Policy Director for ACLU MT ($73-78K, Montana)

Policy Director for ACLU MT ($73-78K, Montana)

The ACLU of Montana Foundation (“ACLU of Montana”) seeks a passionate, energetic, and committed Policy Director to lead its Advocacy and Policy Department. This is an opportunity for a visionary professional to build on the success of the premier civil liberties and civil rights organization in Montana.  The Policy Director is responsible for advancing the ACLU of Montana’s ambitious civil liberties policy agenda before the state legislature, the executive branch, tribal governments, local government bodies, and administrative agencies; assuming leadership in related policy projects; overseeing the Indigenous justice policy advocacy and organizing program; and leading and collaborating on integrated advocacy initiatives.



The ACLU of Montana (founded in 1972) is an affiliate of the national ACLU (founded in 1920) and operates as a private, non-profit organization.  We are the state’s largest and most influential civil rights organization. Our current top priorities are Indigenous justice, criminal legal reform and ending the criminalization of poverty, LGBTQ equality, and voting rights. We work on a range of additional issues including reproductive justice, immigrants’ rights, freedom of speech and religion, and informational and digital privacy. The ACLU of Montana envisions a fair, equitable, and free Montana that welcomes and celebrates diversity of all kinds. In our Montana, everybody is treated with dignity and respect, and has equal access to rights and freedoms.

The ACLU of Montana maintains a fast-paced and friendly work environment, with a current staff of 14 and an office located in Missoula. To learn more about the staff and work of the ACLU of Montana, please visit www.aclumontana.org.   



ACLU of Montana is an equal opportunity employer. We are committed to a diverse workforce and an inclusive culture. We believe that having a board, staff, and volunteer base with diverse personal and professional backgrounds enhances our ability to meet our mission and creates an environment where all members of our community can thrive. We strongly encourage applications from people of color, Indigenous people, immigrants, women, people with disabilities, members of the LGBTQ and two-spirit community, those who have been formerly incarcerated or are currently under supervision, and other underrepresented and historically marginalized groups. We seek to build a team that reflects that diversity. All qualified applicants who share this vision and who have a desire to contribute to our mission are encouraged to apply.


The ACLU of Montana does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, faith, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, tribal affiliation, disability, veteran status, or record of arrest or conviction. We are committed to providing a work environment free from discrimination and harassment and one that honors and promotes a culture of equity, diversity, inclusion, and belonging. We are engaging in ongoing internal equity work, including racial caucusing.

Our work environment is friendly, with flexibility and consideration of personal needs and circumstances.



As a person with a leadership role in a small team, you will balance many critical areas of work:

  • Lead and oversee the ACLU of Montana’s policy program at the state, tribal, and local levels.
  • Work collaboratively across departments to plan and implement effective multi-disciplinary and integrated advocacy policy initiatives, involving a combination of policy, legal, communications, public education, and organizing strategies.
  • Develop and implement the ACLU of Montana’s legislative agenda (including in the legislative interim); lobby members of the legislature and the Governor’s office; track and analyze legislation that affects civil liberties; draft amendments; prepare and deliver testimony; attend and advocate in legislative commissions, taskforces, and workgroups; and identify opportunities for bipartisan support on ACLU issues.
  • Cultivate relationships and build coalitions, and work in partnership with varied and diverse constituencies, including key officials, tribal governments and leaders, staff, and impacted community members and organizations.
  • Lead or participate in state-wide ballot measure campaigns or other electoral engagement campaigns.
  • Prepare policy and educational programs to advance policy objectives; draft action alerts, talking points, issue briefs, reports, op-eds, and website updates.
  • Respond to media requests on policy issues and speak at events and forums.
  • Manage the Advocacy and Policy Department (APD), including planning, coordinating, and reviewing the work of the APD and programs; providing strategic oversight and support of the Indigenous justice policy advocacy and organizing program; and supervising and mentoring APD staff.
  • Develop and oversee the APD budget.
  • Assist with fundraising and donor relationships as needed.
  • Participate in and support equity, diversity, inclusion, and belonging work and initiatives.
  • Serve on ACLU of Montana’s leadership team.
  • Perform other related duties as assigned by the Executive Director.

  • Significant experience in political, legislative, or policy related work, and a deep understanding of the legislative process.
  • A strong passion for social justice and commitment to advancing the ACLU of Montana’s values, mission, and goals.
  • Experience working collaboratively in coalitions; ability to take a leadership role in coalitions, including developing shared plans, coordinating external and internal communications, and navigating internal political dynamics among partner groups.
  • Experience working effectively and respectfully with impacted community members, diverse coalitions, community groups, and individuals across the political spectrum.
  • Experience successfully supervising and mentoring staff.
  • Exceptional analytical, research, writing, and oral advocacy skills.
  • Ability to work independently and keep organized in a fast-paced environment, manage several projects simultaneously, and adjust strategy to frequently changing demands.
  • Commitment to the highest ethical standards of lobbying and professionalism.
  • Ability to work long hours, especially during the legislative session, travel frequently between Helena and the Missoula office, and travel to meetings and events throughout the state.
  • Proficiency with computers, in particular Windows and Microsoft Office.
  • Strong leadership skills; demonstrated ability to work collaboratively and cooperatively with other staff members, board members, lawyers, clients, volunteers, and coalition partners and diverse communities.
  • Commitment to equity and inclusion, and respect for differences of race, ethnicity, age, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, ability, and socio-economic circumstance and class. Understanding and willingness to engage with the issues of institutional and structural racism and bias and their impact on underserved and underrepresented communities.


The following experiences are particularly valuable - please be sure to address these in your resume or cover letter. We encourage you to apply even if you do not have these qualifications:

  • A J.D. degree from an ABA-accredited law school, other significant education in relevant areas of law.
  • Significant education in public policy.
  • Experience in and/or a deep understanding of community organizing work.
  • Experience in campaign planning and/or management.
  • Understanding of a broad range of civil liberties issues and strategies and experience working or volunteering extensively in a social justice or civil rights organization.
  • Experience working in places where diversity and equity initiatives are forefront.
  • Experience working with or in, or deep knowledge of, Montana legislative and other governmental processes, and/or Montana’s tribal governments.
  • Experience living or working with or in, or deep knowledge of, Montana’s tribal communities and Indigenous people.
  • Lived experiences including, but not limited to:
    • Being directly impacted by the social and civil rights issues addressed by ACLU of Montana
    • Living or working directly with people from diverse racial, ethnic, cultural, and socioeconomic backgrounds.
    • A history of personal work on issues of equity, inclusion, and diversity and belonging, particularly on issues of race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, and disability.


The Policy Director will be based in Montana. This position is based in Helena during the legislative sessions; location at other times is open to discussion. The position will be remote, at least through September 6, 2021, and until the office re-opens after the COVID-19 pandemic.


This position is full-time, exempt, and will pay an annual salary of $73,000 - $78,000, depending on experience. Excellent benefits offered, including health and dental insurance, short and long-term disability and life insurance, 401(k) retirement plan, and generous vacation, holiday, family and medical leave policies. Relocation stipend for actual moving expenses available up to $4,000, depending on distance and number of family members, contingent on two years’ employment.



All applications are treated confidentially. Please submit (in pdf format if possible):

1.     A letter of no more than one page describing your interest in the position. Please indicate in your letter where you saw this job posting.

2.    Resume.

3.    Two relevant professional writing samples of no more than 15 pages in total.


Email your application to jobs [at] aclumontana.org or mail it to:
ACLU of Montana, Attn: Hiring
P.O. Box 1968, Missoula, MT 59806

Please put “Policy Director” in the subject line of your email or on your envelope.



We will begin reviewing applications March 8, 2021. Applications after that date are encouraged and will be accepted on a rolling basis until the position is filled. We are aiming for a start date in late April or May 2021.

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