Job Announcement: Public Policy Counsel

Posted: April 14, 2018

The American Civil Liberties Union of Maryland (ACLU) seeks a dynamic team player to fill the position of Public Policy Counsel.

The Public Policy Counsel is a member of the ACLU of Maryland's Public Policy team and is responsible for working with the Public Policy Director and ACLU staff to advance the ACLU's broad civil liberties agenda-including but not limited to access to justice, criminal justice reform, election fairness and voting rights, freedom of expression, government transparency, police accountability, prisoners' rights, immigrants' rights, equal protection, privacy, racial justice, due process, religious liberty, LGBTQIA, and reproductive rights-before the Maryland General Assembly, the executive branch, local governmental bodies, as well as some work with the Maryland federal delegation.

During the state's legislative session from January through April, the Public Policy Program promotes the legislative agenda, reviews bills, prepares testimony, arranges for hearing witnesses, attends hearings, coordinates advocacy efforts with impacted populations and partner organizations, delivers testimony and advocates for the ACLU's position on pending legislation in Annapolis.

The ACLU is a private, nonprofit organization that defends the civil rights and civil liberties of Marylanders through litigation, legislation, and public education.  The office is collegial; the work is challenging and varied, as well as rewarding.

During the legislative session (January - April), the Counsel will be based in Annapolis and will carry out the following tasks:

  • Identify and track all legislation before the Maryland General Assembly that affects civil liberties;
  • Conduct bill review and analysis;
  • Maintain bill tracking database and hearing schedule;
  • Assist with program organization and operations;
  • Assist with drafting testimony, facts sheets and issue papers;
  • Deliver written and verbal testimony before the General Assembly;
  • Attend hearings, briefings, and other proceedings before the General Assembly;
  • Represent the ACLU of MD at relevant program and coalition meetings and events;
  • Assist with development and support of coalitions;
  • Work to actively elevate the work and leadership of communities directly impacted by injustice;
  • Provide staff support to the Board of Directors' legislative committee;
  • Prepare regular program reports for the legislative committee, staff, members, and Board of Directors;
  • Supervise interns and volunteers; and
  • Perform other related duties as assigned by the Public Policy Director


During the interim (May - December), the Counsel will be based in either Baltimore City or Takoma Park and will carry out the following tasks:

  • Conduct issue-related research and analysis;
  • Develop public and policy-maker education materials;
  • Assist with strategic advocacy efforts at the administrative, local, and national government levels;
  • Coordinate with other program areas to stay current on non-legislative work of the organization, and identify issues that require interdepartmental approaches;
  • Assist with development and support of coalitions;
  • Maintain program calendar and docket;
  • Represent the ACLU of Maryland at relevant meetings;
  • Develop advocacy strategies for the upcoming legislative session;
  • Explore opportunities for supporting efforts led by persons and communities directly impacted by injustice;
  • Monitor the implementation of existing laws;
  • Attend national and regional ACLU training and staff conferences as appropriate;
  • Supervise interns and volunteers; and
  • Perform other related duties as assigned by the Public Policy Director



  • Experience in public policy development, legislative advocacy, organizing or government affairs work;
  • J.D. or substantial experience with legislative analysis is required;
  • Commitment to advancing the ACLU's values, mission, goals and programs, with an understanding of the range of civil liberties issues and their implications;
  • Firm commitment to centering race equity in all aspects of our work;
  • Ability to be proactive, understand the political landscape, and be able to work effectively on issues that require bipartisan support;
  • Exceptional analytical, research, writing and oral advocacy skills, as well as the ability to articulate complex issues and communicate them respectfully and effectively to a variety of audiences;
  • Ability to work independently and keep organized in a fast-paced environment, to manage several projects simultaneously, and to adjust strategy to frequently changing demands;
  • A demonstrated ability to work respectfully and effectively with coalitions and community groups, motivate volunteers, and work across the political spectrum;
  • Values diversity in race, ethnicity, age, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, ability and socio-economic circumstances;
  • Available to work long hours and weekends during the General Assembly's 90-day session;
  • Ability to attend meetings and events in Annapolis and throughout the state,
  • Experience with and demonstrated understanding of Maryland legislative and budget process would be a strong plus;
  • Sense of humor a must


COMPENSATION:   Salary is dependent on experience and qualifications. Excellent benefits offered, including generous health insurance plan, life and long-term disability insurance; 401(k); generous sick, vacation and holiday leave.

TO APPLY:  Submit a cover letter, resume, three professional references and a short, two-page business writing sample here:                        


All applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until the position is filled.  Early applications are strongly encouraged.  It will not be possible for us to accept telephone inquiries.

The ACLU of Maryland is an equal opportunity employer that values diversity and strives for authentic inclusion. We do not discriminate in employment based on any individual's race, socioeconomic status, national origin, color, disability, religion, gender, age, marital status, sexual orientation or gender identity and encourage all candidates to apply.