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Career Opening

Director of Advocacy & Innovation

Employment Status: Full-time

Department: Innovation & Strategic Communications

Reports to: Vice President of Innovation and Strategic Communications

Supervises: Dr. Reatha Clark King Fellow

Salary: $95,000 – $105,000 based on experience and qualifications, + benefits

To Apply: Please send resume and cover letter to Applications accepted through July 17, 2024, or until filled.

FLSA Status: Exempt

Location: Hybrid work environment. Office expectation is approximately 35%. As a community foundation with a statewide focus, community context is an integral aspect to achieve the Foundation’s mission. As such, the incumbent to this position should reside within the state of Minnesota and within a commutable distance to WFM’s office in Minneapolis.

Access: The Women’s Foundation of Minnesota welcomes applicants to share with us if they have needs related to flexibility in the hiring process including alternate formats, accommodations, or any other type of modification.


The Director of Advocacy and Innovation serves as the primary strategic implementer for policy, advocacy, and strategic innovation (including the Young Women’s Initiative, abbreviated YWI) at the Women’s Foundation of Minnesota (WFM or Foundation). The incumbent is responsible for ensuring alignment with the Board of Trustee-approved strategic plan and annual operating plan priorities. The position works under the direction of the Vice President of Innovation and Strategic Communication and partners across the staff team and with external partners to elevate and position WFM’s leadership on gender and racial justice in Minnesota and across the country.  

Essential Functions: Role Specific

Strategy, Learning & Innovation 

  • Work in partnership with the Vice President of Innovation and Strategic Communications to develop new strategic, programmatic and advocacy initiatives, ensuring work is steeped in research, WFM’s Intersectional Equity Framework, and meets community-identified needs.  
  • Lead implementation of Young Women’s Initiative of Minnesota (YWI MN) in alignment with strategic plan and the goals of the National Philanthropic Collective of YWI’s (NPCYWI). 
  • Draft WFM policy agenda and policy position statements in response to local, state, national, and global issues in collaboration with Vice President of Innovation and Strategic Communications. 
  • Anticipate and leverage strategic opportunities and challenges externally and internally.  
  • Serve as a WFM spokesperson for the Foundation, specifically with legislators, program partners, and YWI partners.  

Advocacy & Public Policy Engagement

  • Build strategy, momentum, and impact to set and advance the Foundation’s public policy and advocacy agenda. 
  • Develop strategies, in partnership with lobbyists, to monitor bills, manage and engage volunteers. Serve as primary contact for, and partner with, WFM’s lobbyist.  
  • Cultivate and maintain meaningful relationships with allied organizations, coalitions, local and state government officials, national partners, and other influencers. 
  • Provide leadership for the advocacy and policy engagement of Young Women’s Cabinet members. 


  • Contribute to proposal development for foundation and corporate funders and prepare the team for funder meetings. 
  • Contribute to donor engagement events and meetings that highlight advocacy and/or YWI investments. 


  • Serve as Foundation ambassador; develop and build transformational relationships with potential strategic partners, Innovators and YWI Cabinet members, donors and community leaders in communities around the state, as they align with our strategic goals and objectives. 

Essential Functions: Organizational

  • Participate as an active member of the Foundation team by working collaboratively with other team members, and by communicating openly and honestly with staff and volunteers.  
  • Attend Women’s Foundation of Minnesota events as well as external community events, as required and/or as requested by the Vice President of Innovation and Strategic Communications. 
  • Perform all other projects and tasks as assigned by the Vice President of Innovation and Strategic Communications. 

Job Specifications

Desired Education & Experience

  • Bachelor’s Degree or equivalent experience. 
  • Minimum five years experience in management of advocacy, policy, or programmatic departments. 
  • Experience working within Minnesota’s political landscape. 
  • Experience working across diversity and proven ability to work across differences.  
  • Demonstrated successful experience in applying gender, race, place equity framework and strategy to work. 
  • Preference for people with experience working with youth. 
  • Excellent written/oral communication skills. 
  • Demonstrated track record with respect to detail, orientation, and accuracy. 
  • Experience building relationships across the political spectrum. 

Knowledge, Skills & Abilities

  • Demonstrates initiative and a solution-focused attitude while positively contributing to our team work environment. 
  • Commitment and willingness to actively participate in WFM’s learning culture in diversity, equity, and inclusion. 
  • Ability to lead multiple long and short-term projects simultaneously, meeting all related deadlines.  Ability to plan, prioritize, coordinate, and manage own work.  Able to work unsupervised and make decisions and solve problems independently, effectively, and creatively. 
  • Excellent verbal communication, interpersonal and relationship-building skills to effectively work with a variety of people and personalities. Able to communicate clearly, in person and in writing. 
  • Proven ability to work effectively with board members, colleagues, donors, and volunteers. 
  • Able to present, inform, and motivate individuals and groups regarding the Foundation’s mission and philanthropy. 
  • Goal-oriented, persistent, and persuasive in the contact, follow-through and completion of acquiring donor and funder gifts. 
  • Thorough, organized, and detail-oriented approach to work. 
  • Understands the confidential nature of the organization, fundraising, and donor information and maintains confidences. 
  • Sense of humor. 
  • Passion for the Women’s Foundation of Minnesota’s mission. 

Physical Requirements Necessary to Perform This Job

  • Hear and speak in order to use telephone and communicate with people both in and out of the office environment. 
  • Sit at desk for extended periods, as well as move around office area repeatedly throughout the day. 
  • Apply manual dexterity for computer keyboarding and office equipment use. 
  • Visual ability to review detailed reports and information. 
  • Flexible work hours requiring work in excess of 40 hours/week when necessary.  Must be willing and able to work and attend events on evenings and weekends as needed. 
  • Must have reliable transportation to visit off-site locations. 

Tools and Equipment Used

  • Incumbent must be able to use multi-line telephone, calculator, copy machines, facsimile machines, computers, postage machine, and other office equipment. 
  • Able to become proficient in MS Office suite of software as well as fundraising, publishing, and research applications. 
  • Various video and audio platforms to facilitate virtual work, meeting, and event environments. 

To Apply

Send resume and cover letter to Applications accepted through July 17, 2024, or until filled. Please note that WFM participates in E-Verify, which is a service to confirm employment eligibility. This process will occur after an offer of employment is extended.