Southern Oregon University is a welcoming community committed to inclusive excellence and the celebration of diversity. Without diversity, our educational process is diminished. Working together in support of our commitment to diversity, we strengthen and enrich our role as learners, educators and members of a tightly connected global community. We encourage those who share in our commitment to diversity, to join our community and we expect all our employees to demonstrate an ability and desire to create an inclusive campus community.
Department: Campus General Counsel
Salary/Rate: $92,335.71-$106,000 @ 1.0 FTE - Salary Commensurate with Experience
The Director of Government Relations is responsible for developing, articulating, and leading the execution of a successful government relations strategy at Southern Oregon University. The Director Reports directly to the General Counsel and works closely with the President and members of the university cabinet.
The Director is the university's lead lobbyist on state, federal, local, and tribal government policy issues and funding. Liaises with the members and staff of the Oregon State Legislature, Office of the Governor, Oregon Congressional Delegation, federal and state government agencies, local community leaders and staff, and tribal leaders and their staff. In coordination with the General Counsel, the Director provides leadership for the SOU administration and Board of Trustees on public policy issues affecting higher education and SOU by providing information and analysis, then developing and implementing advocacy strategies to advance university priorities.
Minimum Classification Qualifications:
Three years of experience in a government affairs position or equivalent
Ability to articulate and advocate for higher education generally and SOU specifically with energy and vision.
Excellent communication and social skills.
Candidate must possess the vision, organizational skills, and understanding of government necessary to create and direct a successful strategic plan.
Demonstrated agility to work diplomatically with various constituencies, including faculty, staff, students, alumni, community members, and elected officials.
Experience with and ability to interact with a diverse population
Experience in Oregon's local government administrative, land use, policy, and funding processes.
Experience in Oregon's administrative, legislative, and funding processes.
Experience with Federal Government administrative, legislative, and funding processes.
Project Management Experience/Certification
All Listed Duties:
The Director acts as the University's lead with elected officials and their staff at the federal, state, local, and tribal government levels and related state agencies.
Establish & maintain relationships with government officials, resulting in high visibility and credibility for the University.
Develop and manage a comprehensive education program for local, state, and federal officials to create awareness of SOU's programs, activities, and initiatives.
Monitor local, state, and federal budget processes as well as administrative and policy matters by tracking legislative policy and appropriations processes; supply relevant information to government officials and staff both as requested and proactively.
Identify current and emerging issues related to higher education, including, research, teaching, or other matters that impact or potentially impact SOU.
Understand the priorities among legislative leaders and key government officials and their impact on SOU or higher education generally.
Schedule, attend, participate, and represent SOU in front of government leaders, public bodies, and strategic partners and at events.
The Director advances the university's strategic priorities in government by fostering a strong network of advocates.
Identify, engage, and mobilize third-party advocates, including alumni, students, and business leaders.
Proactively pursue funding opportunities to advance the campus' strategic priorities.
Create and manage a campus Legislative Action Team (LAT) with representatives from the SOU administration, faculty and classified staff unions, faculty senate, and student government to share university legislative priorities and to collaborate on issues important to each constituency.
Work with advocates for other universities, K-12, higher education associations, representatives of labor unions, and advocates for private and public entities to build coalitions that can advance SOU's strategic priorities.
Represent Southern Oregon University on the Oregon Public University Legislative Advisory Council (LAC), working collaboratively to advance higher education goals in the state. Work with appropriate campus leaders to ensure SOU's participation, expertise, and presence in activities pursued by the LAC.
Engage with government policymakers and influencers to advocate and deliver for the university.
Strategy & Communication
The Director develops and executes a strategic legislative action plan that furthers University priorities.
Work collaboratively with internal and external stakeholders to develop public policy and appropriations/funding priorities for the university.
Develop advocacy strategies and communication materials to advance SOU's priorities and campus goals.
Monitor and provide analysis of legislation and ordinances to determine their policy, legal, and fiscal implications for SOU.
Draft position letters, legislative language, and testimony. Arrange for and prepare witnesses at public hearings, represent the campus at meetings and conferences, and participate in message development for matters with political ramifications.
Develop beneficial policies, positions, and information that align with SOU's goals and objectives in concert with other public university leaders and the Higher Education Coordinating Commission.
Support the university's special projects.
Serve on university committees as necessary.
Other duties as assigned.
Special Instructions to Applicants:
Must be willing to travel and attend training programs off-site for occasional professional development.
Must be able to work additional hours and adjust working hours to meet special jobs. May be called back periodically to perform work as needed on an emergency basis.
Must be able to successfully pass a pre-employment background check.
Under the provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA): -Position classification defined as
SOU provides career-focused, comprehensive educational experiences to over 6,200 students. Along with an emphasis on student success and intellectual growth, SOU is committed to diversity, inclusion and sustainability. Theoretical and experiential learning programs provide quality, innovative experiences for students. At SOU, students build strong community connections through internships, mentorships, field studies, capstone projects, volunteer opportunities and civic engagement.