Senior Associate, Advocacy, Public Safety Performance Project

  • Job posted by Pew Charitable Trusts

Job Type

Full Time


Details: Yearly Salary




Dist. Columbia
United States



The Pew Charitable Trusts is driven by the power of knowledge to solve today's most challenging problems. Pew applies a rigorous, analytical approach to improve public policy, inform the public and invigorate civic life.

We are an independent nonprofit organization – the sole beneficiary of seven individual trusts established between 1948 and 1979 by two sons and two daughters of Sun Oil Company founder Joseph N. Pew and his wife, Mary Anderson Pew.

Our work lays the foundation for effective policy solutions by informing and engaging citizens, linking diverse interests to pursue common cause and insisting on tangible results. Our projects encourage efficient, responsive governments – at the local, state, national and international levels – serving the best interests of the people. We partner with a diverse range of donors, public and private organizations and concerned citizens who share our interest in fact-based solutions and goal-driven investments to improve society.

With offices in Philadelphia, Washington, DC, Australia, Brussels and London, and with additional staff in other regions of the United States and around the globe, Pew provides an exciting learning environment and the opportunity to work with highly talented individuals. We are a dynamic, rapidly evolving organization that values creativity and innovative thinking and fosters strong teamwork with mutual respect.

State and Local Government Performance
State and local government performance (SLGP), one of the seven program portfolios at The Pew Charitable Trusts, identifies and advances effective policy approaches that improve state and local government policy. SLGP researches emerging topics, develops data-driven reports and highlights innovative approaches to complex problems. SLGP initiatives currently focus on five areas: (1) positioning policymakers to make decisions that are in the best interest of state and local government's long-term fiscal health; (2) making state and local government pension plans healthy and sustainable; (3) improving state and local government's public safety performance; (4) modernizing the civil legal system; and (5) increasing access to effective oral health care.

SLGP makes use of the basic tools required to help explore and advance effective policies, regardless of the issue: credible, timely, and user-friendly research; assessments of public support for change; strategic outreach and dissemination to ensure that good information is widely communicated to decision-makers, media, influential stakeholders, and the public; the capacity to bring together diverse perspectives and find common ground; and the ability to identify and apply approaches that have proven successful elsewhere.

SLGP is led by a vice president and two senior directors who provide oversight over select projects within the portfolio.

Project Overview
The public safety performance project (PSPP) was launched in 2006 as an initiative of The Pew Charitable Trusts. The project helps policy makers advance fiscally sound, data-driven policies and practices in juvenile justice, jails, and community corrections policies that protect public safety, ensure accountability, and control costs. For more information about this project, visit

Position Overview
Pew is seeking to hire a senior associate to focus on assistance to states interested in improving their community corrections, jails, and juvenile justice systems, while supporting the entire spectrum of activity under the project by working closely with project leadership, government relations and communications staff, and other Pew colleagues. The position, based in Pew's Washington, DC office, will report to the associate manager who leads advocacy support efforts for the project.

The ideal candidate will have an educational and employment background in legislative advocacy, policymaking, campaigns, or a related field; knowledge of the justice system; experience working with federal data collections and/or state administrative data; and work experience undertaking projects involving many partners, complex issues, and extensive writing. The position has a set time frame that could be extended based on the success of the program, funding sources, and board decisions on continued support.


Reporting to the associate manager and in consultation with colleagues across PSPP and Pew, the position will:
  • Assess prospective states for participation in the project and make recommendations of states to receive assistance.
  • Provide intensive analyses of jails, community corrections, and juvenile justice policy to states engaged with PSPP and its partners and effective policy maker and stakeholder education of proposed policies and practices, with a focus on issue and legislative strategy.
  • Monitor and engage PSPP and its partners and stakeholders in state jails, community corrections, and juvenile justice policy discussions.
  • Assist in the development and implementation of legislative and communications strategies, including the coordination of project staff and external partners.
  • Assist in ensuring all state assistance components are well-coordinated and strategically focused.
  • Develop relationships with respected policy makers in the field and seek out potential partnerships to advance the project's agenda and expertise.
  • Maintain and continue to develop an understanding of emerging corrections issues by monitoring publications and participating in conferences, seminars, and other professional development activities.
  • Represent the project and Pew at conferences, meetings, and other events, including preparing materials for distribution and making presentations.


  • Bachelor's degree required; advanced degree in public policy or other relevant field preferred.
  • At least four years of applicable experience in the public policy, issue and legislative strategy, or campaign field, with working knowledge of jail, community corrections, or juvenile sentencing issues.
  • Prior to commencing employment with Pew, candidates for this position who were registered to lobby in any jurisdiction must certify termination of previous registration(s) and provide copies of termination notices with said jurisdiction(s) to Pew.
  • The ideal candidate will have an educational and employment background in public policy or a related field, issue and legislative strategy, knowledge of the criminal justice system, and work experience undertaking projects involving many partners, complex issues, and extensive writing and presentation skills.
  • Experience working with complex policy and political issues, including an ability to synthesize and summarize large amounts of information and to focus quickly on the essence of an issue.
  • Demonstrated strong research and analytical skills applied to public policy issues, also including an ability to synthesize and summarize large amounts of information and to focus quickly on the essence of an issue.
  • Experience convening groups of policy makers, practitioners, stakeholders, researchers, and other constituencies and supporting their efforts to develop consensus and move toward a desired outcome.
  • Ability to communicate ideas, thoughts, and concepts clearly, concisely, and in a compelling way, both in writing and orally. A clear, effective writing and presentation style.
  • Develops and moves complex projects forward with a high degree of independence within a creative, fast-paced, action-oriented and collegial environment. Demonstrated time- and project-management skills, including an ability to meet multiple deadlines by maintaining a high level of organization. Ability to think strategically and creatively, adjust to changing circumstances, organize time, remain attentive to details and identify resources for projects. Ability to establish a systematic course of action to ensure project completion.
  • Acute political awareness and non-partisan perspective and approach. Demonstrated ability to build relationships among individuals and organizations with a range of interests and perspectives.
  • Ability to thrive in a creative, fast-paced, and highly professional corporate culture that emphasizes excellence, collegiality and teamwork.

An average of one to two trips per month to perform work or assessments in states.

Total Rewards
We offer a competitive salary and benefit program, including: comprehensive, affordable health care through medical, dental, and vision coverage; financial security with life and disability insurance; opportunities to save using health savings and flexible spending accounts; retirement benefits to help prepare for the future; and work/life benefits to maintain a good balance.

The Pew Charitable Trusts is an equal opportunity employer, committed to a diverse and inclusive workplace. Pew considers qualified applicants for employment without regard to age, sex, ethnicity, religion, disability, marital status, sexual orientation or gender identity, military/veteran status, or any other basis prohibited by applicable law.


Professional Level


Minimum Education Required

4-year degree