The Chesapeake Climate Action Network seeks a talented Policy Fellow to assist the Virginia Director with research, policy development, and outreach during the 2023 legislative session. This fellowship is especially designed for students of color seeking to gain experience in the areas of climate change and environmental justice. 

About Us 

The Chesapeake Climate Action Network (CCAN) is the only group in the Chesapeake region of Maryland, Virginia and Washington D.C. dedicated exclusively to building a powerful grassroots movement to fight climate change. We envision an equitable energy future where truly clean sources of power — such as solar and wind — sustain every aspect of our lives, and dirty fossil fuels are phased out. We strive to include principles of justice and equity in every policy that we advocate for, with the knowledge that racial and social justice is foundational to climate justice.

In Virginia, we fight for solutions that match the scale of the climate crisis the state is facing. For over a decade, we have been pushing the envelope of what’s “politically possible” in Virginia, using every tool available – from organizing to lobbying to the law. We helped stop an $8 billion pipeline, weakening one of the nation’s most powerful polluters (Dominion Energy), and we are standing in the way of two other fracked gas pipelines. In 2020, we led the charge towards the first 100% clean electricity mandate in the South. 

About the Position 

The Policy fellow will have the skills, passion, and commitment to take on one of the biggest problems facing our planet in a state newly committed to tackling it with equity and justice. The ideal candidate will be just as excited to help track bills as they move through the General Assembly as they are to research policy options and generate corresponding memos to Virginia’s state director. 

What You Will Do

The primary responsibilities of the position include but are not limited to: 

    • Legislative Research:
      • Conduct legislative research, resulting in memos and talking points focused on phasing out fossil fuels and reducing the state’s greenhouse gas emissions.
      • Monitor and regularly update staff about our priority legislation.
      • Draft and research language for memos and talking points related to environmental justice, fossil fuel and vehicle pollution reduction, and transit.
    • Content Creation:
      • Provide content for CCAN’s websites.
      • Draft memos related to CCAN and coalition priority policies
    • Bill outreach and education:
      • Attend meetings to educate legislators, journalists, and other leaders about emerging policy challenges and opportunities.
      • Attend committee meetings to testify on key legislation. 
      • Attend and take notes during related coalition meetings.
      • Collaborate with partners to create and execute lobbying strategies to ensure passage of key legislation.
      • Assist with CCAN’s virtual lobby day.
    • Administrative duties and CCAN team expectations
      • Attend internal meetings to learn about and support the work CCAN does across the region on the state and local level 
      • Assist the CCAN field team with grassroots organizing and outreach as it pertains to the 2023 legislative session and Virginia policy goals. 
      • Work with and learn from the various departments within CCAN including communications, VA policy, and field


Priority consideration will be given to current Virginia students, but qualified candidates who reside in Virginia will be considered. The successful candidate will display many of the following capabilities and qualities: 

  • Commitment to the mission of fighting climate change and promoting environmental justice.
  • Strong dedication to justice, equity, and inclusion. 
  • Tech-savvy – ability to quickly learn new online tools.
  • Proven ability to be self-driven, while working effectively with a team. 
  • Proven ability to multitask, while prioritizing measurable results. 
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Problem-solver; someone who thinks of solutions more than barriers.  

The Details

CCAN is an equal opportunity employer, committed to a diverse workforce. We value bringing a diversity of backgrounds and perspectives on staff because it makes us smarter and more effective at what we do and, ultimately, we want our staff and supporters to reflect the communities we organize. 

This position is based in CCAN’s Richmond office with some work taking place at the Capitol building. Mileage reimbursement is available for all CCAN-required travel except travel to and from the office (commute).  The Virginia Policy Fellow reports to the Virginia Director. 

Compensation is $15.00 per hour for 15-20 hours per week during the Winter/Spring semester over a period of approximately 15 weeks. Anticipated start date is early January 2023.

How to Apply: 

Please fill out this Google form application to apply. Applicants will be reviewed on a rolling basis. You will be prompted to answer a series of short questions and asked to submit a resume and writing sample.

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