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Bayou City Waterkeeper seeks Water Justice Organizer

Bayou City Waterkeeper (BCWK) seeks a full-time Water Justice Organizer to join our growing, interdisciplinary, and highly collaborative team working toward water justice across the Lower Galveston Bay watershed. This is a one-year grant-funded position with an opportunity to continue beyond the grant period.

Job Description
The Water Justice Organizer will focus on raising awareness of water justice and related infrastructure and climate issues that disproportionately impact low-income, Black, brown, and immigrant residents across the Lower Galveston Bay watershed, with the goal of building equitable relationships with community members across our region and allow community expertise to inform our work. The Water Justice Organizer will work closely with our team members to support our existing community-centered policy work and expand our grassroots efforts to advance water justice. This work will be concentrated in water justice zones across this region. This position will also work closely with the Policy Analyst, who will analyze policy developments and identify opportunities to develop outreach, advocacy, and campaigns with staff and community partners. The Water Justice Organizer will report directly to our Organizing and Cultural Strategies Manager.

About Bayou City Waterkeeper
Bayou City Waterkeeper is a water justice organization working across the Lower Galveston Bay watershed that encompasses greater Houston for more than two decades. With law and science, we work with local communities to build power, fill gaps in regulatory enforcement, and push back against water injustices and irresponsible development. Our key program areas are Clean Water, Protecting Wetlands, and Just Climate Transitions. Learn more on our website.

Our Values
Recognizing the complexities of our watershed, the challenges we face to protect our waters from the harms of urban development and industrial activities, and the importance of being responsive to the needs of the communities we serve, our work is guided and informed by five values:
● Interconnectivity: Collaborate across disciplines and create multiple ways to engage
● Fluidity: Embrace movement and adaptability in our work
● Bold action: Have hard conversations, disrupt dysfunctional systems, create new frameworks, bring together unconventional allies, and move data and research into action
● Justice and equality: Call out and act to undo inequities in our watershed
● Regeneration: Embrace water as a site for healing, joy, celebration, reflection, and growth

● Lead grassroots relationship-building and power-building activities in water justice zones across the Lower Galveston Bay Watershed. Build trust and establish lines of communication with resident leaders working on water justice issues such as equitable flood protection, natural and nature-based flood and climate protection, drainage and sewage justice, and industrial water pollution. Move impacted residents to action through relational values-based community organizing
● Coordinate training and educational activities, preparing community members for direct action and other advocacy. Work with water justice working groups to host regular training and leadership development offerings. Help co-design and deliver training curriculum
● In partnership with Organizing and Cultural Strategies Manager, develop and execute organizing plans; map out key community and constituent targets; and identify and implement effective strategies to engage impacted communities
● Cultivate relationships with community groups, other organizations, and individuals in the greater Houston region and visit with community groups to learn about community needs
● Speak on behalf of BCWK in public forums such as Harris County Commissioners Court and Houston City Council meetings
● Contribute to event planning and media efforts such as press conferences
● Support the creation of community-centered policy agenda(s)
● Prepare organizing materials, fact sheets, action alerts, media materials, and other communications needed to implement campaigns in coordination with staff
● Develop systems to capture, translate, and share knowledge from projects in progress with a broad range of audiences and stakeholders in collaboration with the Organizing and Cultural Strategies Manager and Communications Manager; develop and produce reports, tools, and resources that help scale projects and processes
● Coordinate and facilitate in-person, hybrid, and virtual meetings and take meeting notes
● Willingness to work a flexible schedule to meet during hours when community members are available

Qualifications & Requirements
Highly competitive candidates will have some combination of:***
● 2-3 years of community organizing or community engagement experience
● Excellent relationship-building and communications skills, including public speaking
● Demonstrated ability to facilitate meetings equitably and inclusively
● Strong project management skills, including attention to detail, organizational skills, and time management
● A motivated self-starter with good judgment, critical thinking, flexibility, resourcefulness, and problem-solving skills
● Demonstrated ability to serve diverse audiences and lead collaboratively
● Commitment to supporting impacted communities
● Commitment to racial justice, anti-racism, and understanding of and commitment to using anti-racist lens in advancing justice, equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility
● Familiarity with the concepts of just climate transitions and the Jemez Principles
● Strong interpersonal skills, self-awareness, and enthusiasm for teamwork
● Self-motivation, creativity, organizational skills, and a diligent and efficient work ethic
● Desire to learn how to develop and implement effective policy-change strategies centering impacted communities and/or demonstrated commitment to centering impacted communities
● Spanish language oral and written fluency strongly preferred
● A love for our region’s people and ecosystems
● Full-time access to a reliable vehicle

***Research shows that women and people of color are more hesitant to apply for a job because they may not meet all of the qualifications listed. The candidate hired may not precisely meet all of these qualifications, but will show the desire and capacity to grow into the role and fit within our small, close-knit team. If you feel passionate about our efforts and believe you have the skills to contribute to the growth of our organization, we want to hear from you.

We allow for flexible work schedules so our staff can be responsive to community needs and balance work and personal responsibilities. Our standard week is 36-40 hours. Occasionally, more than a regular week, including some evenings and weekends, will be necessary. Some local travel is required. Our staff meets in person once per week, and when necessary or beneficial, the Water Justice Organizer will be expected to meet with partners or attend other events in person (COVID permitting). Otherwise, our work is virtual. Given the place-based, community-centered nature of this work, the Water Justice Organizer must live within the Lower Galveston Bay watershed.

Salary & Benefits
$50,000-$60,000. Benefits include unlimited paid leave, paid holidays, and paid parental leave; subsidized group healthcare, dental, and vision coverage; BCWK-funded IRA contribution; and negotiable flex hours. This is a full-time, at-will, exempt position.

Application Instructions
For equal consideration, please send a resume and letter explaining your interest to careers@bayoucitywaterkeeper.org with subject line “BCWK Water Justice Organizer” by June 8, 2023. The interview process will include two stages. A final decision is expected by late June. The position is expected to start by July 5.

Our core values lead us to seek a broad range of perspectives and backgrounds to achieve our mission and maintain an inclusive environment where all staff are valued and respected. As an equal opportunity employer, we are committed to employment practices that ensure that employees and applicants for employment are given equal opportunities without regard to race, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, age, religion, physical or mental disability, medical condition, veteran status, marital status, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information or any other factor that is not related to the position.

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