Washington D.C.
Salary will be competitive
Jul 27, 2018
Aug 31, 2018
Executive, Director
Full Time


The National Women’s Law Center has been expanding the possibilities for women and their families for more than 45 years. Founded in 1972, the Center uses the law in all its forms – getting new statutes on the books and enforced, litigating ground-breaking cases all the way to the Supreme Court, conducting sophisticated advocacy campaigns, and educating the public about ways to make the law and public policies work for women and their families – to move closer to its vision of a world without barriers based on gender. 

We are proud to have been on the front lines of virtually every major advance for women since 1972, benefiting women, their families, their communities, and the nation. We are committed advocates who take on the toughest challenges, especially for women who face multiple and intersecting forms of discrimination and women who are low-income – and we make change happen.


The Center’s Child Care/Early Learning Program promotes policies and investments that increase the availability of high-quality, affordable child care and early education so that more low-income children enter school ready to learn and parents can work and support their families. The Center successfully helped to achieve the first comprehensive child care legislation since World War II, and continues to build on and strengthen that law and expand its funding, and win improvements in other key early learning programs.


The Director will provide vision and leadership to maintain and grow the Center’s Child Care/Early Learning work – as a strategist, advocate, spokesperson, and fundraiser working at federal, state, and local levels. This work will include the continued cultivation of a network of advocates, researchers, analysts, and policy makers to further the Center’s goals and raise the level of public awareness about critical issues affecting outcomes particularly for (but not limited to) low-income women and women of color, as well as their children and families.

Reporting to the Vice President for Child Care/Early Learning & Income Security, the Director will oversee a small team and also work collaboratively with colleagues in other program areas as well as with Communications and Development staff.


The Director’s specific responsibilities include:

  • Lead the Center’s child care advocacy efforts, developing policy goals and advocacy strategies, implementing advocacy strategies, working with the Child Care and Early Learning Research Director to coordinate research with advocacy and other strategies, serving as a thought leader, and helping to develop messages and strategic communications to advance policy agendas;
  • Lead the Center’s coalition of national child care and early learning advocates, developing policy and advocacy objectives for the coalition, building consensus across the political spectrum, organizing  monthly meetings, and providing weekly updates to coalition partners around child care and other issues that affect families, children, and providers;
  • Support the advocacy efforts of state child care advocates through weekly memos, webinars, conference calls, telephone and in-person consultation, and an annual retreat for state and national advocates;
  • Provide technical assistance to states and state and local advocates around child care and early learning legislative, regulatory, and administrative policies;
  • Represent the Center on child care/early learning with lawmakers nationally and at the state and local level, with press in press interviews, at public events, conferences and meetings, and in funder meetings;
  • Provide direction for and track key legislative initiatives and policy trends at the federal, state, and local levels, ensuring that the Center has a prominent voice in relevant policy discussions at all three levels and working with federal legislative staff on appropriations and authorization issues;
  • Work in close coordination with key Law Center staff, including those on the broader Child Care/Early Learning & Income Security team, other Law Center staff engaged in federal and state advocacy work, and the Campaign and Digital Strategies Team, to provide information and support on federal and state legislation and policy, and strategically and collectively further the Center’s work;
  • Directly supervise the Child Care/Early Learning staff team;
  • Conceive, draft, and oversee development of written products, including legislative testimony, talking points, letters, memos, and other materials, and collaborate with the Child Care and Early Learning Research Director in development of the team’s reports and fact sheets; and
  • In partnership with the Center’s leadership and Development staff, undertake strategies to expand funding resources for the Child Care/Early Learning portfolio, to cultivate, solicit, and steward existing funders. 


The Center seeks a candidate with:

  • A minimum of eight years of relevant experience in policy advocacy, program development experience, and demonstrated success working on a mix of advocacy, research, policy formulation, and analysis. A professional degree or a law degree is desirable;



  • Experience engaging a coalition of advocacy partners is required, and experience leading a coalition of advocacy partners is preferred, including experience building consensus across political spectrums, leading coalition-wide advocacy efforts, and developing a coalition-wide agenda; demonstrated ability to provide expert technical assistance to state advocates and policymakers;



  • Solid expertise and current networks with leading thinkers and advocates in the child care/early learning field;



  • Deep working knowledge of key federal legislation and regulations, legislative processes, and state policies that relate to child care/early learning;
  • Superior oral and written communications skills, including the ability to explain the Center’s work in compelling terms and to communicate complex ideas clearly and effectively, and experience as a spokesperson with a range of constituents, including media;



  • Successful fundraising experience strongly preferred, including developing and framing projects to appeal to a broad range of potential supporters;



  • Outstanding time management and organizational skills, with careful attention to detail, and a demonstrated ability to manage multi-faceted projects and perform well independently with grace under pressure in a fast-paced, multi-tasking environment;



  • A collaborative and collegial approach, and an ability and desire to work in a diverse and team-based environment, an orientation to the work that recognizes and values the contributions of all team members, and demonstrated success applying an equity lens to leadership and management;



  • A high degree of self-motivation and an entrepreneurial ability to identify and seize opportunities; and



  • Demonstrated ability to influence and engage diverse audiences and to build long-term collaborative relationships with key organizational and individual partners.


The National Women’s Law Center has retained Sandi Haynes to conduct this search. To apply for this position, please forward a resume, as well as a substantive cover letter outlining your interests and qualifications via e-mail to: and include the position title in the subject line. Electronic submissions are preferred. Hard copies may be addressed to: Human Resources Department, National Women's Law Center, 11 Dupont Circle, Suite 800, Washington, DC 20036. Applications accepted until position is filled.

The National Women's Law Center is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer and values a diverse workforce.  We strongly encourage and seek applications from people with disabilities, women, men, people of color, including bilingual and bicultural individuals, veterans, and LGBTQI individuals.


As noted above, the Center welcomes applications from individuals with disabilities. If you require reasonable accommodations during any part of the hiring process, please email us at or you may send the request by mail to:

National Women's Law Center
ATTN: Human Resources Director
11 Dupont Circle NW, Suite 800
Washington, DC 20036

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