Program Manager


ACLU California Action seeks applicants for a full-time Program Manager. ACLU California Action advocates for the defense and advancement of civil liberties and civil rights in the State Capitol in collaboration with ACLU’s three California Affiliates: ACLU of Northern California, ACLU of Southern California, and ACLU of San Diego and Imperial Counties. We work to secure greater equality, equity, justice, and freedom for all Californians, working in coalition with communities that have been impacted by the denial of justice. Our policy priorities are aimed at dismantling systems rooted in oppression and discrimination through an integrated advocacy approach that employs rigorous policy analysis, lobbying, communications, coalition-building, and member development. ACLU California Action is a 501(c)(4)* organization governed and funded by ACLU’s three California affiliates for the purpose of statewide advocacy.

Position Overview

ACLU California Action management has created a new staff-level position: Program Manager. The position, which will report to the Deputy Director of Government Affairs, is intended to provide support to the government relations team by doing first-round bill review and assignment, monitoring hearings to assist advocates, and aiding in greater coordination among the team. In coordination with the Executive Director, the Program Manager will also act as our lead on political work which includes the legislative scorecard, power maps, and biennial electoral initiatives, and assisting with statewide collaboration efforts and events.




Full-time, Exempt



Primary Responsibilities

The key duties for fulfilling this job’s purpose include:

Government Affairs Team Support:

  • Provide first review of legislative measures and recommend assignment of legislative measures to lobbyists consistent with identified issue area(s);
  • Strengthen and/or develop operations and systems including bill tracking, assignment, calendaring, and official position submissions;
  • Draft summary reports reflecting bill status and outcomes for various audiences, including Board of Directors, donors, external partners, and Cal Action advocates;
  • Monitor committee hearings and communicate with advocates to provide maximum coverage; this may include appearing in committee to register support or opposition of a bill.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Political Affairs Support:

  • Develop and maintain “power maps” of key elected officials and other decision-makers of note;
  • Perform data collection and analysis to create our annual legislative scorecard;
  • Create and administer our biennial candidate survey;
  • Coordinate with Cal Action management and our affiliate partners to identify consensus campaigns in a timely manner for action.

Event/Statewide Collaboration Support:

  • Work with the Director of Statewide Collaboration to better integrate our efforts and the resources and skills offered by our affiliate partners;
  • Aid in planning staff retreats and providing support on site during events;
  • Produce regular reports to update partners on our progress.


  1. At least 2 years of experience, ideally 3-5 years, in public policy, legislative analysis, political/public affairs, and/or event planning;
  2. Exceptional analytical and writing skills;
  3. Sound judgement to decide what issues need to be elevated for additional discussion and which items can be handled by the Program Manager;
  4. A close attention to detail and a vice-like grip on time management;
  5. Ability to keep organized in a fast-paced environment, manage several projects simultaneously, and adjust strategy to frequently changing demands;
  6. Demonstrated ability to manage projects, including to plan, execute and accomplish the completion of large workloads in extremely short timeframes;
  7. Ability to work effectively and collaboratively with diverse staff including remote colleagues working across the political spectrum, value and respect differences of race, ethnicity, age, gender, sexual orientation, religion, ability, and socio-economic circumstance, including the temperament and aptitude to work with colleagues in a collaboration of ACLU affiliates;
  8. Commitment to advancing the ACLU’s values, mission and goals with understanding of the range of civil liberties issues and their implications and have the ability to recognize and balance a range of civil liberties interests and concerns, often competing ones, and to represent the nuanced and specific positions unique to the ACLU in the legislative/legal review process.

Compensation & Benefits

This position comes with a generous compensation and benefits package. This includes top-quality, employer sponsored medical, dental and vision coverage for you and your family; a retirement plan with a 2% employer contribution—up to 5.5% with matching contributions; 22 paid vacation days, 10 days of sick time, and 20 paid holidays of the employee’s choice annually; and robust life, disability, accidental death and dismemberment, and critical illness insurance plans. Salary range for this position is from $69,750-$99,781 depending on the applicant’s experience; employees also receive stipends for transportation and telework needs.

Selection Process

Please submit your resume no later than June 18 to [email protected] for consideration. If you have any questions about the position or our process, please reach out to Jack Zwald at 916-824-3263 or [email protected].

ACLU California Action is committed to providing reasonable accommodation to individuals with disabilities. If you are a qualified individual with a disability and need assistance applying online, please contact Jack Zwald at [email protected] or 916-824-3263.  If you are selected for an interview, you will receive additional information regarding how to request accommodation during the interview process.

ACLU Cal Action advances equity and inclusion in the workplace by providing equal employment opportunity to all as part of a work environment free from discrimination. We encourage and welcome applicants who will work to further this commitment and add to the diversity of our organization on multiple dimensions including race, religious creed, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition, exercising the right to family care and medical leave, genetic information, marital status, sex (includes pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding and related medical conditions), gender, gender identity, gender expression, age, sexual orientation, military and veteran status, political affiliation, or arrest or conviction record. 

*Please note that as a 501(c)(4) organization our team members are not eligible to participate in most student loan forgiveness programs.

** Selected candidate will be required to register as part of ACLU Cal Action’s lobbyist team within 10 days of hire.