Director of Government Relations


Job Title:       Director of Government Relations

Status:          Full-time Exempt

Reports to:   Executive Director 

Application Deadline: Open Until Filled

Position Summary:

Student leaders within Students United set legislative priorities each year. The Director of Government Relations is responsible for facilitating the process through which these priorities are chosen and executing Students United’s comprehensive advocacy program.  The Director of Government Relations will provide advice, strategy, and counsel for Students United’s student leadership on legislative issues; will manage and develop strong relationships with students, legislators and their staff, and other higher education partners and stakeholders. The Director will serve as a resource for students, legislators, and Minnesota State staff. The Director will stay informed on relevant state and federal education policy and proposals. The Director will work with the entire Students United team to act on the mission of the organization and implement all student-led organizational objectives.

Position Duties:

  1. Advocacy Program

    • Advocate on behalf of the students of the seven Minnesota state universities

    • Develop, administer and coordinate student-initiated legislative advocacy programs, such as state lobby days and federal lobbying trips

    • Meet strategic plan advocacy goals

    • Implement Students United’s legislative work, including student-driven objectives, platforms items, agendas and motions

    • Manage Students United’s advocacy programs at the  state and federal levels

    • Develop processes to engage students throughout the legislative process through opportunities such as testifying at the Capitol, legislative 101 sessions, calling their elected representatives, and more

    • Supervise and work with students  on each campus to achieve legislative and advocacy goals

    • Hires and supervises a Government Relations Intern for the legislative session

    • Collaborate with the Director of Communications and Director of Equity and Inclusion to build strategy around advocacy objectives

  2. Build Relationships

    • Engage with other higher education stakeholders including Minnesota State, Inter-Faculty Organization, Minnesota State College Faculty, LeadMN and others

    • Build and maintain necessary connections with state and federal legislative offices to assist in execution of Students United’s priorities and programs

  3. Strategic Advisor

    • Provide research and information, resources, and development for students, legislators, and other higher education stakeholders

    • Remain in regular contact with higher education stakeholders to inform them of Students United positions

  4. Research

    • Remain informed on all pertinent higher education issues, including those related to Minnesota State, and state and federal legislative issues

  5. General

    • Lead and develop workshops and trainings at conferences and on campuses on pertinent legislative/advocacy topics

    • Attend Students United conferences, meetings, and related events

    • Other duties as directed by the Executive Director

Experience and Qualification Requirements:

  1. Bachelor’s Degree

  2. Ability to travel

  3. Ability to be flexible and versatile

  4. Willingness to work some weekends

  5. Strong verbal and written communications skills

  6. Comfort with public speaking and leading training sessions

  7. Fluency in equity, diversity, and inclusion

Preferred Experience and Qualifications:

  1. Event and/or conference planning and management

  2. A minimum of two years of related work experience

  3. Supervision and management

  4. Recent experience working with students (K12 or higher education)

  5. Experience with navigating the Federal government and Washington DC

  6. Experience with the Minnesota state legislature

  7. Experience working with Greater Minnesota populations

To apply please send a resume, cover letter, and references to our Director of Operations, Kalista Mangahas, at