JCUA Community Organizer
Position Description December 2018

The mission of the Jewish Council on Urban Affairs (JCUA) is to combat poverty, racism and antisemitism in partnership with Chicago’s diverse communities. Inspired by core Jewish values, we organize a Jewish constituency to collaborate with communities directly impacted by poverty and racism toward realizing a shared vision of justice. In the context of our ongoing work to build bridges and deepen connections with communities across the city, our workin 2018-2019 calls for three main areas of priority impact: 1) Issue-based Campaigns and Community Organizing ; and 2) Youth Leadership and Engagement; and 3.) Community Investment. To achieve our organizational mission, JCUA develops and mobilizes a base of individuals from the Jewish community who become engaged in a variety of ways as leaders, donors and participants in campaigns, activities, and programs.

Using a community organizing model, JCUA has built relationships and stood in solidarity with communities directly affected by poverty and discrimination for the past five decades. In the past, our work has focused on a variety of issues including civil rights, public housing, police brutality, immigration reform, and worker rights – all with a focus on correcting systemic injustice in our city and region. Today, JCUA continues to pursue social and economic justice by mobilizing our members to work as powerful partners with organizations and in coalitions on pressing issues in Chicago. Our active members comprise an internal leadership core that informs our work, develops organizing campaign strategies, and actively carries out JCUA’s work to win campaigns and bring about systemic change.

The Community Organizer works within the Organizing Team to recruit and develop JCUA members to make an impact on critical issues in Chicago. In conjunction with the Associate Director / Director of Organizing, this person will identify and coordinate 1-2 issue campaigns, take the lead staff role when appropriate and carry out community organizing activities to accomplish goals. The Community Organizer will play a lead role staffing JCore Membership and Committee meetings, and serve as a trainer when appropriate. In 2017, JCUA members launched “Kol Or”, JCUA’s Jewish People of Color caucus, to help bring a racial equity framework to all of the organization’s work. JCUA seeks qualified candidates to lead this work, preferably who have experience and / or are familiar with Chicago’s Jews of Color communities. JCUA considers this to be an open level position; we may consider hiring a Senior Organizer level position based on the the applicant’s skill and experience. Successful candidates will demonstrate the ability to successfully build relationships and work with people who hold a range of marginalized identities and experiences. JCUA is a small dynamic organization where the staff is highly collaborative and committed to supporting each other’s work and goals. This position will report to JCUA’s Associate Director / Director of Organizing.


  • Identify, recruit, and develop JCUA members to drive JCUA’s organizing campaigns and effectively carry out strategies set forth by JCUA’s committees. Work closely with committee members to identify issues, plan, strategize, set goals and achieve results on an ongoing basis.
  • Support JCUA’s membership program, including training and engagement of JCUA leaders in the work.
  • Develop relationships with JCUA leaders, local coalitions and groups, leaders in the Jewish community, and others as appropriate.
  • Work closely with JCUA’s Jews of Color committee, Kol Or, to build relationships, recruit new members, and achieve the objectives of the group.
  • Work to develop relationships and build capacity with JCUA’s Congregation Partners, rabbis, and leaders to engage in our work.
  • Assist with outreach through social media and media outlets to further JCUA’s organizing and membership programming as appropriate.
  • Conduct research and analysis to support campaign work as needed.
  • Represent JCUA in coalitions and other arenas.
  • Willingness to work flexible hours to complete programmatic goals— including weeknights and weekends.


  • Serve as an ambassador and public spokesperson for JCUA in Jewish community settings and in the larger community.
  • Serve as a resource for framing and promoting our work from a Jewish lens.
  • Assist with fundraising and development objectives when needed.
  • Assist with JCUA programming when needed/requested.
  • Commitment to team-building and effective communication with colleagues.
  • Other duties as assigned.


  • Understanding of the root causes of social inequality and social justice through a Jewish lens.
  • Passion for engaging the Jewish community in social justice.
  • Familiarity with Chicago area neighborhoods and the Chicago Jewish community.
  • Bachelor’s Degree from an accredited institution preferred.
  • Minimum of 2 years related organizing experience, 3-5 years preferred.
  • Good listening, organizational, communication, writing and interpersonal skills.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills, including public speaking and presentation abilities.
  • Experience working in interracial settings and coalition building with diverse communities.
  • Experience leading Racial Justice trainings preferred.
  • Resourcefulness and a willingness to take initiative.
  • Current computer skills and working knowledge of online social media platforms.
  • Regular access to a car and valid driver’s license for fieldwork is required.


  • Salary is commensurate with experience.
  • Medical, dental, and vision coverage.
  • Two weeks paid vacation (with an increase over time), plus sick leave.
  • Days off for major Jewish holidays.
  • A supportive work environment with people committed to bringing out the best in each other and to positive social change.


The Jewish Council on Urban Affairs believes that personnel diversity is an organizational strength, and recognizes and values the intersecting identities that staff members bring to our organization. People of color are strongly encouraged to apply. JCUA is committed to providing equal employment consideration without discrimination on the basis of race, gender, disability, religion, national origin, marital status, sexual orientation , or any other  protected status. To apply, please email resume and cover letter to jobs@jcua.org.  Resumes and cover letters will be accepted through January 15, 2019.