Policy Director

Position Type: 1.0 FTE. Exempt.

Reports to: Senior Director of Programs

Location: Washington, DC or surrounding areas


The Center for Environmental Health (“CEH”) is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization that protects people from toxic chemicals and promotes business practices that are safe for public health and the environment. We stop corporations from exposing people to toxic chemicals, collaborate with responsible businesses and industry leaders, and commit to inclusive, community-led solutions that address environmental injustices facing the general public as well as low-income communities of color.


CEH is an organization of committed science-driven advocates who work together to keep short-sighted business interests from harming people in the name of profit. We are proud of our work and achieve big wins for people’s health. The organizational culture is one of entrepreneurism and thoughtfully assessed risk taking. CEH believes that to protect the health of all people, we must address the disproportionate health effects of toxic chemicals caused by systemic racism and other social injustices. The movement to eliminate dangerous chemicals must move forward in partnership with Environmental Justice, Reproductive Justice, and other related movements working to address the pressing social justice issues of our day. CEH’s headquarters are in Oakland.

Commitment to JEDI

At CEH, striving for justice, diversity, equity and inclusion (“JEDI”) for all is critical to our mission and values. We know that having a team that is diverse in race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity and expression, ability, sexual orientation, age, background, and opinions — and fostering inclusion among that team — is core to achieving our organizational goals. CEH strives to recruit talent from a diverse pool of candidates and ensure that those professionals it hires are sufficiently supported so that they flourish. The organization wants everyone to not only have a seat at the table, but to know that their presence and input makes the organization stronger.

EOE Statement:

CEH is an equal opportunity employer. As an organization committed to diversity and the perspective of all voices, it considers applicants equally of race, gender, gender identity or expression, color, sexual orientation, religion, marital status, age, ability, personal appearance, family responsibilities or national origin.

Learn more about the Center for Environmental Health at www.ceh.org.

The Opportunity

In the next phase of its organizational development, CEH seeks to increase its social impact by employing six key strategies: institutional/corporate engagement, litigation, scientific research, community engagement, communications, and policy. As part of this ambitious goal, we’re seeking to hire a proven leader to develop and prioritize CEH’s federal and state policy work. At CEH, we feel strongly that rather than taking ‘the lone wolf approach,’ the best public policies are responsive to the needs and desires of the most heavily impacted communities and come about by forging highly effective coalitions and partnerships among diverse groups of stakeholders. We anticipate that the successful candidate for this position will be deeply committed to this approach and willing to bring their own unique style of leadership to this effort.

Qualities of a Successful Candidate

  • Deeply committed to environmental health and justice – You’re motivated to protect people, animals, plants, and whole ecosystems from the damaging effects of toxic chemicals.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of and experience with policy systems – You bring a strong understanding of the mechanics of legislative and regulatory processes and are skilled at navigating these processes to promote healthy, sustainable, toxics-free solutions.
  • Strong analytical and critical thinking skills –You’re able to analyze and digest complex legislative and regulatory policies and develop thoughtful recommendations for strategic response in a timely fashion.
  • Proven communicator, speaker, and motivator – You’re able to represent CEH in public hearings, coalition meetings, press conferences, etc., explain complex policy issues in writing, and inspire diverse groups of stakeholders to take meaningful action.
  • Established skills in building effective relationships – You’re an active listener and skilled at building rapport with federal and state policy leaders, environmental health/justice advocates, and other key influencers.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

  1. Leads CEH’s federal and state policy strategy and oversees and supervises the work of the policy team
  • Develops annual priorities and objectives for the policy team
  • Manages current policy staff, consisting of a small group of paid consultants and work study students
  • Participates in the development and rollout of CEH’s next strategic plan, including the policy component.
  • Develops, monitors, and manages the policy budget. ensuring that it stays within its approved limits.
  1. Develops, prioritizes, and implements the organization’s federal policy initiatives
  • Educates congressional staff and provides regular technical assistance to them on the impact of toxic chemicals on humans and the environment.
  • Cultivates relationships with staff on key committees and subcommittees.
  • Analyzes legislation and regulations.
  • Drafts legislation and write testimony, regulatory comments to federal agencies and letters of endorsement/support/opposition to legislative initiatives.
  • Maintains relationships with decision makers in the EPA, FDA, and other federal regulatory agencies.
  • In partnership with Communications, develop reports, fact sheets, and other resources to support and inform policy initiatives.
  • Engage CEH’s stakeholders and constituency to achieve policy priorities through reports, fact sheets, action alerts, advocacy training materials, webinars, etc.
  1. Spearheads coalition efforts to protect and defend CA’s Prop 65
  • Monitors legislative developments re Prop 65, including attempts to weaken the law.
  • Facilitates and leads coalition efforts by Prop 65 defenders and protectors to maintain and strengthen the effectiveness of the law.
  • Builds and maintains relationships with key policy leaders and other Prop 65 stakeholders in CA, including key legislators and legislative staff, the CA Attorney General, the Governor’s Office, the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA), etc.
  • Oversees CEH’s “Prop 65 Protects” campaign in partnership with CEH’s Communications team and other staff.
  • Hires and manages any paid consultants or firms deployed to protect and defend Prop. 65.
  1. Coordinates CEH’s policy sign-on process and supports other CEH directors re other policy matters
  • Oversees the policy sign-on process and, when appropriate, makes the final determination about whether CEH adds its name to sign-on letters or supports specific pieces of legislation.
  • Partners with other Directors and CEH staff related to emergent policy issues to determine the priority of the matter and/or whether the policy team has the capacity to take on the issue.
  • As requested, assist Directors and other CEH staff, in providing technical assistance to policy efforts in other states related to efforts to adopt policies related to healthy, sustainable, and toxics-free goods.
  1. Represents CEH in hearings, policy partnership coalitions, conferences, town hall meetings, etc.
  • Speaks on behalf of CEH in policy settings and provides verbal and written testimony at key legislative and regulatory hearings.
  • Serves as CEH’s primary representative in key environmental policy coalitions and networks.
  • Engages in public speaking opportunities in trainings, workshops, conferences, press conferences, and other opportunities
  • Represents the organization at other events and activities as requested by CEH’s Senior Director of Programs and/or the Chief Executive Officer.
  1. Other Duties and Responsibilities
  • Contributes to CEH’s ongoing work and priorities by actively participating in staff meetings, committees, special events, etc.
  • Represents CEH to external stakeholders, including meetings, conferences, press conferences, fundraising events, etc.
  • Actively participates in CEH’s fund development efforts by contributing to grant proposals and written reports, participating in donor and foundation cultivation efforts, attending fundraisers, etc.
  • Actively contribute to CEH’s communications efforts by providing written updates, participating in press events, and engaging CEH’s target audiences through traditional and social media.

Candidate Qualifications/Experience

  • Master’s degree in public policy, environmental health, sustainability, or another related field OR equivalent policy-related work experience.
  • Minimum of 6-8 years of increasing responsibility in public policy work related to environmental health and justice.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of federal policy issues and proven skills in navigating the federal policymaking process, especially as they related to environmental justice issues.
  • Strong familiarity and prior policy experience with the Environmental Protection Agency and its enforcement of statutory regulations is preferred but not required.
  • Establish ability to manage and motivate diverse teams of internal and external stakeholders, including staff, paid consultants, work study students and interns, etc.
  • Proven project management experience, including conceptualizing a strategy and leading and guiding its implementation.
  • Close alignment with CEH’s vision, mission, and goals, including our commitment to principles of Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI).


This position will be based in Washington, DC and surrounding areas.

All CEH staff are currently working remotely, but this is expected to change as conditions improve. We anticipate that the Oakland Office will reopen using a hybrid structure that will require some part-time, in-person work in the office and some part-time remote work at home.


The base salary for this position is $85,000. This salary is negotiable, commensurate with experience. Base salaries are set based on living expenses in the San Francisco/Bay Area; CEH uses an adjusted pay scale to determine the base salaries for permanent remote positions stationed in other parts of the country. The job comes with full benefits, including medical, dental, and vision, employer contributions to a 401K, and generous paid time off.

Working Conditions and Job Setting

  • Physical ability to type (or use voice keyboarding software) and use a computer is essential.

Applying for this job

Please submit the following materials as a single PDF:

  • Cover letter, highlighting your qualifications
  • Resume
  • A one-page (minimum) writing sample highlighting your policy analysis skills

Please merge these documents into a single PDF whose file name includes your surname and “PolicyDirector” Then email it to: jobs@ceh.org with the subject line: Policy Director.

We acknowledge receipt of all employment applications, and when we decide a candidate is no longer in the running, we inform her/him/them promptly.

Position open until filled. Applications submitted before April 15, 2022, will be given priority.