Director of Policy & Advocacy

Job Type

Full Time


Minimum: $70,000.00
Maximum: $70,000.00
Details: Compensation includes $70,000 annual salary and excellent benefits.




29 E. Madison
Suite 1700-C
United States


Position Scope: The Director of Policy & Advocacy leads and manages Chicago Jobs Council’s policy development, advocacy and stakeholder engagement and is a member of the Jobs Council’s leadership team with the Directors of Administration and Frontline Focus Training Institute. The Director of Policy & Advocacy is a full-time position reporting to the Executive Director and supervising a team of 2-4 staff.

Chicago Jobs Council’s (Jobs Council) vision is that all people, regardless of where they start or where they’ve been, can access employment as a pathway out of poverty. the Jobs Council moves people out of poverty through employment using on-the-ground expertise, advocacy, and capacity building. Since it was established in 1981, the Jobs Council’s membership has grown to include over 100 organizations and individuals who work together to influence the development and reform of public policies and programs designed to move people out of poverty, into the workforce and into better jobs.


  • Lead and oversee all aspects of the Jobs Council’s policy work to support our strategic priorities including: government relations; outreach and communications strategies; specific policy expertise; project management; public speaking; and coalition partnerships.
  • Develop annual policy work plan and related budget.
  • Serve on the Jobs Council’s leadership team to develop organization-wide priorities and strategies, organizational improvement, and organizational responses to external factors.
  • Lead organization-wide events as needed, including serving on internal committees.
  • Supervise policy staff and policy interns and contribute to individual and organization-wide professional development.
  • Distill and effectively communicate policy deliberations for community organizations and people directly impacted by those policy decisions so that they can meaningfully participate with the Jobs Council towards policy change.

Skills and Qualifications:

Personal qualities

  • Commitment to the advancement of the Jobs Council’s organizational mission and values.
  • Possesses self-starting work habits demonstrating clear understanding of the Jobs Council’s priorities and one’s own job responsibilities, while at the same time being open to receiving direction.
  • Participates well in a team including listening to and respecting team members’ ideas, willingness to provide backup on other team members’ projects, display of adaptability when a change is made, and openness to incorporating team feedback.
  • Strong interpersonal skills and ability to cultivate relationships with a diverse group of individuals participating in the Jobs Council’s program activities as well as with other stakeholders.
  • Possesses self-confidence, including a belief in one’s ability to accomplish a task and select an effective approach to a task or problem, confidence in one’s own decisions or opinions, reflects on lessons learned from failures and successes.
  • Willingness to delegate responsibilities and tasks to team members; judgment to know when it is appropriate to do so.


  • Acute awareness of political, economic and community issues at the federal, state, and local levels and ability to assess how those factors impact the Jobs Council’s strategic priorities.
  • Clear, concise, and persuasive communication skills (written, verbal, and listening) including the ability to communicate persuasively around a particular topic.
  • Demonstrated ability to balance creativity and logic in effective problem solving and decision making.
  • Ability to both contribute to long-term strategic vision as well as operationalize a strategy into daily tasks (for self and supervisees).
  • Exceptional critical thinking and analytical ability.
  • Excellent organizational and time management skills that allow for the handling of multiple and competing priorities while meeting short and long term deadlines.
  • Proficiency with computer applications in Windows environment, especially Microsoft Office Suite applications, and online project management and survey tools.
  • Demonstrated ability to effectively facilitate discussion at a range of meetings, including staff meetings, working groups, committee or task force meetings, focus groups and breakout groups.
  • Ability to do high-level written synthesis and analysis (including a policy brief, research paper, strategic plan, major grant proposal).
  • Excellent supervisory skills and ability to motivate others.
  • Ability to communicate persuasively around a particular topic.
  • Ability to develop, modify and operate within a budget.


  • Minimum of a Bachelor’s degree with five to seven years related experience; Master’s degree in related field preferred (e.g. MSW, MA, MPA, MPP, etc.).
  • Familiarity with public policies and programs that impact people living in poverty, particularly in the areas of economic development, workforce development, work supports, income supports, vocational education, adult education, and program development.
  • Successful project management experience.
  • Experience with having decision-making authority and responsibility for outcomes around a specific initiative, project or program.
  • Experience leading teams of professional staff.
  • Experience and comfort with speaking in front of an audience.
  • Grant writing experience is a plus.

Professional Level


Minimum Education Required

4-year degree

How To Apply

To apply, submit cover letter and resume via Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until position is filled.

THE CHICAGO JOBS COUNCIL IS AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EMPLOYER. The Jobs Council is committed to building an inclusive staff and strongly encourages applications from individuals of color, people with disabilities, individuals with diverse backgrounds, and those whose life experience is underrepresented in employment programs and policies.