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Director of Government Relations & Advocacy

Department: Government Relations
Location: Washington, DC

The National Governors Association (NGA) seeks an experienced professional to join us as the Director of Government Relations and Advocacy. NGA is the bipartisan organization of the nationís governors. Through NGA, governors share best practices, speak with a collective voice on national policy and develop innovative solutions that improve state government and support the principles of federalism.

The mission of the NGA Advocacy section is to ensure governorsí collective views are represented in the shaping of federal policy. NGA policy positions, reflecting governorsí principles on priority issues, guide the associationís efforts to influence federal laws and regulations affecting states. NGA Advocacy ensures that governorsí views are represented to Congress and the Executive Branch on a range of issues of importance to the states.


NGA is seeking an experienced professional for the position of Director of NGA Government Relations and Advocacy who will report directly to the CEO/Executive Director and manage a team that advocates for governorsí policy positions and advances the interests of the states. S/he will:

  • Provide opportunities for governors and their representatives to affect the state/federal policy;
  • Lead a team of government affairs professionals to organize, strategize, plan and execute advocacy activity on behalf of the association;
  • Manage the NGA relationship with governorsí representatives, both locally and in the states;
  • Manage and lead a team of advocates who lobby for the interests of governors and the states;
  • Develop, nurture and expand relationships with senior Congressional leadership Ė including the Speaker of the House, and in both Chambers, the Majority Leaders, Minority Leaders and other relevant members of leadership teams;
  • Develop ways to track and organize information on effectiveness and outcomes on state and federal policy issues;
  • Guide the work on the issues of importance to the governors through the structure of the five NGA policy committees: Economic Development and Commerce, Education and Workforce, Health and Human Services, Homeland Security and Public Safety and Natural Resources;
  • Obtain and manage state/federal relations consultants for short-term projects as appropriate;
  • Coordinate and meet with Members, Senators and their staffs to inform and assist them on issues of importance;
  • Coordinate and meet with officials in the Administration on challenges of the states to ensure productive policy outcomes;
  • Monitor legislation of importance to the governors;
  • Direct the preparation of issue briefs, hearing summaries, gubernatorial testimony and other materials on topics of interest to states the governors and their representatives;
  • Manage and coordinate electronic distributions of NGA communications and committee notifications; and
  • Identify key state policy issues and opportunities for NGA to track and share to have an early and continuous impact on policy and legislation. 


  • A minimum of 10 years of government relations experience at the director level with strong knowledge of federalism and the state-federal relationship; 
  • A strong knowledge of the federal legislative and regulatory processes is required. Graduate degree in related field required;
  • Extensive experience working with numerous state officials is required;
  • Significant knowledge of Congress, congressional processes and executive agencies and regulatory processes;
  • Preferred senior staff experience on Capitol Hill, or direct interaction with Congress and staff, record of bipartisan work, ability to develop and maintain high-level relationships with leadership in both parties;
  • Strong strategic thinker, ability to direct, plan and execute a multifaceted advocacy campaign;
  • Strong oral and written communications skills sufficient to manage the development of congressional testimony and issue briefs for governors; 
  • Strong interpersonal and organizational skills with a demonstrated ability to work well with others at all levels and carry out multiple assignments in diverse areas; and  
  • Demonstrated ability to take initiative. 


 Fast-paced working environment, extensive computer usage.

Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

NGA is committed to providing a productive and safe environment. To achieve that goal, we conduct background and reference check investigations for all final applicants being considered for employment. 

Equal Opportunity Employment   M/D/F/V 

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