Director, Early Childhood Policy

  • Reports to: Vice President, Early Childhood Policy
  • Staff reporting to this position: Research Assistant, Senior Policy Analyst
  • Department: Early Childhood Policy
  • Position classification: Exempt, full time


American Progress seeks a Director for the Early Childhood Policy team to help lead a team of individuals committed to making affordable, high-quality early care and education a reality for all families. Through research, action-oriented advocacy, and strategic communications, the Early Childhood Policy team is a leading voice on the need for significant reform and investments in child care and early education. The successful candidate will have strong interpersonal and management skills, attention to detail and organization, and a proven track record of managing multiple, complex projects in a fast-paced environment.


  • Work collaboratively to set team goals, objectives, and work plans to advance early childhood policy and advocacy.
  • Maintain expertise in early childhood policy, including understanding federal and state policies related to child care, preschool, Head Start, and home visiting.
  • Oversee day-to-day management of staff and interns, including through recruiting and hiring processes, supporting professional growth and development, and conducting regular check-ins and performance appraisals.
  • Manage projects and work with staff to publish reports, issue briefs, columns, infographics, and other early childhood policy products, and assist in their development, production, and distribution.
  • Generate new ideas for products, data analysis, and advocacy tactics to achieve the team’s goals and objectives.
  • Drive a public-facing narrative on the need for bold investment and reform in child care, including through press outreach, to present a compelling case for change.
  • Work in coalition with national, state, and grassroots organizations on a federal advocacy agenda, including policy priorities for federal legislation.
  • Provide technical assistance to state, local, and federal legislators, staffers, and administrations to support the development and implementation of progressive early childhood policy.
  • Present early childhood policy ideas at public events such as conferences, public meetings, and webinars.
  • Assist with fundraising efforts, including cultivating prospective donors and foundation staff, developing concept papers and proposals, reporting grants, and budgeting.

Requirements and qualifications:

  • Master’s degree in public policy or a related field.
  • Minimum of eight years of professional experience.
  • Exceptional organizational skills and the ability to manage various issues and projects, multitask, and prioritize.
  • Expertise in early childhood policy and advocacy as well as an ability to effectively communicate these issues to a broad audience.
  • Proven track record of effectively managing staff, resources, and budgets in a mission-driven organization.
  • Exceptional project management experience with a strong attention to detail.
  • Ability to manage quick-turnaround deliverables as well as long-term projects.
  • Excellent writing, research, and verbal communication skills.
  • Strong quantitative and analytical skills, including the ability to conduct and oversee both quantitative and qualitative research.
  • Fluency in Spanish is a plus.
  • Commitment to American Progress’ mission and goals.

American Progress offers full and competitive benefit packages. Candidates from diverse backgrounds are strongly encouraged to apply.

To Apply

Please follow the link below to the online application. When completing the application, be sure to combine your cover letter and resume/CV into one Word or PDF file and upload this combined document. The system does not allow for multiple files.

This announcement will remain posted until the position is filled. No phone calls, please.
Please note that only those individuals whose qualifications match the current needs of this position will be considered applicants and will receive responses from American Progress.
Thank you for your interest in American Progress.

Additional information

American Progress operates two separate nonprofit organizations to maximize the progressive agenda: the Center for American Progress and the Center for American Progress Action Fund. This job posting refers collectively to the two organizations under the name “American Progress.” The Center for American Progress is a nonpartisan 501(c)(3) tax-exempt research and educational institute. It undertakes research, public education and a limited amount of lobbying. The Center for American Progress Action Fund is a nonpartisan 501(c)(4) tax-exempt organization dedicated to achieving progress through action. It works to transform progressive ideas into policy through rapid-response communications, legislative action, grassroots organizing, political advocacy, and partnerships with other progressive leaders. The organizations share office space and employees.

American Progress is dedicated to promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion. Diversity is more than a commitment at American Progress—it is the foundation of what we do. American Progress recruits, employs, trains, compensates, and promotes regardless of race, religion, sex, national origin, ethnicity, age, disability, political affiliation, sexual orientation, gender identity, color, marital status, veteran status, medical condition, and all the other characteristics that make us unique.

For more information on the Center for American Progress, please go to For more information on the Center for American Progress Action Fund, please go to