Organizer Director
ACLU - United States

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of San Diego & Imperial Counties
    ~ Job Announcement ~
    Organizing Director

    The ACLU and ACLU Foundation of San Diego & Imperial Counties (ACLU) seek a full-time, sophisticated, dynamic team-player to join its defense of civil rights and civil liberties as Organizing Director. Founded in 1933, the San Diego ACLU is a not-for-profit, nonpartisan organization, which promotes and protects individual civil rights and fundamental freedoms, including First Amendment rights, Equal Protection, Privacy, and Due Process, through education, litigation, policy advocacy, and organizing.

    Located in beautiful San Diego, the ACLU affiliate has twenty-one staff members, twenty-two board members, 9,000 members, and an annual budget of $2.3 million. San Diego County has the second largest number of registered voters in California. San Diego is the eighth largest city in the United States and second largest in California. Imperial County is the poorest county in California.

    The San Diego ACLU works collaboratively with the ACLU affiliates headquartered in Los Angeles and San Francisco, as well as a lobbying office in Sacramento. Together, the three affiliates have more than 110,000 members and 120 staff people in California.

    Position Overview and Functions :

    Reporting to the Associate Director, the Organizing Director leads the organization’s efforts to organize and mobilize ACLU and community members, as well as to empower disadvantaged communities to protect civil liberties. This includes:
    • Supporting communities organizing to build power to defend civil liberties and civil rights.
    • Developing leaders and activists to lead organizing, issue, and initiative campaigns.
    • Directing the organization’s field operations on organizing, issue, and initiative campaigns.
    • Developing and diversifying the ACLU’s activist membership base.
    • Mobilizing ACLU and community activists to pressure public officials to protect civil rights and civil liberties.

    The Organizing Director’s work style will foster teamwork among legal, policy, communications, organizing, and development staff, as well as work effectively with ACLU staff in other offices.

    Other specific duties and responsibilities include:
    • Work collaboratively with other staff and ACLU offices to develop strategic mobilization campaigns related to local, state and national policy objectives.
    • Participate in coalitions, assuming a leadership role on important issue campaigns.
    • Build and nurture effective multi-organizational coalitions and alliances on priority issues and campaigns.
    • Organize education and advocacy events that grow the organization’s strategic relationships, such as “know your rights” presentations, community forums, public hearings, rallies and trainings.
    • Forge and strengthen collaborative efforts with student groups, communities of color, immigrant and refugee communities, the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex communities, and the disability community.
    • Integrate technology as a tool to advance the organization’s program goals.
    • Represent the organization in the media and at public events.
    • Work evenings and weekends and travel when necessary.
    • Other duties as assigned.

    Qualifications :
    • Commitment to civil liberties.
    • B.A. required.
    • At least eight years experience in non-profit or community-based groups, working on legislative, issue-based, or civic engagement campaigns.
    • Excellent writing, speaking and analytic skills; the ability to analyze and articulate complex issues and to communicate them to a variety of audiences.
    • Demonstrated leadership in designing and managing issue or civic engagement campaigns, including organizing and motivating allies, volunteers, and activists and working cooperatively with diverse groups.
    • Experience with online organizing, communication, and activism technology.
    • Ability to manage several projects simultaneously and to adjust to changing demands; excellent attention to detail.
    • A commitment to diversity; a personal approach that values the individual and respects differences of race, ethnicity, age, gender, sexual orientation, religion, ability and socio-economic circumstance.
    • Familiarity with and/or expertise in a broad range of civil liberties issues preferred.
    • Ability to speak Spanish strongly preferred.

    Compensation : Salary is commensurate with experience and qualifications. Excellent benefits.

    To apply : Applicants should submit a resume, cover letter, three professional references describing, in particular, the applicant’s interest in working for the ACLU and his or her qualifications for the position described above. Applicants may send their material electronically to or by mail to the following address.

    Norma Chávez-Peterson, Associate Director
    ACLU of San Diego & Imperial Counties
    PO Box 87131
    San Diego, CA 92138-7131

    The deadline for applications is January 10, 2013, but the position will be kept open until filled.

    Contact with any questions.

    The ACLU is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and encourages applications from women, people of color, persons with disabilities, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender individuals, and veterans.

    The ACLU based in San Diego comprises two separate corporate entities, the American Civil Liberties Union of San Diego and Imperial Counties and the ACLU Foundation of San Diego and Imperial Counties. Both organizations have the same overall mission and share office space and employees. The ACLU has two separate corporate entities in order to do a broad range of work to protect civil liberties. This job posting refers collectively to the two organizations under the name “ACLU.”

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    The philosopher Socrates once said, "I am that gadfly which God has given the state." While the American Civil Liberties Union...