Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance, AFL-CIO and
Institute for Asian Pacific American Leadership and Advancement

Executive Director

Washington, DC

Organization Overview
Founded in 1992, the Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA), AFL-CIO is the first and only national organization of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) union members, and our allies, advancing worker, immigrant and civil rights.

Backed with strong support of the AFL-CIO, APALA has more than 21 chapters and pre-chapters in 12 states and a national office in Washington, D.C. In 2011 to ensure broader education, civic engagement, and capacity building for our communities, we established the Institute for Asian Pacific American Leadership & Advancement (IAPALA).

Position Overview
APALA is seeking a skilled, creative and detailed-oriented Executive Director. This role will have high-level exposure to an exciting world of community advocacy, non-profit coalitions and labor organizing, and will have a an integral role in setting APALA and IAPALA’s overall direction, program and productivity.

The ideal candidate will have previous management, fundraising and/or political or issue campaign experience and enjoy working with a small but nimble team. This position requires the ability to manage a large workflow of requests efficiently and the diligence to check all work for accuracy and completeness.

The Executive Director of APALA and IAPALA is responsible for carrying out the mission and day-to-day operations of the organization. The Executive Director will report directly to the President and work in close collaboration with the Officers and National Executive Board (NEB). The primary responsibilities of the Executive Director include, but are not limited to, the following:

Administration & Management:
The Executive Director will serve as chief administrator responsible for ensuring that legal responsibilities are met, contracts with consultants and independent contractors are managed prudently, and in conjunction with the Treasurer, keep NEB informed on financial status of the organization. The Executive Director is also responsible for the supervision of staff. Additional responsibilities include the following:

  1. Ensure that staff and consultants operate in accordance with the union and outreach mission of the organization;
  2. Ensure that each staff member and consultant is empowered to perform their best; and
  3. Ensure that appropriate training and professional growth opportunities are provided to staff.

National Executive Board Engagement:
The Executive Director is responsible for providing support to the President and Officers in the following areas

  1. Provide leadership and strategic vision for organization, in consultation with the President and Officers;
  2. Develop and implement annual organizational priorities to advance the strategic vision for organization;
  3. Coordinate bi-annual face-to-face NEB meetings; and
  4. Act as liaison between staff and NEB members,

Program Design & Implementation:

  1. Direct and monitor all existing programs, including, but not limited to yearround civic and political engagement including the Every Votes Counts; Organizing and Leadership Development including the Organizing Institute and Young Leaders Council; Racial Justice and Ending Mass Criminalization including Race Talks and efforts advocating for criminal justice and immigration reform; and Global Solidarity and Corporate Accountability; and
  2. Develop innovative programs that advance the mission of the organization, with consultation from NEB.

Membership & Chapter Engagement:

  1. Work with the Director of Policy and Membership to develop and implement a national membership mobilization campaign, in consultation with NEB and chapter leadership;
  2. Act as liaison with chapter leaders and support chapter involvement in national campaigns; and
  3. Organize APALA Biennial Convention, in consultation with Officers and NEB.

Fundraising & Fiscal Management:

  1. Work with the Communications and Development Coordinator to develop and implement a comprehensive fundraising strategy to diversify the funding base of organization, including the following:
    • Engage NEB members to target affiliate unions for annual and program specific contributions;
    • Continue to implement grassroots fundraising effort: APALA Lifetime Warrior Program;
    • Expand individual and institutional support (foundations, labor friendly corporations) for IAPALA.
  2. Maintain current level of financial support from AFL-CIO;
  3. Work with the Treasurer to prepare annual operating budget for review and approval by NEB;
  4. Ensure all local, state and federal taxes are filed in a timely fashion including IRS paperwork for existing chapters;
  5. Manage cash flow of the organization and prepare monthly financial reports for NEB, in consultation with President and Treasurer.


  1. Work with the Communications and Development Coordinator to develop and implement a comprehensive communications program that includes the following components:
    • Produce APALA monthly electronic newsletter;
    • Maintain APALA web site;
    • Produce media advisories and press releases on an as needed basis; and
    • Develop and implement digital strategy that includes maintaining APALA Facebook page, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube accounts.
  2. Serve as the primary spokesperson to pro-actively engage media, AFL-CIO, Change To Win, affiliate unions, National Coalition of Asian Pacific Americans, Labor Coalition for Community Action, Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, constituency organizations and other allied organizations; and
  3. Produce educational fact sheets, and other relevant materials.

Desired Skills & Experience

  1. A record of activism on behalf of workers, the community including the Asian American and Pacific Islander community or other groups engaged in the pursuit of racial, social and economic justice;
  2. Prior work experience with board of directors, success in fundraising, supervising and directing staff, developing annual budgets and work plans;
  3. BA or BS degree in political science, labor relations, or equivalent work or education-related experience;
  4. Ability to effectively develop and supervise staff;
  5. Strong interpersonal skills with the ability to communicate effectively and professionally with a diverse range of people;
  6. Excellent research, oral, writing and listening skills; and
  7. Knowledge of Asian American and Pacific Islander communities and the labor movement.

Please send a cover letter, resume, 3 references and salary history addressed to APALA National President Johanna Puno Hester at APALAjobs@gmail.com. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis. Email subject shall state “APALA Executive Director” by Friday, April 7th by 11:59pm ET. Please no phone calls, faxes or mail in applications.

APALA is an equal opportunity employer. People of color, women, gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and differently-abled people are strongly encouraged to apply.

WHEN APPLYING: Be sure to indicate that you saw this information at UNIONJOBS.COM.