Coalition Contractor

Sightline Institute

Job Description

Sightline Institute seeks a temporary, part-time independent contractor to help shape Oregon housing policy for many years to come.

This individual would spend several months in fall 2023 planning, convening, and summarizing an in-person conversation among advocates for housing, the environment, and justice, as well as other parties interested in shaping state rulemaking for the Oregon Housing Needs Analysis, created by the 2023 legislature in this year’s HB 2001 and HB 2889. The purpose of the in-person conversation is to identify a shared set of principles and political agenda to achieve them aimed at housing for every Oregonian “that is safe, accessible, and affordable in the community of their choice.”

This contract is funded in partnership by Sightline Institute and 1000 Friends of Oregon. Many tasks could be performed remotely, but the work would also require various in-person meetings in Oregon, especially in the Portland and Salem areas.


Anticipated time commitment would be 10 to 20 hours per week, subject to mutual agreement. The main deliverables for this contract would be:

  • The in-person gathering described above
  • Subsequently, a document identifying principles and a shared political agenda among many of these parties for advancing the legislation’s goal to ensure, for every Oregonian, “housing that is safe, accessible, and affordable in the community of their choice”

This work would continue until December 31, 2023, unless completed earlier. By mutual agreement, this contract could be extended to include political and policy work through some or all of 2024, advancing the agenda identified by the document.


Sightline and 1000 Friends would compile, with the contractor, an initial list of people with whom to meet, a tentative timeline, and a tentative structure for the in-person gathering. The contractor will have significant discretion in implementing these and preparing the deliverables. Staff for Sightline and 1000 Friends would be available for advice and help as needed. Tasks might include: 

  • Identifying relevant organizations, government agencies, and individuals for outreach
  • Preliminary conversations with those identified above in preparation for the in-person gathering
  • Carrying out all tasks related to holding the in-person meeting, including finding a space, creating an agenda, inviting participants, and recruiting helpers as needed for the day-of needs
  • Having follow-up conversations with participants to clarify and finalize points of agreement and disagreement
  • Internally summarizing ideas and points of agreement and disagreement that emerge from those conversations or other sources
  • Tracking and/or participating in government agencies’ related work to engage stakeholders
  • Identifying decisions and influence points for Sightline, 1000 Friends, and others to engage
  • Regular meetings with Sightline and/or 1000 Friends staff

If this contract is extended by mutual agreement, tasks to follow in 2024 might also include:

  • Representing the partnership or any resulting coalition to the press, government, or others
  • Applying for, participating in, and/or monitoring any relevant state advisory committees and boards
  • Monitoring and testifying at public hearings by state boards

The main point of contact for this contract would be Sightline's Portland-based senior researcher. They and other Sightline staff would collaborate with the contractor on all this work, sharing tasks as needed to complete the document by late December. One or more hourly contractors might also be recruited for the day of the planned event.

1000 Friends’ deputy director would also be a frequent collaborator and point of contact available to the contractor on all this work.

The contractor would join at least one staff meeting of Sightline and of 1000 Friends to summarize their work and meet peers at each organization.


The ideal candidate would have:

  • A basic working knowledge of Oregon’s political context, its system of land use regulation, and the outcomes of that system
  • Experience helping diverse groups of people identify their shared goals and their points of healthy disagreement
  • Existing relationships with some people working in this field in Oregon, inside and outside of government.
  • Strong communication skills, both orally and in writing
  • A passion for finding the common ground among sustainability, environmental justice, community stability, and economic prosperity
  • A rock-solid commitment to accuracy and intellectual honesty, and (alongside this) similarly solid tolerance for diversity of perspective and sometimes disagreement
  • Experience weighing diversity, equity, and inclusion in research, advocacy, and communication
  • Commitment to the mission and values of Sightline Institute and 1000 Friends of Oregon

Compensation: $2,500 to $3,500 per month, depending on experience and hours.

This is an independent contract position, meaning that it offers autonomy of schedule, time, tasks, and location, as well as a relatively high hourly rate (calculated to be similar to the cost to Sightline of a comparable payroll position for someone of similar skills and experience). It does not include health care, retirement, vacation, or other benefits.

About Sightline

Founded in 1993, Sightline Institute is committed to making Cascadia—the region stretching from Alaska to northern California and from the Pacific to the Rocky Mountain states—a global model of sustainability, with strong communities, a green economy, and a healthy environment. In our programs on housing and urbanism, democracy and elections, climate and energy, and farms and forests, we identify and promote reforms that yield outsized improvements for the region’s people and places.

A nonprofit, nonpartisan public policy research center, Sightline provides research reports, articles, and commentary; books, maps, graphics, and tools; framing and messaging guidance; and a regular news digest. We advise, inform, and advocate to public officials, change makers, and the media, and we collaborate with diverse allies and unconventional coalitions in pursuit of our mission. Sightline is among the largest and best-known public policy think tanks in the region, and we have an organization-wide commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. Learn more at

About 1000 Friends of Oregon

For nearly 50 years, 1000 Friends of Oregon has worked with Oregonians to leverage the state’s special and unique land use planning program to foster connected, vibrant, and beautiful cities and towns while protecting farms, forests, and iconic scenic areas from sprawl development and irreversible conversion. 

We focus our land use policy research, advocacy, and enforcement to help achieve a number of statewide priorities. We research, advocate, and enforce land use policies to enable and accelerate housing production, preserve the viability of farms and forests, and increase the number of transportation options with benefits to our air, our congestion levels, public health, and household and community costs associated with road expansions. Learn more and join the effort to protect the people and places that make home so special at

The Opportunity for Impact

Sightline's Housing & Urbanism team works to create housing abundance as a solution to multiple pressing challenges: affordability, racial equity, climate change, and sustainability. We develop and drive pro-housing policy at the local, state, and federal level, with a core goal to lift exclusionary zoning rules that limit affordable home choices, to promote policies that increase the supply of housing at all levels, and to bring down the cost of living in opportunity-dense cities and towns. We work to loosen restrictions on homebuilding that segregate neighborhoods, push lower-income people out—forcing burdensome, polluting commutes—and prevent Cascadian cities from welcoming new residents. In recent years we have: 

  • Convened the coalition that supported development and passage of a sweeping and ambitious Oregon Housing Needs Analysis statute by the Oregon legislature in 2023
  • Played a key role in both policy development and coalition building that led to the legalization of fourplexes in Portland, the best low-density zoning reform in US history
  • Helped pass statewide legalization of "missing middle" housing in both Oregon and Washington, two of the first laws of their kind in North America, and ending discriminatory restrictions on housemates
  • Mobilized a coalition and led public conversation around removal of costly parking mandates at the state level in Oregon and the local level in Anchorage
  • Driven the regional conversation on housing abundance policy and messaging through published research, focus groups, social media, speaking engagements, press interviews, and explainer videos

How to apply

Send a cover letter and resume to Sightline via Michael Andersen, [email protected]. In your cover letter, share some thoughts on how you might use your personal knowledge, skills, and strengths to approach the first couple months of this work. Please submit by August 30, though applications may be accepted and reviewed sooner.

Posted 10 months ago
Remote, Washington
Public Policy/Government Relations
Education Requirement
High School Diploma
Experience Requirement
1-5 years