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Senior Associate, Midwest Climate Policy, U.S. Climate Alliance

Position Overview

The U.S. Climate Alliance is a bipartisan coalition of governors committed to upholding the goals of the Paris Agreement. The U.S. Climate Alliance secretariat provides strategic, convening, analytical and other functions to support Alliance states in making progress on their climate priorities. For more information on the on the Alliance, please visit

The Senior Associate works with the Executive Director of the U.S. Climate Alliance Secretariat in formulating and executing strategy to support the Midwestern Alliance states (at present Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin) in developing and implementing climate policy within their states and across the region. The Senior Associate will support Midwestern states in developing and staffing the day-to-day execution of a regional strategy.  They will also provide surge capacity support at critical times and at the direction of Alliance states (e.g. producing policy options papers, conducting research, meeting with stakeholders, etc.). Finally, the Senior Associate will collaborate with other stakeholders, including from the NGO, business, agriculture, and labor communities, to expand support for individual state and regional Midwestern climate efforts and seed the ground for successful rollout and support of ambitious climate policies in the long-term.

The Senior Associate reports to the U.S. Climate Alliance Secretariat Executive Director in support of Alliance states and will be expected to work as part of broader teams that include Alliance states, consultants and external partners. The Senior Associate supports and responds to state-led initiatives and works with the Energy and Climate team at the United Nations Foundation, which houses the U.S. Climate Alliance Secretariat.

This position can be located in any of the Alliance Midwestern states - Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, or Wisconsin.

Essential Functions

  • Provide support to the four Midwestern Alliance states in achieving their climate goals and policy priorities across sectors, including:
    • policy analysis, research, and development of options memos, briefing documents and other policy papers;
    • identification of funding and technical resources to address state needs; and
    • convening and other logistical support.
  • Develop and execute a multi-state climate strategy for the Midwest under the leadership of Midwestern Alliance states and in close cooperation with regional stakeholders and advocates. The strategy should create a vision for economy-wide deep decarbonization across the region that aligns with Midwestern values and priorities, and the key climate action strategies for implementation.
  • Build regional collaboration with state and outside stakeholders in the Midwest, expanding support for Midwestern climate efforts, and creating opportunities to engage non-Alliance Midwestern states and stakeholders through relevant activities.
  • Aid in shaping and communicating a Midwestern vision of climate leadership that resonates in the region, in collaboration with the Alliance Communications Director and under the leadership of Alliance Midwestern state press offices.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.

Selection Criteria

We are only considering applicants with the following essential criteria:

  • At least 5 years’ experience in formulating and implementing state climate policy;
  • Experience working with Midwestern governments; and
  • A strong network across regional businesses, labor groups, agricultural communities, and advocates.

Desired Criteria:

  • Experience leading multi-stakeholder processes and building coalitions to drive results.
  • Good networking skills, active regional contacts, and a strong ability to build relationships with state officials, technical partners, business leaders, and other local contacts across the region.
  • Master’s degree required, or a Bachelor’s degree with substantial work experience in climate policy.
  • As part of a small and highly engaged team, key skills include:
    • Ability to quickly grasp new material on the job and apply a critical thinking lens;
    • Self-motivated with strong ability to find solutions in the face of challenges;
    • Maximum flexibility in accepting and professionally executing a range of tasks;
    • Talent for designing and executing activities and resources that are always focused on achieving real-world results;
    • Ability to maintain composure and think clearly in a fast-paced, dynamic work environment.
  • Ability to travel regionally as appropriate.

Benefits & Compensation 

For full-time, benefit eligible employees, UNF offers an excellent range of benefits, including:

  • a choice between two health plans through UnitedHealthcare (PPO or HDHP with HSA)
  • dental insurance
  • vision insurance
  • flexible spending accounts
  • 403b retirement savings plan with a generous matching contribution
  • group term and supplemental life insurance
  • short-term disability
  • long-term disability
  • health club discounts
  • commuter subsidy
  • back-up care
  • employee assistance program

Additionally, all benefit eligible employees have 12 paid holidays, 20 vacation days, 10 sick days, 3 personal days, and 8 weeks of family leave care.

The United Nations Foundation is proud to be an equal opportunity and affirmative-action employer. The United Nations Foundation provides equal employment opportunity to all employees and prohibits discrimination and harassment of any type without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, disability status, genetics, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local laws.

This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation and training.

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