Senior Director/Managing Director, Racial Equity and Justice
Job Details
Full-time, regular

Reports to: Senior Vice President, Rights and Justice

Staff reporting to this position: Racial Equity and Justice staff

Department: Rights and Justice

Position classification: Exempt, full time; Nonunion – Level 8

Minimum compensation: $125,000




American Progress has an immediate opening for a Senior Director or Managing Director of the Racial Equity and Justice team. The Senior Director/Managing Director will lead American Progress’ efforts to develop, communicate, and implement policy ideas that provide a new way forward for a range of equity challenges in an increasingly diverse America, with a particular focus on race and equity. The Senior Director/Managing Director will create a team work plan and clear annual objectives with measurable outcomes. They will coordinate policy analysis and substantial research and writing for the team while also working regularly on relevant ideas and issues with other American Progress teams. The Senior Director/Managing Director will also manage relationships with outside stakeholders, including allied organizations, policymakers, and the media. They will be driven by American Progress’ mission “to improve the lives of all Americans through bold, progressive ideas as well as strong leadership and concerted action, with the aim of not only changing the conversation, but changing the country.” This work will also include a focus on identifying and executing on points of connectivity between racial equity and justice issues and the organization’s five cross-cutting priorities:

  • Strengthening public health and ending the pandemic
  • Building an economy for all
  • Tackling climate change and environmental injustice
  • Advancing racial equity and justice
  • Restoring social trust and strengthening democracy


This leader will have the opportunity to further build and manage a dynamic, high-performing team. They will think strategically about turning ideas into action by working with the Racial Equity and Justice team; collaborating with the Rights and Justice Department and other teams across American Progress; and working in coalition with other organizations in this space. This leader will also need to help raise funds to support their team and department, commensurate with the strategy and build-out plan developed. The ideal candidate will have a strong command and understanding of America’s racial history and structural inequality; facility with government institutions at the local, state, or federal level; executive or legislative branch experience; and relationships with key players in the field.



  • Provide day-to-day management for the Racial Equity and Justice team.
  • Develop the team’s policy research and communications agenda, and actively participate in connecting this work with American Progress’ cross-cutting priorities.
  • Work with the department Senior Vice President and the Executive Vice President for Policy to set the strategic direction for American Progress’ priorities related to racial equity and justice, including the development of cross-cutting efforts.
  • Maintain relationships between the Racial Equity and Justice team and other American Progress teams, including the Executive, Government Affairs, Communications, and Development teams.
  • Work closely with other policy experts—including those on the Economic Policy, Poverty, Energy and Environment, Criminal Justice, Health, Democracy, and Immigration teams—to find areas of collaboration and define shared messages and policy strategies.
  • Play a leading role in managing the team’s budget and assist in fundraising to meet the policy team’s work plan.
  • Manage the production and distribution of a variety of written products, including reports, issue briefs, columns, and op-eds, that advance racial equity and justice and translate research findings for a broader audience.
  • Assist colleagues and guide the team in crafting timely policy reports and rapid-response documents to ensure relevant participation in policy debates.
  • Promote team priorities and work products both inside and outside the organization.
  • Represent the Racial Equity and Justice team with the public, media, and other outside groups and individuals.
  • Build and maintain key relationships across the racial equity and justice field, including with allied organizations and policymakers.
  • Keep American Progress staff updated on news and events related to relevant policy debates in Congress and/or the administration.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.

Requirements and qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience.
  • Knowledge and experiential expertise, as well as a proven track record working on racial justice issues, are required; advanced degree is a plus.
  • Knowledge of federal policymaking and experience working with Congress and federal agencies, as well as established relationships with policymakers, advocates, and community leaders within Washington, D.C., and in the states.
  • Excellent presentation and written and oral communication skills.
  • Strong analytical skills; quantitative skills are a plus.
  • Deep knowledge of racial justice, discrimination issues, and civil rights policy and/or law; familiarity with U.S. history is a plus.
  • Demonstrated ability to develop strategic, long-term plans and implement them successfully.
  • Strong political instincts and experience working with coalitions.
  • Fundraising skills.
  • Experience managing a team.
  • Ability to prioritize, multitask, and meet deadlines in a fast-paced environment.
  • Commitment to American Progress’ mission and goals.

American Progress offers full and competitive benefit packages. This position is not represented by a union. Candidates from diverse backgrounds are strongly encouraged to apply. The starting salary for this position is $125,000.