Government Affairs Director

About IEC

The Illinois Environmental Council Education Fund (IECEF), and its affiliate, the Illinois Environmental Council (IEC), promote sound environmental laws and policies, provide a forum for environmentalists and facilitate a statewide activist network. IECEF engages in legislative monitoring and analysis; outreach, organizing, and coalition building; and communication and education. IEC performs legislative advocacy and builds power for people and the environment.

About the Position

The Illinois Environmental Council Education Fund (IECEF) is looking to fill an opening that was previously held by our federal policy director.  The Government Affairs Director will be primarily responsible for tracking federal legislation and building relationships with federal elected officials and their staff in Illinois, but will also oversee IEC’s team that is responsible for state and city of Chicago lobbying.

Previous experience with advocacy is required. 

This position will be located in Chicago, IL or Springfield, IL, and is hybrid, with two days required in office per week. The position is full-time and will include frequent travel to Springfield, IL, and some travel to other locations in the state.

About You

We’re looking for a self-motivated individual who is excited by the challenge of addressing the biggest challenges facing Illinois by bringing together diverse stakeholders. You should be a hard-working individual that is excited to take on any task.

We are a small, dynamic team that relies on each other to produce high-quality work.

You are excited about building the power of the Illinois environmental community to pass strong environmental laws.  You like to work collaboratively with other organizations and community leaders.

We strongly encourage candidates of all different backgrounds and identities to apply. Each new hire is an opportunity for us to bring in a different perspective, and we are always eager to further diversify our company. IEC/IECEF is committed to building an inclusive, supportive place for you to do the best and most rewarding work of your career.


  • Follow federal legislation, rules, and regulations, and evaluate their potential impact on Illinois environmental issues with an emphasis on impacts to frontline, low-income, and BIPOC communities.
  • Track federal funding opportunities for the state of Illinois with a particular focus on the recent Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and the Inflation Reduction Act.
  • Communicate relevant information about federal legislation, rules, regulations, funding, and programs to IEC partners and members.
  • Coordinate with partner organizations to develop strategies and implement tactics, such as congressional meetings, letters to the editor, action alerts, and other grassroots organizing opportunities.
  • Contribute to IEC’s public messaging and serve as the main spokesperson with respect to our federal work.
  • Oversee IEC’s lobbying efforts at the state and City of Chicago levels by mentoring and supervising staff that is responsible for IEC’s legislative relationships, especially city of Chicago and state lawmakers.
  • Build and maintain relationships with the Illinois Congressional delegation staff and oversee the development of relationships with state and city lawmakers by key staff.
  • Contribute to fundraising efforts, including grant applications & foundation reporting related to IEC’s federal and advocacy work.


  • Degree in public policy, public administration, environmental issues, or political science preferred.
  • Strong relationships with federal legislative and agency offices in Illinois.
  • Strong relationships with Illinois lawmakers, including Illinois state senators, Illinois state representatives, and Chicago alderpersons.
  • Experience working with Chicago City Council, the Illinois State Legislature, or government agencies.
  • Comprehension of and ability to communicate about how pollution and environmental injustice disproportionately impacts Black, Brown, and low-income communities.
  • Solid existing relationships among Illinois environmental NGOs, including frontline and/or environmental justice organizations.
  • Excellent written communication skills.
  • Prior experience facilitating large group meetings, including conference and video calls.
  • Proficiency using both the Microsoft and Google software suites.
  • Highly organized.
  • Ability to coordinate multiple tasks and work independently.
  • Social and outgoing mindset, with an interest and passion for network building through events, receptions, and similar activities.
  • Managerial experience. 
  • Interest in environmental issues and policies.

Equal Opportunity Employer

IEC/IECEF is an equal opportunity employer that is committed to diversity and inclusion in the workplace. We prohibit discrimination and harassment of any kind based on race, color, sex, gender expression or identity, religion, age, national origin, ancestry, marital status, protective order status, veteran status, sexual orientation, citizenship status, genetic information, ancestry, religion, pregnancy, certain arrest or criminal history records, homelessness and use of lawful products outside of work during non-working hours or any other protected characteristic as outlined by federal, state, or local laws.

Equity, Allyship, and Powerbuilding Values

IEC/IECEF is always working to ensure that everyone on our team feels engaged and supported in all areas of the organization’s operations as we work to become a fully inclusive, multicultural, and anti-racist organization.

We are only as powerful as the people in our movement and those we serve. Building power for people and our environment in Illinois requires us to actively combat social and political power dynamics that disenfranchise marginalized communities across a broad range of issues beyond those that fall squarely within traditional environmental policy. When marginalized communities are empowered, environmental protections become more possible. Thus we are called to stand in solidarity as allies with those fighting for justice and to strengthen our democratic institutions where power drives policy change.

About Our Pay and Benefits

This is a full-time position located in Illinois. Benefits include health insurance, dental insurance, a 401(k) plan, and vacation. Salary range is $85,000 to $95,000, but this range may be able to be expanded for exceptionally qualified candidates who are able to prioritize Springfield session travel.

How to Apply

Introduce yourself to us as a colleague. Show us your future here! We value great writers, so be yourself, be creative, and take your time with the application. There’s no prize for being the first to submit! Stock cover letters won’t do. Tell us why you want this job.

Applications must be received by March 10, 2023.

To apply, please send a cover letter with salary requirements and resume to

Jeff Shelden

By email:

Please direct all questions to Jeff Shelden via email.

IEC/IECEF is an equal-opportunity employer.