Vice President, Programs
WE ARE NO LONGER ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS FOR THIS POSITION.
About Higher Heights
Higher Heights for America, a 501(c)(4), and its sister organization, Higher Heights Leadership Fund, a 501(c)(3) organization (Higher Heights) are the leading national organizations providing Black women with a political home exclusively dedicated to harnessing their power to expand Black women’s elected representation and voting participation, and advance progressive policies.
Higher Heights was founded by Black women for Black women’s political growth and equity, with a winning plan for building collective political power and expanding Black women’s elected leadership. Higher Heights’ mission includes:
- Investing in the next generation of political leaders.
- Organizing and mobilizing the power of Black women voters through its #BlackWomenVote campaign.
- Creating an environment for Black women to vote, run, win and lead, through online training, research, cultural-shifting communications work and digital campaigns.
Higher Heights is comprised of two sister organizations working to create transformational change:
Higher Heights for America, a 501(c)(4) organization, and its federal connect political committee, Higher Heights for America PAC, are organizing the political power and leadership of Black women from the voting booth to elected office and creating an environment of Black women to run, win, and lead.
With the support of its rapidly growing network of members, activists, volunteers, and supporters, Higher Heights has helped Black women grow their political leadership and representation.
Higher Heights for America PAC is the leading political action committee exclusively dedicated to electing more progressive Black women at the federal and statewide levels and as mayors in the 100 most populated U.S. cities. Its members have helped:
- Secure the largest number of Black women to ever simultaneously serve in Congress.
- Send the first Black woman to the U.S. Senate in 20 years.
- Elect more Black women to serve as mayors for the country’s 100 most populated cities.
- Select the first Black woman to win a major party nomination for a governor’s office.
Higher Heights Leadership Fund, a 501(c)(3), is building a national civic engagement infrastructure and network to strengthen Black women’s leadership capacity. Higher Heights Leadership Fund is investing in a long-term strategy to expand and support Black women’s leadership pipeline at all levels and strengthen their civic participation beyond just Election Day.
This work requires a multi-year, multi-million-dollar investment to increase Black women’s leadership. Higher Heights Leadership Fund is developing the foundation to achieve this goal through four key components: capacity building, grassroots organizing, research, and convenings.
- Capacity Building: Develop a national network of Black women and other supporters. Partner with other organizations on a variety of initiatives including, but not limited to, research, training, and convenings.
- Grassroots Organizing: Educate and organize Black women to engage and participate in the public debate and social action to improve their civic participation and leadership.
- Research: Develop and publish research on Black women’s political leadership and electoral engagement.
- Convening: Host salon conversations, tele-town halls, and roundtable discussions focused on harnessing Black women’s political power and leadership potential.
To build and maintain representational leadership and support elected officials whose policy priorities are inclusive of all groups, Higher Heights is seeking to develop and implement – with partners, stakeholders, and donors – a nationwide strategy to expand Black women’s political voice and representation over the next 10 years. The strategic plan will focus on expanding the number of Black women elected at the federal, state, and local levels; engaging with and holding elected leaders accountable regarding the key policy and issue concerns of Black women; creating pathways for truly participatory democracy; ensuring the voices of Black women remain front and center in the national discussion and increasing the overall level of engagement of Black women in the 2022 election cycle and beyond.
By 2024, Higher Heights will be positioned to engage at least one million Black women and allies in targeted states through an integrated communications strategy that will not only support the growing number of Black women running for office but also mobilize Higher Heights’ network in targeted electoral and issue-based campaigns.
For more information on Higher Heights, please visit the organization’s website.
Higher Heights is at an exciting moment in its trajectory. With Black women’s political power growing—and increasingly recognized for the force it is—Higher Heights is beginning a journey to significantly expand its team.
This is a unique opportunity for a dynamic leader with a deep commitment to supporting and developing Black women to help shape Higher Heights as it continues to grow. Reporting directly to the President and CEO (CEO), the Vice President, Programs (VP) will assume responsibility for assuring the success of Higher Heights’ movement-building and programmatic work, with a focus on organizational management, voter engagement, candidate development, coalition-building, and evaluation.
As Higher Heights continues to scale, the VP will partner with the CEO to enhance Higher Heights’ program delivery, including supporting, developing, and coaching direct reports - the Political Director and National Director.
The VP’s responsibilities will include:
- Serve as external face of the organization to help build new partnerships, develop transformational opportunities, maintain healthy relationships, and build visibility of Higher Heights.
- Collaborate with senior leadership to develop an annual budget and conduct ongoing monitoring and analysis of financial performance.
- Create a shared vision, sense of ownership and accountability with Program staff, pairing thoughtful and intentional development with a commitment to professional growth for team members at all levels.
- Cultivate a supportive and high-performing team culture that leverages the strengths and opportunities of the staff and available resources.
- Partner with senior leadership to facilitate the hiring, orientation, development, support, and evaluation of staff.
Program Development and Design
- Plan the delivery of the overall program services in accordance with Higher Heights’ mission and strategic goals; develop long-term goals and new initiatives to support the strategic direction of the organization.
- Oversee all national programs, ensuring high level of program quality, integration of best practices, and strong infrastructure support.
- Participate in the oversight and implementation of research, evaluation, and assessment measures, leveraging data to inform programming.
- In partnership with the VP of Institutional Development, assure availability of sustainable funding sources.
- Ensure that programs, policies, and procedures utilize existing and emerging best practices in the field and meet all applicable laws and guidelines.
Candidate and Leadership Development
- Lead Higher Heights strategy to invest in Black women’s political leadership from candidate recruitment and support to leadership development, both through direct outreach and by developing new partnerships to strengthen visibility and pipeline development.
- Establish and maintain positive and collaborative relations with partners, community leaders, organizers, prospective candidates, and other allies and supporters.
Voter Engagement and Organizing
- Lead and manage Higher Heights’ voter engagement and advocacy work to engage Black women in the electoral and advocacy process.
- Design and implement engaging programing and content that continues to position Higher Heights as the leading organization engaging Black women in electoral politics, driving interest among civically minded Black women.
While no one candidate will possess every quality outlined for this position, successful candidates will bring many of the following professional qualifications and personal attributes:
You are a strategic leader with experience spearheading transformational campaigns, building power, and developing relationships to drive collective movement-building. You will have an ability to develop and drive ambitious programs to enhance the power of Black women within the political sphere at the local, state, and national levels. Moreover, you will bring an inclusive lens and perspective to building political power, both among candidates and voters and a passion for ensuring that the voices of Black women are centered in political discourse.
Adaptable Change Agent
You can enlist support behind a unified strategy to drive effective execution. You are a creative thinker with the ability to help lead Higher Heights in developing innovative approaches to identifying, engaging, and developing prospective candidates and organizing its base of voters. As a strong people leader, you are an adaptable coach and mentor who can lead teams in a dynamic, ever-changing political landscape.
Critical to success in this role, you will be skilled at building and sustaining excellent relationships across Higher Heights. You will be an active partner with a demonstrated ability to connect and build bridges, including guiding the team in establishing deep, productive relationships with leaders internally and externally.
Other factors for success include:
- Inclusive management – A passion for building healthy teams that allow each member to contribute to their fullest and thrive. In addition, you bring experience providing leadership in development of inter-team communication and cohesiveness, sustaining culture, and supporting staff during organizational growth.
- Strategy and vision - A track record of developing strategic programming and/or campaigns for progressive, civil rights, social justice, or related organization(s). Working knowledge of and sophistication about candidate campaigns.
- Organizational mindset & leadership – Experience modeling a high bar for performance and demonstrated strategic planning skills, including an understanding of organizational, communications, and political elements.
- Interpersonal communication - Superb interpersonal skills, with an impressive history of forging strong relationships with multiple internal and external stakeholders.
- Engagement - Experience working with membership organizations and an inherent understanding of how to build and engage with members.
- Lived experience – Lived experience within and/or deep knowledge of the historical and systemic challenges facing Black women, with an appreciation of the diversity within this community and an ability to navigate cultural differences by bringing people together.
- Judgement and trust – Integrity, coupled with outstanding judgment and decision-making skills. An ability to be honest about your opinions, share problems appropriately with leadership, and balance competing demands to make well-informed and strategic decisions.
- Political & movement orientation - You consider yourself to be part of the progressive movement, interested and immersed in the social and political landscape. Direct experience with both c3 and c4 organizations. Experience in membership organizations, women’s justice, or social justice is a plus, but not required.
This is a full-time position that requires significant travel. This is a hybrid role with a commute to one of Higher Heights’ offices the New York City and or the Washington, D.C. (DMV) metropolitan area.
Compensation & Benefits
The salary range for this role is $130,000 -$160,000 and it is offered along with a competitive benefits package.
Koya Partners, the executive search firm that specializes in mission-driven search, has been exclusively retained for this engagement. Molly Brennan and Chartise Clark are leading this search on behalf of Koya Partners. To express interest in this role please submit your resume and cover letter here. All inquiries and discussions will be considered strictly confidential.
Koya Partners is committed to providing reasonable accommodation to individuals living with disabilities. If you are a qualified individual living with a disability and need assistance expressing interest online, please email NonprofitSearchOps@divsearch.com. If you are selected for an interview, you will receive additional information regarding how to request an accommodation for the interview process.
Higher Heights is an equal opportunity employer. Higher Heights prohibits unlawful discrimination against any employee or applicant for employment based on race, color, religion, sex, gender identity, age, national origin, genetic characteristics, disability, status as a special disabled veteran or veteran, marital status, sexual orientation, sexual identity or any other basis prohibited by law.
About Koya Partners
Koya Partners, a part of Diversified Search Group, is a leading executive search and strategic advising firm dedicated to connecting exceptionally talented people with mission-driven clients. Our founding philosophy—The Right Person in the Right Place Can Change the World—guides our work as we partner with nonprofits & NGOs, institutions of higher education, responsible businesses, and social enterprises in local communities and around the world.
At Koya, we don’t just accept difference—we celebrate it, support it, and thrive on it for the benefit of our team, our clients, and the communities we serve.
For more information about Koya Partners, visit koyapartners.com.