Zero Waste Campaign Advocate


Boston, Massachusetts

Job Type Permanent
Salary Details The target starting compensation for this position is $36,000-$60,000 in the first year and depends on relevant experience, education, and location.
Deadline Aug 02, 2024
Required Experience 2 - 6 years

PIRG Zero Waste Campaign Director

Boston or Amherst, MA; Chicago, IL; Denver, CO; Portland, OR; or Philadelphia, PA

Nothing we use for a few minutes should threaten our health and pollute our future for hundreds of years. The PIRG Zero Waste team is seeking a campaign director to lead our zero waste campaigns and move us beyond plastics. 

Every day, people throw away tons of plastic “stuff” — cups, plates, bags, containers, and more. All of this waste not only clogs our landfills, trashes our parks, and litters our streets, but it also washes into our rivers and oceans, where it can harm wildlife. Moving beyond plastic is also critical to addressing climate change. The plastic industry emits an enormous amount of greenhouse gas emissions: soon, plastics production may even surpass emissions from coal. It’s time to move beyond single-use plastic, by getting rid of the most harmful waste, and stopping the use of things we truly don’t need. 

Key Responsibilities:

The Zero Waste Campaign Director will coordinate and work with our state offices across the country to run campaigns that call on our decision makers to lead us toward a zero waste future by passing statewide bans on single-use plastics and policies that hold producers responsible for their plastic pollution. This position requires exercising discretion and independent judgment in making decisions in matters of significance. Responsibilities may include but are not limited to:

  • Coalition building: Build support for our campaign goals from key constituencies at the campus, state and national level, including the Break Free From Plastic coalition.
  • Advocacy: Take our policies directly to key decision-makers in campus leadership, state legislatures, Governors’ offices, in Congress, in corporate boardrooms, and other forums where we could advocate for moving beyond plastics. Run multiple lobby days for students and staff.
    • Media Outreach: Serve as the spokesperson for our campaigns through media events, press releases and opinion writing. Keep abreast of important zero waste issues, raise the profile of zero waste issues and our campaign goals in the media.
  • Campaign strategy: Assess opportunities for building political support for our agenda through coalition-building, grassroots organizing, media coverage and message development.
  • Program development: Evaluate new research on the issue, create viable policy solutions and propose the right political strategy and messaging.
  • Fundraising: Write grant proposals, build relationships with foundation staff and meet with major donors.
  • Staff recruitment and development: Build our team by recruiting and managing interns and participating in staff recruitment efforts. Potential to oversee staff. 


Candidates must have at least 3 years of relevant professional experience. Qualified candidates will have a demonstrated commitment to citizen-based social change, as well as a track record of leadership. Experience working on waste, environmental or climate campaigns preferred. 

We're looking for people who are goal-driven and results-oriented, who have excellent public speaking, writing and analytical skills, the ability to speak persuasively in a charged atmosphere, and the passion and drive it takes to make positive policy changes.

Compensation and Benefits:

The target starting compensation for this position is $36,000-$60,000 in the first year and depends on relevant experience, education, and location. Candidates on the lower end of directly relevant experience should expect to be on the lower end of this range; candidates on the higher end of relevant experience are likely to be on the higher end of this range. PIRG offers an excellent benefits package. Our benefits package includes medical, dental, and vision insurance for employees and dependents, paid time off, our commuter benefit program, a 401(k) plan with employer match, parental leave, long term disability insurance, and may include needs-based student loan assistance. We also offer an excellent training program and opportunities for advancement. 


This position could be based in Boston or Amherst, MA; Chicago, IL; Denver, CO; Portland, OR; or Philadelphia, PA.

About PIRG

PIRG is an advocate for the public interest. We speak out for the public and stand up to special interests on problems that affect the public's health, safety and wellbeing.

How is it possible that, in the richest country the world has ever seen, dissatisfaction is rising and life expectancy is dropping? Is it just inequality? Or could it be that, in the name of producing and consuming more "stuff," we’ve lost sight, as a society, of what really matters -- including health, wellbeing, community, and a clean environment? 

PIRG’s mission is to spotlight these problems and find new solutions. Let's make more stuff reusable, repairable and recyclable, instead of single-use and designed for obsolescence. Let's choose conservation and renewable energy over fossil fuels. Let's value clean air and water over short-term profits and lower costs. Let's grow food that nurtures us as well as the land, with fewer pesticides, antibiotics and other quick fixes. 

Getting governments and corporations to make these choices is hard, and steps in the right direction are almost always small. But we have a 50-year track record of training and putting even our newest staff in a position to overcome powerful interests and win real results for the public interest.

Our Mission and Values

Why work with PIRG? Check out 10 reasons on our website.

PIRG is part of The Public Interest Network, which operates and supports organizations committed to a shared vision of a better world and a strategic approach to social change. Visit our website for things you should know about our network when you apply.

PIRG is an equal opportunity employer.

COVID-19: We take COVID-19 safety very seriously. Employees must follow our COVID safety protocols and be fully vaccinated and boosted. Accommodations are provided to the extent required by law.


Fill out our online application on our website.

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Category Admin & Leadership, Policy And Law, Sustainability
Tags Outreach