Policy Director, Great Salt Lake

Job Type

Full Time






Salt Lake City
United States


The Great Salt Lake Policy Director, based in Salt Lake City, Utah, is a member of the National Audubon Society Western Water Initiative team whose goal is to advance balanced solutions to water use in the West to ensure birds, ecosystems, people and economies thrive. Our primary goal is to develop and drive policy outcomes that protect and restore Great Salt Lake as well as other Saline Lakes of the Intermountain West – a network of lakes providing critically important breeding and stopover habitat for millions of migratory birds and supports local and regional economies. The Policy Director will also serve as National Audubon Society’s policy lead in Utah to advise and assist in advancing national policy priorities that support Audubon’s strategic goals.


The Policy Director reports to the Saline Lakes Program Director and collaborates with senior conservation policy leads to develop and execute an agenda that addresses issues impacting the Great Salt Lake and supports other priority policy priorities affecting birds and the places they need in Utah. They also serve as a spokesperson for Audubon and advocate on behalf of Audubon to local, state, and federal government officials, including agency staff and appointed and elected officials.


Candidates should include a cover letter when applying to this position.

Essential Functions

  • In collaboration with the Program Director, develop policy solutions and execute advocacy work to secure conservation goals for the Great Salt Lake at federal, state, and local levels as well as other for other saline lakes as needed in Nevada and Oregon.
  • Stay abreast of federal, state and local legislative and local affairs affecting Audubon’s conservation agenda in Utah.
  • Collaborate with Audubon’s policy and conservation leadership to develop policy and advocacy strategies that accomplish water and conservation-related objectives, advancing both short-term and long-range federal policy goals.
  • Cultivate and sustain productive relationships with legislative staff and key elected and agency officials.
  • Serve as an articulate, enthusiastic and visible ambassador for Audubon in coalitions and in engaging key stakeholders, including government officials, major funders, business leaders and the media to advance conservation efforts.
  • Research and frame public policy positions, including development of briefing papers, talking points, comments, submissions and other written materials, and efforts to externally advance those positions.
  • Oversee planning and implementation of important policy campaigns in collaboration with communications, campaign, and network teams within Audubon.
  • Manage and work effectively with consultants retained for lobbying, policy work, or other technical expertise.
  • Provide real time content in support of Audubon policy objectives for web and social media platforms; be active in the communication and dissemination of Audubon objectives and successes in the policy arena.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Qualifications and Experience

  • Bachelor’s degree in political science, public policy, natural resources or related field required, as well as 7-10 years’ progressive experience working on policy and government relations in business, government or non-profit arena. An equivalent combination of education and experience will be considered.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of, and experience working in, federal, state, and local governmental processes.
  • Strong understanding of current policy trends in Utah and the West related to water, climate change, wildlife, land conservation, agriculture, land planning, and growth and economic development, and experience applying this knowledge to policy advocacy and implementation strongly preferred.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills, with the ability synthesize and interpret technical information for various audiences.
  • Superior relationship-building and interpersonal skills, including demonstrating a proven ability to: collaborate successfully with colleagues across an organization to develop conservation strategies; work easily and effectively with a wide range of people; act diplomatically while exhibiting an understanding and sensitivity to the dynamics of a complex organization.
  • A tech-savvy professional, including proficiency with Microsoft Office applications, social media and other digital engagement tools a must. Experience with donor management tools, such as Salesforce, a plus but not required.
  • Willingness and ability to attend events as needed on weekends or evenings.
  • Passionate about balanced solutions to protect water and other natural resources that are important to ensure that birds, ecosystems and people thrive.
  • A commitment to conservation and Audubon’s mission to protect birds, other wildlife, and their habitat.


Full benefits, to include PTO and a generous 403(b) retirement plan contribution.

Professional Level


Minimum Education Required

4-year degree