Policy and Alliance Director

Policy and Alliance Director

Californians for Justice Website

Organization Overview

Californians for Justice is a statewide grassroots organization working for racial justice by building the power of youth, communities of color, immigrants, low-income families, and  LGBQ and T/GNC communities. Led by students, we organize to advance educational justice and improve our social, economic, and political conditions.

CFJ is a unique and exciting organization. We are the only grassroots organization in California that organizes youth to have a voice in both local and statewide education policy. Our campaign and policy reform goals at the local and statewide levels include adequate and equitable school funding, increased access and success in K-12 and higher education, and ending the “school-to-prison pipeline.” Our recent victories include winning almost $30 million to improve school climate and engagement in California in 2018, a requirement for districts to include student input in school budgeting through our Student Voice Campaign in 2014, and the passage of the historic Local Control Funding Formula in 2013. CFJ currently has four regional offices in Fresno, Long Beach, Oakland and San Jose, 25 full-time equivalent staff and a budget of $2.5 million. CFJ is a great place to work. We value outcomes, process, and relationships, and actively work to make sure our staff have the skills and support to do their jobs well.

Position Overview

The Policy Director manages CFJ’s state policy team and leads the organization’s policy and budget advocacy strategy and efforts. The Policy Director will 1) build and strengthen statewide alliances and partnerships 2) weave the state policy strategy with regional goals and strategies and 3) advance CFJ’s mission and vision through state legislation and budget

The Policy Director reports to the Senior Strategy Director and is part of the CFJ statewide team. The position is full-time and exempt. In all duties and responsibilities, this position exercises discretion and independent judgment.

Essential Responsibilities

State policy and budget advocacy

CFJ’s campaign and policy goals at the local and statewide levels include: our school transformation work, expanding youth-led democracy, and amplifying a narrative for Black liberation in alignment with our Unified Campaign. Our policy and legislation strategies focus on advancing racial justice and educational equity.

  • Support the implementation of our previous wins at the state level, including Community Schools, Relationship Centered Schools, Community Engagement Initiatives, LCFF and LCAP implementation, and more
  • In consultation with Policy Team, Statewide Team and with input from organizers create and execute a policy and budget advocacy strategy that is informed by the experiences of CFJ members and the California public education landscape
  • Travel regularly to Sacramento to strengthen legislative and alliance partnerships and opportunities, and to other Californians for Justice regions to support members of the Policy Team
  • Work with Strategy Directors, Organizing Directors, Communications Director, and Co-Executive Directors to develop & implement a unified statewide campaign strategy that advances our local campaigns and organizing
  • Rigorously and regularly evaluate our statewide policy work within the statewide education landscape
  • Conduct regular policy research to update staff on policies and legislation that align to our work, while also identifying opportunities to author our own legislation
  • Stay abreast of the California and national education issues and landscape
  • Understand the intersection of research and policy and can provide strategic support to connecting researchers and our policy advocacy efforts

State Partnerships and Alliances

  • Act as CFJ’s point person on statewide alliances and with key state decision-makers
  • Lead state-level advocacy on CFJ’s policy priorities by supporting delegation visits, meeting with policymakers, and ensuring that CFJ students and staff are prepared to lead these meetings
  • Build and maintain relationships with state-level grassroots, policy, and advocacy groups and engage them in our campaigns as appropriate
  • Work with CFJ’s Communications team to develop effective media strategies and messaging to advance state policy goals
  • Work with staff to create youth/community-friendly trainings on policy and budget issues

Supervision and organizational leadership

  • Oversee and manage the CFJ Policy team
  • Supervise and support the development and leadership of Policy team members
  • Serve as an active member of the CFJ Statewide Team to provide overall organizational leadership
  • Participate in all grassroots fundraising campaigns and maintain a portfolio of individual and organizational prospects for solicitation
  • Engage in foundation fundraising, including proposal development, providing report information, general stewardship, and leading site visits
  • Participate in cross-department committees and teams
  • Provide support for and participate in organization-wide and regional campaigns and events including and not limited to organization fundraising efforts and electorate campaigns to advance our strategic direction.
  • Other Responsibilities

Other duties as assigned

Essential Qualifications

  • Minimum of 3 years of advocacy or public policy experience
  • Minimum of 2 years in a senior-level staff position and proven experience with supervision and leading a team
  • Experience in 2 or more of the following areas: campaign strategy development, policy development, alliance building, strategic communications
  • Strong commitment to social justice, racial justice, and youth empowerment
  • Ability to work effectively with public officials and a variety of stakeholders from grassroots groups, advocates, researchers, and litigators
  • Excellent oral and written communication, problem-solving, and detail-oriented
  • Understanding of California’s education policy and landscape
  • Advanced skills in the facilitation of small and large group meetings
  • Strong computer skills with expertise in Microsoft Office; familiarity with Apple Computers and G-Suite is a plus

Preferred Qualifications

  • 3 years of staff management and supervision experience
  • Background in policy analysis and research
  • Background in youth, community, or labor organizing is strongly preferred

Work Environment

This is a hybrid position and will be based out of Sacramento or Oakland, and will work virtually with frequent travel to the state capitol during the legislative cycle and as needed. This position will also occasionally work out of the Oakland office.

Physical Demands

  • Able to work on a computer, including sitting at a desk, for extended periods of time.
  • Able to read a computer screen. Manual dexterity to operate a keyboard.
  • Able to speak clearly on the phone and in person and be understood by others.
  • Able to occasionally lift objects weighing up to 10 pounds.


$74,599 – $93,039, depending on experience and qualifications, as determined by CFJ’s salary scale. CFJ provides a generous benefits package, including fully paid health insurance (medical, dental, and vision) for employees working at least half-time and their dependents. We also offer substantial vacation days and time off.

How to Apply:

Send your resume, a cover letter demonstrating your interest and qualifications, and at least three references to jobs@caljustice.org with the subject line “Policy Director – Your Name.” CFJ is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer. People of color, women, lesbian/gay/bisexual/transgender/gender nonconforming, and people with disabilities are encouraged to apply.

To apply for this job please visit caljustice.org.

Back to Top