Objective: Citizen Action of Wisconsin seeks a dynamic and socially committed person to join our organizing team to lead an important new cutting edge project. Citizen Action is developing a nonpartisan program that uses the latest techniques to engage infrequent voters between elections in order to involve them more fully in the civic life and to increase voting in underrepresented communities. This position is located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, includes travel in Milwaukee County and the use of an automobile.
Description of Work: Citizen Action of Wisconsin has over the years built a model nonpartisan voter engagement program in Milwaukee’s African American community which we successfully extended to the fast growing Latino community. The program is voter-file based and data driven, and evolves each cycle to take advantage of the latest research. This program up until now has been limited to the 5 month before major elections.
Citizen Action is seeking an organizer to help implement a new approach to voter engagement that has the same intensity of contact year round as it does during elections. The goal is to break the cycle where underrepresented communities see a surge in field work before major elections, which disappears between elections. In the new model our permanent issue campaigns (health care, economic justice, etc) will adopt election-style techniques of constituent contact.
The new organizer will work directly with Citizen Action’s Deputy Director and the organizer of our Accion Ciudadana program, Luz Sosa, to create a seamless connection between our voting engagement programming and our issue campaigns (health care, economic justice, and other major issues) by extending voter-file based civic engagement to our work between elections. Our two leading constituency targets are Latinos and African Americans in Southeast Wisconsin.
The new organizer will help in adapting our issue campaigns to the needs of engaging currently civically disconnected people, and developing leaders. The organizer will work with existing staff to help identify potential activists, and develop them into leaders in our campaigns and in executing voter engagement work in their communities.
The organizer will work with other Citizen Action staff to create a leadership development program which is geared towards people at early rungs in the ladder of civic participation with the goal of developing new community leaders to help shape the community. The program’s goals are to develop new leaders, extend the reach and impact of our issue campaigns, and improve our voter engagement outcomes, especially during midterm elections such as 2018 where severe voting drop is likely.
Citizen Action and our partner organizations will provide intensive training on the voter file (VAN) and how to incorporate digital technology and data into all organizing work.
Organizational Background: Citizen Action of Wisconsin is an issue focused non-profit organization committed to achieving social, economic, and environmental justice. We are dedicated to achieving a Wisconsin and an America where every human being has an equal opportunity to live a meaningful and fulfilling life. Citizen Action of Wisconsin brings together thousands of activists and allied groups across Wisconsin to deepen democratic participation and create an issue environment that advances a progressive public policy agenda. Most fundamentally, we believe that issues matter.
It is through transformative issues that capture the public imagination and reveal the dissonance between our nation’s ideals and its economic and social realities that average people see their stake in the public sphere and are motivated to participate in their democracy, resulting in meaningful and lasting change.
Citizen Action’s lead issues are good jobs, health care reform, and the protection and expansion of democracy. Citizen Action is spearheading the development of new and innovative grassroots organizing techniques, and seeks candidates who are interested in embracing new dynamic approaches. More information on current Citizen Action of Wisconsin programs can be found atcitizenactionwi.org
- Work with Deputy Director, Organizing Director and Accion Ciudadana Organizer, to help develop and implement a cutting-edge voter engagement program in Milwaukee’s Latino and African-American community that results in direct voter contact with lower propensity voters on issues and develops new leaders and voters.
- Directly organize and develop activists and volunteers to participate in Citizen Action’s voter engagement program and issue campaigns.
- Attend training programs lead by Wisconsin Voices to become and expert in all VAN and data components of the work. Work with Citizen Actions staff in-house to further develop voter file skills.
- Embrace and effectively utilize new communications technology, working within Citizen Action’s social networking and web technology programs to augment on-the-ground organizing.
- Coordinate program, volunteer recruitment and logistics for canvassing, phone banking, mobilizations and other grassroots activity.
- Work directly with Accion Ciudadana organizer to develop new recruit and develop new members for the organization.
- Develop new leaders from the field contacts who will work within their own communities to expand the reach of our program.
- Work in a focused way to advance strategic goals, and provide timely weekly reporting of organizing progress.
- Philosophical commitment to progressive values, economic justice, and health care freedom, for everyone in America
- A willingness to learn, the ability to work hard with irregular hours, and the ability to work independently with guidance as well as with a team.
- Good written and verbal communication skills, including ability to communicate and mobilize individuals via phone, produce effective flyers, email alerts, and effective social media posts.
- Ability to resolve conflicts while maintaining effective relationships
- Excellent listening, interpersonal and problem solving skills
- Strong personal time management skills, organization skills, and the ability to work under pressure.
- Experience with and commitment to working on racial justice issues and/or working in communities of color.
- Thorough attention to detail, resourcefulness and a talent for problem-solving, tenacity and determination in challenging situations, a high sense of urgency, and an ability to carry out a plan
- Experience in labor, community, political or faith-based organizing, especially requiring relationship building with dues paying members is preferred but not required.
- Experience with voter files a plus
- Bilingual (Spanish) skills are a plus
- Automobile and valid driver’s license required
Salary and Benefits: This is a full-time position which includes a gold-rated health care plan, dental, employer-matched 401K, life insurance, disability insurance, mobile phone allowance, and other benefits. Some weekend and evening hours required. Compensation is based upon experience and demonstrated organizing skills. This is a union position, represented by OPEIU Local 9, AFL-CIO.
Application Process: E-mail cover letter and résumé to Matt Brusky, Deputy Director at Matt.Brusky@citizenactionwi.org
Citizen Action of Wisconsin is an equal opportunity employer and will not discriminate against any employee or applicant on the basis of race, color, national or ethnic origin, religion, age, gender, handicap, pregnancy, sexual orientation, or veteran status