Director of Public Policy

Job Locations US-WA
Posted Date 1 week ago(7/10/2024 11:47 AM)
Job ID
# of Openings
Civil Rights, Social Action, and Advocacy
Fiscal Sponsorship Organizations
Location : Name
A Way Home Washington


A Way Home Washington (“AWHWA”) ( a statewide movement to prevent and end youth and young adult homelessness, prioritizing the existing disproportionality of homelessness rates among young people of color and LGBTQ+ youth. Partnering with young people, communities, agencies, and leaders across Washington state, we work to realign local and state youth-serving systems to meet the needs of young people in ways that matter most to them and result in safe and stable housing. By engaging stakeholders on a local level and creating a statewide network, we connect communities and provide opportunities to discuss common barriers and solutions for ending youth and young adult homelessness.


Throughout our history, we have focused on integrating evidence-based practices with quality, real-time data. We apply Continuous Quality Improvement to test, learn from, and develop innovative solutions to systemic barriers. Ending youth homelessness won’t be achieved by maintaining the status quo; outside-the-box thinking is required to create cutting-edge initiatives and measurable results. We are guided by the principle “Nothing about us without us,” knowing our duty to ensure that youth and young adults hold key roles in shaping and influencing the systems change that lead to ending youth homelessness and housing insecurity.


A Way Home Washington is a fiscally sponsored organization of Third Sector New England, Inc (



AWHWA is currently seeking a Director of Public Policy to lead our work related to advancing public policy, legislation, and budget allocations aimed at preventing and ending youth and young adult homelessness across Washington state. This position will lead, co-develop, and implement this important work by engaging and building relationships with a diverse range of partners and allies, including young people with lived experience, service providers, philanthropy, government representatives, and others. This Director will have a thorough understanding of the legislative process and will build a robust advocacy plan, agenda, strategy, and infrastructure to effectively impact public policy that aligns with the AWHWA mission and vision. We are looking for a professional with strong experience in creating effective strategies that achieve targeted goals. Our ideal future colleague will have the proven ability to grow understanding and activate change through public and political will building in an inclusive style that honors the oppression, racism, homophobia, and trauma that so many of the young people we serve experience. We are looking for someone with a demonstrated ability to establish and maintain trust, focus, and accountability across various internal and external entities. This individual will bring a nuanced understanding of homelessness and housing insecurity among young people, as well as the historical and systemic inequities that create those circumstances. We are looking for a commitment to preventing and ending homelessness for all youth and young adults and, crucially, a firm belief that doing so is possible.



Essential Functions


Organizational Leadership

  • As a member of the organizational leadership team, the Director of Public Policy will contribute to organizational goals, strategic planning, budgeting, and a strong, inclusive culture, management, and communication.
  • Lead and support an organizational culture that is inclusive, anti-racist, and anti-homophobic, and translate these values and vision into a public policy approach.
  • Lead the organizational effort to develop a 3–5-year strategic public policy vision that informs the annual public policy plan.
  • Provide oversight to any contracts directly related to public policy and advocacy work, including lobbyists, interns, or others.
  • Partner with the Executive Director and Development Director to ensure the Advisory Board, key philanthropic partners, and others understand and engage with the Public Policy vision and key strategic tools, including the annual public policy plan.


Engagement, Development, and Execution of Annual Public Policy Plan

  • Direct, develop, and execute an annual public policy plan, budget, and activity calendar to increase awareness and support for A Way Home Washington and to advance its mission of preventing and ending youth and young adult homelessness.
  • Engage key partners and allies in the development and execution of the annual public policy plan, including internal staff, anchor communities, key advocacy coalitions, elected officials, and young people with lived experience.
  • Represent A Way Home Washington at critical tables and coalitions to understand partner agendas and advance the AWHWA agenda.
  • Steward and strengthen relationships with elected officials, their staff, and government agency staff at the local and state levels, as well as other key stakeholders.
  • Create meaningful opportunities to engage and learn from young people with lived experience, ensuring they are part of the development and execution of the annual Public Policy plan.
  • Work with and support internal teams, including the Advisory Board, Executive Leadership Team, and staff, to engage them in the development and execution of the annual Public Policy Plan.
  • Provide regular updates and briefings to internal teams on the development, execution, and progress of the annual Public Policy Plan during the interim and legislative session.
  • Partner with other internal directors, especially the Executive Director and the Communications Director, to ensure accurate communications to internal and external partners regarding the vision, strategy, progress, and “call to action” related to the annual Public Policy Plan and other activities related to public policy.


State Legislative Session

  • In preparation for each legislative session, provide training opportunities so that internal staff, young people with lived experience, anchor communities, and other close partners understand the basics of the upcoming session, including key dates, committee structure, budgetary and other “landscape” dynamics.
  • In partnership with internal and external partners, develop an annual legislative agenda and supporting educational materials, such as “one-pagers” and supporting research, to make the case for supporting issues on the legislative agenda.
  • Advocate to successfully gain support for AWHWA legislative agenda issues from allied coalitions to demonstrate strong community support.
  • Provide regular briefings to internal and external staff, partners, and stakeholders as agreed with the Executive Director and other organizational leaders. These briefings will include clear analysis of government materials, including proposed state budgets, revenue forecasts, political nuances, and progress/barriers to achieving success with the AWHWA legislative agenda.
  • Provide direction and regular oversight to any contract lobbyist or others responsible for advancing the AWHWA legislative agenda. Determine the best strategy for committee testimony and who should represent AWHWA, including the lobbyist, Director of Public Policy, Executive Director, or other key partners such as Advisory Board members or philanthropic leaders.
  • Provide analysis and key briefings that lead to strategic decisions upon key events within the legislative session, such as the release of Governor and/or House/Senate budgets, cut-off dates, revenue forecasts, or other key developments. Provide key decision points, recommendations, or other direction for the Executive Director and other decision-makers directly related to AWHWA.
  • Coordinate an annual Advocacy Day that promotes the AWHWA legislative agenda, engaging Anchor Communities and other stakeholders across the state to attend and meet with key legislators.
  • Attend and support partner Advocacy Days and events.
  • Develop and manage outreach to the AWHWA community and citizen supporters to ensure they are aware of and educated on the legislative agenda and equipped to respond to any “Call to Action,” such as signing in to a key legislative committee hearing, emails, or other direct actions.


We will consider exceptional candidates who demonstrate a strong combination of the specific qualifications and skills described below.


Attributes and experiences of our successful future colleague should include:

  • A seasoned, mature professional who believes that preventing and ending youth and young adult homelessness is attainable.
  • Commitment to an equity-based vision and approach to public policy work, including engaging and sharing leadership with key constituencies such as young people with lived experience and local community partners.
  • Ability to work with diverse populations, including in stressful situations.
  • Ability to be a self-starter and team player.
  • Excellent advocacy, consensus-building, and coalition-building skills, and a demonstrated ability to work with groups and individuals across the political spectrum.
  • At least 3-5 years of successful experience in working with the legislative process and a full understanding of and demonstrated success in building and leading political strategic efforts.
  • A bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience; a master's degree is preferred.
  • Embeds the values of anti-racism, diversity, equity, and inclusion into all aspects of the work.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Proven ability to effectively communicate complex ideas to a variety of audiences.
  • Public speaking and presentation skills.
  • Ability to meet deadlines, manage competing priorities, and advance multiple projects.
  • A demonstrated ability to establish working relationships with external stakeholders, including the media.
  • Strong experience managing staff; helping them to grow professionally and coalesce as members of a supportive, goals-driven team.
  • Creative, highly motivated, goal-oriented, and organized.
  • Familiarity with trauma-informed practices and the ability to engage economically, socially, and culturally diverse people who may be experiencing or impacted by homelessness and/or other traumatic situations with compassion, tact, sensitivity, and respect.
  • Proficient in all Microsoft Office applications (Word, PowerPoint, Excel, etc.), Google Suite, Adobe Suite, and other tools as needed.


In the spirit of “nothing about us without us,” we strongly encourage BIPOC, persons with disabilities, persons with lived homelessness experience, and LGBTQ+ individuals to apply. We are a non-discriminatory workplace and equal employment opportunity employer committed to building an organization reflective of the community it serves. We believe that everyone has their own superpower that brings niche expertise into their work. We value the unique lived experiences of every individual, and we hope you’ll share your superpower with us.



Physical Demands/Work Environment


The physical demands described here are representative of those for this position. Reasonable accommodations will be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the functions. Work is performed in an office environment and in close proximity to other workers.


While performing the duties of this position, the employee is required to:

  • Handle, or feel objects, tools or controls;
  • Reach; traverse; sit (usually for longer periods of time); occasionally ascend/descend; and position self (to) move;
  • Occasionally lift and/or move up to 25 pounds;
  • The noise level in the work environment is usually moderate;
  • Job is not subject to significant occupational or environmental hazards;
  • Likelihood of personal injury would be relatively slight;
  • Environmental and work hazards are not present to a measurable degree.


Compensation and Benefits


Location: Work will be primarily performed Hybrid - Washington State.

Compensation: The starting salary range for this position is $97,850 - $123,600/yr. and is commensurate with experience. The full salary range possible within the role is $97,850 - $149,350/yr. dependent on experience and performance.

Benefits: This position is eligible for a full benefits package including:

  • Generous Paid-Time-Off (PTO): twelve paid holidays, three weeks of vacation, one week of personal holiday, and ability to accrue up to 487.5 hours of health leave time for benefited staff.
  • 80% Employer-paid, offering some $0 deductible Health Insurance through Harvard Pilgrim along with several low-deductible plans;
  • Low-cost Guardian Dental and Vision.
  • Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) for Health and Dependent Care.
  • Employer-paid Life, Long- and Short-Term Disability Insurance.
  • Employer-paid Pension and Employee-paid 403b plan through TIAA.
  • ...and more!

TSNE/AWHWA strives to achieve excellence through a diverse, equitable, and inclusive work environment that embraces all of our individual and collective differences. Black, Indigenous, People of Color, Middle Eastern and North African, Bilingual and/or Bicultural candidates, and LGBTQ2SIA+ candidates are strongly encouraged to apply. We value and honor the unique talents, learning styles, and lived experiences of each individual that enrich and strengthen our workplace culture, and we are proud to be an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer.


All employment conditions are based on an individual’s performance and job qualifications. TSNE/AWHWA prohibits discrimination and harassment of any kind based on race, creed, color, religion, native language, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, national origin, physical or mental disability, age, genetic information, veteran status, marital status, parental status, pregnancy, race-based hairstyles, or any other protected characteristic stated by federal and state law. Regardless of any class’ protection under the law or lack thereof, TSNE/AWHWA celebrates diversity and values the strengths that come with having a diverse team of employees. It is represented in our workplace culture, and it is who we are.


TSNE/AWHWA's EEO statement extends to volunteers, interns, contractors, vendors, and clients.


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