Senior Associate - Combating LGBTI Violence
Human Rights First - Washington, DC

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Human Rights First is an independent advocacy organization that challenges America to live up to its ideals by creating the political environment and policy solutions necessary to secure consistent respect for human rights. To ensure that lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) persons can access and enjoy fundamental human rights protections, Human Rights First works to bolster the responses of governments to hate crime violence motivated by sexual orientation or gender identity bias, to challenge laws that criminalize homosexuality, and to improve access for LGBTI refugees to asylum, protection, resettlement, and assistance.

Human Rights First seeks an experienced advocate to lead our initiative to combat violence against LGBTI people abroad. The Senior Associate is responsible for devising, planning, coordinating, and executing strategies to achieve project goals and objectives; managing the work of a team of people from across the organization to implement those strategies; fostering relationships with the U.S. government, human rights advocates, nongovernmental organizations, LGBTI advocates, and potentially the business community; conducting advocacy; being the “public face” of the issue for Human Rights First; developing recommendations, reports, website content, press materials, and other documents; engaging in research; developing specific projects; and assisting in efforts to raise funds to support the program.

  • Identify policy objectives and devise and execute strategies to achieve organizational goals, including how to influence the political dynamics and public debate and overcome obstacles to achievement of objectives.
  • Engage in both written and oral advocacy directed at those in the U.S. government responsible for the decisions necessary to achieve our objectives, including but not limited to developing and implementing agency policies, priorities and practices.
  • Identify, develop, and maintain solid working relationships with key policy and decision makers in both the executive and legislative branches.
  • Cultivate and manage partnerships with key advocacy partners and allies, working consistently and closely with NGO partners and coalitions to further shared goals.
  • Draft advocacy documents designed to influence target audiences – in coordination with the communications team – including, but not limited to, reports containing original research, policy blueprints with relevant, specific, and implementable recommendations, briefing papers, letters, advocacy alerts, blogs, fact sheets, talking points, press materials, website content, public education materials, and background analysis documents.
  • Identify and organize advocacy opportunities including congressional hearings and briefings, press events, speaking opportunities, and other events. Secure opportunities for Human Rights First to testify at congressional hearings.
  • Develop and maintain relations with media representatives, working with other team members and the communications team, and engage in targeted media outreach.
  • Communicate with colleagues about policy opportunities and developments for all relevant project and organizational objectives.
  • Support fundraising efforts by assisting in grant proposal and report writing and editing and, in coordination with Development department, through occasional outreach to key donors and foundations.
Team Leadership and Program Development and Direction
  • Lead advocacy on combating violence against LGBT persons globally. Consistent with Human Rights First’s strategic plan, this will be pragmatic, results-oriented advocacy that is politically astute, grounded in facts, and driven by sophisticated legal and policy analysis.
  • Establish strategies and priorities and lead and direct activities, staffing, and operations for the Combating LGBT Violence objective.
  • Effectively manage the work of a team of 3-6 skilled professionals working part-time on this objective in the following areas: policy analysis, communications, political and government advocacy, coalition management, issue expertise, and administrative support. These individuals also report to their respective department supervisor, receiving performance input from the team leader for their performance appraisals.
  • Cultivate and manage strategic relationships, coalitions, and both internal and external partnerships, including the LGBT community and other constituencies in the United States to enhance the scope and effectiveness of efforts on the objective.
  • Develop project management plan for the objective, and work plans for the team members, ensuring that project activities are result-oriented, advance Human Rights First’s objectives and its profile on this work in the media, among policymakers and with interested constituencies.
Management, Program Administration, and Organization
  • Manage the team by setting clear expectations and work standards; provide needed information, resources, and tools; and actively work with the team to review and revise strategies, research, writing, and team action plans.
  • Manage project timelines, keeping work on track and key parties informed of progress while providing status reports of team activities against strategy.
  • Serve as a spokesperson for the Combating LGBTI Violence objective and ensure communication messaging is reaching the applicable parties.
  • Develop and manage the budget for the Combating LGBTI Violence objective, providing necessary feedback to funders and the executive team. Includes tracking progress made against proposed program activities and objectives, and spending of restricted funding.
  • Ensure that all members of the team are clear on individual responsibilities and how their roles relate to other members of the team.
  • Proactively resolve personnel issues on the team to ensure that individuals are conducting work with the greater team in consideration.
  • Ensure that staff are given challenging but realistic workloads and coordinate with other team leaders and supervisors of team members to ensure effective prioritization and balance in team member’s workloads.

EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS: Advanced degree in international development, political science, business, economics, law or other discipline related to human rights.

ANNUAL SALARY : Competitive with comprehensive benefits package

START DATE: Immediately

SUBMISSION DEADLINE: July 26, 2013 . Applications will be considered on a rolling basis; applicants are encouraged to apply early.


Please complete the online application found at our website under ABOUT US / JOB OPPORTUNITIES links.

You will be requested to provide:
  • Resume (upload)
  • Cover letter (secondary upload*)
  • Writing sample (secondary upload*)
  • Names and contact details for three (3) references (enter online)
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Applicants will receive a confirmation email with their username and password once they’ve created a profile. Please keep this information to access your application and make changes at any time.

Only selected applicants will be contacted for phone or in-person interviews. NO PHONE CALLS, PLEASE.

Human Rights First is a non-profit, nonpartisan international human rights organization based in New York and Washington DC. We build respect for human rights and the rule of law to help ensure the dignity to which everyone is entitled and to stem intolerance, tyranny, and violence.

Human Rights First is committed to recruiting, retaining, developing, and promoting staff across all programs and departments from a diversity of backgrounds, including members of racial and ethnic minorities, LGBTI people, people with disabilities, people of all socioeconomic backgrounds, people of all nationalities, and veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces. We believe that a diverse staff and an inclusive work environment that welcomes a range of perspectives help make our advocacy work stronger and more effective.

  • A minimum of 3 -5 years of experience in government, or experience engaging in legislative and/or policy advocacy with the U.S. government.
  • Strong knowledge of U.S. and international law and policy related to human rights, especially to LGBTI rights and the functioning of U.S. government and international institutions.
  • Demonstrated experience defining objectives, crafting advocacy strategies, and executing campaigns. Human rights advocacy preferred.
  • Strategic thinker with sound policy judgment and political skills.
  • Demonstrated understanding of relationship between communications and advocacy strategies.
  • Excellent presentation skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to translate highly technical material for a variety of audiences, particularly policymakers.
  • Superior project management skills, including personnel management, capacity to respond rapidly with research and analysis to emerging developments, to finish assignments under pressure, and to work collegially with others.
  • Ability to work well with teams as a leader and a member.
  • Ability to evaluate projects, including creating metrics to measure progress.
  • Strong interpersonal skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to foster relationships with the U.S. government, human rights advocates, and nongovernmental organizations.
  • An understanding of the human rights issues and political dynamics in at least one region of the world. Overseas experience desired. Willingness to travel internationally.
  • Ability to work comfortably in a variety of settings, including legal, academic, and governmental.
  • Savvy with social media tools.
  • Advanced-level proficiency and previous experience in a variety of computer software applications (MS Office – especially Internet Explorer, MS Word XP, Excel, PowerPoint).
  • Curiosity and sense of humor strongly desired.