Lead Organizer

Posted by
Riders Alliance
New York, NY
Published 28 days ago

The Riders Alliance fights for reliable, affordable and world-class public transit in order to build a more just and sustainable New York. We organize subway and bus riders to build grassroots power across racial, economic, and neighborhood lines: holding our elected officials accountable, engaging the public, and taking direct action to guarantee that riders have a powerful voice in the decisions that affect us.

The Lead Organizer is responsible for mobilizing a grassroots base of subway and bus riders, and leading ambitious federal, state, and city campaigns to drive transit policy wins and hold elected officials accountable to what riders need. The ideal candidate is an experienced and creative organizer, and a strategic thinker capable of producing consistent, high-quality work in a fast-paced and exciting environment. As we work to radically reimagine the role and power of public transit in NYC’s recovery, it is a critical moment to expand our base and bring rider organizing to its next ground shifting level.

The Riders Alliance has won important progress for public transit in New York, including Fair Fares, billions of dollars in new funding to fix the subway through North America’s first congestion pricing plan, and a bold reimagining of the city’s local bus service. Most recently, we won over $15 billion in federal relief funding to rescue NYC’s transit system from immediate catastrophe due to COVID-19 and to ensure the millions of New Yorkers who rely on buses and subways every day don’t lose their service. 

The Lead Organizer will be an outspoken leader and an experienced changemaker. Reporting to the Deputy Director, they will be responsible for the following:

  • Build an organized base of grassroots leaders. Drive the growth of membership and grassroots community leadership for the organization, building deep relationships with member leaders, and working with community members and leaders to determine goals and strategy.
  • Manage effectively. Supervise and coach organizing staff, interns, and volunteers to set strategic goals, win vital policy campaigns, and build a powerful organization of transit riders. Invest in relationships with staff and model a performance-oriented culture.
  • Be a public leader. Represent the organization with a variety of audiences and act as a key spokesperson to boldly advance our advocacy agenda. 
  • Build political power. Build relationships with elected officials, media, coalition allies, and other constituencies to influence the agenda and win improvements in service. Help the organization build a broad network of allies for public transit. 
  • Assist in setting campaign strategy and goals. Work closely with the Deputy Director and senior staff to develop campaign goals, strategy, and plans, and identify promising transit campaigns in targeted communities. 
  • Be inclusive. Recognize and appreciate different ways of working and being.
  • Integrate new ideas and work. Model constant learning from other movements, advocates, and models to incorporate into our organizing work. 

Required Qualifications:

  • A minimum of 5 years in community, labor, or political organizing, where you have demonstrated success in managing campaigns, developing leadership, and recruiting members and retaining members.
  • A record of executing successful campaigns in diverse settings, including in low-income communities and communities of color.
  • Excellent people skills: ability to quickly build relationships, to listen to and persuade people, and to engage people effectively around a common goal.
  • Experience supervising staff, with a strong ability to coach and develop staff leadership.
  • Strong leadership presence and persuasive communications skills, particularly public speaking and presentation skills.
  • Ability to work effectively with people of different cultures and backgrounds.
  • Bachelor's degree or equivalent work experience.
  • Self-motivated individual able to work independently under strategic supervision from the Deputy Director.
  • Commitment to racial, gender and economic justice and their intersections, both inside and outside organizations.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Ability to fluently speak language(s) other than English.
  • Familiarity with communities throughout New York City.

Job Features:

  • Full-time position. Hours will require regular in-city travel, evening meetings, and occasional weekend and off-hours work.
  • Full benefits: excellent health, dental, 401(k) match, paid time off.

How to Apply:

  • Send a resume and cover letter detailing your experience in local politics and community campaigns to
  • Applications are considered on a rolling basis; early applications are encouraged.

The Riders Alliance is an equal opportunity employer, and we strongly encourage candidates from diverse backgrounds to apply for the position.

The Riders Alliance fights for reliable, affordable and world-class public transit in order to build a more just and sustainable New York. We organize subway and bus riders to build grassroots power across racial, economic, and…

Details at a Glance

  • Time Commitment
    Full Time Schedule
  • Professional Level


Temporarily Remote
Work must be performed in or near New York, NY
Associated Location
New York, NY, USA

Join Idealist

Sign up today to save your favorite jobs and get email alerts when new ones are posted.