Alma Advisory Group is supporting Public School Allies (PSA) with their executive search for an Advocacy Partner. We would love your help identifying leaders to join the PSA team.
If you would like to learn more or to submit your resume, please click on the link and one of our team members will reach out with more information.
About Public School Allies
In the United States, too few students have access to effective, high-performing public schools. Public School Allies is a national non-profit organization that partners with state and city leaders to create innovative public school systems. Our call to action is clear—it lives in the experience of students in urban settings across the country who lack guaranteed access to high quality public education. We want to partner with city leaders to remedy this pervasive issue in urban areas across the United States.
What We Do
At Public School Allies, we are inspired by the growing number of cities that have empowered educators to dramatically expand opportunities for students in public schools. Our work is focused on cities because we have seen what’s possible when civic leaders, educators and parents in cities across the country take bold action to drive positive change for students. We support local leaders who are committed to improving the educational opportunities available in their city through community engagement, student and parent advocacy, and political work. We also work closely with our sister organization, The City Fund, which provides funding and support to city-based non-profits seeking to improve public education. Our team of Partners consists of experienced education leaders and political advocates from across the country who are committed to working with local leaders to create innovative school systems and provide viable opportunities for all students.
What You’ll Do
As Partner, serving as an integral early member of the Public School Allies team (PSA), you will play an essential role in developing city and state investment strategy, coaching and partnering with local leaders in identified urban public school regions to build the political conditions to advance high quality education options for all students. A crucial component to the work in this role will be an unwavering commitment to building relationships with internal and external stakeholders aligned with our vision, and committed to our mission. A combination of ambition, experience, navigation, and organization coupled with a proven track record of problem-solving, strategic planning, effective execution, and political acumen in the face of high-stakes initiatives in political and educational environments will be essential.
What You’ll Own
As a Partner, you will focus on the following bodies of work:
1. Building In-Depth Knowledge for Focus Regions
Developing a comprehensive understanding of the local political arenas in the cities and states you support
Creating connections with local leaders in an effort to establish potential partnerships
Spending time in the work with grantees and partners to align with practitioner perspectives
2. Developing Investment Strategy
Evaluating city and state political ecosystems with the goal of investing for long-term local success
Developing an investment strategy and package for review by the partner team and board
Coordinating investment approach with local partners in a manner sensitive to their local dynamics
3. Supporting Aligned Local Organizations
Supporting goal-setting and progress-to-goal processes in partnership with local grantee partners
Being on the ground and in the work with grantees in local policy and advocacy contexts
Serving as an active member on boards of local partner non-profit organizations when appropriate
4. Cultivating Vision
Inspiring possibilities for city and state advocacy leaders regarding opportunities for students
Establishing frameworks to assist local leaders to engage stakeholders in community engagement
Communicating mission and vision of PSA and The City Fund to local organizations and opinion leaders
5. Coaching and Advising
Providing city and state advocacy leaders with ongoing support to effect thoughtful policy and political change
Guiding grantees and partners through political challenges through intentional advocacy
Creating sustainable systems and structures to provide abundant support to grantees in the field
6. Organizing Connections
Utilizing political capital to drive collaborative advocacy in support of grantees and partners
Implementing a defined outreach and inclusion structure to engage impacted stakeholders
Building on political and electoral experience to create systems to advance a local policy platform
What You’ll Need to Be Successful
You have the ability to analyze conditions for change by considering geographical markets and education trends; existing and potential state and local advocates; and, strengths and challenges in each urban area PSA serves. You are confident in developing and communicating goals in support of PSA’s vision and mission. You apply your professional experience and knowledge to support the strategic implementation of our work.
Your propensity to lead innovative practice and organizational design efforts are evident in everything you do. You thrive on leading organizational effectiveness; initiating, sponsoring, and implementing organizational change; and supporting those around you to support and advocate for PSA’s vision and mission.
Political Skills and Experience
As a team member, you constantly demonstrate the ability and desire to work cooperatively with others on a team; as a team leader, you have the experience, finesse, awareness, and ability to bring the right people together both within the PSA organization and externally to inspire and empower partners to collaborate in service to our students, families, communities, and stakeholders.
You have an uncanny knack for noticing, interpreting, and anticipating others’ concerns and needs, and a thoughtful way of communicating this awareness empathetically to others. You see the best in people and compel them to excel in unique and impactful ways. You recognize the intensity and reality of political situations and know how to respond to them thoughtfully and purposefully with respect to those involved.
You recognize and embrace that this is a political position, and have the expertise and experience to lead adaptively and manage technically in complex political contexts in service to our goals of creating sustainable capacity in others to navigate political circumstances and arrive at identified outcomes.
You possess skill and experience in various aspects of political advocacy work, including candidate or issue campaigning, government affairs, grassroots and grasstops coalition building, and general ability to deploy a variety of tactics to advance an agenda.
Civic Coalition Building
You bring the capacity to develop, maintain, and strengthen partnerships with others inside or outside the organization who can provide information, assistance, and support. Additionally, you are able to gather collaborative support from stakeholders for ideas, proposals, projects, and solutions in support of PSA’s mission and vision.
In the process of building relationships, you are able to identify the information needed to clarify situations, seek information from appropriate sources, and use skillful inquiry to determine the best next steps. Your leadership strength manifests itself in bringing people together to coalesce around a common vision for students.
Connecting purposefully, intentionally, and masterfully with others in various ways is clearly a strength in your repertoire as a political advocate and education leader. You express yourself with clarity, grace, style, and awareness in conversations and interactions with others. You are an expert in planning and delivering communication that makes an impact. You inspire others to think, and empower them to act.
Your stakeholder-focused communication represents PSA as an organization that exists to create opportunities and define possibilities for students in urban settings. You are impressively prepared for engagements with stakeholders, and you are continually following up with others to ensure that your agreements and commitments have been fulfilled with respect to communication. You have an insatiable drive to create life-changing opportunities for children, and are not afraid to say so. Your clarity of vision is compelling and inspiring to those you support, and those you lead.
You are not shy when it comes to standing up for students in the face of political tension, conflict, or controversy. Your experience has imbued in you the capacity and willingness to speak your philosophical truth and share your organizational beliefs without hesitation. Your commitment to PSA’s vision and mission could not be clearer in your interactions in the field.
When things get tense politically, you are at your best. You are so clear in your convictions regarding the guarantee to each and every student in the urban communities you support of access to world class education that you can stand up to and with the best to represent the shared vision of PSA in any context.
What You’ll Need
10+ years of experience in education and political advocacy at various levels focused on multiple disciplines
Understanding of political climate and corresponding response strategies in urban public school contexts
Commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion values and belief that this is the sine qua non of PSA’s work
Discipline and drive to work individually, and to succeed collaboratively with PSA team and partners
Ability to navigate uncertainty and ambiguity, and to prioritize work efforts to achieve overall strategy
Willingness to travel to supported cities each month to be on-the-ground support for grantees and partners
Determination to be the face of critical work in the creation of a powerful organization from the ground up
The Application Process
Qualified candidates for the role of Political Advocacy Partner must submit a letter of interest tailored to this opportunity, a completed online application, and a resume that clearly demonstrates the aforementioned qualifications to Kathleen@AlmaAdvisoryGroup.com. Candidates invited to move forward in the interview process can look forward to an engaging, inspiring, and inclusive experience that illuminates the potential match between the candidate and the expertise, commitment, and skills that the Partner role will require.
What We Offer
Salary for this one-of-a-kind position is competitive, and commensurate with prior experience. In addition, a comprehensive benefits package is included. We look forward to discussing details with you as the interview process progresses.
Public School Allies is an equal opportunity employer and encourages resumes diverse candidates. Public School Allies does not discriminate in any aspect of employment on the basis of race, color, ancestry or national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, marital status, disability, veteran status, genetic information, or age.