DEPARTMENT:   Independent Living                             

REPORTS TO:  IL Senior Manager

STATUS:  Full-time; salaried exempt

Position summary:

This position is designed to develop leadership skills around systems change and advocacy for individuals with disabilities within the communities of our six county regions for increasing access by removing barriers and developing community advocates.   The Manager will assist the Senior Manager, Independent Living Director and CEO with the development and implementation of a Strategic Plan for advocacy activities in alignment with the agency’s strategic plan and have a strong background in Community Organizing techniques and training.   Oversees the day-to-day operations of the Advocacy Program at the direction of the Senior Manager of Independent Living and Director of Independent Living.  Identify people with disabilities in our catchment areas who are interested in advocacy activities, work with them to identify needs that are experienced by community members and provide training and mentoring for leaders to address priorities for systems change. Serve as the Staff Liaison for the Board of Directors’ Advocacy Committee.

Minimum Qualifications:

  • Prefer a Baccalaureate Degree in Human Services, Social Services or related field.
  • Experience and a desire to work with people with disabilities.
  • Prefer some Leadership/Managerial Experience.
  • Prefer experience in advocacy, lobbying and/or community organizing in civil rights issues, disability issues preferred.
  • Proficient with computer, including, Word, Excel, Power Point and Outlook.
  • The capacity to treat individuals with disabilities in a respectful and dignified manner which supports and empowers their capacity for independence.
  • The ability to arrange transportation and travel independently including the ability to travel freely throughout The IC catchment area as needed.
  • Demonstrates THE IC’s core values of Inclusiveness, Flexibility, Person First, Accountability and Integrity and essential team virtues of Humble, Hungry and Smart.

Essential Functions/Areas of Accountability:

  1. Develop and implement group and community level interventions that organize and mobilize communities to improve the capacity of people with disabilities to live independently through changes in public policy, in line with the philosophy, mission and goals of the independent living program.
  2. Assist the CEO, Director, Senior Manager and Board Advocacy Committee in developing a strategic plan for advocacy in The IC’s 6 county regions to include the development of action plans, project timelines and evaluation processes which focus on supporting participants involved with advocacy initiatives.
  3. Represent The Independence Center in the media as directed by the CEO and Marketing Department in order to advocate for systems change issues. May include developing relationships with media contacts, organizing media stories, directly representing the organization and preparing staff and consumers to be media spokespersons on specific issues.
  4. Directly lobby and/or educate at the local, state and national levels as needed to further the organization’s policy priorities as directed by the CEO or Director. Be flexible to change direction as lobbying demands arise. Will attend legislative sessions, testify before the legislature, and work with elected officials, agencies, and organizations to develop and promote legislation and programs that will benefit people who have disabilities.
  5. Oversee the daily function of the department to include staff management, orientation/training of new employees and facilitate the ongoing training to ensure IL staff have the information they need to fulfill their job duties. Complete yearly evaluations as well as assist in the process of developing and preparing staff for future opportunities, craft job descriptions, implement and monitor staff goals and provide general staff support as needed.
  6. Assist the Senior Manager with developing a budget for the IL Program, ensure program budgets are met and IL staff understands their individual budgets.  Utilize proper requisition forms and ensure coding is completed accurately.
  7. Have a working knowledge of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Rehabilitation Act, and Fair Housing as it relates to the organizing project at hand. Research policy and political setting of systems change initiatives at the local, state, and national level.
  8. Develop and build a base of citizen support to increase support for initiatives and legislation at the local, state and national levels and provide leadership to interested advocacy participants. This includes development of advocacy trainings and opportunities for achieving self-identified goals of participants and working in conjunction with IL staff to understand consumer needs and barriers.
  9. Serve as the Staff Liaison for the Board Advocacy Committee. Support the Advocacy Committee Chair with the development of a consumer-driven Committee that will define policy priorities for the organization and provide leadership development opportunities for Advocacy Committee members.
  10. Responsible for holding weekly staff meetings to maintain communication with IL staff and build and maintain a strong IL team. Attend monthly All staff meetings.
  11. Mentor IL staff and team as needed to develop approaches to systems advocacy issues, including training opportunities and cross-programmatic collaboration.
  12. Maintains appropriate records and documentation of services, related data and information according to process and policy.
  13. Work with the Marketing Department as needed to educate the public to advance initiatives via social media outlets (Facebook, Twitter, and Blog Posts) and through publications, company newsletter, website, etc.
  14. Work with Development Department to support organization activities in alignment with systems change priorities; includes assistance with grant applications, community collaborations and event planning.
  15. Maintain confidentiality as outlined in the employee handbook.
  16. Performs other related duties and responsibilities as deemed necessary.

 Skills and Abilities:

  • Personal experience with a disability and knowledge of the Independent living movement is desirable.
  • Ability to network and assess the community for barriers to people with disabilities.
  • Excellent Interpersonal and communication skills.
  • Ability to write routine reports, assessments and related correspondence.
  • The capacity to empower individuals with disabilities to advocate for themselves.
  • Ability to multi-task in a fast-paced environment.
  • Able to work with minimum supervision.

Physical/Environmental Requirements:

  • Office environment requiring ongoing computer use and extended amount of time sitting or standing.
  • Considerable regional travel may be required.
  • Reasonable accommodations may be made to empower a qualified candidate with a disability to perform the essential functions of the job.

This position may also require the performance of other duties as assigned.

If you are qualified and wish to apply, please route your resume and salary expectations along with a cover letter addressing your alignment with the minimum qualifications to  Responses must be received by Friday, June 8, 2018.

EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITYThe Independence Center is dedicated to the principles of equal employment opportunity.  We prohibit unlawful discrimination against applicants or employees on the basis of age 40 and over, race, sex, color, religion, national origin, disability, military status, genetic information, or any other status protected by applicable state or local law. Reasonable accommodations may be made to empower a qualified candidate with a disability to perform the essential functions of the job.