Government Relations Director, Kentucky – Remote

28 Aug, 2022


Government Relations Director, Kentucky – Remote

American Cancer Society
Lexington-Fayette, KY; Louisville, KY
The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) is the nation’s leading cancer advocacy organization. Together with our charitable partner, the American Cancer Society, we work in Congress, state legislatures and local jurisdictions to support evidence-based policy and legislative solutions designed to eliminate cancer as a major health problem.


Position Description

Build the power of ACS CAN in assigned state(s) to implement successful public policy advocacy campaigns. Lead, drive, and execute a comprehensive direct lobbying and government relations leadership program for assigned state(s). This includes actively serving as an ambassador for the Society and ACS CAN to the state legislature(s), governor(s), state agencies, congressional offices, and donors, as well as representing the organization on coalitions. Lead the planning and implementation of issue campaigns in assigned state(s) to achieve progress towards policy and appropriations successes, working with grassroots staff to execute the assigned state(s)’s advocacy program, as well as with contract lobbyists, where applicable. Lead and drive work to achieve the assigned state(s)’s ACS CAN fundraising goal. Embrace diversity, equity, and inclusion in every aspect of the role. Model the organization’s values and cultural beliefs. Comply with all relevant lobbying protocol, including lobbyist registration and reporting, adhering to assigned state(s)’s legal requirements, and all assigned administrative duties.
This is a remote position, with an ideal base location in Louisville, Lexington or Frankfort, KY.  The position is responsible for Kentucky and West Virginia.
Mission/Issues Campaigns:
  • Drive mission policy and appropriations wins in assigned state(s). Actively serve as an ambassador for the Society and ACS CAN to the state legislature(s), governor(s), state agencies, and congressional offices, while also educating the public and appropriately demonstrating the values and reputation of the enterprise and its brand.
  • Establish clear, focused legislative and regulatory priorities based on the best mission advancement opportunities in assigned state(s), developing legislative agendas and supporting materials that include thorough documentation, while ensuring consistency with ACS CAN policy positions and messaging.
  • Lead and drive local or statewide issue campaigns in assigned state(s), including ballot initiatives or referenda where applicable.
  • Develop and maintain positive relationships with local, state, and federal elected officials and staff.
  • Build relationships and closely collaborate in assigned state(s) with relevant executive branch personnel, especially in health and other agencies engaged in health equity, tobacco prevention and cessation, access to care, cancer screenings, drug formularies, etc.
  • Monitor and analyze all relevant pieces of legislation and provide or facilitate oral and written testimony in accordance with ACS CAN policy, working with ACS CAN State – Local campaigns team to ensure adherence to organizational positions.
  • In close collaboration with other team members in assigned state(s), as well as regional and national colleagues, lead and drive the planning and implementation of comprehensive and strategic issue campaigns to achieve progress towards legislative and appropriations successes at the state/local level. Utilize the Direct Action Organizing method of campaign planning and execution, incorporating grassroots, media advocacy, and other organizational support systems.
  • Lead efforts in assigned state(s) to facilitate the advancement of the organization’s federal legislative campaigns and priorities, as required. Ensure the development of positive relationships between the organization and key congressional targets in assigned state(s). Strategically build federal champions for ACS CAN’s priorities where possible.
  • Defeat legislation that would negatively impact the mission of the ACS and ACS CAN.
  • Serve as the primary ACS CAN media spokesperson in assigned state(s), or otherwise help facilitate the preparation of others, such as leadership volunteers, for interviews. Also develop relationships with assigned state(s)’s capitol press corps. Utilize Twitter accounts, as well as other similar communications tools, to reach audiences on behalf of ACS CAN.
  • Actively serve in assigned state(s) as ACS CAN’s representative on coalitions aimed at advancing the organization’s public policy and appropriations priorities, with a clear understanding and management of parameters around coalition agreements, including deal breakers on legislation.
Integration and Capacity Building:
  • Serve on ACS area or state management, market, and/or planning teams, as required.
  • Work with ACS and ACS CAN colleagues in assigned state(s) to help facilitate the success of the entire enterprise.
  • Incorporate ACS staff and volunteers in legislative and appropriations campaigns, where appropriate.
  • Enhance the overall external visibility of the enterprise in a positive manner commensurate with the organization’s brand.
  • Help the enterprise build capacity by working in concert with grassroots staff to recruit, engage, and communicate with the organization’s volunteer network in assigned state(s).
  • Help grassroots staff conduct trainings as needed for volunteers and ACS staff in assigned state(s), and help prepare volunteers for meetings, testimony, etc.
  • Work closely with ACS CAN’s national fundraising team and other colleagues to goal, plan, drive, and execute a viable fundraising program in assigned state(s).
  • Lead and drive ACS CAN efforts in assigned state(s) towards achievement of its annual fundraising goal, through events or other revenue generating activities, including the prospecting of donors and growth of the organization’s financial base.
  • Utilize policy forums or similar fundraising events in assigned state(s) to also build and nurture relationships aimed at advancing the organization’s mission.
  • Facilitate account management, actively supporting both ACS and ACS CAN fundraising by leveraging relationships in assigned state(s).
  • Serve as an effective steward of relationships by communicating effectively with ACS CAN corporate members, donors, and prospective funders in assigned state(s)
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion:
  • Approach the work of the enterprise with a spirit of diversity, equity, and inclusion, establishing a climate where every individual is valued and respected.
  • Ensure the development and execution of a state diversity and inclusion plan in assigned state(s), establishing and nurturing relationships with new stakeholders and advancing the organization’s diversity goals. *Identify, and pursue where applicable, opportunities to improve health equity and eliminate health disparities through the state policy and appropriations process.
  • Follow ACS CAN policies and guidelines. Comply with all lobbying related requirements and regulations.
  • Ensure that any Cancer Votes activities in assigned state(s), where relevant, adhere to all IRS and ACS CAN legal guidelines and reporting requirements.
  • Model leadership by embracing all of the organization’s technical tools and trainings, while also effectively completing administrative duties around documentation and reporting.
  • Management:
  • Manage contract lobbyists, where applicable.
  • Other duties as assigned.


Position Requirements


  • Bachelor’s degree in political science or related field, and a minimum of 5 years relevant work experience.
  • Detailed knowledge of the legislative process and political landscape, with the ability to adapt to a given state(s) government environment(s).
  • Political and/or policy campaign experience required.


  • Health policy knowledge preferred.
  • Fundraising experience preferred.
  • Ability to draft bill or amendment language preferred.
  • Excellent written, oral, interpersonal, computer, and mobile application skills required.
  • Action-oriented and the ability to work independently with minimum direction and work as a member or leader of a team.
  • Ability to work with others in complex environments, with a strong ability to adapt to changing situations.
  • Demonstrated ability to work on fast-paced, time-sensitive matters with internal and external constituents.
  • Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with diverse individuals and communities.
  • Ability to complete work in a timely and efficient manner and ensure work is accurate.
  • Ability to utilize available technology to perform position responsibilities.


Some travel required.

The American Cancer Society has adopted a vaccination policy that requires all staff, regardless of position or work location, to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 (except where prohibited by state law).

ACS CAN provides staff a generous paid time off policy; medical, dental, retirement benefits, wellness programs, and professional development programs to enhance staff skills. Further details on our benefits can be found on our careers site at: We are a proud equal opportunity employer.


Job posted: 2022-08-28