Organizational Description:

The Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF) influences policy, mobilizes communities, and strengthens programs and organizations to improve the health of Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (AA and NHPI) populations. Founded in 1986, APIAHF advocates on issues critical to the health and well-being of our diverse and vibrant communities. We approach our work with the philosophy of coalition-building and developing capacity for AAs and NHPIs and other, diverse racial/ethnic communities. APIAHF is based in Oakland, CA and has an office in Washington, DC, which primarily focuses on policy and communications.

Title:  Senior Director, Government Relations & Policy
Reports to:  Chief of Staff/SVP for Government & External Relations
Supervises: 2-4 staff (Policy, Communications)
Classification: 15

Position Summary:  As a member of APIAHF’s senior staff, the Senior Director, Government Relations & Policy will work with the Executive Team and APIAHF Policy and Program staff to formulate short and long-term policy goals and priorities and develop strategies to advance those priorities, including through federal (and state) legislative and administrative advocacy and coalition building.

The Senior Director, Government Relations & Policy will collaborate with the Senior Director, Network Innovations to develop and build APIAHF’s national network of community based organizations and health leaders to support and inform APIAHF’s health policy agenda.

In addition, the Senior Director, Government Relations & Policy will analyze proposed regulations, legislation and executive branch policy guidance and oversee the development of products to assist with advocacy on these issues (i.e. sign-on letters, policy briefs, action alerts, fact sheets and other publications) for a diverse array of audiences such as policymakers, advocates, health and social service providers, media, and community organizations.

The Senior Director will manage APIAHF’s work in coalition with national health advocacy, Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander (AA and NHPI), immigrant rights organizations, and community networks. In addition, the Senior Director will manage the policy team’s grants and program deliverables.

Duties and Responsibilities:

Organizational development:

  • Provide leadership and guidance on key policy issues to APIAHF’s ExecutiveTeam as well as to program staff;
  • Ensure policy program activities are aligned with mission, vision and values ofthe organization;
  • Work with the Senior Director, Network Innovations to develop and buildAPIAHF’s national network of community based organizations and health leadersin support of and to inform APIAHF’s health policy agenda;
  • Work collaboratively with other APIAHF directors to ensure synergy betweendivisions and attend Senior Staff meetings;
  • Assist in setting agendas for and participate in organizational meetings (i.e. teammeetings, strategic planning sessions, biennial conferences);
  • Assist with special projects and other duties as assigned.

Project Management:

  • Monitor and assess the impact of federal and state legislative and regulatory developments and proposals on the health of Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders;
  • Develop legislative and administrative strategies and conduct advocacy on behalf of Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander communities;
  • Develop and implement strategies to engage local Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander community organizations, industry, academia, health professionals, and others in health policy advocacy;
  • Oversee the development and editing of policy briefs, reports, presentations (speeches, talking points) and publications;
  • Manage the policy program and initiatives, write grant reports and assist with grant proposals;
  • Develop, implement and monitor annual work plans and ensure completion of deliverables.


  • Supervise policy and communications staff and interns;
  • Meet regularly with staff to ensure clarity on direction, organizational values, communication of vital information, and to provide guidance and support.

External Relations:

  • Work with the SVP for Government and External Relations and the Communications team to develop and manage the communications strategy and rapid response;
  • Develop, nurture and maintain effective relationships with a wide range of regulatory, governmental and public representatives on APIAHF’s policy portfolio and health care matters;
  • Manage and nurture effective relationships and communication with health and immigration policy advocates, AA and NHPI policy partners;
  • Serve as a resource and provide technical assistance to government officials, legislative staff, advocacy groups, health care and social service providers, advocates, community organizations and the media.

Required Qualifications, Education and Experience:

  • Master’s or JD degree in health, public policy, law or related field;
  • 7-10 years of combined experience in policy and government relations such as in a Congressional office, federal agency or a healthcare related or civil rights organization, with a central part of a prior position having included contributing and/or making policy positions for the organization on healthcare issues;
  • Demonstrated experience analyzing legislation, regulations and/or executive branch policy, as well as the ability to synthesize diverse information and develop policy recommendations;
  • Demonstrated experience and leadership in the development and implementation of policy advocacy campaigns at the national and/or state levels;
  • Demonstrated experience in program coordination and management, including supervision of staff, and budget management.

Skills, Knowledge, and Abilities:

  • Extensive knowledge of communities both locally and nationally, as well as the implications of national and local politics on AA and NHPI communities
  • Extensive knowledge of health policy, community planning and organizing, and community empowerment frameworks/best practices
  • Advanced public speaking, facilitation, technical assistance, training, and writing skills
  • Demonstrated ability to cultivate relationships with staff, board members, volunteers, and supporters of culturally diverse community-based organizations and coalitions
  • Strong computer skills including Microsoft Office, Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, and internet applications in a Windows environment
  • Demonstrated strong supervision skills of both administrative and professional staff, simultaneous supervision of multiple staff, and experience with conflict management, evaluation, and staff development
  • Demonstrated experience working effectively in team environment

Desired Qualifications:

  • Bi-lingual or bi-literate in an Asian, Pacific Islander and/or second language;
  • Demonstrated interest or experience working with Asian, Pacific Islander and/or immigrant communities;
  • Experience writing legislation or amendments to legislation, and conducting and/or writing issue briefings for policy makers;
  • Experienced writer on health care policy or quality of health care issues;
  • Experience in media advocacy.

General APIAHF Roles:

  • Serves as an ambassador and steward of the organization;
  • Fosters an environment that promotes trust and cooperation among clients and staff;
  • Enforces policies and procedures, including maintenance of confidentiality, to ensure that the principles of APIAHF are implemented;
  • Accountable for participation in decision making processes and understanding the outcomes;
  • Understands the values and principles of APIAHF and applies them in work responsibilities;
  • Participates in other activities, agency advocacy, and serves on ad hoc committees as requested;
  • Attends APIAHF and Board of Directors meetings, when required.

Mental and Physical Demands:

  • Pace of work is fast
  • Standing time required is 10% including walking
  • High level of concentration and attention to detail required
  • Time speaking and listening: range of 70-80%
  • Ability to travel by plane for long periods of time i.e. 3 hours or longer: 10-20%

Other Attributes:

  • Decision making impact: high
  • License or credentials: none required; graduate degree required.
  • Ability to drive, current license

Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. Please send your application package (cover letter, resume, list of references) to [email protected]. Application packages should be addressed with the subject line: ‘Senior Director, Government Relations & Policy’.