The Government Relations Specialist works to support and implement Planned Parenthood of Illinois’ policy agenda. The Government Relations Specialist develops and maintains good working relationships with elected officials, government agencies, and subject matter experts in areas of reproductive rights and health care policy. This position works under the supervision of the Senior Director of Public Policy and will be based in either Chicago or Springfield.
1. Assist Senior Director of Public Policy staff in developing legislative strategy and plans.
2. Review legislation and analyze relevant proposals to determine effect on the interests of Planned Parenthood of Illinois.
3. Develop and maintain good working relationships with legislators and other public officials. This includes all Constitutional offices, appropriate state agencies, legislative leadership, relevant committee chairs, and other lobbyists through personal visits, correspondence, phone, and other communications.
4. Collaborate and coordinate with Public Policy staff on advocacy efforts on behalf of policy and legislative issues and execute grassroots organizing and advocacy in Central Illinois.
5. Serve as a liaison to advocacy partners and coalition groups.
6. In coordination with Communications staff, prepare legislative Planned Parenthood Action Network communications.
7. Develop and maintain relationships with subject-matter experts in the areas of reproductive rights, healthcare policy, law, and medicine. Identify individuals willing to provide expert and constituent testimony in legislative, legal, and advocacy efforts.
8. As appropriate, work with the Senior Director and Public Policy staff to implement electoral plans and activities for Planned Parenthood Illinois Action and Planned Parenthood Illinois Action PAC, including grassroots organizing and voter outreach activities in Central Illinois.
9. Through these activities demonstrate an understanding of and commitment to PPIL core values of respect, knowledge, responsibility, health, compassion, and access; practice these values in relations with internal and external customers.
1. Research and draft legislation being proposed by PPIL and analyze all legislative and administrative rules proposals related to PPIL’s interests.
2. Produce position papers and fact sheets on legislation and agency rules and regulations related to PPIL’s interests.
3. Directly lobby members of the Illinois General Assembly, other elected officials, and agency staff on legislative and policy matters.
4. Prepare and deliver legislative committee testimony and/or recruit individuals to provide expert testimony and assist them in preparation.
5. Prepare and maintain voting records, legislative histories, legislator files, and bill files.
6. Plan and manage legislative receptions, lobby days, in-district visits, and constituent communications with elected officials.
7. Coordinate and conduct speaking presentations related to PPIL’s public policy issues.
8. Supervise advocacy interns and volunteers.
9. Assist the Senior Director in compliance with state and federal lobbying and election laws including required reporting to the Illinois Secretary of State, Illinois State Board of Elections, and the Federal Elections Commission. 10. Manage administrative activities related to the functioning of the department.
11. Other duties as assigned.
The physical demand characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to stand, walk, talk, read, see, and hear. The employee is frequently required to use hands and fingers to type, handle, or feel and reach. The employee is regularly required to sit. The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 25 pounds.
Supervisor: Senior Director, Public Policy
Status: Full-time, exempt from the overtime provisions of the wage and salary guidelines
Education: Bachelor’s degree and a minimum three years in legislative, political, or constituent education is required. Demonstrated ability to plan and implement strategic legislative initiatives and manage sensitive political situations. Significant past involvement in reproductive rights and health, or women’s rights, is preferred.
Professional and Personal Qualities: An understanding of the philosophies of Planned Parenthood is essential. A self-starter, with the ability to organize and maintain large amounts of diverse information with attention to detail. Must be able to manage projects from start to finish, demonstrating strong follow through and appropriate confidentiality. Strong interpersonal skills required and a willingness to relate to many different types of people, understanding their needs and motivations while keeping the needs of the agency as the highest priority. Excellent writing skills and proficiency in Microsoft Office, including Excel, Word, and PowerPoint a necessity. Ability to maintain a flexible work schedule that may require some evenings and weekends.
Planned Parenthood of Illinois works affirmatively to include diversity among its workforce and does not discriminate in the selection of its staff on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, sexual orientation, disability, income, marital status, or any other dimension of diversity. We encourage diverse candidates to apply for this position.
About Planned Parenthood of Illinois
We are a trusted health care provider, an informed educator and a passionate advocate. Planned Parenthood of Illinois' 17 health centers throughout the state deliver vital health care services, sex education, and sexual health information to more than 60,000 women and families each year.
For nearly 90 years, building healthy communities has been Planned Parenthood's mission. Everyday, Planned Parenthood of Illinois helps all kinds of people get the health tools and information—and above all the care and compassion they need—to prevent unintended pregnancies or to plan for families when they are ready.