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About Us

Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (RTC) is the nation’s largest trails organization—with a grassroots community more than 1 million strong—dedicated to building a nation connected by trails, reimagining public spaces to create safe ways for everyone to walk, bike and be active outdoors. Founded in 1986, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy's national office is located in Washington, D.C., with regional offices in California, Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania. For more information, visit Connect with RTC @railstotrails on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn.

Job Location

This position is located in RTC’s national office in downtown Washington, D.C., and is easily accessible from Metro’s red, orange, silver and blue lines. RTC is currently operating with a hybrid work schedule. Remote work is acceptable; however, mandatory works days in the D.C. office will be required upon the office reopening from closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Proof of COVID-19 vaccination is required for this position.

Job Description

The Advocacy Outreach Director will be responsible for leading RTC’s movement-building activities, with a short-term focus on organizing allies to take full advantage of Federal and State funding programs for trails and active transportation and a long-term focus on building political will to elevate trails as essential community assets across America. The Director of Outreach will collaborate broadly across the organization to develop and pursue an outreach strategy to grow strategic relationships and engage Local, State and Federal partner groups as well as grassroots and grasstops supporters to support RTC’s work to position trail networks to benefit from new funding policies. This person will help RTC to demonstrate strong demand for resources and to document remarkable impact from such investments.

Job Duties

Work across RTC to develop an organizational outreach strategy to increase the influence of the trail and active transportation movement and broaden its geographic reach by:

  • Growing strategic relationships with state and local partner organizations
  • Engaging partner organizations in taking advantage of new funding policies to advance regional trail and active transportation networks and trail connections between communities
  • Engaging partner organizations as well as grassroots and grasstops supporters to advocate for further policy advances
  • Translating progress in building active-transportation infrastructure into greater political will in communities across America to further prioritize trail and active transportation networks going forward
  • Organize and collaborate with RTC staff to establish an effective national network of state and local partner organizations. This network will be built to maximize impact upon decision-makers of relevance to RTC priorities. Partner relationships will be shared with staff responsible for cultivating such decision-makers.
  • Oversee effort to provide easy-to-access resources for state and local partners to enable successful advocacy campaigns.
  • Work with the Policy Team and Development Team to create and implement a strategy to deploy influential individual supporters to engage key decision-makers.
  • Work with the Communications Team to develop and implement organization-wide campaigns that unite our movement and increase our influence over policymakers.
  • Directly supervise the Advocacy Coordinator.

Supervisory Responsibilities

This position will supervise the Advocacy Coordinator and report to the Vice President of Policy.

Desired Background and Personal Attributes

Seven+ years of professional experiences that establish a track record of successful leadership relevant to political organizing. Key work experiences may include:

  • Electoral or ballot measure campaigns, preferably in a leadership or strategic capacity
  • Policy advocacy or legislative staff for an elected official
  • Community organizing
  • Coalition leadership
  • Electronic advocacy
  • Demonstrated understanding of federal and state surface transportation policies, including active transportation programs, a plus

Undergraduate degree, or equivalent experience, in political science, public administration, sociology or communications (graduate degree a plus)

Successful track record of three or more years of staff supervisory experience

Work Environment

Normal office setting with low to moderate noise level with some travel required.

Employer's Rights

RTC reserves the right to revise, change or reclassify this job description at any time in accordance with RTC’s business needs. This job description is by no means an implied contract.

How to Apply

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. To apply, please email with the following:

  • The position you are applying for in the subject line

  • A résumé (as a separate attachment)

  • A cover letter that includes a brief statement about your personal background or experiences that demonstrate your potential to contribute to RTC’s commitment to create an inclusive and diverse workplace.​

Commitment to Diversity

Rails-to-Trails Conservancy seeks diverse, passionate and qualified individuals who want to make a difference in the world. RTC is an equal opportunity employer. We evaluate qualified applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, veteran status, age, and other legally protected characteristics.

If you need a reasonable accommodation because of a disability for any part of the employment process, please e-mail and provide the nature of your request and your contact information.