Campaign Director

Straight Ahead! (The Straight Ahead Organization)

Website Straight Ahead! (The Straight Ahead Organization)

Abolitionist lobbying group in Pennsylvania

Position Overview

The Straight Ahead Organization (Straight Ahead!) emerged from the movements to abolish death by incarceration (DBI) and solitary confinement in Pennsylvania. Our leaders come from the Abolitionist Law Center (ALC)Human Rights Coalition and the Coalition to Abolish Death By Incarceration (CADBI), organizations which have generated path-breaking research and communications around the issues of life-without parole and restorative justice while centering the leadership of the formerly and currently incarcerated and their family members. The movement has developed and worked with a growing network of grassroots community activists to build legislative support for parole eligibility for lifers, and created chapters of the grassroots CADBI organization in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Harrisburg, Delaware County, Lancaster, Coatesville, and Lehigh Counties across the state.

Straight Ahead! is seeking an abolitionist organizer with vision, experience, and management abilities to serve as Campaign Director and lead a campaign against Death By Incarceration (Life without parole sentences) in Pennsylvania, which has one of the largest populations of LWOP and Geriatric prisoners in the country.

Straight Ahead! builds organizing power to transform the local, state, and national policy landscape around Mass Incarceration and Death By Incarceration sentences through deep, long-term partnerships with leading community organizing groups led by directly impacted communities and organizers.

We seek a visionary and talented Campaign Director to pull together and lead the team of organizers covering this broad terrain.

Straight Ahead! has certain core values as to how we think about campaigns, and alignment on these principles would be fundamental to the ultimate success of any candidate for the position. These principles include:

  • A commitment to building abolitionist, decarceration and transformative campaigns that engage a mass-base within membership organizations, and that envisions a full range of engagement with the base, from leadership development to mass mobilization, from building deep member-engagement committees/structures, to ensuring that campaigns recruit large numbers of directly impacted people into the campaign.
  • A deep commitment to race, class, and gender equity.
  • A strong critique of state violence and mass incarceration.
  • Straight Ahead! is committed to methodological and tactical diversity in our campaigns. We will run aggressive legislative campaigns on the state level. We want to deploy the fullest range of effective methods, from direct action campaigning to sophisticated media work, from digital campaigning to mass mobilization to grass tops work.


The Campaign Director will have the following responsibilities:

  • Supervise the communications and organizing directors and work with them to develop their strategies and teams, and to execute their campaign plans.
  • Develop Straight Ahead!’s campaigning methodology by developing and instituting clear goals, benchmarks, and practices.
  • Participate in regular meetings to support the growth and organizational development of Straight Ahead!
  • Provide high-level strategic advice to the executive leadership on program development in the core Straight Ahead! issue areas.
  • Facilitate coordination between the campaign team, including organizing, policy, communications, digital, and capacity building.
  • Developing and leading legislative strategy to pass laws that will bring our people home.
  • Building coalitions in Pennsylvania and Nationally to further the Campaign.
  • This position will require travel across the state of Pennsylvania as well as national travel if necessary. Weekend travel will be expected.
  • Participating in events, meetings and rallies with impacted communities will also be a requirement.
  • Strong proficiency with Google Drive (familiarity with other project management/comms cloud-based platforms to manage people remotely Slack, Monday, Wrike is a plus).


We are looking for applicants with the following qualifications:

  • At least five years of organizing and campaign experience.
  • Experience with base-building community organizations.
  • A demonstrated commitment to abolition, racial equity, gender justice, and to empowering low- and moderate-income communities, communities of color, and immigrant communities.
  • Experience with a wide range of campaign approaches, with a demonstrated experience with grassroots campaigns, legislative campaigns, and electoral politics.
  • First rate management skills, with a proven ability to implement a holistic management system in a movement-organization context, significant experience supervising large, diverse, advanced teams of organizers, etc.

Salary and Benefits

The Campaign Director will be located in Philadelphia. This is a full-time, salaried position with some evening and weekend hours required. This position has a six-month introductory period. The salary for this position is $75,000 annually, negotiable based on experience. The position comes with a health insurance benefit of up to $400/month and 35 days (280hrs) of paid time off annually.

Reports to: SAO Executive Director and SAO Board Executive Committee

Application Process

Please email your resume, two professional references, and a detailed cover letter explaining your interest in the position as a single PDF to Applications will be accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis until February 1, 2021.

Straight Ahead Organization is an equal opportunity employer. People of color, women, indigenous people, LGBTQI-GNC people, and formerly incarcerated people are strongly encouraged to apply.

To apply for this job email your details to