Senior Government Relations Director – Florida/Georgia

30 Sep, 2020


Senior Government Relations Director – Florida/Georgia

American Cancer Society
Tallahassee, FL

Position Description

Save lives. Fulfill yours.

At the American Cancer Society, we’re leading the fight for a world without cancer. Our employees and 1.5 million volunteers are raising the bar every single day. The people who work at the American Cancer Society focus their diverse talents on our singular mission: to save lives, celebrate lives, and lead the fight for a world without cancer. We achieve our mission by drawing on our core values of integrity, compassion, courage, determination, and diversity.

It is a calling. And the people who answer it are fulfilled.


Build the power of ACS CAN in Florida and Georgia to implement successful public policy advocacy campaigns. Plan and execute a comprehensive direct lobbying and government relations leadership program for each state. This includes: actively serving as an ambassador for the Society and ACS CAN to state legislatures, governors, state agencies, congressional offices, and donors, as well as representing the organization on coalitions. Lead the planning and implementation of issue campaigns to achieve progress towards policy and appropriations successes, working with and managing grassroots staff to execute each state’s advocacy program, as well as with contract lobbyists, where applicable. Lead work to achieve each state’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 each state’s legal requirements, and all assigned administrative duties.


Mission/Issues Campaigns:

  • Drive policy and appropriations wins in Florida and Georgia. Actively serve as an ambassador for the Society and ACS CAN to state legislatures, governors, 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 Florida and Georgia, developing legislative agendas and supporting materials that include thorough documentation, while ensuring consistency with ACS CAN policy positions and messaging.
  • Lead local or statewide issue campaigns in assigned territory, 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 Florida and Georgia 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 each state, as well as regional and national colleagues, lead 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 the Florida and Georgia ACS CAN team 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 each state. 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 Florida and Georgia, or otherwise help facilitate the preparation of others, such as leadership volunteers, for interviews. Also develop relationships with each state’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 each state 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 and/or planning teams, as required.
  • Work with ACS and ACS CAN colleagues in Florida and Georgia 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 each state.
  • Help grassroots staff conduct trainings as needed for volunteers and ACS staff in each state, and
  • Help prepare volunteers for meetings, testimony, etc.


  • Work closely with ACS CAN’s national fundraising team and other colleagues to goal, plan, and execute a viable fundraising program in Florida and Georgia.
  • Lead ACS CAN efforts in each state 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 each state 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 each state.
  • Serve as an effective steward of relationships by communicating effectively with ACS CAN corporate members, donors, and prospective funders in each state.

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 Florida and Georgia, 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 each state, where relevant, adhere to all IRS and ACS CAN legal guidelines and reporting requirements.


  • Hire, lead, and manage the performance of staff to achieve annual goals and objectives, including evaluation and ongoing feedback, coaching, and development.
  • Manage grassroots staff in each state, ensuring the recruitment and cultivation of a robust volunteer structure.
  • Manage contract lobbyists, where applicable.
  • Model team leadership by embracing all of the organization’s technical tools and trainings, while also effectively completing administrative duties around documentation and reporting.
  • Manage consistently, exhibiting the organization’s values and cultural beliefs.


Position Requirements



  • Bachelor’s degree in political science or related field, and a minimum of 8 years of relevant work experience.
  • Detailed knowledge of the legislative process and political landscape, with the ability to adapt to multiple state government environments.


  • 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 manage and work with others in multiple 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.

 Specialized Training or Knowledge:

  • Political and/or policy campaign experience required.
  • Health policy knowledge preferred.
  • Fundraising experience preferred.
  • Ability to draft bill or amendment language preferred.
  • Staff management experience preferred.

It is the policy of the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network not to discriminate against any employee or any applicant for employment because of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, age, disability, marital status or veteran status.

Learn more here

Job posted: 2020-09-30