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Community Organizer

Posted By:
Hugh Espey
Posting ID:
Des Moines, Ia
Category:Nonprofit / Social Services
Listing Type:Job
Employment:Full Time
Company:Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement

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Job Opening:

Community Organizer with Iowa CCI

Fighting for Social, Economic & Environmental Justice

Position Description –
Iowa CCI wants to hire another community organizer who would work on issues in both urban and rural areas, be based out of our Des Moines office, and travel throughout the state. The right candidate is highly motivated and passionate about standing up for what’s right. You would work as part of a team of members and staff to build people power; hold elected officials, government agencies, corporations and industry groups accountable; and fight for social, economic and environmental justice.

Organizational Background –
The mission of Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement (CCI) is to empower and unite grassroots people of all ethnic backgrounds to take control of their communities; involve them in identifying problems and needs and in taking action to address them; and be a vehicle for social, economic and environmental justice.

We use organizing strategies that build people power and focus on civic engagement, leadership development, and holding institutions accountable to everyday people. We view community organizing as the most effective means for engaging people in true democracy to bring about progressive social change.

Iowa CCI members are everyday people who talk, act and get things done on issues that impact us the most – issues like a factory farm moving in next door and ruining your quality of life, or shady mortgage lenders taking advantage of hard-working families and causing foreclosures.

Over three decades, we’ve saved family farms, turned declining neighborhoods around, stopped dozens of factory farms, preserved homes for families and become a force to be reckoned with. We have over 3,200 dues-paying members across the state from all walks of life – urban and rural, black and white, immigrants and lifelong Iowans – who believe in the power of uniting and standing up for what’s right.

CCI staff have over 100 years of combined experience. They provide training and expertise, and it's our members who provide the focus, leadership and power in numbers to tackle tough issues and get things done. We are one of those unique organizations that is truly by the people and for the people.

Our community organizing is currently centered on five main program areas: 1.) farming and the environment (which includes our work on factory farms and clean air/clean water/family farm issues); 2.) housing and financial safety (which includes our work on predatory lending, payday lending and the mortgage foreclosure issue); 3.) voter-owned clean elections (which includes our work on reducing big-money, special interest influence on our political system); 4.) immigrant rights & worker justice; and 5.) neighborhood-based issues.

The community organizer we hire will focus on issues related to: 1.) farming & the environment and 2.) voter-owned clean elections throughout the state.

We are fast-paced, energetic and recognized by other organizing groups as an organization that is effective at creating social change.

Our website –

Greater Des Moines Job Classifieds

– has more information about who we are and what we do.

Community Organizer Responsibilities:
• work with CCI members and other like-minded people to identify issues that are important to them.
• research issues raised by members, and train members to do research themselves.
• hold planning meetings with members to develop action strategies and plans for winning on issues and achieving goals.
• assist members in carrying out agreed upon strategies to win concrete victories.
• help carry out media strategies to raise awareness about issues and build support for our organizing.
• assist with other project activities as needed (local issues, statewide organizing, national/regional issues, grassroots fundraising, etc.).
• recruit new members through organizing campaigns and other means.
• assist with fundraising, grant writing and reporting.

• excellent verbal and interpersonal communication skills
• ability to communicate excitement and enthusiasm
• ability to work well with everyday people in diverse racial, ethnic, social and economic groups
• ability to show initiative and follow-through
• excellent writing skills
• strategic thinking skills and attention to detail
• ability to be creative
• ability to work well as part of a team
• ability to adapt to rapidly changing situations
• willingness to travel around the state, and do some out-of-state travel occasionally
• not afraid to use confrontation as a tactic for winning justice
• must be passionate about Iowa CCI's mission and purpose
• excellent computer skills
• willingness to work long hours
• bi-lingual in Spanish and English a plus, but not required
• organizing experience and college education a plus
• must have a car or have access to a car on a daily basis

Salary & Benefits:
Starting salary of $24,000 (could be higher based on experience). Excellent benefits include a great work environment with dedicated people, health and dental insurance, a 401(k) retirement plan, and
generous vacation and PTO. Opportunities for advancement.

To Apply:
Email resume and 3 references by May 1, 2010 to:
Hugh Espey, Executive Director

Please put “community organizer” in the subject line

Mailing address is:
Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement
2001 Forest Avenue
Des Moines, Iowa 50311

Iowa CCI is an equal opportunity employer.

For more information on Iowa CCI, visit

Greater Des Moines Job Classifieds

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