Advocacy Fellow

Compensation: $24.04 per hour for this non-exempt, hourly position

To apply:

The Opportunity

Essie Justice Group (Essie) is building grassroots power to dismantle the US incarceration system, the most egregious creator of racial and gender injustice of our time. We are a loving and powerful community of women with incarcerated loved ones and include cisgender women, transgender women, formerly incarcerated women, gender nonconforming people, elders, and young people.

Building a sustainable grassroots institution that can be leveraged in the fight for a Black Feminist future is a priority at Essie. Through the development of thoughtful organizing models, a vibrant organizational culture, and scalable structure our aim is to break the isolation of the 1 in 4 women who have loved ones behind bars and sustain bold decarceration advocacy through the leadership of women with loved ones behind bars. After six years of honing our Healing to Advocacy organizing model that graduated over 200 women in 29 cohorts into our sisterhood and building an active member leadership structure across California, Essie is waging ever more ambitious campaigns to divest from state-sponsored punitive control and invest in structures that support the self-determination, freedom, and dignity of Black women and gender non conforming people. We seek an organized, enthusiastic and committed member leader to join our team as an Advocacy Fellow who will support these efforts.

The Advocacy Fellow is a detail-oriented, people-person who thrives when participating on a team in the execution of an ambitious and visionary program. This person will help drive forward the programmatic work within Essie’s Campaigns & Advocacy staff team. The Advocacy Fellow’s role is to help out with select fact-finding, organizing, and administrative tasks related to launching statewide member-led campaigns. This person will carry out a variety of supportive functions, including managing logistics for community events, conducting outreach, and participating in the development and execution of decarceration and/or prison abolition campaigns in team strategy sessions. This person is a natural multi-tasker who is able to wear many hats and follow through on various deliverables at once.

The Advocacy Fellow is a valued member of the team and an aligned steward of Essie’s goals and culture. This person increases the organizational capacity to connect member experiences and the day-to-day realities of our loved ones behind bars to the campaign work we undertake.

The start date for the Advocacy Fellow is April 5, 2021. The application deadline is midnight on Sunday, January 10, 2021.

Core Responsibilities

Member Engagement in Priority Campaigns: Cultivate and support the engagement of Essie members across the Bay Area and Los Angeles in Essie campaigns, and help deepen member leadership and strategic capacity.

  • Coordinate and conduct outreach strategies for campaign-related community events.
  • Co-facilitate campaign-related events and political education workshops.
  • Provide direct ongoing support to constituent leaders in accessing campaign and advocacy related resources and activities.
  • Use a variety of digital tools to conduct advocacy and member engagement work virtually while in-person gathering is restricted by COVID-19.
  • Facilitate the participation of Essie members in rapid response campaigns through creative outreach and 1:1s.

Logistics & Coordination: Lead on logistics, administrative tasks and special touches for Campaigns & Advocacy department meetings and member-facing events.

  • Plan and execute logistics for programmatic retreats and events, staff retreats and events, fundraising events, and large meetings.
  • Communicate to constituents, partners, and other stakeholders to coordinate event and activity logistics.
  • Develop event project plans, timelines, checklists, role assignments, and other resources that ensure all staff members involved in executing events are aligned.
  • Manage the on-site team providing support of all events and meetings.
  • Book travel arrangements as needed.
  • Coordinate food, supplies, venues and/or technology, and special touches and set up for all department meetings, cross-departmental strategy meetings, and for larger events as assigned.

Special Projects

  • Take on delegated projects to support priority and specialized areas of work across the Campaigns & Advocacy department and other member-focused programming, including supporting policy research tasks, drafting advocacy materials, and facilitating listening circles.
  • Do what it takes to ensure the success of assigned projects through strong project management, facilitation, communication, and administrative and logistics support.

Who We Are Looking For

Ideal Qualifications

  • Commitment to supporting the leadership of women (cis and trans) and gender non-conforming people with incarcerated loved ones and our families.
  • 1 – 2 years of experience in managing projects with a moderate degree of complexity, importance, and urgency.
  • Excellent time-management, organizational, and event planning skills.
  • Effective and empathic correspondence writing; clear and persuasive verbal communication.
  • Experience with Mac operating systems, Google Suite and MS Office Suite (especially Excel and Word).
  • Ability to work independently and with discretion in decision-making related to administrative matters.
  • Comfort with a fast-paced and non-traditional work environment.
  • Feels an authentic personal need and desire to develop additional skills in project management, business email correspondence, personal time management systems, and team building.
  • Highly motivated to apply and level up organizational skills.


  • A radical Black feminist. You believe deeply in the ability of women and gender nonconforming people with incarcerated loved ones to free our people, and have demonstrated alignment with Essie’s values. You are not shy when it comes to fighting against patriarchy, racism, classism, and heteronormativity and see it as deeply connected to your life’s purpose.
  • A determined, methodical executor. You are extremely organized and coordinate events with skill and grace, especially in a fast-paced, focused environment. You relish strong work plans, spreadsheets, collaborative documents, and time management tools to support your and the project’s success. You anticipate needs and take initiative to address them. “I persist despite obstacles” is one of your mottos.
  • Self-awareness is your superpower. Though you are already fully aligned with Essie’s Black Feminist values, you are committed to continuously deepening your commitment to that politic through study, openness, and humility. You easily recognize your own relationship to privilege and power and are uncommonly eager to receive feedback.
  • Discernment and honesty we can trust. You are a thoughtful team member who acts in alignment with your integrity and are unfailingly trustworthy.
  • Uplifting and additive. You see mistakes as opportunities for growth; problems as catalysts for solutions, and inspire others along the journey. You carry a positive approach, can-do attitude, a sense of humor, and authentic kindness wherever you go.

The Position

The Advocacy Fellow is a full-time, hourly, non-exempt position supervised by the Senior Policy Associate. The salary for this position is $24.04 per hour (which is equivalent to $50,000/year if 40 hours are clocked every week of the year) with full medical, dental, and vision benefits, optional 401(k), a substantial vacation package, and a monthly personal wellness stipend. The position is based in one of Essie’s offices in Oakland or Los Angeles, California.

To Apply

Please address a thoughtful cover letter to the “Essie Hiring Committee” and submit along with a resume through our hiring portal ( by the application deadline at midnight on Sunday, January 10, 2021.

Essie Justice Group provides equal employment and advancement opportunities to all staff members. Employment decisions are based on merit, qualifications, and skills. Essie does not discriminate in employment opportunities or practices on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, immigration status, socioeconomic status, ancestry, age, size, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, familial status, veteran status, disability, AIDS/HIV status, medical condition, prior conviction, arrest history, traits historically associated with race, including, but not limited to, hair texture and protective hairstyles, or any other characteristic protected by law.

Essie values and specifically seeks applicants who are people with incarcerated loved ones; formerly incarcerated people; people of color; women; queer, transgender, gender non-conforming, and gender fluid people.

This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting, hiring, placement, performance assessment, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation, and training.

About Essie Justice Group

Essie Justice Group is a non profit organization of women with incarcerated loved ones taking on the rampant injustices created by mass incarceration. Our award-winning Healing to Advocacy Model brings women together to heal, build collective power, and drive social change. Learn more at