Logo RGB Utah copy

Protecting the Bill of Rights in Utah since 1958

Job Announcement: The ACLU of Utah Seeks a Smart Justice Coordinator

aclu logo2The American Civil Liberties Union of Utah has an immediate opening for a full-time Smart Justice Coordinator to develop strategies to reduce the state’s jail and prison populations and to combat racial disparities in our criminal justice system. The issue of mass incarceration is ripe for bipartisan involvement, and the ACLU works collaboratively with groups across the political spectrum to achieve our goals. This position requires successful experience with issue advocacy campaigns and coalition partnerships. 

View a PDF of this job description >>

Founded in 1958, the ACLU of Utah is a not-for-profit, nonpartisan organization that utilizes legal, legislative and public education approaches to fight for individual rights and fundamental freedoms including reproductive freedom, immigrant rights, free speech, racial justice, privacy, religious liberty, LGBTQ rights, and more. Based in Salt Lake City with a staff of ten, the ACLU of Utah has not only the opportunity, but also the responsibility to protect and advocate for the civil liberties and civil rights of everyone in Utah. For more information, please visit www.acluutah.org

The Smart Justice Coordinator is a newly-created position that will report to the Executive Director and work closely with the organization’s legal, policy, and communications staff to further the ACLU of Utah’s integrated advocacy efforts to advance our priorities at the state and local level.


Position Overview and Functions:

The Smart Justice Coordinator will build and lead a campaign to realize a new criminal justice system in Utah – one that locks up far fewer people in prison and jail, eliminates racial disparities, uses fiscal resources wisely, and treats people fairly. This person joins the ACLU of Utah during at a critical juncture for civil rights and civil liberties in our nation. People with personal experience being impacted by the criminal justice system are encouraged to apply. 

The Smart Justice Coordinator will assume the following responsibilities:

  • Work in collaboration with colleagues to identify and establish strategic decarceration and criminal justice reform policy goals, specifically including parole and prosecutorial reform.
  • In collaboration with ACLU of Utah and ACLU national staff, research, draft, and implement a campaign plan.
  • Connect with a range of stakeholders, including policymakers, agency heads, prosecutors and defense attorneys, local officials, individuals and family members impacted by the criminal justice system (including formerly incarcerated people and crime survivors), community leaders and members, and other advocates, to craft policy proposals, create educational and research materials, and execute a strategy to win key reforms.
  • Lobby state and local policymakers, as appropriate.
  • Prepare and deliver presentations and testimony to support criminal justice reform advocacy efforts.
  • Develop relationships with allies and other organizations to further advocacy goals.
  • Represent the ACLU of Utah in working groups and coalitions.
  • Craft key performance metrics and evaluate the success of individual tactics as well as the campaign’s overall effectiveness; Track and report the status of activities, both internally and externally.
  • Attend trainings and conferences as required.



  • Demonstrated understanding of how to use policy analysis, research, lobbying, media, communications, alliance-building, and other advocacy tactics to influence the political agenda, with proven experience of engaging with and influencing decision-makers.
  • Knowledge of criminal justice reform advocacy and messaging, or an ability to quickly become conversant with the latest decarceration research, messaging, and tactics used to educate the public and move policymakers.
  • Excellent written and oral communications skills, with a high level of comfort presenting information.
  • Exceptional interpersonal skills.
  • Commitment to and experience with working in close partnership with community members, including people directly involved with and affected by the criminal justice system.
  • A history of working collaboratively and successfully with people and organizations from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds and a broad range of ideological positions and religious views.
  • Passion for criminal justice reform, ending mass incarceration, and racial justice.
  • Demonstrated task and time management skills.
  • Attention to measurable goals and results.
  • Applicants with a record of arrest or conviction, or personal experience being impacted by the criminal justice system preferred.



The ACLU of Utah offers a generous and comprehensive compensation and benefits package including paid vacation, medical, vision, and dental insurance, 401(k) with organizational match, life and short-term and long-term disability insurance, and generous time off policies. 


Please send a PDF of a cover letter and resume to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and include “Smart Justice Coordinator” in the subject line.

Applications are being accepted until the position is filled

The ACLU is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and encourages applications from all qualified individuals including women, people of color, persons with disabilities, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender individuals.