Senior Advisor, Government Relations and Strategic Partnerships

Apply Now

Apply for this job

Upload CV (doc, docx, pdf)

Job Description

Senior Advisor Government Relations

Job ID: 59992


This position works remotely requiring a telecommuting agreement and adherence to the UCSC Telecommuting/Remote Work Guidelines. The employee shall be available in a full-time capacity during assigned telecommuting work hours (specific hours to be discussed with supervisor). While telecommuting/remote working, the employee is responsible for ensuring a worksite environment suitable for accomplishing their regular job duties during scheduled hours of work and, if applicable, arranging for dependent care just as they would if they were working at the regular UCSC worksite.



The University of California has implemented a Vaccination Policy covering all employees. Employees, including new hires, are required to comply with any applicable policies relating to the University of California’s COVID-19 vaccine program.


For full consideration, applicants should attach their resume and cover letter when applying for a job opening. For guidance related to the application process or if you are experiencing difficulties when applying, please review the Applicant Resources on our Talent Acquisition website.

  • How to Apply
  • Troubleshooting
  • Tips for Applicants
  • FAQ’s


Application materials submitted by 11:59 pm on the IRD will be routed to the hiring unit for consideration. Materials submitted after the IRD will ONLY be forwarded at the request of the hiring unit. To ensure your application is routed for consideration, submit your materials before 11:59 p.m. on the IRD. Talent Acquisition cannot accept application materials outside of the jobs portal, and is unable to update submitted applications on an applicant’s behalf, or forward communications to the hiring units. For more information about the IRD and the applicant review process, view this link.

The IRD for this job is: 10-24-2023


UC Santa Cruz is a public university like no other in California, combining the experience of a small, liberal arts college with the depth and rigor of a major research university. It’s known as an unconventional place where innovation and experimentation is part of the campus’s DNA. That playful, bold spirit still thrives today, all on a campus renowned as among the most beautiful in the world.


The Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC) is a public agency supported by 13 members (states and territories). Through the work of thousands of educators, Smarter Balanced created an online assessment system aligned to the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), as well as tools for educators to improve teaching and learning. Smarter Balanced is housed at the University of California Santa Cruz (UCSC) Silicon Valley Extension.

The work of Smarter Balanced is guided by the belief that a high-quality assessment system can provide information and tools for teachers and schools to improve instruction and help students succeed – regardless of disability, language, or subgroup. SBAC involves experienced educators, researchers, state and local policymakers, and community groups working together in a transparent and consensus-driven process.

Smarter Balanced staff have a profound commitment to UCSC’s Principles of Community including embracing diversity, equity, and inclusion.

UCSC Extension provides professional training that reflects the academic rigor of the University of California and the hands-on, roll-up-your-shirtsleeves practicality of Silicon Valley culture. Developed with guidance from key industry leaders and academic experts, our certificate programs match the economic demands of industry, from engineering to business, education to bioscience. The University of California reviews and approves UCSC Extension courses and programs for academic content, merit, and instructor qualifications. Many Extension courses may be applied toward degree programs or may be eligible for professional certificates and licenses.

More information can be found here:


The Senior Advisor, Government Relations and Strategic Partnerships implements short and long-term planning for customer relationships with our membership states. This position plays a critical role in developing strategies, programming, and spearheading projects that facilitate, improve, and strengthen client relationships. Collaboration with our State Educational Staff (SEAs) is the strength of our organization and is in alignment with our mission and values. Accordingly, this role regularly utilizes knowledge of the operational contexts of state education agencies.


Budgeted Salary: $101,100 – $141,246/year. Salary commensurate with skills, qualifications and experience.
Under California law, the University of California, Santa Cruz is required to post a reasonable estimate of the compensation for this role. The salary shown above is the budgeted amount the University reasonably expects to pay and the salary extended should not exceed this posted amount.

Benefits Level Eligibility: Full benefits

Schedule Information:

  • Full-time, Fixed
  • Percentage of Time: 100%, 40 Hours per Week
  • Days of the Week: Mon-Fri
  • Shift Includes: Day

Employee Classification: Career appointment

Job End Date: None

Work Location: Remote

Union Representation: Non-Represented

Job Code Classification: 000223 (GOVT REL SPEC 4)

Travel: Up to 25% of the time


30% – Planning, Program, and System Design

  • Using institutional knowledge and awareness of constituency perception, designs, develops and implements short and long-term strategic plans, programs, events, and activities.
  • Based on collaboration with Smarter Balanced staff (using institutional knowledge, knowledge of public education as an industry and legal framework), and awareness of constituency perception, designs, develops and implements short and long-term Customer Relationship Management (CRM) strategies, creates and implements plans to better support consortium members including programs, events, and activities.
  • Develops and maintains comprehensive CRM systems to develop and maintain knowledge of constituency process, challenges, and contacts. Collaborates with Smarter Balanced staff to ensure answers effectively address the needs of stakeholders.
  • May supervise staff and/or serve as project lead and in general facilitates CRM operations for executive team. May mentor less experienced staff.

20% – Policy and Compliance

  • Develops and advances policy-driven positions through liaison with Smarter Balanced and state educational agency (SEA) staff.
  • Serves as critical liaison between Smarter Balanced and SEAs on compliance-related issues with applicable federal, state and / or local laws, regulations, and / or rules, standards and guidelines. Monitors and interprets federal and state legislation and / or proposed actions by city government and advises senior management of potential campus and / or medical center impact. Maintains currency in legislative and policy activity across the Consortium (member states and federal government) in areas impacting K-12 assessment and implementation in order to provide expert and informed counsel.
  • Analyzes, summarizes and / or reviews report findings and data that are included in reports from the Consortium, members or related assessments (e.g.NAEP, PISA, etc).

10% – External Relations

  • May oversee all aspects of complex external relations programs through sound CRM methodologies and practices, all member-facing projects and events, including coordinating special programs and overseeing production of audio / visual or written and visual materials.
  • Serves as the sponsor for member-facing communications. Frames, reviews, and edits member-facing communications to ensure consistent and strategic messaging that aligns to Consortium strategy as well as best practices in instruction and assessment.
  • May represent the Consortium in the media or with external organizations.

40% – Member Services

  • Elicits and monitors the dispensation of feedback from members through regular member outreach, the administration of consortium-wide surveys, and collection of information from individual members on a regular basis. Serves as the lead advisor to Executive Administrative Officer on state of member and Consortium relationships. Manage CRM system in support of those relationships.
  • Quickly and appropriately identifies, addresses, and mitigates unforeseen and / or rapidly unfolding events within the Consortium operations or within membership that may negatively impact relationships with the Consortium’s various constituencies, keeping senior management and other Consortium leaders appropriately advised and notified.
  • Responds to constituent inquiries by collaborating with other staff to achieve similar consistency and meet strategic objectives.


  • Bachelor’s degree in related area and / or equivalent experience / training.
  • Advanced knowledge of the statutory and operational contexts of state education agencies, connections with Local Education Agencies (LEAs) and federal compliance reporting.
  • Advanced knowledge of practices and procedures associated with building and maintaining effective working relationships with all levels of internal and external constituencies consistent with the University’s Principles of Community and Smarter Balanced’s commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility.
  • Advanced knowledge of issues of concern in public education.
  • Advanced knowledge of practices and procedures associated with building and maintaining effective working relationships with all levels of internal and external constituencies.
  • Advanced written, verbal, and interpersonal communication skills, including skill to produce information that is appropriately presented and effectively received by target constituencies.
  • Active listening skills, including advanced critical thinking and analytical skills.
  • Skill to recognize potential areas of constituency concern and address, resolve and / or mitigate problems or issues.
  • Advanced knowledge of the legislative process, including organization procedures and the budget and appropriations processes relating to public education.
  • Experience ensuring that organizational practices, services, and behaviors support and promote diversity among staff.
  • Documented experience in contract management.
  • In your most recent position, completed work necessary to fulfill the terms of a contract as a service provider.


  • Graduate-level degree or post-baccalaureate certificate in areas such as public policy, education policy, law.
  • Graduate-level degree or post-baccalaureate certificate in areas such as management, leadership, non-profit leadership, development, or strategic partnerships.
  • Advanced project management skills, including skills to plan and implement successful events.
  • Advanced skills to read, interpret, understand and respond to pending and proposed education legislation, including skills to write effective position statements.
  • Documented experience in grant management.
  • Knowledge regarding assessment development for large scale assessment in K-12 education.
  • Knowledge regarding how to use assessment results to improve teaching and learning in K-12 education.


  • Selected candidate will be required to pass a pre-employment criminal history background check.
  • Ability to work long periods of time at a computer with or without accommodation.
  • This is a fully remote position, and the selected candidate must be able to work successfully from a home/remote office and be able to fulfill the requirements of the UCSC telecommuting agreement.
  • Ability to work overtime including evenings, nights, weekends and holidays to meet operational needs, and work an alternate work schedule shift as required.
  • Selected candidate will be required to complete training within established time frames as directed including UC compliance training.
  • Ability to travel nationally.
  • Ability to maintain appearance and conduct suitable for working in a professional setting.


All UCSC employees must understand and follow job safety procedures, attend required health and safety training, proactively promote safety at work, and promptly report actual and potential accidents and injuries.


The University of California is an Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, or protected veteran status. UC Santa Cruz is committed to excellence through diversity and strives to establish a climate that welcomes, celebrates, and promotes respect for the contributions of all students and employees.

View full job description and access on-line application:

To ensure review of application materials by the hiring unit, they must be submitted on or before the initial review date (IRD) via the Staff Employment Opportunities web site; A computer is available at the UC Santa Cruz Staff Human Resources Office located at Scotts Valley Center. The Scotts Valley Center is located at 100 Enterprise Way, Suite E100, Scotts Valley, CA 95066. To learn more or to request disability accommodations, call 831-459-2009. Hearing impaired are encouraged to use the California Relay Service at 800-735-2922. UC Santa Cruz is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, or protected veteran status. UC Santa Cruz is committed to excellence through diversity and strives to establish a climate that welcomes, celebrates, and promotes respect for the contributions of all students and employees.


“If you require alternative methods of application or screening, you must approach the employer directly to request this as H1BVisaJobs is not responsible for the employer’s application process.”