Senior Director/Managing Director, Gun Violence Prevention
Job Details
Full-time, regular

Reports to: Senior Vice President, Rights and Justice

Staff reporting to this position: Gun Violence Prevention staff and experts

Department: Rights and Justice

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

Minimum compensation: $125,000



American Progress is dedicated to developing policies that promote safe and just communities by: (1) reducing gun violence and increasing oversight of the gun industry; (2) increasing investment in community-based violence intervention solutions; (3) shrinking the footprint of the criminal justice system while improving public health and safety; (4) promoting equity and accountability within the justice system; and (5) providing opportunities for people directly impacted by the criminal justice system.

The Senior Director/Managing Director for Gun Violence Prevention will lead American Progress’ efforts to further these goals by developing and seeking to advance smart, focused strategies through research, policy development, and strategic communications as well as by working in coalition with stakeholders at the federal, state, and local levels. This position will bring a particular focus on the intersections between gun violence prevention work and criminal justice; racial and gender justice; public health; democracy; and anti-poverty work. The Senior Director/Managing Director will be an active collaborator with American Progress experts on these intersecting issues and will also collaborate with partner organizations on relevant and overlapping policy priorities and be a strong navigator of advocacy coalitions.

The Senior Director/Managing Director 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 gun violence prevention issues and American Progress’ five crosscutting priorities:

  • Strengthening public health and ending the pandemic
  • Building an economy for all
  • Securing a sustainable future
  • Advancing racial equity and justice
  • Restoring social trust and strengthening democracy


This position requires developing, communicating, and moving toward implementing policy ideas that provide a new way forward for safe and just communities for everyone, with a particular focus on reducing gun violence. The Senior Director/Managing Director will create a work plan that includes clear annual objectives with measurable outcomes and focuses on the most urgent and relevant gun violence prevention issues while identifying opportunities to engage with American Progress’ crosscutting priorities and the department in which the team is housed. The position requires coordinating policy analysis and substantial research and writing for the team, while also working regularly on relevant and timely ideas and issues with others at American Progress. The Senior Director/Managing Director will also manage relationships with outside stakeholders, including ally organizations, policymakers, and the media.

This leader will have the opportunity to further build and manage dynamic, high-performing staff. They will think strategically about turning ideas into action, collaborating with others at American Progress within their department and across the organization—as well as in coalition with other organizations and stakeholders in this space. This leader will be expected to help raise funds, commensurate with the strategy and build-out plan developed, and to support the Rights and Justice Department. The ideal candidate will have a strong command and understanding of gun violence prevention policy and criminal and racial justice policy; facility with local, state, or federal government institutions; and relationships with key stakeholders in the field, including individuals directly affected by gun violence and by the justice system.



  • Provide day-to-day management for gun violence prevention work; develop policy, research, and communications agenda; actively participate in connecting this work with American Progress’ crosscutting 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 gun violence prevention, including development of crosscutting efforts.
  • Play a leading role in managing the relevant budget and assist in fundraising to meet the policy work plan and support American Progress’ crosscutting work.
  • Represent American Progress with the public, media, and other outside groups and individuals.
  • Build and maintain key relationships across the gun violence prevention field, including allied organizations, policymakers, and survivors.
  • Promote priorities and work products both inside and outside the organization.
  • Assist colleagues and guide staff in crafting timely policy reports and rapid-response documents to ensure relevant participation in policy debates.
  • Keep American Progress staff updated on news and events related to relevant policy debates.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.

Requirements and qualifications:

  • Commitment to American Progress’ mission and goals.
  • Knowledge and experiential expertise as well as a proven track record of success in the field; advanced degree is a plus.
  • Knowledge of gun violence prevention policymaking and programmatic efforts at the local, state, and federal levels as well as established relationships with policymakers, advocates, and community leaders inside Washington, D.C., and in the states.
  • Excellent presentation and written and oral communication skills.
  • Strong analytical skills; quantitative skills are a plus.
  • Skills and experience managing a team and actively participating in cross-team and cross-organizational efforts.
  • Deep knowledge of gun violence prevention policy.
  • Demonstrated ability to develop strategic, long-term plans and implement them successfully.
  • Strong political instincts and experience working with coalitions.
  • Fundraising skills.
  • Ability to prioritize, multitask, and meet deadlines in a fast-paced environment.

American Progress offers a full and competitive benefit package. Candidates from diverse backgrounds are strongly encouraged to apply.