About Community Organizing and Family Issues (COFI)
Policy Campaign Organizer
Join us in building a grassroots movement of parent leaders working for economic, racial and social justice for families. Community Organizing and Family Issues (COFI) builds the leadership, power and voice of low-income parents to fight for equity on behalf of their children and families. We are looking for an experienced Policy Campaign Organizer to work with COFI-trained Black and Brown parent leaders (mostly mothers and grandmothers) across Illinois to change public policies and systems to make them more responsive to the needs of all families.
Who We Are
COFI is a Chicago-based organizing center that elevates the voices of parents living in challenged communities of color through:
· Local Organizing: COFI trains and organizes neighborhood and school-based parent teams to take action on issues they identify as important to improving life outcomes for children.
· Policy and Systems Change Organizing: COFI unites parent leaders across neighborhoods, race and ethnicity to impact policy changes of priority benefit to children and families.
· Sharing the Learning: COFI provides training and resources to parent-led organizations around the country.
COFI’s innovative model of leadership development and community organizing, The COFI Way, emphasizes the interconnection between personal struggles and broader community issues and builds capacity for parent leaders to address these issues through collective action. Through COFI’s intensive and systematic leadership development and organizing process, parents develop skills, confidence and the organized power to win improvements in schools, communities, and public policies.
What You’ll Do
The Policy Campaign Organizer will work with Illinois parent leaders and COFI’s team of organizers on a wide range of parent-led policy campaigns. Specific responsibilities include:
· Coordinate planning and strategy development for policy campaigns with low-income parent leaders at the local, citywide and statewide levels.
· Provide leadership support, training and mentorship to parents in the public policy process.
· Organize and coordinate meetings, trainings and campaign activities.
· Coordinate media and fundraising for the campaign.
· Network with and build relationships between parents and community organizations, advocacy groups and policymakers to move forward the campaign.
· Research and analyze complex policy issues and create training and resource materials for parents to help inform their decision-making.
COFI’s current campaign issue areas include:
· Early Learning: addressing barriers to access to early intervention, child care and quality preschool for low-income children and families.
· Elementary Justice: seeking to end punitive school discipline policies and the criminalization of youth of color.
· Health, Food and Recess: working on food insecurity, and other health and mental health equity issues for children and families.
· Stepping Out of Poverty: working on asset building, reining in government fees and fines, and other economic security issues for families in poverty.
Who You Are
Candidates who will be successful in this job will have:
· At least 2 years of experience with community, labor or electoral organizing.
· Strong grassroots organizing, leadership development and policy campaign skills.
· A commitment to building the leadership and voice of parent leaders from low-income Black and Brown communities across Illinois.
· Enthusiasm for learning The COFI Way organizing model and working with COFI’s staff and parent leaders to implement the model.
Other qualifications include:
· A demonstrated ability to work effectively across racially diverse communities and cultures.
· Knowledge, understanding of and commitment to racial, economic and gender equity.
· Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to relate easily with a wide range of people.
· Strategic thinking skills, with a demonstrated ability to build campaigns that connect local issues with broader public policy issues.
· Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
· Research, policy analysis and media skills.
· Excellent organizational skills including planning, time management and information management.
· Creativity, flexibility and good problem-solving skills.
· Willingness to work flexible hours, including some evenings and weekends.
· Must have a car and maintain a valid driver's license and automobile insurance coverage.
· Spanish/English bilingual preferred but not required.
What Else You Should Know
If hired, you will join a team of dedicated organizing staff supervised by COFI’s Deputy Director, Policy and Organizing. Working from COFI’s Chicago office, you will coordinate closely with other COFI organizers in Chicago and across the state to support the leadership and policy change work led by POWER-PAC Illinois, COFI’s statewide network of grassroots parent leaders. (Note: COFI also has offices in East St. Louis and Kane County. This position is statewide and could potentially work out of one of those offices but will still require occasional trips to Chicago. For staff who are based in Chicago, trips to the suburbs and occasionally downstate Illinois are required.)
Women organizers and organizers of color are strongly encouraged to apply.
COFI is an equal opportunity employer.
More information about COFI is available at www.cofionline.org.
Salary and Benefits
The salary for this position starts in the range of $43,000 to $50,000, depending upon experience.
Generous family friendly benefits include health, disability, life, 403(b) with employer match, paid time off, flex benefit, flexible scheduling, paid sabbatical after 10 years, and optional vision and dental.
How to Apply
Please submit a resume, cover letter and COFI Employment Application to firstname.lastname@example.org specifying this Policy Campaign Organizer position. The application can be downloaded from our Jobs Page https://cofionline.org/COFI/about/jobs/ or completed here.
Applications may also be submitted by mail to Applications, COFI, 2245 South Michigan, Suite 200, Chicago, Illinois 60616 or by fax to 312/226-5144.
June 2022 or as soon as possible.
Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until the position is filled.