National Freedom of Information Coalition
Protecting Your Right to Open Government

Tennessee Coalition for Open Government seeks executive director

Tennessee Coalition for Open Government (TCOG) is seeking candidates who are interested in joining our organization as its Executive Director.

TCOG is a 501(c)(3) non-profit and non-partisan alliance of media, citizen and professional groups working to educate Tennesseans about their right to know about the affairs of their government as set out in the Tennessee constitution and Tennessee’s “sunshine” laws, including the open meetings and public records laws.

Our purpose is to serve as a clearinghouse of information on problems and solutions in the “open government” arena at the state and local level.

TCOG seeks to keep citizens, media and public officials informed about developments and threats to these laws, through projects, and programs — with an understanding that the best way to preserve and improve access to public business is through research and education.

This position currently requires an average of 30 hours per week – with more time required during the state legislative session and study group meetings and less time the rest of the year.

The optimal job candidate will have:

•  a bachelors degree and experience that provides a working knowledge of the Tennessee public records and open meetings laws, court precedents and relevant opinions of the Attorney General. Needs to be able to advise citizens and reporters on about these statutes and opinions without presenting this information as legal advice;

•  the skills necessary to collaborate with a wide range of groups and individuals;

•  the ability to organize and maintain a system to identify threats to open government, including monitoring proposed legislation, legal developments, statewide news coverage and calls from citizens and journalists who inquire about problems;

•  the ability to successfully seek funding through grants and contributions and to coordinate fundraising activities with TCOG board members and other supporters to support a level of services the Board of Directors determines appropriate;

•  the capacity to develop and maintain a communications system that keeps the public, TCOG board, TCOG Advisory Committee and TCOG partners up to date on developments affecting open government. This includes writing and editing skills needed to produce op-ed and educational pieces, help maintain a website, and use social media;

•  the ability to manage the business affairs of the organization, ensuring that all administrative and regulatory filings are completed on time to protect the group’s 501(c)(3) tax status. These include the IRS 990 tax return, corporation annual report and Charitable Solicitations permit with the Secretary of State, and filings with the Tennessee Ethics Commission.

•  the ability to respond to calls for information and other assistance from journalists and citizens, making it clear that guidance provided does not constitute legal advice. Track and report on those calls.

A letter of application and resume should be emailed as a PDF or similar format to by December 15, 2011.

A PDF of the announcement is here.

Tennessee Coalition for Open Government is a member of NFOIC.