Public Affairs Officer

Washington D.C.
Salary range: $48,000-$52,500 (based on experience)
Feb 14, 2018
Mar 12, 2018
Organization Type
Non-Profit and Associations

Ecological Society of America

1990 M Street NW, Suite 700

Washington, DC 20036


Date:                           February 13, 2018

Title:                           Public Affairs Officer

Department:              Public Affairs Office

Supervisor:                Director of Public Affairs

Classification:            Full-time, Exempt

About ESA

The Ecological Society of America, founded in 1915, is the world’s largest community of professional ecologists and a trusted source of ecological knowledge, committed to advancing the understanding of life on Earth. The 9,000 member Society publishes five journals and a membership bulletin and broadly shares ecological information through policy, media outreach, and education initiatives. The Society’s Annual Meeting attracts 4,000 attendees and features the most recent advances in ecological science.

For recent information about the ESA and the Public Affairs Office (PAO), visit the ESA 2017 Annual Report website. To view the most recent PAO Policy News, federal budget tracker, and the federal register tracker, visit the ESA Ecotone blog.

Purpose & Responsibilities

ESA has an excellent career opportunity in our Public Affairs Office (PAO). The Public Affairs Officer is an integral position within PAO. The Public Affairs Officer will be responsible for developing, coordinating and implementing strategies to increase federal funding opportunities for the science of ecology, to provide policymakers with information, and to develop opportunities for members’ policy engagement.

We are seeking a highly-motivated individual who is enthused about working with a dedicated group of individuals who are committed to the science of ecology. Excellent writing and analytical skills are required.

Specific Activities for the Public Affairs Officer

Research and Analysis

  • Work with the Director of Public Affairs to develop policy positions, analyze and respond to federal legislation, regulation, and rulemaking
  • Track federal environmental legislation, the federal budget, and appropriations bills
  • Track Federal Register opportunities
  • Track relevant news developments in Congress, federal agencies, and other settings of interest to ecologists
  • Draft content for science policy letters to lawmakers
  • Represent ESA at coalition meetings, agency meetings, and at other events
  • Actively participate in, and report on, policy discussions of interest to the ecological community
  • Attend and report on relevant congressional committee hearings
  • Special projects as needed


  • Assist with policy briefings
  • Represent ESA in congressional meetings
  • Working with the Director of Public Affairs, organize and coordinate ESA member biannual congressional visits


  • Write and distribute a bi-weekly policy e-newsletter for ESA members
  • Create science policy content for ESA websites, social media and external written products and track analytics
  • Develop and maintain relationships with ESA members interested in science policy
  • Assist in developing policy and communication training workshops and webinars for ESA members
  • Draft policy-related press releases
  • Write blogposts and post to ESA social media accounts
  • Build ESAs annual report webpages


  • Supervise part-time Public Affairs intern/s
  • Assist in coordinating and activating ESA’s Rapid Response Team of experts


  • BA/BS degree with 1-3 years of experience; or recent graduate with MS/MA degree
  • Hill experience or internship is a plus
  • Strong written and verbal skills
  • Excellent organizational skills
  • Ability to perform responsibilities with composure, accuracy, and quality under the stress of deadlines and/or fast pace
  • Ability to read, interpret, analyze, track, and apply legislation to ESA program policies, and make good decisions without daily oversight
  • Effective time-management skills with the ability to handle multiple assignments simultaneously and to plan for both short- and long-term projects
  • Willingness to develop professional relationships with ESA members, policy makers, scientists, and other stakeholders
  • Willingness to learn as needed and follow directions
  • Demonstrated high level of initiative
  • Must enjoy working effectively as part of a team
  • Positive attitude in accomplishing tasks
  • Ability to maintain confidentiality
  • Travel: less than 10%; must be able to travel to the ESA Annual Meeting each August
  • Sense of humor is a plus!


ESA offers a casual work environment, salary range: $48,000-$52,500 (based on experience); a good work-life balance;100 percent employer-paid health insurance; ESA contributes 10 percent of salary to a retirement account after working for six months, and vacation and sick leave.

Application Instructions

Please email a cover letter, a one-page writing sample, and a CV or resume to Alison Mize, at  Please put “PA Officer and your last name” in the email subject line. You may also include your LinkedIn url and any social media handles or pages.

The position is open until filled, but anticipate filling the job quickly.

ESA is an Equal Opportunity Employer and supports an inclusive workplace. Minorities, women, veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply.