Ocean Career: NCEL Ocean Program Manager

NCEL (National Caucus of Environmental Legislators) is currently seeking an Ocean Program Manager to oversee the organization’s work on ocean and coastal policy issues. This position will regularly convene state legislators virtually and in person, travel to state capitals to organize informational events, and craft policy memos regarding ocean policy.

Their work will primarily focus on sustainable offshore energy, preserving marine ecosystems, enhancing coastal resilience, and integrating environmental justice into state policy solutions. Much of this work will take place by facilitating NCEL’s Coastal Working Group of state legislators and building relationships with key partners at all levels of government. They will also track state legislation and assist state legislators in communicating their priorities to federal officials.

This role will prioritize growing NCEL’s Ocean Program as a standalone issue area and work closely with Leadership, Communications, and Development staff around strategy and vision for the future of the program. This position will be actively managing projects, deadlines, and grant deliverables and will require regular (25%) travel, averaging one or two trips per month for events and other meetings.

The ideal candidate will be passionate about ocean topics as well as an outgoing organizer or network-builder who enjoys outreach and collaboration. They will be a growth-oriented individual who is committed to integrating environmental justice and equity concepts into policy solutions. They will have a passion for policy advancement and be highly skilled at verbal and written communication. They will enjoy planning webinars, organizing strategy sessions, hosting in-person issue briefings, and collaborating with advocacy partners on shared environmental goals.

About the National Caucus of Environmental Legislators

NCEL is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that empowers a nonpartisan network of state environmental leaders to protect, conserve, and improve the natural and human environment. We believe that the key to advancing sound policy in the states is well-informed legislatures with strong champions who can advocate on behalf of the environment, develop shared strategies, and collaborate with their peers across the country on shared learning and action.

Essential Duties & Responsibilities

Program Management and Strategy (35%)

  • Lead NCEL’s Ocean Program through strategic planning and development, program administration, and program growth.
  • Support NCEL’s internal strategy and practice on racial equity and environmental justice, advancing equity and inclusion for historically underrepresented perspectives and communities in ocean policy.
  • Collaborate with key local, state, national, and international NGO partners on educational opportunities, materials, and events.
  • Expand partnerships with federal agencies and offices with a focus on marine resources, ocean biodiversity, or offshore energy.
  • Foster collaboration among state lawmakers, Tribal leaders, Indigenous Communities, and related organizations on coastal state policy topics that honor Tribal ocean sovereignty.
  • Prep programmatic and policy trends for participation in meetings with philanthropic partners.

Policy Analysis Research, Analysis, and Communication (25%)

  • Track and analyze ocean and justice legislative trends and share updates with NCEL members and key allies.
  • Develop materials including fact sheets and briefing books on specific issues.
  • Development of website content including legislative spotlights and blog posts related to policy developments.

Network Building, Events, and Outreach (25%)

  • Coordinate legislative working groups around ocean and justice topics.
  • Work with partner organizations to plan local events such as in-state meetings or site tours related to program work.
  • Conduct visits to state capitals during the legislative session to meet with legislators and host briefings.
  • Recruitment of state lawmakers to join the network.
  • Facilitate information-sharing and coaching among working group members, and other NCEL members.
  • Follow up with legislators after meetings and events and provide continued support.
  • Travel up to 1-2 times per month across the country to participate in or host events on behalf of NCEL.

Other Duties & Responsibilities

  • Provide grant writing in support of fundraising efforts.
  • Manage program budgets and review program expenses on a monthly basis.
  • Phone, email, and in-person outreach to state legislators to support policy work.
  • Curation and dissemination of issue-specific information sheets and email alerts.
  • Connect with media outlets to amplify environmental health policy solutions.
  • Represent NCEL at advocacy coalition meetings, both virtually or in person.

Minimum Qualifications

  • Five years of experience in policy or political organizing at the state, federal, or community level and/or advocating for specific issues.
  • Working knowledge of policies related to coastal conservation, offshore energy, and ocean conservation.
  • Proximity to an airport and ability/willingness to travel to events across the country.
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills and ability to convey complex information in simple terms.
  • Must have experience in Google applications and basic database management.
  • Ability to work independently with strong time management skills and attention to detail.

Preferred Qualifications

  • A four-year degree from an accredited college or university.
  • Experience working with underserved, overburdened, or frontline communities.
  • Experience working with elected officials and/or on campaigns.

Work Environment

This position is fully remote and full-time at 40 hours/week. The candidate can expect to travel up to 1-2 times a month several times throughout the year in addition to NCEL’s week-long Forum conference in the summer. Occasionally longer days that can include travel and working into the evening to attend or host events can also be expected.


The salary for this position is $86,000. NCEL also offers a generous benefits package including:

  • 401(k) with employer contributions
  • Employer-paid health, dental, and vision insurance
  • Paid time off, vacation days, sick days, and holidays

Closing Date: March 8, 2024

Learn more about this opportunity and how to apply.

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