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Government Relations Internship

Washington DC

In December 2017, Congress passed the most sweeping tax reform legislation in the past three decades. Thanks to the hard work of the National Trust and its partners, that bill retains the federal historic tax credit (HTC) – the federal government’s most significant investment toward historic preservation – nearly in tact. As the impact of the tax overhaul on historic preservation comes into clearer focus, the National Trust will continue its advocacy for strong state and federal historic tax credits.

Of the thirty-five states that currently offer a rehabilitation tax credit, ten are closely aligned with the federal credit and two are threatened. We are working to minimize those threats and to decouple state and federal credits where appropriate. The Government Relations Intern will have the opportunity to join lobbying meetings on Capitol Hill and create advocacy materials that effectively illustrate the economic benefits of the HTC to establish, protect, or strengthen historic tax credit programs. Approximately 2/3 of the internship will be dedicated to state and federal tax credit projects.

Interns will also have the opportunity to work on other advocacy priorities of the National Trust, including campaigns to protect historic and cultural resources on public lands. The exact nature of these projects will be determinded closer to the start date and will depend on current advocacy needs at the time. This work will include opportunities to contribute to a national campaign to protect historic resources in our national parks by joining lobbying meetings and producing research and advocacy materials. 

National Trust internships are temporary, volunteer experiential learning opportunities with no expectation of employment at the conclusion of the internship.

For this internship, the National Trust is offering a stipend of $2,000 to help offset expenses. The period of the internship would be from approximately June 4, 2018 to July 27, 2018 for approximately 35 hours per week (some flexibility of schedule available); some evenings and weekends will be required.


  • Support the ongoing advocacy needs of National Trust’s campaign to strengthen the federal HTC.
  • Support state historic tax credit work by reviewing existing research and developing an understanding about how state tax credit programs function and their return on investment. Work will include creating advocacy one-pagers and PowerPoint presentations.
  • Draft case studies of exemplary rehabilitation projects that have used federal and/or state historic tax credits in key strategic states.
  • Analyze data on state historic tax credit programs (e.g., number of projects, total amount of rehabilitation expenditures), analyze for any national trends, and use GIS to analyze in select states to create useful maps for advocacy.
  • Develop advocacy materials in support of protecting historic and cultural resources on public lands.


The intern will gain experience under the mentorship of respected preservation and government relations professionals, in an educational setting at one of the nation’s leading arts and cultural and non-profit advocacy organizations. The intern will also have the opportunity to participate in educational programming offered via the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s Washington Office internship program. Students may also be eligible for college or graduate school academic credit at the discretion of their institution.

Specifically, the intern will gain knowledge in the following areas:

  •  Federal and state tax policy
  •  Federal preservation policies
  •  Advocacy by a non-governmental organization

At the end of the project the intern will have produced advocacy materials which can be added to their professional portfolio in support of their future career pursuits.


  • Passion for preservation and/or public policy.
  • Interest and ability in analyzing policy documents (e.g., bills, rules).
  • Desire to learn how to energize grassroots advocates.
  • Ability to work a minimum of 20 hours per week up to 35 hours per week.
  • Ability to work independently and to report to off-site supervisor.
  • Exceptional analytical and problem solving skills.
  • Excellent attention to detail and project organization skills.
  • Ability to collaborate and achieve results with supervision, including ability to interact professionally with key internal and external stakeholders as needed.
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills. Friendly and professional demeanor on the phone and in writing, with ability to speak and write clearly in English. Bi-lingual language skills (especially English/Spanish) a plus.
  • Ability to work effectively with culturally diverse colleagues; connections to or experience helping to engage culturally diverse audiences and partners a plus.
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office products required, including Outlook, Word and Excel. Familiarity with other software a plus including GIS and social media tools.
  • Bachelor’s level studies (or equivalent years of experience) required; current or rising juniors, seniors or graduate students preferred. Studies or demonstrated interest in political science or government relations preferred.

Please email cover letter and resume to

Posted March 14, 2018

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