North American Steel Campaign Director | Climate Strategies Lab | Flexible location
Job Title: North American Steel Campaign Director
Reports to: Co-founder and Partner Evan Gillespie
Salary: $125,000 – $140,000
Heavy industry is the foundation of modern society – literally. From steel and cement to paper, glass and more, these globally traded goods are essential to modern life. Unlike fossil fuels, we don’t want to stop using steel and cement; we need these materials more than ever. But we need them to be cleaner in order to ensure community health and safety and to get industrial emissions on a 1.5 C-aligned trajectory.
Steel is the highest greenhouse gas (GHG) emitting industrial sector, accountable for 7 to 10 percent of global emissions, or 4 billion tons of GHGs annually. In the last year we’ve seen increasing recognition of the importance of steel decarbonization, with net-zero announcements from five of the six largest steel companies in the world, new government initiatives flowing from COP 26 and a range of new studies proposing technical and policy pathways. However, steel companies lack the incentives and the pressure to make real and material progress toward net-zero GHGs.
There are a variety of pathways to clean production of high-quality steel, but none of these options are being implemented at the rate or scale needed to achieve the climate goals of the Paris Agreement. A coordinated campaign focused on steel for the automotive sector is our best opportunity to accelerate
clean steel production so that it can then be used throughout the economy. By bringing together organized labor, industry, local communities, environmental advocates, policymakers and funders, we have the chance to increase the auto sector’s demand for zero carbon steel, end highly polluting blast furnace processing and develop smart industrial and trade policy. This is where we step in.
Who We Are:
Climate Strategies Lab (placeholder name while “CSL” works through a branding process) aims to decarbonize heavy industry around the globe by 2045. Three seasoned Sierra Club Beyond Coal campaigners – Victoria Chu, Evan Gillespie and Nachy Kanfer – have joined forces to build an organization focused on cleaning up heavy industry and remaking the sector to be a better partner to communities, workers and the environment.
CSL provides open-source advocacy-focused data, communications, campaign strategy and execution while building a global network of strategists, advocates, community leaders and foundations to drive campaigns necessary to influence national and international policies that shape corporate and public procurement, redirect financial markets and drive investments in zero-emission industrial production.
Our comprehensive approach is designed to build a coordinated field of advocates, workers and industry partners that are co-creating and executing efforts to transform the aluminum, steel, solid waste and
other sub-sectors into models for zero-emission industrial activity. In doing so, this field will restore union jobs and leverage U.S. progress to clean up heavy industry around the world.
CSL is a new, financially strong organization rooted in and being built through our shared values, namely:
- Determination – Big change is possible. When others say “that’s too hard,” we dig deeper. We pay attention to the details because accuracy matters in our work. We set high standards for ourselves and are committed to meeting them, even when it takes a few tries.
- Creativity – We’re seeking out and developing new approaches to the climate crisis. We aren’t afraid of asking questions, and we’re not stuck in analysis paralysis; we keep moving toward results. We look for a way to make an idea work, rather than assuming it won’t.
- Justice – We hold industry accountable for its impact on climate. But our institutions – including industrial producers and governments that regulate them – are built on systemic injustices. Industrial policy connects to that history and thus our solutions must actively work against it. We are committed to ensuring that communities most impacted by climate change have resources, access and decision-making power.
- Collaboration – We build inclusive spaces. As new staff join the team, they are enhancing our organizational culture. We rarely – if ever – work alone; we invite divergent perspectives and dismantle barriers to participation in order to collectively leverage our shared learning to meet the challenges and opportunities of our work. We do the work we say we will do, so partners know they can rely on us. We don’t hoard resources.
- Healthy Humans – We practice self care and healthy lifestyles. We’re balancing the urgency of the work with the ability to prioritize the other parts of our lives with flexible and accommodating schedules. Our compensation package provides staff with financial security through a living wage and health insurance. We take time to unplug and recharge. We hold honest conversations with each other, with kindness and compassion.
- Growth & Learning – We take risks and are open to change. We are prepared and curious, keeping up with innovations in science and campaigning and learning as we do the work. We support each other’s growth through dedicated professional development opportunities. We do work that challenges and motivates us, while holding each other accountable through constructive praise. Our team shares feedback in many directions, geared toward individual and collective improvement. We trust each other to hold difficult conversations. We celebrate wins and work done well together. We believe in each other and our team, and we show it.
Campaign Goals & Position Scope:
The goal of this campaign is to catalyze the transformation of the steel industry by demonstrating the viability at scale of producing high-grade steel with dramatically lower GHG emissions. Specifically, we aim to build demand for green steel through the greening of the auto industry and government supply chains. Additional strategies focused on environmental enforcement, federal trade and energy policy will be needed. This campaign is intended to yield the funding, incentives and public pressure to establish new advanced commercial facilities that make and use green steel through cooperation between steel makers, steel buyers and governments.
There is a clear opportunity to place particular focus of this campaign on the automotive industry because of the industry’s leveraged influence over steel companies, the short, controlled supply chain, high consumer exposure and the growing momentum around transportation electrification. While the goal is leverage across the steel industry, a significant commitment by a single major international automobile company could reduce emissions by millions of tons of CO2 per year.
In this newly-created position, the North American Steel Campaign Director will develop and drive a strategy grounded in public pressure, partnership and policy advocacy. The Campaign Director will lead a coalition of organized labor, industry, local communities, environmental advocates, policymakers and funders to raise the salience of green steel among policymakers and the public. With coalition partners, the Campaign Director will create an open-source campaign where interested groups can bring their strengths to the debate and come together to develop skills, share technical expertise and execute a joint vision.
This is a role for an experienced campaigner who has led successful coalitions involving diverse stakeholders, won key fights to improve community health and well-being and built effective networks rooted in trust and collaboration across sector, geography and community. In this capacity, the Campaign Director drives strategy generation and implementation, policy analysis and advocacy and coalition development. The Campaign Director will draw on dedicated communications and data analyst staff to help partners implement campaign strategies. Key responsibilities include the following:
Strategy Development & Implementation
- Work with partners to identify and implement new campaign strategies that accelerate decarbonization of the steel industry in line with the values we share with our partners.
- Build new organizational relationships and alliances that reflect our values and priorities around equity, diversity and climate justice.
- Engage key leaders, organizations and industry partners in strategy development to build institutional and community buy-in for the campaign.
- Stay apprised of industry trends, policy developments and technology innovations that will inform the trajectory of the campaign.
- Provide briefs and unvarnished analysis of these developments for partner organizations, including funders/investors.
Coalition Building & Capacity Building
- Recruit and build an aligned and powerful coalition around the vision of cleaning up the steel industry.
- Facilitate, manage relationships and support coalition members.
- Assess the North American steel industry landscape, identifying strengths, current players and gaps in preparation for investment, engaging key leaders, organizations and industry partners.
- Collaborate in the development of comprehensive campaign plans, ensuring tight coordination and cohesion between convening, analytics, communications and policy advocacy.
- Design and implement trainings and other opportunities for stakeholders to collaborate, train each other and build the foundational knowledge to develop and refine campaigns.
- Identify partners with aligned efforts to accelerate action and leverage resources, relationships and research.
Budget, Organizational & Team Management
- Determine, help raise and manage the campaign budget (estimated at $5M/three years), leading funder engagement, ensuring cost effectiveness and accurate reporting to funders/investors.
- Build and manage staff and consultant corps, including establishing annual objectives (to support
overall goals established in strategic plans), provide regular feedback and appropriate recognition, conduct annual performance reviews and support ongoing professional development.
- Manage campaign-related contractor relationships.
- Oversee the learning and impact evaluation of the campaign, developing dashboards to track progress and benchmarks against strategic plans and proactively producing reports and analyses to inform strategies and improve results.
Who You Are:
The incoming North American Steel Campaign Director is driven by their belief in and commitment to Climate Strategies Lab’s vision and mission. Through their track record and expertise as a successful campaigner, coalition and capacity builder, the successful candidate builds authentic and lasting relationships with internal and external stakeholders, including coalition members and funders, engaging with them as partners in CSL’s broader vision. They effectively communicate this vision and inspire engagement because of their keen understanding of how organized movements create change and accomplish policy objectives.
The Campaign Director joins a committed team that brings a track record of success in campaign strategy, data analysis and communications, with a particular focus on climate and clean energy. The successful candidate is entrepreneurial, excited about the prospect of building something new in the climate movement from the ground up. They have the experience of setting vision, establishing and growing successful programs with creativity, humility and an expectation of continual learning.
This role requires a deep commitment to the principles of environmental and climate justice, proven collaboration skills and the ability to design and execute coordinated strategies that will generate change in a deeply entrenched and seemingly intractable aspect of the climate movement. The Campaign Director demonstrates initiative by diving right in to take a concept from idea to implementation, navigating through internal and external barriers as they arise without getting stuck and finding and deploying resources creatively to solve problems. The successful candidate has worked in an advocacy environment and understands the movement context – including building movements that do not yet exist or bringing new resources to existing movements – possessing a strong grasp of the economic, social and political forces that shape industrial production, consumption and broader policy in the U.S.
In spite of enormous obstacles involved in cleaning up heavy industry, the Climate Strategies Lab team operates with a spirit of possibilities and seeks a Campaign Director who shares the belief that we can all do things we’ve never done before and can stretch ourselves to achieve incredible results. The Campaign Director maintains a resilient outlook and looks for ways to make ideas work before assuming they won’t. The selected candidate will also possess most of the following Core and Preferred qualifications:
- Strong commitment to the mission and goals of Climate Strategies Lab and a strong passion for solving the climate crisis.
- At least 7 years of increasing responsibility in campaigns, coalition- and/or capacity building, with a proven track record of accomplishment.
- Proven leadership and strategy development skills with clarity of vision, familiarity with power and community mapping processes and the ability to articulate and drive strategies to win.
- Experience working across lines of race, class, gender and geography, with proven experience of working productively with EJ and labor, and an analysis of how climate change intersects with historically oppressed and marginalized communities.
- Exceptional training and facilitation skills with experience designing and executing inspiring and impactful convenings that build trusting relationships, individual skills and collective power.
- Mastery of relationship-building skills with a wide range of diverse external constituencies with the diplomatic abilities and authentic leadership skills that build the trust-based relationships necessary for stakeholders to buy in and share accountability for our collective work.
- Experience developing and delivering strategies in a campaign context, demonstrating resilience and resourcefulness in the face of obstacles and bringing a keen understanding of how organized movements create change and accomplish policy objectives.
- Proven ability to raise and manage funds to ensure successful program/campaign execution.
- Outstanding people and project management abilities to ensure strong collaboration of campaigns and projects that advance on time and on budget.
- Exceptional oral and written communications skills with the ability to break down a complex issue into manageable and clear decision points that drive the desired campaign outcomes.
- Ability and flexibility to manage a small and growing team with competing demands; excited to build a strategy, team and systems from the ground-up.
- Demonstrated ability to prioritize and be flexible in a fast-paced, constantly evolving and collaborative environment, where leading a team, working on a team and working individually are all required.
- Commitment to continuous learning, hunger for knowledge and willingness to ask questions and self-correct.
- An approach that is curious, self-directed and entrepreneurial.
- Openness to giving and receiving direct, compassionate feedback.
- Prior start-up experience as an early team member in a growing organization.
- Ability to lead through influence in a matrixed campaign environment.
- Prior experience in and content knowledge in climate, clean energy and/or the industrial sector, including manufacturing, labor and public policy.
- Prior global experience with high cultural competence and diplomacy skills.
Salary and Benefits:
The salary range for this position is $125,000 – $140,000, based on experience and qualifications as outlined above. Climate Strategies Lab offers a competitive set of benefits, including 100% of comprehensive health care coverage for employees (medical, dental and vision), work from home stipend, up to 5% employer match to 401k and 11 paid holidays plus unlimited vacation, starting with a minimum of 15 business days.
Our Commitment to Racial Equity, Diversity, Inclusion & Climate Justice:
We believe that diversity in our team isn’t just a value but brings different lived experience and perspective that is essential to solving the climate crisis. If you’ve read this job description and are excited by it, if you can see yourself happily filling this role and making a difference on climate change, we really hope you apply. Climate Strategies Lab is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to transparent and equitable recruitment, hiring and promotion processes that foster inclusion and belonging. If you need a reasonable accommodation during the application or interview process, please email Cathy Schreiber at email@example.com.
To apply or nominate a candidate, please send to firstname.lastname@example.org with “North American Steel Campaign Director” in the subject line a resume and cover email or letter answering the following:
1) Why are you passionate about climate change?
2) Briefly share a campaign you led or played a leadership role in, particularly a key lesson learned that you would apply to the North American Steel Campaign.
Submission in a combined PDF or Microsoft Word file is preferred. This position is open until filled, with an initial application deadline of 5PM PT on Friday, June 17, 2022. Candidate review and phone screens begin immediately and will be conducted throughout the search period.