Managing Director, Policy and Advocacy

29 Aug, 2019


Managing Director, Policy and Advocacy

Robin Hood Foundation
New York, NY
About Robin Hood
Robin Hood is New York City’s largest poverty-fighting organization. In addition to funding 200 of the most effective nonprofits serving New Yorkers experiencing poverty, we amplify financial support with a range of management assistance.Building on our 30 years of experience, Robin Hood is expanding our impact with an explicit focus on lifting families sustainably and measurably out of poverty through influencing policy, raising our thought leadership profile, importing and exporting effective ideas and strategies nationally, and building new collaborations with strategic partners.

Position Overview

Robin Hood is seeking a seasoned, battle-tested Director of Policy and Advocacy to join its newly created Public Policy department in engaging and influencing city, state, and federal policymakers in the service of our poverty-fighting and economic mobility agenda.  Working with the Chief Public Policy Officer and other members of the Public Policy department, the Managing Director of Policy and Advocacy will play a leading role in the development and execution of Robin Hood’s public policy agenda with the aim of lifting New York City households sustainably and measurably out of poverty.

To build on Robin Hood’s success and reputation as a top poverty-fighting organization in New York City, a more comprehensive approach with respect to policy, government, and advocacy is needed.  More than ever before, the fate of people experiencing poverty in New York City will be determined by policy makers in NYC, Albany, and Washington, DC.  To achieve our core mission, Robin Hood cannot afford not to be part of those conversations.  Robin Hood must be seen as more than a grant-making organization.  It must be seen as a thought leader and powerful voice for mobility from poverty.

We know what works in the fight against poverty – high quality schools, affordable housing, workforce development, healthcare and a strong safety net. It’s time to start supporting not only organizations, but policies and initiatives that provide and safeguard these needs.  Moreover, by supporting over 250 New York City nonprofit organizations, Robin Hood has the unique ability to mobilize grassroots support for the causes it chooses to champion.

We realize that philanthropy is not enough to combat poverty.  Poverty is a complex, multifaceted problem demanding a renewed antipoverty policy agenda. We intend to create a clear strategy behind engagement with policy makers to support advocacy and legislative impact. The goal is clear: Robin Hood will enter the public policy arena in order to address the structural forces that limit mobility from poverty.


This position will be based at Robin Hood’s headquarters in New York City and will require limited travel to other locations across the United States.

Principal Responsibilities

Advance Robin Hood’s public policy agenda through the development and execution of strategies to build power for low-income New Yorkers and to advance and win our public policy agenda.

This includes:

  • Provide leadership, along with other Public Policy staff, in the development and implementation of policy priorities and strategy
  • Work with Robin Hood’s Chief Public Policy Officer, senior leaders, and board of directors to advance our public policy agenda strategically and powerfully in New York City, Albany, and Washington, DC
  • Collaborate with the Chief Public Policy Officer and Robin Hood senior leadership in cultivating and building powerful relationships with key policymakers and influencers in New York City. Albany, and Washington, DC in service of our agenda
  • Support the cultivation of Robin Hood’s relationships with elected officials and their staff, government leaders, and regulatory agencies and personnel at the city, state, and federal levels
  • Lead in development of coalition building strategies and supporting the cultivation of key relationships
  • Work with the Chief Public Policy Officer and other senior staff in the development of a human-centered approach to policy development and advocacy
  • Provide reliable, timely analysis and strategic guidance to Robin Hood’s Chief Public Policy Officer and senior leadership on legislative activities at the city, state, and federal levels
  • Work with Robin Hood Public Policy and Program department staff to develop and disseminate materials regarding legislative and regulatory developments to relevant constituencies
  • Work with Robin Hood Policy Analysts to analyze proposed legislation and recommend appropriate actions
  • Draft testimony, correspondence, federal regulatory comments, and other documents
  • Prepare witnesses for testimony to legislative bodies
  • Support the education and engagement of Robin Hood staff and board members on advocacy issues


  • JD or other advanced degree in liberal arts, science, health, government or other related discipline required, or an equivalent combination of relevant education and federal legislative and regulatory work experience
  • 10-12 years of experience in public affairs, public policy, or federal/state issue advocacy campaign experience in the fields of education, early childhood development, food security, housing, immigration, health care, and/or workforce development
  • Understanding of and commitment to social change through building the capacity and power of people to change their communities and to participate directly in changing public policies
  • High level of cultural competency
  • Excellent diplomacy, interpersonal, oral and written communication skills, with proven ability and experience in developing and/or interpreting materials on complex public policy issues for varied audiences
  • A keen understanding of poverty fighting political landscape and an ability to work effectively with diverse constituencies
  • Demonstrated leadership and executive presence commensurate with the ability to effectively present complex subject topics, provide input to, and influence decision making at the C-suite level
  • Extensive experience in a leadership role in representing an organization or government agency on issues of importance to under-resourced communities
  • Experience as a public spokesperson and advocate; ability to analyze and articulate legal concepts and other complex issues and to communicate them to a variety of audiences
  • Proven track record in accomplishing major legislative, regulatory and policy agendas of similar size and complexity
  • Excellent advocacy, consensus-building and coalition-building skills; demonstrated ability to work collegially and collaboratively with other staff and other organizations; demonstrated ability to work with relevant policy partners (government, policy shops, academic institutions, etc.) and individuals across the political spectrum
  • Ability to work within a pressurized, fast-paced environment while handling sensitive and confidential matters; must exercise good judgment and display initiative
  • Strong knowledge and understanding of relevant local, state and federal laws, rules and regulations, and the ability to interpret and apply them in advancing policy change objectives
  • Extensive knowledge of legislative and administrative processes
  • Experience analyzing and interpreting legislative and regulatory language
  • Experience drafting legislation and/or budgetary documents
  • Experience effectively supervising and developing staff
  • Ability to manage several projects simultaneously and to adjust to frequently changing demands; able to assume a full range of delegated responsibilities, working both independently and as part of a team
  • A “quick study” on a dynamic array of issues

Robin Hood Values
Our core values ground the work that we do in all areas of our organization. If these principles appeal to you, we invite you to apply.

  • Robin Hood puts people first. Always.
  • Robin Hood is unafraid to take action and create solutions.
  • Robin Hood is data driven and heart led.
  • Robin Hood works the coat check.

Salary and Benefits
Salary is competitive and commensurate with experience.  Robin Hood has excellent benefits and offers a flexible work environment.

To Apply
Please complete our online application.

Robin Hood is an equal opportunity employer.  Applicants from diverse backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

Job posted: 2019-08-29