with EveryAction/VAN, GoogleDocs, Google Analytics, as well as managing Facebook pages and/or Twitter accounts).
  • Ability to undertake periodic travel in Wisconsin and occasionally out-of-state.


Salary and Benefits:  This is a full-time position that includes health care, dental and employer-matched 401K, life insurance, disability insurance, cell phone allowance, and other benefits. Some weekend and evening hours are required. Salary Range for Citizen Action of Wisconsin Director positions is $55-$80k. Salary is based on qualifications and experience, and is negotiable upon offer of employment.

Application Process:  E-mail cover letter and resume to Matt Brusky (Deputy Director) at [email protected]. The Hiring team will review applications as they come in. The Interview process will begin as soon as we feel we have a diverse and qualified applicant pool. If you are chosen to participate in the in-person interview process, a Citizen Action Hiring Team member will reach out to you via email to schedule a pre-interview via phone, and a first interview via Zoom. Please, no calls or in-person inquiries, as we want to ensure a fair hiring process.      

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