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Power Organizer


The Industrial Areas Foundation (IAF) is seeking to recruit, train, and develop a new generation of organizers to work in one of the groups that already exist and to assist in new strategies and targeted campaigns. The IAF is recruiting organizers to work across the US in its 70+ affiliate organizations.   IAF is seeking women and men from colleges, graduate programs, seminaries, business and law schools, the military, political campaigns, and other professions who are interested in exploring careers in organizing.  

IAF is the oldest and largest broad-based citizens organizing network in the US. Founded by Saul Alinsky, IAF won the first universal health care law in Massachusetts that became the blue print for ObamaCare, conceived and won the first living wage law in Baltimore that became a national movement, and secured more than $1 trillion in infrastructure, housing, and schools investment to revitalize poor rural and urban communities across the US.  IAF has trained hundreds of thousands of citizen leaders and organizers, including Cesar Chavez and Barack Obama.

Here are some of the qualities IAF looks for in a successful organizer:

1).  NATIVE INTELLIGENCE – not necessarily degrees, but the ability to think, reflect, communicate, challenge the conventional wisdom, make judgments in complicated situations, and show flexibility.

2).  ANGER AND EDGE – not temper, not ideological fervor, not an abstract commitment to “the people,” but a clear sense of what’s wrong, impatience in the face of that wrong, and a drive to address it.

3).  A WILLINGNESS TO CROSS RACE AND CULTURE – to be willing to work with people unlike oneself, people of other races, classes, orientations, and faiths.

4). A TRACK RECORD – some evidence, in high school, college, the local community or the workplace of attempting to relate to people and to respond to situations that seemed to demand responses; and some success in whatever field or career or endeavor has occupied the individual’s time.

5).  A DRIVE TO BE ON THE GROUND IN COMMUNITIES DIRECTLY AFFECTED BY INJUSTICE TO BUILD POWER & TAKE ACTION FROM THE BOTTOM UP — some evidence that you are committed to people and place and embrace the organizing tradition pioneered by A. Philip Randolph, Fannie Lou Hammer, Ceasar Chavez, and others.


E-mail us a 1-page resume and a separate 1-page story of self that tells us why you want to be an organizer, or why you became an organizer, and a specific story of how you have demonstrated some of the qualities VOICE's looks for in a successful organizer.  VOICE will only review complete applications that include the 1-page story.

E-mail applications to: