About Appalachian Voices
Appalachian Voices is a nonprofit advocacy organization that works to achieve an Appalachia with healthy, intact ecosystems and advance a just transition to a generative and equitable clean energy economy. We have 35 staff members located across the region in Boone, NC, Charlottesville, VA, Norton, VA, Knoxville, TN, and Durham, NC.
Commitment to Equity
Appalachian Voices is committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion both in our work and in our organizational structure. We seek applicants who share and exhibit these principles. As an equal opportunity employer, we are committed to employment practices that ensure employees and applicants for employment are provided with equal opportunities without regard to race, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, age, religion, physical or mental disability, medical condition, veteran status, marital status, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information or any other factor that is not related to the position.
We understand people gain skills through a variety of professional, personal, educational and volunteer experiences. We encourage candidates to review the primary roles and responsibilities listed. If you believe you have the transferable skills necessary to fulfill the responsibilities of this role, we encourage you to apply.
Appalachian Voices is seeking a Federal Legislative Specialist to join our fast-paced, dynamic team. This is a remote position, with frequent travel to Washington, D.C. Preference will be given to candidates who reside in the Appalachian region near one of our primary locations listed above.
This position will support federal legislative work to advance our goals related to community and economic redevelopment efforts in the Appalachian Coalfields, protections for coal miners with black lung disease, coal mine reclamation, protecting communities from the impacts of methane gas pipelines, and other relevant issues of the region. The Federal Legislative Specialist will build relationships across the political spectrum and policy campaigns with coalition partners, members of Congress, and federal agency officials to advance bills and initiatives through the federal government.
This position will work under the supervision of the Director of Government Affairs and Strategy, and in coordination with field staff to build and implement campaigns that engage impacted communities in the Appalachian coalfield region and support power-building efforts in Southwest Virginia. Foundational to success is a well developed understanding of the federal legislative process and politics, and an understanding of community and economic development within a just transition framework. An individual with experience lobbying elected officials, developing legislative campaigns, working in coalitions, and/or the aptitude to learn quickly, will do well in this role.
With massive federal funding being invested in clean energy and economic transition in fossil-fuel-impacted communities, this is an exciting time to join the Appalachian Voices team. The Federal Legislative Specialist will work with a diverse network of regional partners to deliver strategic and successful campaigns to accelerate sustainable and equitable development in Central Appalachia and protect communities from the harmful impacts of coal mining and methane gas infrastructure. In the face of climate change and hard won environmental victories, the Federal Legislative Specialist joins a team and a movement building alternative systems where ecological integrity, social justice, and democracy drive our goal to build a new economy.
- Directly lobbying and educating members of Congress and federal administration officials and their staff to address priority issues, advance legislation and defeat bills that negatively impact or threaten our organizational goals;
- Working with partners, Congressional offices, and administration officials to develop legislation and proposed executive action on priority issues;
- In coordination with partners and other AV staff, developing grassroots action alerts, press releases, letters to the editor, opinion pieces, and lobbying materials;
- Responding to media inquiries regarding federal legislation and executive actions;
- Tracking federal legislation as it moves through committees and amendment processes;
- Identifying strategic Congressional and administration targets, messaging, and messengers.
- Demonstrate strong knowledge of and interest in the federal legislative process and federal politics;
- Demonstrate the ability to directly communicate a convincing argument to elected officials and their staff regarding the importance of our organizational legislative priorities;
- Understand, or be interested in learning about, federal policies and programs that impact Central Appalachia, such as coal mine reclamation, black lung disease, the Inflation Reduction Act, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, clean energy development and clean energy manufacturing tax credits and grant programs, the Clean Water Act, and the National Environmental Policy Act;
- Demonstrate the ability to work with people of diverse political interests and cultural backgrounds;
- Have excellent written and verbal communications skills;
- Utilize well-honed and flexible campaign management skills, with the ability to steward multiple campaigns simultaneously; and
- Thrive in a highly collaborative setting while being self-motivated and creative.
Compensation & Benefits:
This is a full-time position. Appalachian Voices offers competitive compensation and benefits that include employer-paid health care, vision, and dental policies with options to include family members at a reduced cost; short- and long-term disability plans; generous paid vacation and parental leave; flexible working hours; and an employer-matched retirement plan. Salary is commensurate with experience, however, the expected salary range is between $60,000 - $75,000; candidates seeking the higher end of this range should be able to demonstrate very strong background, experience, or other factors. We are open to feedback from the market and would welcome the opportunity to connect with candidates who may be outside of the compensation band. Appalachian Voices is committed to equity in pay practices. This position is included in a union-represented collective bargaining unit, and specific terms, conditions and benefits of employment may be subject to a future Collective Bargaining Agreement.
Please read and follow these instructions carefully:
Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until this position is filled. For early consideration, apply by April 21, 2023. The interview process will begin in late April, with a target start date in June 2023. Questions about the position are welcomed via email. No calls, please.
Please send a resume and cover letter, no longer than one page, that addresses the questions below to email@example.com the subject line “[YOUR NAME] Application for Federal Legislative Specialist.”
1) What’s your connection to Appalachia and why do you want to work with coal-impacted communities?
2) Share one example of your experience lobbying an elected official (at any level of government) who did not agree with you.