Performance as Director of Government Relations & Public Policy will be evaluated on the basis of overall effectiveness lobbying the Council and DC Government Executive officials to advance Chamber objectives and effectiveness in assisting the Chamber President/CEO and the Board in achieving desired policy goals.
We anticipate that the individual who is selected for this position will have a critical role in transforming the advocacy work of the organization. The Chamber is seeking an exceptional candidate who fully embraces and is committed to the mission and vision of the organization.
Duties and Responsibilities
The Director of Government Relations & Public Policy exercises primary responsibility within the DC Chamber of Commerce for developing, recommending and executing policy initiatives; representing the President and the Chamber as appropriate and for recommending and implementing solutions to local, government and business, and economic development issues that affect Chamber members and the entire business sector.
Track, digest and report on DC Council legislation and DC government initiatives, including the budget, using a variety of available public and private sources of information, as requested;
Support President & CEO in consistently developing and sustaining strong and productive relationships with DC Councilmembers and staff, and DC executive agencies -- including the Executive Office of the Mayor and the Office of Policy and Legislative Affairs;
Lobby DC Council members and staff on a regular basis to achieve desired legislative outcomes, and regularly communicate pertinent information back to the Chamber;
Develop and take advantage of reliable sources of intelligence that will allow the Chamber to become aware of important public policy proposals well before they are formally proposed;
Proactively develop, recommend and deploy strategies to begin countering/supporting legislative and/or regulatory initiatives in advance of their formal introduction;
Lobby appropriate DC Administration staff members and/or pertinent agency heads to drive government initiatives and achieve desired policy outcomes;
Prepare timely and persuasive testimony accurately representing the Chamber’s position on pertinent legislative and regulatory initiatives;
Represent the Chamber in coalitions and working groups, as requested;
Assist in the preparation of the annual State of Business Report and be the lead organizer of the State of the District event;
Collaborate and lead as requested in program development for the Chamber’s Policy and Economic Forums;
Meet with and, as requested, present to the Chamber’s Board of Directors and its Executive and Government Affairs Committees on pertinent advocacy matters;
Agendize and lead various issue-specific business advocacy coalition meetings, as requested;
Integrate strong policy analysis into effective advocacy efforts;
Build, sustain and, as requested, lead successful advocacy coalitions, both within and beyond the Chamber membership;
Monitor and analyze federal and regional legislative efforts, as requested;
Act as the Board Liaison and coordinate Board Meetings and other Board convenings; and,
Perform other duties as assigned.
Reports to the President/CEO of the DC Chamber of Commerce and receives assignments in terms of overall objectives and goals. Utilizes considerable judgment and discretion in the execution of assignments, and in determining the appropriate methodology and approach. Consults with the President/CEO and/or Chair of the Board on matters involving broad policy implications and/or potentially controversial issues.
Guidelines are provided in the form of orally provided broad statements of policy goals and objectives from the President/CEO, Chairman of the Board or Board of Directors of the DC Chamber from which the incumbent must exercise a significant degree of independent judgment and discretion in achieving desired results.
Issues dealt with have potential for becoming controversial in press, District of Columbia Council, Congress or the public. The Director’s duties involve often complex matters of government regulation, law, Council intent, congressional intent and legislative history.
Scope and Effect
Performance as a spokesperson, representative and advocate of the DC Chamber of Commerce has an impact on the presentation and results of policy and legislation concerning the Chamber members and the entire business community in the District of Columbia.
On frequent basis, the incumbent meets Government Relations & Public Policy representatives of the Circle Partners, member businesses and other organizations on matters of mutual concern to the Chamber, business community, DC Council, District of Columbia Government and the U.S. Congress. Regular contact is made with other influential members of the public and private sectors.
Purpose of Contact
Contacts are made for the purpose of representing and advancing the Chamber’s policy and legislative interests, acquiring and imparting information concerning DC Council actions, congressional activities, DC government initiatives and resolving conflicts on issues affecting the Chamber, its membership and the DC business community.
The Chamber is an exciting, collegial and fast-paced work environment. We provide our employees with a demanding but supportive environment where they can develop critical new skills and expertise. The work is primarily performed in an office setting but includes extensive opportunities to work with high-level advocacy stakeholders from across the region. Work outside the office includes participation in conferences and meetings in various government offices, DC Council offices, congressional offices, or other meeting facilities.
The Chamber’s core hours are from 9 AM to 5 PM, Monday through Friday. Candidate must be flexible in some instances where additional work time is required (i.e., legislative and committee hearings, Chamber work events).
The DC Chamber is an equal opportunity employer. Applications from women, individuals with disabilities, veterans, and people of diverse cultural backgrounds are encouraged.
Knowledge and skills needed include:
Extensive knowledge of the legislative, budgetary and management procedures and processes on the local, regional or federal levels;
Understanding of the legislative process and extensive legislative and policy analysis experience;
General knowledge of the policies, positions and priorities of the President/CEO and Board of Directors of the DC Chamber of Commerce, including a keen grasp of their interrelationships with the DC Government and the DC business community;
General knowledge of issues impacting the business community in the District of Columbia;
Sensitivity and skill with respect to policy actions that are frequently complex and/or controversial;
Tact and good judgment when dealing with local, regional and national officials and influencers;
Ability to adapt and respond quickly to rapid legislative and policy developments;
Ability to provide sound and authoritative advice to President/CEO, Chairman, Board of Directors and Committee Members;
Ability to analyze, summarize and grasp complex legislation and policy initiatives including: congressional statutes applicable to the District of Columbia; pertinent Federal regulations and policies; Mayor’s orders, regulations, and policies; City Council legislation; practices among state and local government bodies; and practices and procedures of neighboring jurisdictions and regional bodies;
Ability to develop and execute customized strategies for, and implementation of, effective Chamber advocacy outreach to public officials, members, influencers and the broader business community;
Strong interpersonal skills;
Superior oral and written communication skills;
Transformative leadership skills; and,
Exceptional persuasive skills.
Minimum of 5 years’ direct experience
Experience building and sustaining successful advocacy coalitions
Experience integrating strong policy into effective advocacy efforts
Extensive legislative and policy analysis experience
The DC Chamber of Commerce is the largest Chamber in the Washington DC region. As an advocate for the DC business community for 81 years, the DC Chamber of Commerce is the voice for businesses in the District of Columbia, proudly serving a diverse membership of more than 1,400 members. For more information, visit https://www.dcchamber.org.