Deadline date

Open until filled

The ACLU of Arizona—a leader in the fight against mass incarceration, discrimination in public education, and threats to LGBTQ equality and immigrants’ rights—is seeking a full-time organizer. The Smart Justice Organizer will recruit, train and mobilize people who have first-hand experience with the criminal justice system to help lead our aggressive multi-year advocacy campaign to reduce the U.S. jail and prison population by 50% while combating racism in the criminal justice system.

We are looking for an enthusiastic individual, eager to take on an unparalleled opportunity to be a part of our ACLU of Arizona Smart Justice campaign team who has demonstrated excellent independent judgment, has strong interpersonal and communication skills, and has a proven track record of recruiting and motivating people with first-hand experience with the criminal justice system to invest their time into campaign efforts. Personal experience being incarcerated or in other ways entangled with the criminal justice system is preferred.

We need someone who is energized by being part of the ACLU organization and who knows how to make every volunteer, ally and community partner feel important. Our ideal Smart Justice Organizer sees an opportunity for connection everywhere and enjoys bringing people together to support our campaign and organizational goals.

Reporting to the Smart Justice Campaign Manager, the Smart Justice Organizer will play a key role in leading the ACLU of Arizona’s organizing work around our Campaign for Smart Justice.

This is a full-time position based in our Phoenix office.


  • Recruiting and organizing new people who have been impacted by the criminal justice system to help reform Arizona’s criminal justice system and promote racial justice.
  • Building a base of formerly incarcerated leaders by engaging them in on-going 1:1 meetings, building their skills, developing them as spokespeople, mobilizing them through targeted, strategic actions, and supporting their development as leaders.
  • Developing and carrying out organizing tactics that support the ACLU’s legislative goals, including contacting state elected officials and building the ACLU’s power by increasing the number of core leaders who support our mission.
  • Speaking at events and to small groups on behalf of the ACLU of Arizona.
  • Training core leaders on how to share their stories with decision-makers, members of the press and audiences from across the political spectrum.
  • Planning, conducting, and recruiting core leaders to participate in relevant trainings and programs that develop grassroots leadership and support our advocacy efforts.
  • Supporting community mobilization efforts by collaborating with grassroots leaders, allies, and ACLU of Arizona staff to execute large and effective community actions.
  • Completing and executing work plans.
  • Managing simultaneous projects and shifting priorities.
  • Advancing other ACLU of Arizona priorities through organizing.


  • Two or more years of experience in community/field organizing and leadership development, working directly with volunteers, a membership base, community leaders, or directly impacted people strongly preferred.
  • A history of successful collaboration with people from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds and a broad range of ages, ideological positions, sexual orientations, gender identities and religious views.
  • Exceptional interpersonal, communication, facilitation, training and communication skills.
  • Superb organization skills; detail-oriented with strong follow-through and the ability to meet tight deadlines.
  • Creative, results-oriented, self-starting, and eager to learn new skills.
  • Attention to measurable goals and results.
  • Personal qualities of humility, capacity for self-reflection, and a sense of humor.
  • Fluency in Spanish is preferred.
  • Valid automobile driver’s license and dependable vehicle, and ability to travel around the state as necessary and participate in evening and weekend meetings.
  • Individuals with knowledge of current political alignments and opportunities for collaboration, specifically in Arizona and with a broad range of groups.
  • Individuals who have familiarity with the advocacy and community organizing landscape around the state strongly encouraged to apply.
  • Knowledge of criminal justice policy issues is preferred but not a requirement.


Compensation for this position is negotiable and depends on experience and is highly competitive. Benefits include generous vacation and sick leave, medical and dental insurance, life and long-term disability insurance, defined contribution plan with employer match, and 12 paid holidays.


Send a cover letter explaining your interest in and qualifications for the position as detailed in this announcement, a current resume, and names and contact information of three professional references (including at least one supervisor) by email to info@acluaz.org. Include “Smart Justice Organizer” in the subject line of your email. When submitting your application, please be sure to submit both a cover letter (with a document name formatted as “Last name First name Cover Letter”) and your resume (with document name formatted as “Last name First name Resume”). Please also indicate in your cover letter where you heard of this career opportunity. No phone calls or walk-ins, please.


For nearly 100 years, the ACLU has been at the forefront of every major civil liberties fight in our country’s history. Whether it’s reducing the prison and jail population, achieving full equality for the LGBTQ community, reducing immigration detention, or ending unjust laws that strip people of their fundamental right to vote due to criminal convictions, we take up the toughest civil liberties issues to defend all individuals from government abuse and overreach. With ACLU affiliate offices in all 50 states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico, we fight tirelessly to defend our rights in the courts, influence public policy, and empower communities to advance rights for all. We are a passionate, highly motivated group of lawyers, public policy experts, lobbyists, community organizers, and fundraisers, and we’re looking for exceptional talent to join our team.

This is an incredibly exciting time to join the ACLU. Membership in Arizona has increased from 5,000 before the November 2016 election to over 18,000 today. In celebration of our 100th anniversary in 2020, the ACLU is building a more expansive advocacy infrastructure to increase the ACLU’s effectiveness in achieving its public policy objectives. We’re centering the leadership of impacted people and making space for them to come to the table, meet with decision-makers, and push for reforms. The organization is growing rapidly and has identified critical legal, advocacy, and communications objectives that need proactive campaigns to succeed.

The ACLU of Arizona seeks a talented leader with strong litigation and management skills to lead our pro-active, high-impact legal program, continue to build our in-house litigation capacity, and leverage existing cross-departmental resources to make an even greater impact on the civil liberties landscape in Arizona.

Founded in 1959, the ACLU of Arizona is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, public interest organization dedicated to the defense and expansion of civil liberties and civil rights in Arizona. Our four strategic priority areas are: criminal justice reform, educational equity, LGBTQ equality, and immigrants’ rights. The ACLU of Arizona has 22 staff members, 17 board members, approximately 18,000 members, and an annual budget of $3.2 million, including resources to hire three new positions in FYE 2020.

The ACLU of Arizona is an equal opportunity employer. We value a diverse workforce and an inclusive culture. The ACLU of Arizona encourages applications from all qualified individuals without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, disability, veteran status or record of arrest or conviction.