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Current Food Law and Policy Career Opportunities

It is an exciting time to have a career in food law and policy. As we learn about new opportunities, we will post them on this page as a resource for those seeking to start or continue a career in food law and policy. Good luck in your job searches!

  • Research Assistant, Harvard Law School Food Law and Policy Clinic (HLS Students Only)
  • Policy Director, Fair Food Network
  • Associate Attorney, Sustainable Food and Farming, Earthjustice
  • Executive Director, Berkeley Food Institute 
  • Associate Attorney, Earthjustice

Research Assistant, Harvard Law School Food Law and Policy Clinic (HLS Students Only)

The Food Law and Policy Clinic (FLPC) serves partner organizations and communities by providing guidance on cutting-edge food system issues, while engaging law students in the practice of food law and policy. Specifically, FLPC focuses on increasing access to healthy foods, supporting sustainable production and regional food systems, and reducing waste of healthy, wholesome food.

With its comprehensive work related to U.S. laws and policies of food donations, FLPC is launching an exciting and first-of-its kind project that will bring its expertise to other countries. In collaboration with the Global FoodBanking Network, FLPC is beginning to research more than a dozen foreign legal systems to better understand how they encourage or discourage food donations. Ultimately, through this partnership and extensive stakeholder engagement, FLPC intends to publish legal guides that communities in these countries can use to better navigate the laws and policies of food donations.

 FLPC seeks a research assistant (RA) for a paid position to help with legal research for this project. For spring 2019, our particular focus will be on the laws and policies of Argentina, Chile, and Mexico.

Under the supervision of FLPC staff, the RA may:

  • Research tax incentives and dis-incentives for food donations, including VAT, tax deductions and tax credits, and other tax policies
  • Research civil and criminal liability related to food donations
  • Research food labels and other related food-safety laws and policies
  • Work with the FLPC team on drafting and revising country-specific legal guides

Qualifications

  • Fluency in Spanish
  • Ideally, a thorough understanding of Latin American laws and institutions
  • Interest in food and public health law and policy
  • Strong writing and research skills
  • Enrolled at Harvard Law School

 How to Apply

Applicants must submit (1) a cover letter, (2) a resume, and (3) a writing sample to bfink@law.harvard.edu.

RAs must have the ability to be employed in the United States.  The position is part-time and the time commitment can be flexible.

 For more information, please e-mail bfink@law.harvard.edu.


Policy Director, Fair Food Network

Fair Food Network is looking for an experienced government relations professional to join their team. The Policy Director will lead Fair Food Network’s outreach, advocacy and policy-related relationship building work, with an emphasis on Washington, DC relationships and legislation. This person will also oversee a Michigan-based Policy Manager who will support relationship building in the state and manage Lansing-based advocacy and outreach. The Policy Director, working with the Policy Manager, will also contribute policy expertise to Fair Food Network’s new Technical Assistance Hub, which provides support and tools to healthy food incentive programs across the country.

The Policy Director will report to the Chief Operating Officer, supervise the Policy Manager, and work closely with the External Affairs team. The position will be based in Washington, DC. Exceptional Michigan-based applicants able to work from our southeast MI offices will be considered.

Key Responsibilities

  • Set strategy for Fair Food Network’s national and state-based (Michigan) advocacy and policy-related technical assistance work
  • Conduct outreach and advocacy for Fair Food Network priorities with legislative and executive staff in Washington, DC. Manage strategy for engaging the Michigan Congressional Delegation
  • Advance relationships with national affinity groups and partners, including attending key conferences around the country
  • Keep Fair Food Network and network of incentive partners informed on key trends and happenings in DC
  • Keep legislative and executive staff in Washington, DC informed on the state of the field and projects in their home states and districts, as applicable
  • Develop tools and provide real-time coaching on policy matters to Fair Food Network’s national incentive partners through the Technical Assistance “Hub”
  • Develop written overviews, hearing testimony, letters of support and other communications as necessary geared toward policy makers
  • Manage Michigan-based Policy Manager for results in Michigan advocacy work
  • Perform miscellaneous job-related duties as assigned

What You’ll Need

  • At least 5 years related professional experience
  • Existing relationships with key government officials, including at the USDA and on Capitol Hill.
  • Demonstrated ability to advocate among federal officials for organizational priorities
  • A pulse on the sector-specific DC buzz and ability to share relevant updates with Fair Food Network and partners in the field
  • Demonstrated skills in relationship and partnership building
  • Big picture thinking about how to develop content to influence policy makers; writing skills and experience developing materials for government partners
  • A collaborative style and willingness to build and strengthen new and existing relationships existing between Fair Food Network and appropriate partners
  • Ability to maintain a team orientation while working remotely
  • Willingness and ability to travel nationally up to 25% of time

Even Better

  • Deep content knowledge in the healthy food incentive field, including knowledge of key issues important to policy officials and a passion for the topic
  • Relationships with key industry partners and affinity groups
  • Skills and experience with managing staff for commitment and results
  • Desire to learn and continuously improve
  • Deeply inspired by Fair Food Network’s mission

The Rewards

  • Ability to advance Fair Food Network’s next 10 years of impact
  • Work with passionate, dedicated people
  • Apply your skills for social change
  • Competitive, comprehensive benefits package including full health benefits, a 401K match, family leave, an open PTO policy, and professional development opportunities
  • The starting salary for this position ranges from $88-100K, commensurate with experience

How to Apply

Please complete the brief application questions via the application form here. Candidates are able to display interest on an ongoing basis. If you have any questions about the role, please email jobs@fairfoodnetwork.org. 


Associate Attorney, Sustainable Food and Farming, Earthjustice

Earthjustice’s Sustainable Food and Farming Program is seeking an Associate Attorney to conduct legal advocacy and litigation. The position is available immediately and is located in New York, NY.

The Sustainable Food and Farming Program, within the Healthy Communities Department, engages in litigation and other legislative and administrative advocacy on behalf of a wide range of diverse clients to advance safer and healthier food and more sustainable and climate-friendly farming in order to protect consumers, farm workers and communities, and our waters, air and climate. A major priority is to limit and obtain adequate safeguards on the use of dangerous pesticides, excess fertilizers, animal waste, and farm and food processing chemicals. We take on cases with regional and national scope. We also work on cross-cutting Access to Justice issues to respond to the current efforts to limit the use of science and public participation.

The Associate Attorney program offers early-career attorneys the opportunity to develop into thoughtful, professional, and effective advocates skilled in the various aspects of public-interest litigation. The Associate Attorney will become familiar with the foundational environmental laws — including the Clean Water Act, Clean Air Act, Endangered Species Act, and  Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act — the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act, and the Farm Bill, gaining a broad learning experience. The term for the associate position is three years, with potential for extension. Some associates have gone on to other positions within Earthjustice, while others use the experience as a springboard to other career opportunities in environmental litigation or other areas.


Responsibilities:

The Associate Attorney will handle legal advocacy and litigation in judicial, administrative, and legislative fora including, but not limited to:

  • Work closely with Staff and other Associate Attorneys and clients to investigate, develop, and prosecute cases.
  • Participate in the full range of tasks involved in complex litigation, including factual investigation, legal research and analysis, discovery, briefing, and oral advocacy.
  • Develop and engage in legal advocacy, including draft and review legislation; draft rulemaking petitions, comments to agencies, letters, fact sheets and other materials; and, participate in coalition meetings and events.
  • Handle other legal work to further the work of the Sustainable Food and Farming and Healthy Communities Programs.

Qualifications:

  • Law school graduate with up to four years of legal experience.
  • Admitted to, or willing to apply for admission to, the New York Bar.
  • Excellent legal research, writing, analytical, and communication skills.
  • Experience in federal or state legislatures or judicial clerkship a plus.
  • Strong work ethic, initiative to take on work and solve problems, sound yet creative judgment.
  • Contributes to the creation of a diverse, equitable, and inclusive work culture that encourages and celebrates differences.
  • Ability to work well both independently and on a team.
  • An unrelenting commitment to high professional standards.
  • Aware of and sensitive to the needs and concerns of individuals from diverse cultures, backgrounds and orientations.
  • Commitment to serving the public interest.

We offer a mission- and employee-focused work environment and a competitive compensation package, including excellent benefits. Compensation is based on experience. Earthjustice is an equal opportunity employer and highly values diversity.


To Apply:
Interested candidates should submit the following materials via the Jobvite system. 

  • One- or two-page cover letter that addresses at least the following subjects: (1) excellent legal skills; (2) your interest in Earthjustice’s mission and any particular legal, environmental, or social justice issues; and (3) aspects of your background that show competence to work with diverse clients and colleagues.
  • Resume.
  • Writing sample, preferably a legal brief or memorandum that is either unedited or lightly edited by someone other than you. Please include a cover sheet explaining the extent of editing by someone else.
  • Unofficial law school transcript.
  • List of contact information for three professional or academic references.

 Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until the position is filled.

Please reach out to jobs@earthjustice.org if you are having technical difficulties submitting your application. No phone calls, drop-ins, or hard copies.


Executive Director, Berkeley Food Institute

In consultation with the Faculty Director(s) of the Berkeley Food Institute (BFI), the Executive Director (ED) is charged with the development, administration, and management of an inter-departmental research Institute located on the UC Berkeley campus; The Berkeley Food Institute is an exciting program that connects seven academic units: College of Natural Resources, Graduate School of Journalism, Goldman School of Public Policy, School of Public Health, College of Environmental Design, Haas School of Business, and Berkeley Law. These academic units on the campus have partnered to create an interdisciplinary/cross-campus institute that conducts research and develops policy recommendations and public outreach campaigns designed to transform food systems to expand access to healthy, affordable food and promote sustainable and equitable food production. BFI empowers new leaders with the capacity to cultivate diverse, just, resilient, and healthy food systems. In addition to performing rigorous scientific research, BFI informs and engages the public in its effort to transform food systems. To achieve these goals, the Institute provides graduate and undergraduate courses and fellowships and conducts community-based research projects. Most importantly, the Institute communicates research outcomes and policy recommendations clearly and effectively to legislators and the public.

The Institute was established in 2012, with start-up funding from a small group of individual donors and foundations who are committed to the project long term. The Executive Director will continue to fundraise for and shape the direction of the Institute, in collaboration with a governing Executive Committee, made up of the Deans of the seven schools, and an Advisory Council composed of outside experts and donors.

Responsibilities

  • Cultivates major outreach and policy programming and ensures their execution once funded.
  • Develops and executes strategic plan for financing program activities and ensuring ongoing sustainability of program.
  • Coordinates varied and competing requirements associated with managing an innovative program in a university and/or government environment.
  • Identifies and develops funding from multiple external sources.
  • Plans, directs, and controls program budget and manages financial, human resources, technical, and other supporting resources.
  • Assesses program’s effectiveness, and recommends changes to program’s content, policies, and strategic goals accordingly.
  • Develops and maintains liaisons with external Advisory Council. Represents the program to governing boards, outside agencies, and the public.
  • Leads professional conferences and provides public relations support. Presents seminars and workshops and participates with faculty on research.
  • Develops research ideas and options for faculty review and decision, and develops and implements instruction and research programs that reflect faculty interests.

Required Qualifications

  • Knowledge of food and agriculture issues, food policy, and economic, environmental, social, and cultural impacts of the food system.
  • Expert ability to communicate and interact effectively with a broad constituency, including faculty, researchers, scientists, program/center managers, staff, students, funding agencies, community members, NGO and government agencies, individual donors, and media in a dynamic multicultural setting.
  • Successful leadership experience in an academic institution and/or non-profit agency with budgetary responsibility of $500,000 – 1.5 million and expert knowledge of administrative, budgetary, human resources, and financial principles and practices, with oversight of a staff of eight or more.
  • Demonstrated expertise to oversee multiple functions and the vision and agility to lead amidst significant change in the field and in revenue streams; ability to manage productive collaborations between multiple agencies; demonstrated ability to develop and implement innovative program and research agendas and engage the public.
  • Expert fundraising experience, including identifying, cultivating and soliciting major gifts, producing events, and writing grants to foundations and government agencies.
  • Experience developing effective external communications, PR and marketing strategies, including web, social media, and media relationships, and development of marketing/fundraising materials.
  • Expertise developing internal communications, including coordinating and facilitating effective meetings, establishing communications protocols, and ensuring key stakeholders are well-informed of program development at all times.
  • Professional demeanor, attention to detail, and the ability to act decisively.
  • Technical proficiency – solid computer skills with knowledge of software programs (Microsoft Office – Word, PowerPoint, Excel). Ability to learn function-specific software.

 Preferred Qualifications

  • A minimum of eight years of senior-level management experience.
  • Advanced degree in related area and/or equivalent experience/training.

Salary & Benefits

Annual salary will be commensurate with experience

For information on the comprehensive benefits package offered by the University visit: http://ucnet.universityofcalifornia.edu/compensation-and-benefits/index.html

How to Apply

Please submit your cover letter and resume as a single attachment when applying. To apply, visit https://jobs.berkeley.edu/ and search for job 26548.


Associate Attorney, Earthjustice

Earthjustice’s Sustainable Food and Farming Program is seeking an Associate Attorney to conduct legal advocacy and litigation. The position is available immediately and is located in Washington, D.C. or New York, NY.

The Sustainable Food and Farming Program, within the Healthy Communities Department, engages in litigation and other legislative and administrative advocacy on behalf of a wide range of diverse clients to advance safer and healthier food and more sustainable and climate-friendly farming in order to protect consumers, farm workers and communities, and our waters, air and climate. A major priority is to limit and obtain adequate safeguards on the use of dangerous pesticides, excess fertilizers, animal waste, and farm and food processing chemicals. We take on cases with regional and national scope. We also work on cross-cutting Access to Justice issues to respond to the current efforts to limit the use of science and public participation. More about this work here.

The Associate Attorney program offers early-career attorneys the opportunity to develop into thoughtful, professional, and effective advocates skilled in the various aspects of public-interest litigation. The term for the associate position is three years, with potential for extension. Some associates have gone on to other positions within Earthjustice, while others use the experience as a springboard to other career opportunities in environmental litigation or other areas.

Responsibilities:
The Associate Attorney will handle legal advocacy and litigation in judicial, administrative, and legislative fora including, but not limited to:

  • Work closely with Staff Attorneys and clients to investigate, develop, and prosecute cases.
  • Participate in the full range of tasks involved in complex litigation, including factual investigation, legal research and analysis, discovery, briefing, and oral advocacy.
  • Develop and engage in legal advocacy, including draft and review legislation; draft rulemaking petitions, comments to agencies, letters, fact sheets and other materials; and, participate in coalition meetings and events.
  • Handle other legal work to further the work of the Sustainable Food and Farming and Healthy Communities Programs.

Qualifications:

  • Law school graduate with up to four years of legal experience.
  • Admitted to, or willing to apply for admission to, the New York Bar.
  • Excellent legal research, writing, analytical, and communication skills.
  • Strong work ethic, initiative, sound yet creative judgment.
  • Contributes to the creation of a diverse, equitable, and inclusive work culture that encourages and celebrates differences. 
  • Ability to work well both independently and in a team. 
  • An unrelenting commitment to high professional standards.
  • Aware of and sensitive to the needs and concerns of individuals from diverse cultures, backgrounds and orientations.
  • Commitment to serving the public interest.

We offer a mission- and employee-focused work environment and a competitive compensation package, including excellent benefits. Compensation is based on experience. Earthjustice is an equal opportunity employer and highly values diversity.

To Apply:
Interested candidates should submit the following materials via the Jobvite system. 

  • One- or two-page cover letter that addresses at least the following subjects: (1) why you are drawn to Earthjustice’s mission and whether there are particular legal, environmental, or social justice issues that inspire you; and (2) aspects of your background that demonstrate competence to work with diverse clients and colleagues.
  • Resume.
  • Writing sample, preferably a legal brief or memorandum that is either unedited or lightly edited by someone other than you. Please include a cover sheet explaining the extent of editing by someone else.
  • Unofficial law school transcript.
  • List of contact information for three professional or academic references.

Apply online.
Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until the position is filled. 
Please reach out to jobs@earthjustice.org if you are having technical difficulties submitting your application. No phone calls, drop-ins, or hard copies.


Health Policy Fellowship, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)

A fellowship is available in the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (ODPHP) within the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health (OASH), Office of the Secretary (OS), at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), in Rockville, MD.

OASH provides leadership to the nation on public health and science matters, and communicates on these subjects to the American people. OASH is a Staff Division in HHS that performs both policy and program roles and is led by the Assistant Secretary for Health (ASH), whose chief mission is promoting, protecting, and improving the  nation’s health. For additional information, please visit: http://www.hhs.gov/ash/.

ODPHP, strategically placed in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health, Office of the Secretary, has been leading the alignment of disease prevention and health promotion activities across the department for more than 30 years. Within ODPHP, the Division of Prevention Science coordinates departmental efforts in the development of 1) Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA), which form the cornerstone of Federal nutrition policy, are the basis of Federal food, nutrition, and health programs, and are issued jointly with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) every five years since 1980; and 2) the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans (PAG), which provide science-based recommendations and summarize the latest knowledge about physical activity and health.

The primary role for the health policy fellow will be supporting the coordination and development of the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans and may be involved in the following activities:

  • Supporting the development, implementation, and reviewing of activities.
  • Reviewing of DGA/PAG projects and materials through research, writing, and editing.
  • Communicating and disseminating the second edition of the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans.
  • Participating in and supporting of the evaluation of team projects in the area of disease prevention and health promotion.
  • Replying to Departmental correspondence and clearances.
  • Supporting Division of Prevention Science meetings, contributing to program development and implementation.
  • Contributing to Departmental prevention efforts in ways that support the team efforts.

This program, administered by ORAU through its contract with the U.S. Department of Energy to manage the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education, was established through an interagency agreement between DOE and HHS. The initial appointment is for one year, but may be renewed upon recommendation of HHS contingent on the availability of funds. The participant will receive a monthly stipend commensurate with educational level and experience. Proof of health insurance is required for participation in this program. The appointment is full-time at HHS in the Rockville, Maryland, area. Participants do not become employees of HHS, DOE or the program administrator, and there are no employment-related benefits.

Qualifications

  • Currently pursuing a Master’s degree in nutrition science or have received this degree within 60 months.
  • It is preferred that the applicant be able to demonstrate ability to present information, both orally and written, and be able to work independently as well as with a team.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Citizenship: U.S. Citizen Only
  • Degree: Master’s Degree or Doctoral Degree.

Learn more and apply online.