External Affairs Director

California School Boards Association

Posted: 10/5/2020

Position Type: Full-Time (Paid)

Function: Advocacy/Lobbying

Primary domain: Education

City: West Sacramento

Postal code: 95691

State: California

Country: United States

Organization Information:


Not Available



Mission statement:

CSBA strengthens and promotes school board governance.  We define and drive the public education policy agenda through advocacy, training, and member services.  Strong local boards of education are essential to ensure a high-quality education for every student in every community. 

Position Details:

Job Description:


    Under supervision of the Assistant Executive Director for Governmental Relations, this position is responsible for the oversight of CSBA’s grassroots program; to oversee state and local outreach, establish and coordinate  membership training efforts; supervise team of grassroots professionals;  supervise grassroots programs and outreach to association members and other partnering industries; assist with Political Action Committee fundraising efforts; coordinate CSBA’s efforts relating to statewide ballot measures including signature gathering and “get out the vote” efforts; develop, summarize, and maintain various reports and records; foster cooperative working relationships among Association staff and act as liaison with various legislative, educational, community, public, and government agencies; and perform related work as required.


    • Executes CSBA’s grassroots programs designed to identify and train local school and county board of education members for grassroots political action; fosters and supports legislative and political allies and facilitates the interaction between state and federal legislators and candidates with school board members at the local, county and regional level.
    • Coordinates grassroots efforts throughout California to maximize the political effectiveness of CSBA statewide and in Sacramento and Washington D.C.; coordinates state and federal legislator participation in CSBA’s local, county and regional activities.
    • Oversees association grassroots program, including educating school board members on the importance of advocacy work.
    • Identifies and implements successful grassroots motivation, activation and management systems. 
    • Supervises team of grassroots professionals throughout the state; including hiring, training and supervising professional staff who work in assigned territories throughout California.
    • Develops strategic grassroots engagement activities designed to enhance the association’s advocacy program on legislative, political and statewide ballot issues.
    • Identifies opportunities within key legislative and congressional districts to engage local school board members to participate in local, county and regional policy meetings.
    • Collaborate with CSBA departments on communications, services and marketing strategies.
    • Maintains key relationships with political and legislative insiders at the state and federal level.
    • Advises on strategies to be used to forward the political and legislative priorities of the Association at the state and federal levels.
    • Plans winning campaign strategies to achieve CSBA’s legislative agenda and priorities; develops work plans, tactics and budgets for such campaigns.
    • Assists with Political Action Committee fundraising and reporting activities.
    • Travels throughout the state of California.
    • Develops methods to effectively communicate Association positions on proposed legislation to congressional members, legislators, legislative committees, Association leaders, Legislative Committee, CSBA staff, community groups, and others.
    • Assists in the development and implementation of the Association’s legislative strategy; contributes to the development of the Association’s position on bills, issues, and policies.
    • Writes background papers, letters, action alerts, and presentations for advocacy at the Federal and State levels.
    • Contributes to Association publications and reports.
    • Represents and advocates for the Association on statewide and national campaigns, committees, and advisory groups; develops collaborative relationships with policy makers, government officials, school districts, county offices of education and other representatives, and community groups to support the Association’s mission, vision, and goals; participates on a variety of interdisciplinary committees and represents the Association to a variety of community and stakeholder groups.
    • Serves as a liaison to employees, the public, private organizations, community groups, and government and local educational agency officials; consults on legislative and political issues, programming, and planning; receives and responds to concerns and questions relating to assigned area of responsibility; reviews concerns and recommends solutions. 
    • Participates in the development and implementation of new or revised grassroots and legislative action programs, systems, procedures, and methods of operation; compiles and analyzes data and makes recommendations.
    • Communicates orally, in writing, or through graphic representations and technical summaries with grassroots staff, colleagues, managers, the public, organized employee groups, and representatives of various organizations in a variety of settings, including large and small group meetings.
    • Prepares and submits Board of Directors and Delegate Assembly agenda reports and various other committee and staff reports and correspondence regarding assigned program activities, and special projects as assigned by the Assistant Executive Director.
    • Participates in the development and administration of the department’s annual budget; assists in the forecast of additional funds needed for staffing, equipment, materials, and supplies
    • Participates in and makes presentations to the Board of Directors, Delegate Assembly, and a wide variety of committees, and boards; performs review of matters in areas of expertise pertaining to the various committees and boards
    • Reads and demonstrates an understanding and adherence to CSBA values, policies, and practices.
    • Demonstrates respect, honesty and professionalism at all times. 
    • Other duties as assigned.



    • This position provides for a wide variety of independent decision-making, within legal and general policy and regulatory guidelines.  This position is required to manage and direct other staff, with the responsibility of overall direction, coordination, and evaluation of those roles.  This position will carry out supervisory responsibilities in accordance with the organization's policies and all applicable laws.  Overall responsibilities of this position include, but may not be limited to, interviewing, training, timekeeping and wage & hour management, planning, assigning, and directing work, appraising performance, rewarding and disciplining employees, and addressing and resolving complaints.


Knowledge of:

  • Political and grassroots campaign development strategies.
  • Legislative practices and processes; principles, practices, and trends in public, elementary, secondary, and post-secondary education.
  • Political Action Committees: structures, laws, rules and regulations, and fundraising strategies. 
  • Organization and function of non-profit organizations, boards, and commissions.
  • Applicable Federal, State, and local laws, regulatory codes, ordinances, and procedures relevant to assigned area of responsibility; principles, practices, concepts, and methods of Federal and State legislation research, development, analysis, and evaluation; methods techniques, and procedures of effective Federal and State legislative advocacy.
  • Sources of information related to a broad range of education policy and programs.
  • Research design, methods, analysis, and reporting.
  • Public relations techniques.
  • Principles and practices of business letter writing, report formatting and preparation, data collection, information management, record keeping principles and procedures, and business mathematics and statistical techniques.
  • Modern office management practices and methods, including use of standard office equipment, computer equipment and applications, including word processing, spreadsheet applications, report writing and business correspondence/writing.
  • English usage, grammar, spelling, vocabulary, and punctuation.
  • Techniques for providing a high level of customer service by effectively dealing with the CSBA members and staff, the public, vendors and contractors.
  • Effective communication skills for use in one-on-one settings as well as in small and large groups.

Ability to:

  • Perform responsible and difficult legislative research, development, analysis, and evaluation involving the use of independent judgment and personal initiative.
  • Analyze, interpret, summarize, and present technical and legal information and data in an effective manner; prepare clear and concise speeches, articles, reports, correspondence, procedures, and other written materials.
  • Interpret, apply, and explain Federal, State, and local policies, procedures, laws and regulations.
  • Effectively represent the Association in meetings with education institutions, Federal and State governmental agencies, community groups, and various businesses, professional, and regulatory organizations and in meetings with the public.
  • Travel extensively throughout the state of California.
  • Maintain a professional appearance and demeanor at all times.
  • Establish and maintain a variety of filing, record keeping, and tracking systems.
  • Organize and prioritize a variety of projects and multiple tasks in an effective and timely manner; organize own work, set priorities and meet critical deadlines.
  • Operate and maintain modern office equipment, including computer equipment and specialized software application programs.
  • Use English effectively to communicate in person, over the telephone, in writing, and electronically, including social media.
  • Use tact, initiative, prudence, and independent judgment within general policy, procedural and legal guidelines; establish, maintain, and foster positive and effective working relationships with those contacted in the course of performing duties and responsibilities.



  • Any combination of training and experience equivalent to an Bachelor’s degree or higher with major coursework in business administration, public administration, government, legal, or political sciences, or related field with at least 5 years of experience in campaign consulting, political fundraising, grassroots development, legislative representation, research, analysis, and evaluation or a related field.  



  • Employee works in a primarily sedentary office environment with moderate noise levels, controlled temperature conditions, and no direct exposure to hazardous physical substances. 
  • Employee must be able to navigate to and from meetings around the state and stand or sit for long periods of time in meetings.
  • Employee is personally responsible for following health and safety guidelines, instructions, and policies.
  • Must possess mobility to work in a standard office setting and use standard office equipment, including a computer; vision to read printed materials and computer screen, and hearing and speech to communicate in person, and over the telephone; must be able to bend, stoop, kneel, reach, push and pull drawers open and closed in the execution of duties.
  • Must be able to sit at computer for long periods of time and have the dexterity to access, enter, and retrieve data using a computer keyboard or calculator, and operate standard office equipment.
  • Employee must possess the ability to lift, carry, push, and pull materials and objects weighing up to 25 pounds, hand truck available to assist.
  • Must be able to travel throughout the state of California.



  • Possession of, or ability to obtain a valid California Driver’s license by time of appointment.


At CSBA, we proudly offer competitive compensation packages to our full-time exempt and non-exempt employees, including the following benefits:

  • Medical, Dental & Vision
  • CalPERS Retirement
  • 457 Retirement Plan
  • Short and Long Term Disability
  • Life and AD&D insurance
  • Flexible Spending Account
  • Vacation
  • Floating holidays
  • Employee Assistance Programs


Commensurate with Experience

Posting Expiration Date:


How to Apply:

Please follow the link below to our careers portal and select "APPLY FOR JOB" at the top of the page to submit your online application:

External Affairs Director - Apply Here!

If you have any questions regarding the position or our application process, please email [email protected]


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