Policy Research and Analytics Director


The Policy Research and Analytics Director serves as a senior leader in the organization, reporting directly to the Executive Director. In conjunction with Executive Director, other organization Directors, and the Policy Committee of the Board, the Policy Research and Analytics Director helps establish, refine, and execute a strategic policy agenda in the context of the organization’s long-term goals.

The Director leads the organization’s policy development and research efforts, building and sharing an understanding of the state’s systemic barriers to successful student outcomes and potential solutions. To do this, the Director stays abreast of the education policy and practice landscape across Illinois, nationally, and in other states, to bring the best information to our work; remains current with the research literature and engages with other thought leaders; and regularly learns from organizational partners and collaborators.

The Director will:

  • be responsible for overseeing the development of key publications of the organization, including the biennial The State We’re In.
  • conduct analysis, perform data analysis, and develop materials for public dissemination, including, for example, policy briefs, comments on proposed policy action, legislation, rules, or state plans.
  • collaborate with others on the team and with partners to develop and execute strategic approaches for securing adoption of the organization’s policy goals.
  • be a public representative of the organization, participating actively in the state and national education policy and advocacy community, serving as an organizational representative on state advisory boards, councils, and committees, as well as representing the organization at convenings.
  • will testify on legislation, be a spokesperson with media, and represent the organizational publicly.
  • build and maintain relationships with education policymakers and stakeholders across the state and country to help continually refine and advance our policy agenda.
  • serve as a member of the senior staff, providing overall leadership to the organization, including presenting to the Board and working with Board members, assisting with annual planning, budgeting, and goal setting, and contributing to a collaborative team environment.The Policy Research and Analytics Director will supervise a small staff.


The ideal candidate will be passionate about improving the state’s education system throughout the P20 spectrum through policy change and state-level impact and will be committed to educational equity and learning from and partnering with communities.

The ideal candidate will:

  • be intellectually curious and bring a strong research or policy background and very strong analytic skills.
  • be rigorous in analysis and committed to integrity in data, research, and presentation.
  • be of absolute integrity, unquestioned ethics, and bring a high level of professionalism.
  • bring tremendous drive and strong ability to achieve outcomes, work well in a fast-paced environment, be comfortable working in an ever-shifting political environment, and experienced in navigating government policy-making processes, working effectively with key players within and outside government.
  • be excellent at building and maintaining relationships.
  • think strategically, be able to develop and execute successfully on strategy, and contribute to the organization’s overall goals and priorities.
  • be hands-on, willing to engage on all aspects of the work. No job too big or too small.
  • be an effective communicator, able to communicate complex material in a clear and concise manner to colleagues within the organization and to general audiences.
  • be committed to learning and committed to other’s learning, energetic, and strong, and bring a collaborative approach to the organization and to the work.
  • be an excellent manager, committed to developing the Associate staff team.
  • be a good, supportive colleague to peers.
  • be a thought-partner, teacher, coach, and mentor, willing to model and coach others and be a willing student, committed to learning from others.

The ideal candidate will have a Master’s or Doctorate in a related field and 10 years of experience in policy analysis and development as well as data analaytics and will also bring experience identifying and using research and data to inform policy, along with an ability to partner with practitioners and others to strengthen the work. The ideal candidate will also have experience effectively managing and supervising a diverse team of staff.


Competitive salary that is commensurate with experience along with excellent benefits, such as health/dental insurance; short-term/long-term disability plans; retirement plan with a company match; flexible spending account; generous PTO plan.


The review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled. Applications should include a letter of interest and a current resume and be submitted electronically.

Nominations, applications, or inquiries about the position and/or the search process should be directed to: policydir@advanceillinois.org

Advance Illinois is an equal opportunity employer with a commitment to engaging the skills and leadership of people of color, low-income persons, LGBT persons, differently-abled people, and other people from diverse backgrounds. People from these and other historically marginalized backgrounds and communities are strongly encouraged to apply.