Empowering New York’s Asian American Community Since 1989

Image Alt


Associate Director of Advocacy & Policy

The Asian American Federation (AAF), founded in 1989, is New York City’s most powerful leadership voice for better policies, services, and funding that lead to more justice and opportunity for Asian New Yorkers. Our mission is to raise the influence and well-being of the pan-Asian American community through research, policy advocacy, public awareness, and nonprofit support.

In collaboration with 70 member and partner community-based organizations, we serve the interests of 1.7 million New Yorkers from 20 ethnic groups—diverse in language, culture, and religion—that make up New York’s Asian community, by providing expert research and unrelenting advocacy; working with lawmakers to change policies; and training Asian nonprofits to better serve their communities.

We fight to keep the pan-Asian American community visible and to ensure our needs are met, our contributions are valued, and our stories are told.


Reporting to the Deputy Director of Research & Policy, the Associate Director of Advocacy & Policy will be responsible for the execution of strategies designed to advance AAF’s advocacy agenda and public policy goals, and building partnerships and coalitions to achieve those goals. Our current advocacy agenda includes civic and economic empowerment, immigration integration, mental health, nonprofit support, and senior services.


Policy Expertise

  • Lead the development of AAF’s annual policy agenda and oversee policy engagement activities, such as convenings and briefings;
  • Collaborate with the Deputy Director to develop and execute advocacy strategies for diverse policy audiences, including member organizations, elected officials, funders, and coalition partners;
  • Monitor and anticipate city, state, and federal policy actions relevant to AAF’s mission, while facilitating timely internal communication; and
  • Provide valuable insights and recommendations to the Deputy Director, executive leadership, and issue-specific team leads to guide advocacy efforts, including determining the appropriate level and type of engagement.

External Relations

  • Alongside AAF leadership, serve as the policy spokesperson and representative at external events and policy discussions, including annual city and state budget and legislative mobilizations;
  • Cultivate programmatic partnerships to enhance existing programs and strengthen connections with the community, funders, and supporters; and
  • Coordinate with internal teams to raise public awareness of AAF’s initiatives, and oversee proactive and reactive advocacy actions, including drafting briefing papers and testimonies; organizing member participation in public hearings; and coordinating rallies and press conferences.

Member Engagement

  • Engage members through annual surveys and visits, ensuring feedback collection;
  • Conduct regular convenings to inform members about ongoing work, including budget initiatives; and
  • Interface with internal working groups to gather continuous feedback on policy priorities and spearhead member campaigns in priority areas, bridging high-level concepts into actionable strategies, while identifying crucial elected officials for relationship-building.

Team Management

  • Collaborate with the Deputy Director to oversee the annual budget for the Advocacy & Policy team, ensuring resource adequacy and compliance with grant and funding source requirements; and
  • Manage a team responsible for advocacy and policy-related initiatives and civic engagement, including staff and consultants, and oversee the recruitment, training, and supervision of seasonal interns to support AAF’s policy work.


  • Bachelor’s degree in public policy, social work, or a related field, or equivalent professional experience; master’s degree desirable;
  • 5-7 years of relevant experience, with at least 3-4 years of policy development and legislative advocacy experience;
  • At least 2-3 years of management experience strongly preferred;
  • Substantial experience in city and state government, policy advocacy, community organizing, and/or community engagement;
  • Demonstrated ability to think critically, independently, and strategically;
  • Strong relationship-building skills and the ability to interact with elected officials and community stakeholders effectively;
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills with exceptional attention to detail, including high-level proofreading and editing abilities;
  • Flexibility and adaptability to work in a fast-paced and dynamic environment;
  • Proficiency in an Asian language is a plus; and
  • Demonstrated commitment to Asian American communities and AAF’s mission.

All new hires must be vaccinated and must stay up-to-date with COVID-19 vaccines unless they have been granted a reasonable accommodation for religion or disability. If you are offered a position with AAF, this requirement must be met by your date of hire, unless a reasonable accommodation for exemption is received and approved by AAF.

Compensation & Benefits: This position is based in New York City, with a hybrid work environment. The salary range for this position is $90,000 – $95,000. To uphold organizational parity and pay equity, AAF will use a non-negotiable salary structure that takes into consideration the entire breadth of a candidate’s experience, employment, and education to arrive at their base salary. Compensation details will be discussed further during screening conversations. In addition, AAF provides a comprehensive benefits package that includes 100% employee health care; dental and vision coverage; life insurance; commuter benefits; as well as a 403(b) plan and generous paid time off.

Contact: Shelby Woods and Trisha Sutrisno of Koya Partners have been exclusively retained for this search. To express your interest in this role, please submit your materials by filling out the Talent Profile. All inquiries and discussions will be considered strictly confidential.

The Asian American Federation is an Equal Opportunity Employer. 

Koya Partners is committed to providing reasonable accommodation to individuals living with disabilities. If you are a qualified individual living with a disability and need assistance expressing interest online, please email [email protected]. If you are selected for an interview, you will receive additional information regarding how to request an accommodation for the interview process.