Vice President, State Policy

09 May, 2023


Vice President, State Policy

Forum for Youth Investment
Washington, D.C.

The Vice President, State Policy Alignment works closely with the EVP, Policy and Government Affairs as a key leader and strategic advisor with responsibility for overseeing all state policy development and alignment efforts, including the State and Local Children’s Cabinet Network and for serving all Forum state clients when they request policy consultation and services. The person taking on this position will be a keen strategist and skilled tactician with a deep commitment to racial and social equity and expertise in advancing federal and state youth policies. The VP will be a trusted advisor to the EVP and a senior leader within the Forum and the unit.. The VP will also provide oversight and direction to high profile state-focused strategic initiatives that position the Forum as a leader in the youth policy field. At the same time, the VP will roll up their sleeves and handle a wide range of day-to-day activities that support staff, leaders, and the organization to thrive. Organization & Background Founded in 1998, the Forum for Youth Investment is a national nonprofit, nonpartisan “action tank” committed to changing the odds that all children and youth are ready for college, work, and life. The Forum connects leaders to ideas, services and networks that can help them make more intentional decisions that are good for young people, even in the face of limited resources. It helps leaders who are trying to improve & align policies, plan & partner for impact, and/or strengthen programs & adult practice across all the systems and settings where young people spend time. The Forum is a thriving organization with a budget of $11 million, a staff of 50, and headquarters in Washington, DC. The Forum overall is funded by a mix of foundations, corporations, and a fee-forservice contract base. For more information on the Forum, please visit

Position Responsibilities Specific responsibilities include but are not limited to the following: • Lead the Forum’s state policy work, serving as a thought partner to the Executive Vice President, Cross-Systems Consulting, providing policy consultation to state clients across youth ecosystem (education, workforce development, juvenile justice, child welfare, and behavioral health). • Lead strategy, learning, and knowledge management for the State and Local Children’s Cabinet Networks, developing resource and partnerships for peer learning community. • Track state policy environments within core jurisdictions that are Forum clients and elevate systems reforms and policy change to influence state and federal policy. • Oversee project management for state client policy deliverables, ensuring they are on time, on budget, with the highest levels of quality and customer/stakeholder satisfaction. • Lead, coach and manage state policy team to maximize performance and produce results aligned with the organization’s strategy and impact metrics. Using a continuous improvement framework, develop strategies to support a collaborative culture, shared accountability, and efficiency. • Partner with the EVP of Policy and Government Affairs to engage all policy staff in the development of unit’s annual work plan and accompanying budget that cascades from Forum’s strategy. • In partnership with the EVP of Policy and Government Affairs, serve as key relationship manager for funders, aligning unit’s resource development approach to the organization’s strategic plan, priorities, state customers’ needs, and core functions of the unit. Oversee the unit’s grant reporting for state policy initiatives. • Collaborate effectively with other units and organizational functions, including Cross-Systems Consulting, Strategic Communications, and Youth Program Quality. . Performance/Character Requirements We are looking for a leader with experience building exceptional staff teams and organizational systems that drive growth. In this role you will contribute to the creation of a unit roadmap in partnership with the EVP and other unit leaders. Then it’s time to get results through exceptional implementation of the plan. Characteristics of successful candidates include: • Manages Self – You ask for feedback on impact of your behavior on others. You identify and follows through on actions in response to constructive feedback. You honestly assess your own strengths and know what weaknesses need support.

Leads Courageously – You act courageously to make changes that will improve the organization. You consistently drive to successful outcomes and stay composed and positive in challenging situations. • Communicates Effectively – You communicate (both in writing and verbally) clearly, succinctly, and in a timely manner. You provide information people need to know to do their jobs, make accurate decisions, and to feel part of a team. You are able to engage an audience and achieve the desired effect in a variety of formal presentation settings. • Builds High-Performing Teams/Develops Others – You form and lead teams capable of getting results. You create a learning environment of creativity and engagement. You can effectively raise and resolve conflict with the team. You provide frequent and timely developmental feedback to others and construct compelling developmental plans. You take personal responsibility for mentoring high-potential employees. • Makes Quality Decisions – You clearly state where you stand on issues, even if it is unpopular. You seek input from appropriate parties before making decisions, and still make timely decisions. • Demonstrates Strategic Agility – You anticipate future consequences and trends accurately. You’re able to align your goals to the overall organizational strategy. You can create breakthrough strategies and plans. • Demonstrates Business Acumen – You understand and create opportunities to cultivate and support exceptional partnerships. You are able to make the case for decisions and initiatives. You adapt strategies and tactics to create a success defined by metrics. • Influences and Negotiates – You influence others by building coalitions or alliances among diverse groups. You effectively adapt influence strategies depending upon the situation. You’re skillful at removing barriers that get in the way of effective collaboration among groups. • Manages Vision and Purpose – You inspire commitment to a compelling vision and shared values. You create a climate in which people want to do their best. You’re able to champion change and lead the organization through a transition. • Thinks Strategically, Executes Skillfully – You can see the forest through the trees and know how to craft strategic short and long-term programs that are aligned with organizational goals. At the same time, you can’t wait to roll-up your sleeves and get the work done. • Is Goal Oriented – We want someone who is a doer, with doggedness, a determination and commitment to reach a goal, and a strong bias toward action. You always find a way to make it happen. • Demonstrates Creativity – While there are tried-and-true tactics in your toolbox, you explore new ways of thinking and continually strive to create best-in-class programs that move your organization and field forward. • Handles Ambiguity – You can effectively cope with change and lead others through it. • Communicates Assertively – As a senior-level communicator, you express opinions directly, confidently, and accurately. You can also be very persuasive and influence the way others think, feel, or behave. • Collaborates & Values Relationships – You can quickly gain the respect and trust of your direct reports, peers, and leadership team. You understand the importance of listening, asking probing questions, and allowing others to be heard. • Takes Risk – The entrepreneurial spirit shines through in your willingness to experiment with new approaches and act even though the outcome is uncertain. • Models Diplomacy – You have worked in diverse settings and understand the cultural sensitivities of doing business with partners and clients around the country. You are tactful in dealing with diverse people or situations. • Exhibits Professional Acumen – You demonstrate confidence, experience, and poise under pressure. 4 Qualifications • Bachelor’s degree in related field, such as public policy or political science; advanced degree (MPP, JD, etc.) preferred. • 10+ years’ experience in leading youth policy efforts across K-12 education, workforce development and youth-serving systems (i.e. juvenile justice, child welfare), ideally with experience working both inside government and in advocacy organizations. • Deep relationships with federal policymakers in Congress, White House and Federal Agencies. • 8+ years management experience; • Proven track record in advancing youth policies securing legislative and/or executive branch changes. • Successfully secured annual or multi-year grants and contracts in the range of $200,000 – $1m, providing subject matter expertise in policy and advocacy. • Demonstrated experience leading, participating in, and executing against strategic and operational planning with the ability to ensure clarity around performance expectations, both at the organizational and individual levels; and alignment with the organization’s vision. • Proven experience providing strategic counsel and guidance to leadership team members. • Solid judgment / temperament in dealing with confidential and sensitive information and issues. • Willingness to travel, as needed. Working Environment Flexibility is required to adapt to the dynamic work environment of a non-profit “action tank” that has national clients and exposure. Excellence is valued in every position. The Vice President, Policy & Advocacy will be based in our Washington DC Office and lead a hybrid team some working in the office, others remotely outside of the DC area. Position & Compensation The salary range, duties and responsibilities of this position meet the requirements of Section 13 (a) (1) of the Fair Labor Standards Act and therefore qualifies as an “exempt” position. The starting salary for this senior leadership position is targeted between $117K and $148K, dependent upon experience and qualifications, with a comprehensive benefits package. Please send resume and cover letter with salary requirements to: Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. If your application is selected for an interview, you will be contacted directly. No telephone calls or inquiry emails, please. ** The Forum for Youth Investment is committed to creating a diverse work environment and is proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer and drug-free workplace, and to comply with ADA regulations as applicable.

Job posted: 2023-05-09