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Director of Government Relations in Columbia, MD at Universities Space Research Association

Date Posted: 5/1/2018

Job Snapshot

Job Description

The Director, Government Relations will develop and implement public policy advocacy efforts undertaken by USRA, a nonprofit corporation chartered to advance space-related science, technology and engineering.  USRA operates scientific institutes and facilities, and conducts other major research and educational programs, under Federal funding. 


Essential Duties/Responsibilities:

  • Drafts position papers for USRA, in collaboration with USRA executives and universities, and plans advocacy efforts, including congressional visits by USRA executives and representatives of USRA member universities 
  • Identifies and analyzes legislation that could impact USRA's activities and that of its member universities
  • Develops and distributes a monthly communication (USRA Legislative Brief) for the benefit of member universities
  • Serves as USRA's representative in legislative and public policy matters, under the direction of the VP, Corporate Affairs and Communications
  • Guides outside counsel, and acts as an internal resource on legislative and regulatory matters
  • Other job related duties as assigned

Required Qualifications:


Bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited university


8 or more years of experience with the legislative process and working with elected officials at the federal level, including presenting and undertaking communications

Licenses, Certifications:



Knowledge, Skills & Abilities:  

  • Experience in designing, implementing, and directing multiple complex projects
  • Experience in producing written materials for communication to congressional offices and providing updates on legislative and regulatory developments
  • Familiarity with the budget of NASA and the budgets of other science agencies (preferred).
  • Experience in interacting with universities (preferred).
  • Experience working for Congress as a member of a personal or committee staff (preferred).


  • Behave Ethically: Understand ethical behavior and business practices and ensure own behavior is consistent with these standards and aligns with the values of USRA
  • Build Relationships: Establish and maintain positive working relationships with others, both internally and externally, to achieve the goals of USRA
  • Communicate Effectively: Speak, listen and write in a clear, thorough and timely manner using appropriate and effective communication tools and techniques
  • Foster Teamwork: Work cooperatively and effectively with others to set goals, resolve problem, and make decisions that enhance fund raising effectiveness
  • Lead: Positively influence others to achieve results that are in the best interest of the organization.
  • Organize: Set priorities, develop a work schedule, monitor progress towards goals, and track details, data, information and activities
  • Plan: Determine strategies to move the organization forward, set goals, create and implement actions plans, and evaluate the process and results
  • Solve Problems: Assess problem situations to identify causes, gather and process relevant information, generate possible solutions, and make recommendations and/or resolve the problem



  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office and its applications.

Working Conditions:

This job operates in a professional office environment. This role routinely uses standard office equipment such as computers, phones, photocopiers, etc. Extensive online usage. This is largely a sedentary role.


Incumbent will be expected to work from Washington, DC office and travel, as needed.

All interested candidates must apply directly on our website at

USRA is an Equal Opportunity Employer Minorities/Females/Protected Veterans/Disabled/Sexual Orientation/Gender Identity