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Maryland State Education Association

Maryland State Education Association


Organizational Specialist/ Government Relations (Lobbyist)
Center for Public Affairs

Based at the MSEA Headquarters in Annapolis, MD


ABOUT MSEA: Maryland State Education Association (MSEA) is the Maryland affiliate of the National Education Association (NEA). MSEA is a union and professional association headquartered in Annapolis, Maryland representing 74,000 educators and school employees working in Maryland’s public schools. MSEA is dedicated to improving the teaching and learning experience; negotiating professional compensation and advocating for increased education funding and working conditions for public school employees; promoting academic achievement for all students; and protecting labor, civil and human rights for all.

Job Summary
The Organizational Specialist/Government Relations serves as a lobbyist and policy analyst for MSEA. This position will lead in specific issue areas, including the Maryland state budget, school funding, school construction policy, and retirement security. The position will ensure an effective representation of MSEA in Maryland’s education communities, and within local, state and federal government agencies. This is a union position in the Professional Staff Association (PSA) bargaining unit, and reports to the Assistant Executive Director for Political & Legislative Affairs.

Job Duties and Responsibilities

  1. Advises and advocates on legislative and regulatory proposals that impact education funding and policy.
  2. Builds relationships and actively engages and monitors the work of the Interagency Commission on School Construction, the Board of Public Works, the Spending Affordability Committee, and other boards and commissions.
  3. Writes, edits, and delivers testimony to the Maryland General Assembly and the Executive Branch.
  4. Serves as principal resource, trainer, consultant and advisor to staff, members, assigned committees, councils and boards on all aspects of education funding. Advises in such areas as funding formulas, maintenance of effort, pension issues, retiree health care, and COMAR regulations on any of these issues (among others to be assigned).
  5. Develops and maintains collaborative relationships among members and coalition partners to support the association’s legislative and political goals.
  6. Attends meetings of local affiliate governing boards to develop our legislative agenda and build support among those board and local affiliate members.
  7. Supports the political action work and outreach for assigned county affiliates related to political organizing, advocacy, the MSEA Fund for Children and Public Education, and any coordinated legislative activities.
  8. Assists assigned local affiliates with the candidate recommendation process for federal, state, and local candidates for public office.
  9. Works extended hours including weekends and evenings, when necessary, in order to perform assigned responsibilities. Some driving within the state of Maryland may be required.
  10. Performs other duties as assigned.

QUALIFICATIONS:

  • Bachelor’s Degree in labor relations, public policy, education or equivalent required; graduate degree in labor relations or political science preferred, or law degree desirable;
  • Three years (minimum) of experience in budget analysis, school finance, lobbying and/or general organizing;
  • Direct knowledge and working relationship with the Maryland General Assembly and Executive Branch
  • Working knowledge of the Maryland state budget process and existing school funding formulas;
  • Working knowledge of the Maryland state laws governing political action;
  • Familiar with the federal, Maryland state and local government personalities, agencies, and committees.
  • Ability to exercise discretion, independent judgment, initiative and resourcefulness;
  • Ability to influence, motivate or lead persons or groups in gaining compliance with Association objectives by persuasion or negotiation;
  • Ability to identify and analyze complex data, and plan and carry out work projects while altering and refining the methods and techniques to be used;
  • Ability to exercise a high degree of discretion and maintain confidentiality when working with sensitive correspondence and data of major importance;
  • Ability to work independently within the Association, with affiliates and outside organizations/agencies for the accomplishment of Association goals;
  • Ability to interact effectively and frequently with individuals and groups both inside and outside the Association in moderately unstructured situations;
  • Ability to motivate members to advocate for the Association’s public positions, particularly during the legislative session;
  • Ability to perform duties with a high level of efficiency and accuracy on deadline;
  • Proficiency in verbal and written communication; and
  • Experience working in Microsoft Office suite environment.
  • Has or is able to obtain and maintain a driver’s license that complies with the State of Maryland.


ADDITIONAL QUALIFICATIONS:

  • Experience with school finance (operating and capital) at the local board of education/county government level;
  • Experience in political or issue-organizing campaigns; and
  • Experience with voter files and voter activation network (VAN) is highly desirable.

This position offers a generous benefits package.

Application Procedure:
To be considered for this position, complete the MSEA employment application, it can be found on the career site of www.marylandeducators.org and submit along with a cover letter and your résumé to careers@mseanea.org by July 16, 2019.

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