American Heart Association Government Relations Director - Nashville, TN in Nashville, Tennessee

Government Relations Director - Nashville, TN

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Job Description

Are you ready to join an organization where you can make an extraordinary impact every day?

Imagine all Americans enjoying ideal cardiovascular health free of heart disease and stroke. At the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association, we get to work toward that goal every day. Is it easy? No. Is it worthwhile? Absolutely.

This is satisfying and challenging work that makes a real difference in people's lives. We are where you can achieve professional growth with personal fulfillment. We are where you can connect people to making a lifesaving impact. We are where you can partner with individuals, schools, lawmakers, healthcare providers and others to ensure everyone has access to healthier lifestyle choices and proper healthcare.

The American Heart Association is where you can make an extraordinary impact. The American Heart Association (AHA) has an excellent opportunity for an Advocacy Director to service the state of Tennessee. The Tennessee Government Relations Director will serve as the primary representative of the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association to the Governor, Legislature, state agencies, other lobbyists, other elected officials, key partners and stakeholder groups to generate awareness and support for the American Heart Association’s public policy priorities. Provides support for the American Heart Association’s federal and local policy priorities. Works with local volunteers and staff to help build grassroots support for the AHA’s public policy issues. Collaborates with coalitions and AHA partners to build support for public policy issues. Provides expertise and assistance with the American Heart Association’s Major Gifts team and external partners to identify and secure funding opportunities for public policy campaigns. Serves as a content expert on public policy, political nuances and realities, grassroots strategy and other appropriate tactics for the staff and volunteers in Tennessee. Shares best practices and successful strategies with AHA colleagues in other states and departments for team success.

Primary Responsibilities :

  • Responsible for overall AHA state-level policy work and planning in Tennessee, helping to create, lead and execute strategies for policy success.

  • Serve as the primary registered lobbyist in an assigned geographic location and be present for all pertinent legislative meetings and critical regulatory action.

  • Serve as the primary point of contact for legislators, executive branch decision makers, local decision makers and other policy makers in geographic area.

  • Monitors state and local legislative and regulatory issues of concern to the AHA/ASA and apprises appropriate volunteers and staff of emerging advocacy issues.

  • Represents the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association before decision making bodies; including but not limited to providing testimony at public meetings; prepping champions sponsors and staff; providing letters of support or other written materials; and direct lobbying of key decision makers.

  • Work with Community Health Director, Government Relations Director, to coordinate local and state campaigns as identified and directed.

  • Recruit, organize and manage the Tennessee State Advocacy Committee to help advance policy priorities.

  • Coordinates the agenda and meetings of the State Advocacy Subcommittee.

  • Identify legislative priorities in conjunction with state advocacy committee to advance AHA policy issues.

  • Submits periodic updates and reports on the status of issues including how legislators stand or voted on the AHA’s issues.

  • Checks hearing schedules and daily calendars for meetings and deadlines of interest to the AHA/ASA, and attends key legislative and agency hearings and helps to arrange testimony when necessary.

  • Attends and participates in relevant meetings throughout the year, including division public advocacy committees, market meetings and local team meetings.

  • Assists in recruiting key contacts and building the grassroots network.

  • Assists in researching issues, developing support materials, recruiting spokespersons, preparing testimony, and other activities as needed to advance the AHA’s advocacy issues.

  • Coordinate with communication team members to develop media advocacy strategy in support of our public policy efforts.

  • Assists with advocacy presentations and training opportunities as needed.

  • Helps coordinate lobby days, rallies, press conferences, and other advocacy events.

  • Serve as a highly reliable and effective coalition partner with state and local coalitions and similar policy goals at the AHA.

  • Seeks out other organizations, coalitions, companies, and government agencies to leverage partnership opportunities to advance the AHA’s advocacy issues.

  • Develops strategic campaign plans, media advocacy plans and grassroots plans for key public policy priorities.

  • Provide regular updates on lobbying and policy activities to supervisor, staff, coalition colleagues, and volunteers.

  • Monitors funding opportunities for advocacy work and writes grant proposals and applications to help secure and expand advocacy resources.

  • Manage or assist with the management of grants or grant funds provided to support direct lobbying activities, grassroots activities, policy activities, or any other activities which support our public policy goals and objectives.

  • Directly manages state-level contract lobbyist(s) and works to create RFPs and organize screening process for lobbyist hiring, as needed.

  • Ability to represent AHA policy issues without conflicts.

  • Assists with the identification and development of potential donors and sponsors to the AHA.

Required Experience

  • Bachelor's degree or equivalent experience in political science, public administration, social science, health policy, health education or other relevant area of study.

  • At least 4 years relevant work experience in two or more of the following areas: legislative/lobbying, political campaigns, volunteer recruitment, media advocacy or public policy/government relations.

  • Knowledge of the advocacy/legislative process at the community, local, state, and federal levels.

  • Proven ability to recruit, train, coach, guide, and motivate volunteers to achieve objectives.

  • Must understand the principles of positioning and framing as it relates to the advancement of policy change.

  • Superior organizational, interpersonal, and communication (verbal and written) skills.

  • Knowledge of the principles and practices of strategic planning, budgeting, and managing work.

  • Excellent, written, verbal, and social media communication skills.

  • Excellent computer skills (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Skype, SharePoint, Workday)

  • Ability to travel up to 25%, including overnight, throughout the assigned territory.

  • Ability to work flexible hours including evenings and weekends, when necessary.

  • Ability to work independently and sometimes irregular hours.

  • Attention to detail and drive for excellence

  • Ability to live 30 pounds.

  • Campaign and staff management experience preferred.

To view this and all other job postings, please visit our website at at

NOTE: Candidates must apply on-line as the AHA recruitment process does not permit faxed or hard copy resumes. (You will receive an automated response notifying you your resume has been received.) Only those selected to interview will be contacted directly. All other resumes will remain in our database for future reference.

The American Heart Association will not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment because of age, race, color, religion, sex, gender identity, national origin, disability, veterans’ status, sexual orientation, marital status or based on political or religious opinions or affiliations, membership or non-membership in employee organizations

Attracting talented, committed employees means offering a competitive benefits package, ongoing professional development and training, and a diverse and inclusive environment in which to work and grow. We offer a wide range of outstanding, competitive benefits, including: comprehensive health benefits (medical/dental/vision insurance), retirement plan with generous employer contributions, 12 paid holidays per year, paid time off, flexible spending accounts and a Fit-Friendly, smoke-free work environment.

Job Location

Nashville, Tennessee, United States

Position Type


Job Category: Advocacy

EOE Minorities/Females/Protected Veterans/Disabled