AFT Washington

AFT Washington

Government Relations Specialist

Based in Tukwila, WA

POSITION: Government Relations Specialist. AFT Washington is excited to offer the opportunity to engage with legislators, community allies, and our membership around developing and forwarding our legislative agenda. This position is responsible for driving our legislative and policy program on behalf of AFT Washington’s membership including researching and drafting policy that supports our legislative, bargaining, and other strategic agendas.

Date Posted: October 2, 2019

Résumés accepted until: November 1, 2019

Annual Salary: $60,689 to $76,886 DOE and in accordance with a CBA

Under the supervision of the President, and as part of the Advocacy Team, the Government Relations Specialist will be responsible for driving AFT Washington’s legislative agenda through researching and drafting policy, engaging our members and community allies, and developing strategies for reaching our strategic goals:

  • Identify and research professional issues of the membership and recommend best approaches for addressing them, e.g., lobbying, policy, bargaining, etc.
  • Develop a legislative agenda, including writing legislation, by working with AFT Washington committees, councils, locals, executive board, other unions, and community partners.
  • Plan and implement AFT Washington’s strategy to achieve legislative goals in conjunction with the executive board, Legislative Affairs Committee, and other staff.
  • Contribute to the legislative communications strategy of AFT Washington.
  • Staff the Legislative Affairs Committee.
  • Advocate AFT Washington’s legislative priorities when the legislature is out of session.
  • Lobby for AFT Washington’s legislative agenda during the legislative session.
  • Identify, recruit, and prepare members and leaders to testify before committees on behalf of the legislative agenda.
  • Assess effectiveness and report on the success of our legislative program.
  • Assess legislators and prepare a report on their performance relative to our legislative priorities.
  • Facilitate member participation in government studies, committees, and commissions.
  • Represent AFT Washington at and monitor the activities of state agencies that have direct decision-making impact on members, e.g., The State Board for Community and Technical Colleges, The Washington Student Achievement Council, the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, SEBB, Health Care Authority.
  • Build partnerships and collaborate with education advocacy groups and coalitions that have values, mission, and goals congruent with those of AFT Washington.
  • Work with the State Affiliate Political Organizer (SAPO) to develop a Committee On Political Education (COPE) endorsement process, and implement off-session meetings with legislators.
  • Provide support for events as assigned.
  • Other related duties as assigned.


  • A minimum of 3 years of experience researching, developing, and moving legislative and policy agendas, including experience in Washington State.
  • Alignment with the values of unionism and the labor movement.
  • Experienced in developing, planning, and implementing legislative campaigns.
  • Experienced in developing and maintaining community relationships with diverse groups and constituencies.
  • Familiarity with the Washington State budget process.
  • Commitment to AFT’s mission and to public education.
  • Committed to equity, diversity, and inclusion and knowledgeable about strategies to dismantle institutionalized oppression.
  • Willingness and ability to work evenings and weekends.
  • Ability to travel locally and statewide. Must have access to a car and be licensed and able to drive.
  • Proficient with computers and MS Office software, including Outlook, Word, and Excel.
  • Be solution-oriented and independently motivated to act on opportunities to forward our legislative agenda.


  • High-quality medical, dental, vision, AD&D insurance.
  • Employer-paid pension plan.
  • 4 weeks paid vacation during the first year of employment.
  • 12 paid holidays plus 2 floating holidays.

The first nine (9) months of employment shall be probationary.
This position is represented by Teamsters Local 117.

To Apply
Please forward résumé and three references to:

James To, Operations Manager
AFT Washington, AFL-CIO
Attn: Government Relations Specialist Position
625 Andover Park West, Suite 111
Tukwila, WA 98188
Fax: 206-242-3131
E-mail: jto@aftwa.org

For questions, please contact James To by email or at 206-495-5967.

AFT Washington is an equal opportunity employer and encourages all qualified applicants to apply. The organization strives to eradicate all forms of oppression and achieve equity for all. Equity, diversity, and inclusion are essential organizational goals which are incorporated into the hiring process. All applicants will be assessed with consideration of their understanding of institutionalized oppression and strategies for addressing it.

WHEN APPLYING: Be sure to indicate that you saw this information at UNIONJOBS.COM.