Government Affairs Director

Location: Brooklyn, NY, or remote within the United States
Target Start Date: January 28th, 2020
Salary Range: Salary range is $85K-100K per year. (Offers will vary based on experience and location-based cost-of-living calculations. Brooklyn-specific salary range is $90K–$100K.)
Benefits: Vision, dental, & medical insurance; 403(b) retirement savings plan; generous vacation policy; parental leave; long-term disability; employee assistance program
Level: Senior

Organizational Overview

At Democracy Works, we believe voting should fit the way we live. To that end, we build technology for both voters and election administrators that simplifies the process and ensures that no voter should ever have to miss an election.

TurboVote, our first service, helps voters register, stay registered, and cast a ballot in every election, from municipal to national. TurboVote signed up its six millionth voter in 2018 by building the largest college, nonprofit, and corporate voter engagement coalition in the country, including more than 300 campuses, companies like Starbucks, Univision, Facebook, Google, Snap, and dozens more. We also helped (basically) everyone find their polling place through the Voting Information Project. Its data had 123 million impressions in 2016, and over 11 million voters looked up where to vote on Ballot Scout helps election administrators track absentee ballots through the mail, providing transparency in the vote-by-mail process and making it easier to follow up when things go awry. And in 2018, we became the organizational home of the National Association of State Election Directors (NASED).

Election administrators have long been a critical stakeholder for the work that we do here at Democracy Works. As our voter engagement work has grown explosively over the past few cycles, we’ve realized that we need to more purposefully approach relationship building with election offices around the work we do to engage voters. As government affairs director, you'll join our Election Administration Department. You’ll be responsible for establishing and managing Democracy Works’ strategy for engaging with election officials around our voter engagement work, particularly Turbovote. You’ll also represent the interests of Election Administrators internally.

In this role, you’ll be building relationships with officials across the country. Some are already supportive, some are skeptical, and some have had little to no contact with Democracy Works in the past. In some places, you’ll be making new connections around our voter engagement work with officials who are already engaged with our election administration programs, particularly the Voting Information Project. As you lead this initiative, you’ll have support from and collaborate with our election administration outreach staff, the voter engagement product, research, and support teams, and senior leadership.

You will:
  • Design, document, and execute a government outreach strategy
  • Build relationships and communicate with the states about our tools for voters, and communicate state interests internally
    • Define research processes to ensure that we’re using our state relationships effectively to ensure the accuracy of our election information
    • Represent state needs in setting our product roadmap 
  • Monitor changes in laws and processes that shape election administration practices in all 50 states, and communicate these developments across Democracy Works
  • Support an election official advisory group, from creation through ongoing engagement
  • Travel across the country frequently, meeting with state and local election officials and attending/speaking at statewide and national convenings of election officials
  • Create clear and accurate written communications for an audience of election officials.

You are:
  • A strategist, capable of seeing the big picture and planning how to reshape complex systems
  • Adept at mapping new landscapes and navigating those landscapes in order to achieve your goals 
  • A relationship builder who is undeterred by people skeptical of what you’re bringing to the table
  • Persuasive, able to meet stakeholders where they are and understand their perspective
  • A skilled communicator, comfortable answering questions on the fly and dealing with the unexpected.
  • A self-motivated planner, capable of defining goals and working toward them independently
  • Diligent in following up on conversations and commitments 
  • Organized and attentive to detail 
  • Comfortable discussing  data and technology

You have experience:
  • Working in government affairs or elections 
  • Working collaboratively with stakeholders
  • Building relationships, even better if in an environment where you were faced with skepticism
  • Public speaking 
  • Crafting written documents for a government audience
  • Working on, or adjacent to, the development of technology 
  • Collecting and analyzing data 
  • Creating strategy (where you need to get and how you’ll get there) for your role 

Physical demands
This position requires regular, daily use of a computer and telephone to conduct work and communicate with colleagues and external contacts.

Social expectations

This position entails regular check ins with colleagues across the organization, as well as a significant number of external meetings and public speaking opportunities. 

Time and travel expectations

Democracy Works’s regular operating hours are 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Eastern time. Two times per year, all full-time staff members participate in a five day retreat in our Brooklyn offices. All staff is held each year in May and November. Additionally, this role will include up to 35% domestic travel by plane and/or train, including occasional travel over weekends.

Application Instructions

To apply, upload a resume and respond to the following questions (in lieu of a cover letter) using the form below.

In your responses, please include only the following information:

  • How did you find this job listing?
  • In one sentence, what makes you interested in Democracy Works? 
  • In one sentence, what makes you interested in this role?
  • Would you be available to start by January 28th, 2020?
  • Are you willing to work at a non-partisan organization?
  • This role requires serving as a public face of our work. Given the strictly non-partisan nature of our mission, are you willing to remove partisan content from social media profiles under your own name?
  • What experience do you have working in a government/government affairs/elections role? (This experience is required for this position.)

As part of our application, you’ll see an optional form used to collect EEOC demographic information. The data collected in this form is useful in our EEOC reporting and in our assessment of our recruitment practices. However, please keep in mind that the standardized EEOC language used in this form does not reflect the values of Democracy Works--for example, we don’t view gender as binary. We also encourage all applicants to state their pronouns when applying for any job opening at Democracy Works. 

Democracy Works is committed to diversity and inclusion in everything we do and aspires to have a team that's representative of the voters we serve. When hiring, we practice proactive outreach to top talent that’s underrepresented in our sector. We conduct an anonymized skills evaluation, to reduce implicit bias and resume-dependency in our process. We're a woman- and gay-founded nonprofit, and promote an inclusive culture that stands against racism, sexism, homophobia, and ableism (to name a few). To be explicit, we strongly encourage applicants of all races, ethnicities, political party associations, religions (or lack thereof), national origins, sexual orientations, genders, sexes, ages, abilities, and branches of military service. 

Feel free to contact if you have any questions about our commitment to inclusion or about general hiring practices, or if you need an accommodation for a medical condition during the hiring process. Democracy Works posts all current career opportunities at

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