Reading Partners is changing the education landscape. We are a leader in working to solve the literacy crisis in our country by leveraging community volunteers in under-resourced schools. Our diverse and expansive volunteer base provides one-on-one tutoring to students twice weekly, and our program is proven to help children master the reading fundamentals they need to unlock their potential as successful, happy and confident readers in school and in life. Our people are our heartbeat and our greatest resource; we are all passionately rallied around our mission to help children become lifelong learners by empowering communities to provide individualized instruction that works. Join our stellar team leading the charge to deepen our impact and expand our service. Watch this video to learn more about Reading Partners.
The high level:
Reading Partners is seeking a Director of Equity (DE) to lead the ongoing design and implementation of the race, equity, diversity and inclusion (REDI) work throughout the organization. Reporting to the Chief Talent and Equity Officer (CTEO), the DE will join Reading Partners’ leadership team and will be responsible for shaping the REDI vision and strategy as well as researching, defining, and codifying REDI best practices that prepare Reading Partners’ staff, Americorps members, students, and tutors to embody and execute on our work through a REDI lens. In partnership with national teams, , the REDI team (an employee resource group), and regional leaders, the DE will assess Reading Partners’ REDI progress to date and establish a clear understanding of barriers to engaging in transformative REDI work across a high-impact national organization. The DE will ultimately drive Reading Partner’s exploration of the implications and benefits of becoming an anti-racist, social justice organization.
The ideal candidate will have significant experience leading internal REDI efforts for a non-profit organization or social and/or racial justice enterprise. The candidate will also have exceptional communication skills, strategy development, and process improvement experience with demonstrated skills leading discussions with individuals/groups with differing perspectives around sensitive issues and controversial topics.
What you’ll do:
Strategy Development and Execution
- With the Chief Talent and Equity Officer, co-create annual and long-term REDI strategic goals for the organization, set benchmarks and chart the path to goal year-over-year.
- Perform a needs assessment of core functions, systems, structures, and policies across national and regional offices.
- Set clear priorities and measures of success for the next 12 months, revising annually as needed.
- Align with Executive (XT) and Leadership (LT) teams on vision and strategy.
- Provide coaching, strategic thought partnership, and liaison support to regions, senior leaders, and people managers empowering them to set and achieve team-specific REDI goals.
- Identify, select and successfully partner with external REDI consultants as needed
- Become one of the strongest champions of REDI, core values, and culture integration at Reading Partners..
- Research and share REDI related data, efforts, trends and innovations.
- Own, develop, and manage org-wide REDI program and capacity building efforts that help to foster a culture of inclusion.
- Design, facilitate and/or identify trainings for staff development with a focus on developing managers and creating practices to ensure an inclusive, positive experience for all staff.
- Partner with the national AmeriCorps, Community Engagement, and Program teams to advance social justice through our service in schools and communities
- Ensure systems and processes are designed and executed to support REDI initiatives, and to capture and analyze relevant data.
- Provide thought partnership on diversity and culture surveys, skillfully communicating results to others.
- Advise and support the REDI working group and Affinity groups
- Support the cultivation of broad and diverse talent pipelines to attract both active and passive candidates coming from underrepresented groups.
- Collaborate with the Talent team to create and facilitate a “Bias in Hiring” training and ensure that search practices and procedures are equitable and inclusive.
Other duties as needed.
How you’ll do it:
Mission and Culture Catalyst:
- In order to thrive as a culture leader at Reading Partners, you are highly motivated by Reading Partners’ work and authentically represent this mission externally. You demonstrate a sincere passion for enriching the lives of high need students through literacy development and embody Reading Partners’ mission, core values and approach. You are energized by working amid ambiguity and will bring a patient and solutions oriented outlook to their work. You are a leader who is strategic and dynamic, with a track record of establishing meaningful and trusting relationships with colleagues and stakeholders.
Collaboration & Influence
- You facilitate ongoing interaction and positive dialogue to enable people to collaborate with each other and independently across Reading Partners' national and regional organizational structure in order to help them shape a consensus, collectively. You possess a consultative and collaborative leadership style that engenders trust and shared passion across Reading Partners.
Leadership & Management:
- You boast an exceptional ability to lead the mission-critical REDI function and strategy at the national level. You show a genuine interest in coaching, inspiring, and developing entry level to senior level staff members by cultivating a culture of growth and development. You provide clear guidance and goals, delegate, and provide growth opportunities while supporting progress along the way. You support our national network of Reading Partners staff through regular calls, best practice sharing, etc.
- You demonstrate an ability to effectively manage time, balance multiple competing priorities at once, and, above all, remain adaptable, flexible, and positive while navigating challenges. You anticipate challenges and questions, and proactively act to address them. You understand the larger strategic priorities and make measurable progress against these larger goals. You show an ability to make quick, sound, and on-the-fly decisions that consider all stakeholders. You see the bigger picture and are able to drill down to smaller details and connect the dots.
Strategic Leadership and Execution:
- You develop and design new strategies and approaches to meeting REDI goals and then lead implementation of those strategies. You execute work in a highly organized, analytical, and data-informed manner. You bring a systems perspective to organizational challenges, with the ability to effectively move from vision to strategy to plan to execution while managing multiple work streams and demonstrating exceptional project management instincts. You are creative, a thoughtful decision maker, and are comfortable partnering with others to problem-solve, and use clear and strategic processes in making decisions. In addition, you have professional experience both developing and executing strategy to optimize organizational processes and achieve ambitious goals.
You’ll be successful in this role if you:
- Have 5+ years of relevant work experience, including at least 2 years advancing REDI strategy across a large, multi-layered organization.
- Deep understanding of the concepts related to race, equity, diversity, and inclusion as well as the contexts and cultures within organizations that impact the implementation and management of effective change efforts.
- Clear commitment and value alignment to REDI and a demonstrated track record of championing equity and building a culture of equity.
- Views differences between individuals (race, gender, age, cultural heritage, physical ability, education and lifestyle) as an asset and demonstrates an appreciation of the diversity within Reading Partners.
- Open to feedback with evidence of handling sensitive situations with positive outcomes for the organization.
- Believes in the philosophy of a learning organization.
- Aligned in thought and action with Reading Partners’ values (http://www.readingpartners.org/about-us/vision-values/ )
- Have flexibility and adaptability in work style and work schedule, including some night and weekend time
- Hold a Bachelor’s degree and/or equivalent prior experience
- Can prove eligibility to work in the U.S. legally
Bonus Points if you:
- Have experience working in the launch phase of projects or programs
- Are an AmeriCorps, Peace Corps, or other national service alum/alumna