Deputy Director of Public Policy & Advocacy
The Arc of Texas (The Arc) creates opportunities for all Texans with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) to actively participate in their communities and make the choices that affect their lives. Since our founding in 1950, The Arc at the local, state, and national level has been instrumental in the creation of virtually every program, service, right, and benefit that is now available to over one million Texans with IDD. Today, The Arc is primarily a public policy and advocacy organization that continues to advocate for including people with IDD in all aspects of society.

Position Summary

This position requires an individual committed to the cause of promoting, protecting, and advocating for the human rights and self-determination of Texans with disabilities. The Deputy Director of Public Policy & Advocacy (The Deputy) position helps support our public policy & advocacy initiatives to expand The Arc’s strategic visibility and inclusive community of self-advocates, family members of people with disabilities, allies, local chapters of The Arc, organizations, and advocates. The Deputy will be expected to have experience in the political process and have dynamic skills and effective relationships to be a key leader of the public policy & advocacy function of the organization.

The Ideal Candidate

  • Possess a strong executive presence while demonstrating exceptional written and verbal communication skills.
  • Demonstrates a non-partial, unbiased perspective in political environments.
  • Expresses analytical and political acumen to understand how legislative and regulatory decisions impact individuals with IDD and provide policy consultation and proposals in key areas of interest.
  • Execute a high degree of judgement and tact.

This role requires experience with government and regulatory agencies, political affairs, public policy, grassroots advocacy, social justice, and working alongside people with disabilities. This position will report to The Arc of Texas’ Director of Public Policy & Advocacy and will be second in command of the Public Policy & Advocacy Department. The Arc’s office is in Austin, Texas – the Deputy must be located in the Austin metropolitan area within their first 60 days of employment.

Primary Duties and Responsibilities

  1. Support the overall public policy & advocacy activities of The Arc to advance its Mission, policies, and positions.
    • Track, research, analyze new & revised legislation, conduct issue analysis; intervene in state legislative, executive, and agency developments that impact our constituency.
    • Coordinate with committees, staff, and members to develop biennial policy goals and advocacy tactics.
    • Coordinate with staff to identify, analyze, and monitor policy issues effecting Texans with IDD across our core issue areas.
    • Attend and/or coordinate with the department coverage of meetings of the Texas Legislature, state agencies, and other relevant stakeholder meetings.
    • In conjunction with the Communications & Marketing Department, support advocacy-related communications with internal and external stakeholders.
  2. Help ensure Local Chapters, members, and other stakeholders are informed and involved in policy decisions and advocacy efforts.
    • Serve as a liaison between The Arc, grassroots members, the legislature, state agencies, and other stakeholder groups.
    • Assist chapters and grassroots members in understanding and fulfilling their roles in working with their legislators on core issue areas.
    • Help witnesses connected to The Arc prepare and deliver legislative testimony or appear before and participate in state agency committees.
    • Develop trainings and educational materials in conjunction with Public Policy & Advocacy staff on policy issues, services and supports, and advocacy.
    • Facilitate and empower allies to participate in systems advocacy.
  3. Assist with and inform programs related to public policy & advocacy activities.
    • Support the sustainability and success of existing grant projects.
    • Support fundraising efforts & prospects for new opportunities to expand the efforts of The Arc.
    • Provide technical assistance, research, analysis, and networking in correlation to policy expertise and strengths.
    • Assist with compliance of funding agreements including reporting requirements and development of continuation applications.
  4. Other duties as assigned by the Director of Public Policy & Advocacy and CEO.

Qualifications for the Deputy Director of Public Policy & Advocacy

  • Leadership experience, including demonstrated ability to motivate others to advance goals, and the ability to effectively manage multiple projects or roles.
  • Excellent analytical ability, including demonstrated experience with legislative or regulatory issues or activities.
  • Ability to work with members in the development of policy goals and deployment of advocacy tactics with the aim of furthering The Arc’s priorities.
  • Understanding of legislative processes and regulatory programs that impact The Arc’s mission and its stakeholders.
  • Ability to navigate high-impact and complex situations.
  • An eagerness to execute a hands-on approach to build credibility, relationships, and knowledge.
  • Outstanding personal communicator with the stature and presence to represent the organization at presentations and events, legislative and administrative arenas with stakeholders, partners, and other avenues.
  • The ability to persuasively communicate complex concepts and programs into concise and credible messages.
  • Professional presence and strong verbal, written and public speaking and presentation skills, for both internal and external audiences.
  • A collaborative style, interactive with the courage and conviction to challenge and defend ideas and strategies; ability to offer creative pathways or alternative solutions both internally and externally.
  • Excellent analytical and organizational skills.
  • Connection to and experience working with or for underserved populations, particularly people with disabilities.

Educational and Professional Requirements

  • Graduation from an accredited four-year college or university with major course work in public policy, political science, public relations, sociology, social work, or other related fields.
  • At least four (4) years of professional experience, successfully supporting and managing public policy and advocacy initiatives. Prior work with individuals with disabilities and families is preferred.

Working Conditions

  • Approximately 22 co-workers in relatively close quarters.
  • Approximately 60% of this job will take place remotely, with approximately 20% occurring in-office, and remaining 20% in community-based settings (e.g., committee hearing at State Capitol, public meeting at state agency, etc.).
  • Job requires The Deputy to relate to representatives of other organizations who do not support, or outright oppose, our positions. Such relationships cause stress.
  • Occasional weekend or night work is required. During legislative session (every two years), extra night and weekend work may be required.
  • Compensation and Benefits

    Salary Range: $60,000 – $72,500 annually (commensurate with experience)

    The Arc values its employees, and as such, strives to offer a competitive total compensation package which includes both cash compensation and benefits. This position is eligible to participate in the following benefits.

    • Employer sponsored health and dental insurance
    • Retirement plan benefits and employer matching up to 5%
    • Eighteen (18) days of vacation leave each year (accrued by pay period)
    • Twelve (12) days sick leave each year (accrued by pay period)
    • Employer paid long-term disability, short-term disability, and life insurance benefits
    • The Arc observes sixteen (16) days of holiday which includes a weeklong winter break
    • Application Process

      To apply, please email your resume, cover letter, and professional references to accounting@thearcoftexas.org with the subject line “Deputy Director of Public Policy & Advocacy.” Recruitment agency inquiries will not be considered. Applicants who are applying with accommodations will receive individual instructions and assistance.