Job Listing: Director of Government Relations, MPP

The Marijuana Policy Project, a fast-paced, well-respected lobbying organization, is seeking a seasoned Director of Government Relations.

The Director of Government Relations should have strong political instincts and solid political or government relations experience, be an excellent manager, and be able to persuasively promote MPP's policy goals.

The overarching goal of the position is to pass medical marijuana legislation in the US Congress, while preventing bad bills from being enacted. The Director of Government Relations' responsibilities are:

1. Managing MPP's direct lobbying efforts in Congress (40% of the job). This includes acting as MPP's primary congressional lobbyist; advising the Executive Director on legislative strategy and tactics; and advancing MPP's congressional priorities, which are:

  • passing the Hinchey-Rohrabacher medical marijuana amendment (to the US Justice Department's spending bill);
  • securing a hearing and vote for the States' Rights to Medical Marijuana Act in the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health;
  • getting the first-ever marijuana de-federalization bill introduced;
  • repealing the Barr amendment, which has been blocking a local medical marijuana ballot initiative from taking effect in the District of Columbia since DC voters passed the initiative in November 1998;
  • eliminating the White House drug czar's office (or at least eliminating its ad campaign);
  • working in coalition with other organizations to repeal the federal civil asset forfeiture laws;
  • maximizing the number of members of Congress who are pressuring the DEA to grant a permit to a proposed medical marijuana production facility at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst; and
  • monitoring other relevant legislative opportunities, such as eliminating the ban on federal financial aid for certain students who are convicted of drug offenses.

2. Working in coalition with (1) approximately 50 medical and religious organizations to persuade them to take action on federal medical marijuana legislation; (2) property rights groups to prevent the DEA from seizing the properties of California landlords who rent to medical marijuana dispensaries that are legal under state law; and (3) environmental organizations to call for the repeal of marijuana prohibition (40% of the job).

3. Overseeing the work of two full-time paid -- and an undetermined number of part-time volunteer -- field organizers who are working to build local "grasstops" coalitions in targeted congressional districts for the purpose of increasing the vote total for the Hinchey-Rohrabacher medical marijuana amendment on the House floor (20% of the job).

The Director of Government Relations manages MPP's national field coordinator, as well as two field organizers (one MPP employee and one MPP grantee).

Through January 2008, the Director of Government Relations also manages MPP's New Hampshire Campaign Manager, who is working to get all Democratic and Republican presidential candidates to take public, positive positions on medical marijuana access. (That position ends with the New Hampshire primary election on January 22, 2008.)

The Director of Government Relations reports to the Executive Director.

In addition to a competitive salary, the position includes full health insurance and an optional retirement package.

To apply, please see MPP's application guidelines. Interviews are being conducted on a rolling basis, so interested candidates are encouraged to apply as soon as possible. MPP is not taking phone calls; rather, all interested candidates should apply by using the process described at the link above.

Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
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