Senior Operations Strategist

  • Job posted by Community College Research Center

Job Type

Full Time




New York
New York
United States



The Community College Research Center (CCRC) is the leading independent authority on two-year colleges in the United States.  Housed at Teachers College, Columbia University, CCRC conducts research on the issues affecting community colleges and works with colleges and states to improve student success and institutional performance.


Founded in 1996, CCRC’s research on community colleges has served to generate and inform a renewed interest in these essential higher education institutions, which enroll a majority of historically underserved students and are important engines of economic mobility. CCRC is committed to making vital contributions to higher education research, policy, and practice.


CCRC seeks a Senior Operations Strategist to support and assist the Director and senior leadership team in carrying out the mission and strategy of the Center. The Senior Operations Strategist will manage implementation of the Center’s strategic priorities and ensure that decisions on policy and procedure are shared and understood organization-wide.

Reporting to the Director, the Senior Operations Strategist is a member of the Center’s senior leadership team, and will be responsible for leading the development and implementation of sustainable operational structures to support the organization as a whole. S/he will manage two individuals and serve as a key bridge across CCRC’s operational and research capacities, as well as a close liaison to Teachers College and Columbia University.

This is an ideal opportunity for a strategic and versatile leader with a strong process orientation and exceptional relationship management skills.

Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

Operational Leadership and Strategy Implementation  

  • Manage the implementation of the Center’s strategy and high-priority initiatives
  • Conduct organizational analyses and make recommendations for new or revised operational strategies, programs, and policies
  • Facilitate distributed leadership functions at the Center, including coordinating staffing for priority initiatives and providing project management support as needed
  • Oversee planning and coordination of effective senior leadership team and staff meetings, ensuring appropriate follow-up and execution support


Systems and Process Design and Management 

  • Contribute to more integrated human resources and talent development processes, including onboarding, training, project staffing, and career advancement  
  • Develop systems to coordinate workflow between research, finance, and administration, in particular with respect to project staffing, budgeting, deliverables, and reporting  
  • Work closely with the communications team to ensure it has the systems in place and the resources it needs to enact a robust outreach strategy
  • Work closely with the Director and senior leadership team to develop a fundraising strategy and tracking system to ensure fundraising efforts are coordinated across teams and with the Center’s finance and administration staff


Stakeholder Management and Communications

  • Manage relationships with Teachers College, Columbia University, the advisory board, and key external constituents
  • Assist with internal communications, supporting the senior leadership team in communicating Center priorities, developments, and initiatives
  • Handle queries, concerns, and requests from staff on behalf of the Director, working to understand and solve problems and engage proactively with issues and people
  • Act as surrogate for the director with external stakeholders and the general public as needed; represent the Center at external events, building relationships with researchers, practitioners, policymakers, and funders
  • Work with the administrative and communications staff to oversee special event planning and execution


  • 10+ years of professional work experience, preferably in positions involving a significant volume of operational and project management responsibilities
  • Experience working with senior leadership to drive strategic priorities and a track record of results when managing complex projects and initiatives
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills and the ability to communicate with high-level stakeholders and experts in various fields
  • Exceptional organization skills and ability to work simultaneously on multiple projects
  • Understanding of complex organizational policy and systems, with the capacity to overcome unforeseen obstacles and see projects through to completion
  • Ability to work both collaboratively and independently and manage confidential matters
  • Strong leadership skills, self-direction, and self-motivation
  • Comfort with fundraising and experience developing strong, long-term relationships
  • Advanced degree(s) preferred in a relevant field such as education, public policy, the social sciences, business, or communications. Knowledge of and experience with community colleges is preferred
  • Ability to travel on occasion


Salary and benefits will be competitive and commensurate with experience.


The Community College Research Center is an equal opportunity employer and welcomes candidates from diverse backgrounds.

Professional Level

None specified

Minimum Education Required

No requirement

How To Apply