Policy Director

11 Aug, 2019


Policy Director

Santa Fe, NM


Now in its second century, Audubon is dedicated to protecting birds and other wildlife and the habitat that supports them. Audubon’s mission is engaging people in bird conservation on a hemispheric scale through science, policy, education and on-the-ground conservation action.  By mobilizing and aligning its network of Chapters, Centers, State and Important Bird Area programs in the four major migratory flyways in the Americas, the organization will bring the full power of Audubon to bear on protecting common and threatened bird species and the critical habitat they need to survive.  And as part of BirdLife International, Audubon will join people in over 100 in-country organizations all working to protect a network of Important Bird Areas around the world, leveraging the impact of actions they take at a local level.  What defines Audubon’s unique value is a powerful grassroots network of nearly 500 local chapters, 23 state offices, 41 Audubon Centers, Important Bird Area Programs in 50 states, and 700 staff across the country.  Audubon is a federal contractor and an Equal Opportunity Employer (EOE).

Position Summary

The Director of Policy will define and lead policy efforts and overall governmental affairs functions to advance Audubon’s mission and bird conservation objectives in New Mexico.  Reporting to the Vice President and Executive Director of Audubon New Mexico, they will serve as part of New Mexico’s senior leadership team and work closely with the Director of Freshwater Conservation and Regional Network Action Manager.  The Director of Policy will lead development and execution of a state policy agenda to advance both state and federal priorities, focusing on water, working lands, and climate conservation priorities as they relate to the conservation of at-risk bird populations. The Director is responsible for coordinating and implementing policy efforts with staff across National Audubon and New Mexico programs. This includes engaging chapters, grassroots, and partners, proactively communicating issues and positions, and helping attract contributions to execute successful policy campaigns and conservation outcomes.  The Director of Policy will also be tasked with extending our digital reach to more effectively and efficiently organize our membership in New Mexico to take action on issues that impact bird populations in the state.


The ideal candidate is a skilled, experienced manager and strategic thinker with a working background knowledge of New Mexico wildlife conservation, environmental, and/or energy policy.


Only candidates who submit a cover letter will be considered for this opportunity.  



Essential Functions

  • Collaborate with Audubon national and state-based conservation, policy, science, network, communications and marketing teams to develop and execute Audubon New Mexico’s policy agenda to advance Audubon’s strategic bird conservation objectives.
  • Manage and lead Audubon New Mexico advocacy with the New Mexico Legislature, state agencies, relevant federal decision makers and coalition partners to advance short and long-term Audubon policy and appropriations priorities at the state and federal level.
  • Coordinate the efforts of all state staff working on federal, state, regional and local policy initiatives.
  • Raise the profile and visibility of Audubon New Mexico as a leader in conservation policy efforts; build creative and enduring alliances and partnerships to support Audubon’s policy efforts and serve as an effective, enthusiastic, and visible spokesperson for Audubon New Mexico.
  • Advance policy priorities through issue campaigns that engage and expand Audubon’s network of individual volunteer advocates, chapters and allies in New Mexico with support from Audubon state and headquarters staff.
  • Work with communications and policy staff to plan and implement a communications and digital organizing program in support of Audubon New Mexico conservation priorities and issue campaigns to include writing public policy position documents, fact sheets, articles, newsletters and press releases and social media posts.
  • Engage board members to assist in achieving Audubon New Mexico’s policy goals.
  • Work with the Executive Director and development staff as needed to support fundraising efforts.
  • Promote an organizational culture and structure that fosters cooperation, communication, collaboration, teamwork, and trust.


Qualifications and Experience

  • Bachelor’s Degree in public policy, natural resources or related field required.  Master’s or J.D. strongly preferred.
  • 7-10 years’ progressive professional experience, to include 5+ years working on policy and government relations related to conservation in business, government or the non-profit arena. An equivalent combination of education and experience will be considered.
  • Keen understanding of current policy trends in New Mexico related to wildlife management, climate change and land conservation and experience applying this knowledge to policy advocacy and implementation strongly preferred.
  • Successful track record working in federal, state, and local governmental processes especially with Governors’ offices, state and federal agencies, and legislative committees.
  • Experience working directly with people from diverse racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic backgrounds and incorporating the perspectives of multiple communities, including communities of color, in the consideration of impacts and outcome of the decision-making process.
  • Experience in working in partnership with a network of local chapters and invested grassroots leaders.
  • Experience working in a decentralized organization that coordinates strategies for both local and national legislative issues.
  • Effective management skills, including the ability to direct and mentor staff in a decentralized setting.
  • Superior interpersonal skills – a leader that is effective organizational ambassador in order to build coalitions and cultivate relationships with partners, government officials, donors, and the public.
  • Willingness to aid in fundraising efforts as needed; experience with issue campaigns a plus.
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills, with the ability synthesize and interpret technical information for various audiences.
  • A commitment to Audubon’s mission of conservation of birds, other wildlife, and their habitat and the ability to communicate the mission, goals, and programs effectively to partners, government officials, donors, and the public.
  • Willingness and ability to travel regularly across the state and elsewhere as needed, some weekends and evenings required.
  • Tech-savviness, with proficiency in MS Office applications, campaign/advocacy tools and other online software. Comfort with donor management systems such as Salesforce is ideal, but not required.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills, with the ability synthesize and interpret technical information for various audiences, including the grassroots network, decision makers and the news media.
  • Spanish fluency preferred.

Only candidates who submit a cover letter will be considered for this opportunity.  

Learn more here

Job posted: 2019-08-11