Midwestern Agricultural Community Organizer
The Rural Investment to Protect our Environment (RIPE) is seeking to hire farmers and community organizers to engage farmers and farm trade associations to support a federal policy that invests in farmers and the environment. RIPE is an innovative non-profit program dedicated to fostering a bipartisan coalition for federal climate policy that invests in voluntary agricultural stewardship and farmer profitability.
RIPE seeks a self-motivated farmer or community organizer to coordinate and manage grassroots and grass-tops outreach, base-building, training, education, and leadership development among Midwestern farmers and ranchers. The organizer will be responsible for launching and growing a farmer membership program in 1-4 states, with support from the RIPE Agricultural Engagement Director. States include: South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Iowa, and Missouri. The organizer will engage growers to build awareness of and support for a ground-breaking and timely approach to federal climate legislation that delivers a win for farmers, ranchers and the environment. If you are excited to engage and mobilize growers in the Midwestern US to secure a much-deserved profit opportunity from US climate policy, this is the opportunity for you.
Hiring priorities are for those based in South Dakota, Nebraska, or Kansas and willing to consider exceptional candidates based in Iowa, Minnesota, or Missouri
RIPE is a non-profit based in Washington, DC that works on the following goals:
· Comprehensively address climate change with bipartisan mandate
· Fairly compensate farmers with a profitable and reliable revenue stream of around $40 billion annually that communities can rely upon in an era of declining rural economies, volatile commodity prices & disrupted access to international markets.
· Invest in voluntary agricultural stewardship practices to improve drinking water quality, soil health, and climate change mitigation
The responsibilities of the Agricultural Community Organizer include but are not limited to the tasks below. If you are skilled in some, but not all of these tasks, please still consider applying. The position will be supported by an Ag Outreach Director and Communications Manager, so you can rely on their strengths to complement your strengths on our team.
· Develop and enact effective strategies and actions to build awareness of and support for the RIPE Roadmap, in coordination with the Ag Engagement Director.
· Network with farmers to explain policy concept and identify supporters
· Cultivate membership of farmers, ranchers, and farm trade associations
· Create activities such as committee meetings and surveys for members to provide input on policy design and outreach strategy
· Identify and engage important stakeholders that can effectively support and amplify RIPE’s mission, including commodity groups and other grower associations.
· Maintain positive, supportive, and proactive relationships with key stakeholders
· Determine the frequency and content of calls, meetings, and training opportunities with farmers and ranchers in the organizer’s area of responsibility.
· Facilitate calls and/or meetings to provide opportunities for farmers and ranchers to discuss producer concerns relevant to climate policy, learn about the policy-making process, discuss current events impacting the community, and identify upcoming advocacy and organizing opportunities.
· Mobilize members to contact trade associations, and Members of Congress, and other stakeholders as necessary.
· Organize campaigns for Op-Eds, letters to the editor, and other media opportunities to engage local press
· Facilitate leadership development training with Ag Engagement Director and other organizers.
· Work with Ag Engagement Director to design leadership development training curriculum, including local and state policymaker engagement.
· Identify and develop agricultural climate policy leaders through one-on-ones, leadership development training, meetings, and other forms of member engagement.
· Network with other groups that are organizing agricultural campaigns and connect RIPE stakeholders to those campaigns.
· Maintain updated statistics about RIPE grower involvement, activities, and outcomes using a shared online database.
· Collaborate with RIPE staff to provide holistic support to all participating growers.
· Actively participate in regional and organizational planning with RIPE staff.
· Attend, present at, and provide resources at relevant grower events, trainings, and conferences.
Skills, Abilities, & Qualifications
· Significant experience working as a community organizer or we’d like to talk to you if you are a farmer who is well connected in agricultural communities.
· Prior experience working with agricultural producers and their communities, preferred.
· Outgoing personality, ability to work with people from a variety of agricultural backgrounds, and navigate complex political dynamics.
· Excellent organizational skills with ability to manage diverse projects simultaneously and solve problems.
· Excellent oral and written communication skills, interpersonal skills and self-motivation.
· Positive, proactive and personable team player.
· Ability to work independently and as part of a collaborative team.
· Passionate about the opportunity to build power among agricultural producers to earn a net financial benefit from US climate policy.