Director of Congressional and Federal Affairs

  • American Psychological Association
  • Washington, DC
  • Mar 11, 2022
Full time Advocacy Government Affairs / Relations Lobbyist Public Policy

Job Description

The Director of Congressional and Federal Affairs serves as the primary advocacy liaison to one or more federal science funding agencies (e.g. CDC, NSF, or areas of research, represent APA on coalitions, and lead on advocating in support of psychological science within the agency/agencies and Congress). This non-supervisory position will cover NICHD, NIDA, NIAAA and other agencies as assigned.

Education and Experience:

  • Master’s degree in psychology, other scientific field, or policy preferred.
  • 5-7+ years of relevant experience in science policy, regulatory and advocacy work. Government relations experience, including federal and state legislative and regulatory, lobbying, policy development, grassroots and coalition-building experience required.
  • 5-7+ years relevant experience and understanding of psychological and behavioral research and federal science policy.
  • Substantial contacts and leadership roles (planning/coordinating/convening) in coalitions and partnerships with other advocacy organizations.
  • Excellent interpersonal, communication and writing skills.
  • Proficient in communicating via social and related media.
  • Proficient in MS Office


  • Advocates for APA legislative and regulatory issue positions before Congress and in the Executive Branch agencies with primarily retrospective review of Deputy Chief for Scientific Affairs.
  • Manages issues within assigned portfolio and is also expected to lead or work on any federal or state issue relevant to advocacy priorities.
  • Formulates, develops and implements policy and political strategy and agenda with direction and collaboration with Chief Advocacy and Deputy Chief Advocacy Officers.
  • Provides research and analysis of federal and state law and legislation and coordinates with regulatory and policy staff regarding federal and state regulation.
  • Drives and leads APA’s advocacy organizational relationship initiatives, ensuring focus on and alignment with APA’s needs and Strategic Plan;
  • Develops and implements strategies for increasing the share of federal funding dedicated to psychological and behavioral health;
  • Increases visibility and understanding of psychological science within research funding agencies, and ensure psychological scientists are represented in peer review, policymaking and advisory committees.
  • Develops sustainable partnerships with other organizations and entities—
    • Explores, creates and sustains strategic alliances, collaborative opportunities, networks, partnerships, etc. across advocacy priorities;
    • Creates visibility for, development of, and participation in APA advocacy programs and initiatives;
    • Communicates with allied organizations regarding APA’s programs and advocacy initiatives.
  • Initiating and maintaining relationships with Congressional offices and Executive Branch agencies and coalition partnership and leadership to accomplish legislative and regulatory agenda.
  • Creating opportunities for scientific psychologists to participate in federal advocacy by planning and undertaking federal advocacy training sessions, identifying experts to provide congressional testimony or to visit key policymakers.
  • Preparing legislation, testimony, fact sheets, and other advocacy, policy and informational materials necessary to advocate on behalf of the association.
  • Interfacing with APA membership, senior management, other staff across the entire association, and governance to promote and discuss advocacy agenda.
  • Other duties as assigned.


The American Psychological Association, located at 750 First St NE, Washington D.C., was named a 2014 recipient of the Washington Post Top Workplace. It is metro accessible from the Red Line.

Application Instructions

Qualified candidates must apply online through APA’s applicant system and attach a cover letter and resume specifying your salary requirements. Applications that are submitted without both documents are considered incomplete and will not be reviewed for consideration. Once your application is submitted, you will receive a confirmation email. Please make sure to check your Spam folder if you do not receive an email from us.

The American Psychological Association is an Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, protected Veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or any other protected categories covered under local law.

APA has a mandatory vaccination policy. All employees must be either fully vaccinated or receive approval from APA for an exemption (disability/medical or sincerely held religious belief) before beginning work at APA. By submitting your application, you agree that as a condition of employment, you must comply with APA’s mandatory vaccination policy and other health and safety requirements.

Equal Opportunity Employer/Protected Veterans/Individuals with Disabilities

The contractor will not discharge or in any other manner discriminate against employees or applicants because they have inquired about, discussed, or disclosed their own pay or the pay of another employee or applicant. However, employees who have access to the compensation information of other employees or applicants as a part of their essential job functions cannot disclose the pay of other employees or applicants to individuals who do not otherwise have access to compensation information, unless the disclosure is (a) in response to a formal complaint or charge, (b) in furtherance of an investigation, proceeding, hearing, or action, including an investigation conducted by the employer, or (c) consistent with the contractor’s legal duty to furnish information. 41 CFR 60-1.35(c)



American Psychological Association