Become an organizer

Chapters of the Industrial Areas Foundation are seeking to recruit, train, and develop a new generation of organizers to work in one of the groups that already exist and to assist in new strategies and targeted campaigns. IAF is seeking women and men from colleges, graduate programs, seminaries, business and law schools, the military, political campaigns, and other professions who are interested in exploring careers in organizing.

Here are some of the qualities we look for in a successful organizer:

  1. NATIVE INTELLIGENCE – not necessarily degrees, but the ability to think, reflect, communicate, challenge the conventional wisdom, make judgments in complicated situations, and show flexibility.
  1. ANGER AND EDGE – not temper, not ideological fervor, not an abstract commitment to “the people,” but a clear sense of what’s wrong, impatience in the face of that wrong, and a drive to address it.
  1. A WILLINGNESS TO CROSS RACE AND CULTURE – to be willing to work with people unlike oneself, people of other races, classes, orientations, faiths.
  1. A TRACK RECORD – some evidence, in high school, college, the local community or the workplace of attempting to relate to people and to respond to situations that seemed to demand responses; and some success in whatever field or career or endeavor has occupied the individual’s time.

Career Opportunities

NINETY-DAY PROFESSSIONAL ORGANIZER TRY-OUTS (year-round): Metro IAF offers paid, 90-day try-outs to interested men and women at one of its organizations in the northeast, southeast, and mid-west any time of the year. Organizer candidates are assigned to a sponsoring Metro IAF organization, are given an organizing assignment to test their capacity, and receive extensive training and supervision from a senior Metro IAF organizer. These try-outs are offered after a process that includes:

  • An expression of interest by an individual that would include a letter of introduction, a resume, and some references;
  • An individual meeting, or series of individual meetings, held with the candidate;

  • Some contact with the individual in the context of local training/organizing or some mutually agreed-upon voluntary experience that gives the individual a better view and feel for IAF organizing and the local IAF organizer a better sense of the individual;

  • Then the 90-day try-out itself.  Upon successful completion of a 90 day try-out, candidates may be offered a 1 year contract

We are actively looking for candidates that speak Spanish.

Send cover letter, resume to  To learn more about how we think about organizing and our work, read Going Public by Michael Gecan.

All Metro IAF affiliates are proud Equal Opportunity Employers.  Women, people of color, people with disabilities, and LGBTQ are strong encouraged to apply.