Co-Director of Programs and Network

Location: Chicago, IL
Date: 7/9/2019

The Opportunity
IWJ is seeking a highly-motivated, organized, and dedicated Programs and Network Co-Director to lead our dynamic and unique network; skilled, dedicated, and unionized staff; and a diverse board of directors in a joint co-leadership model. IWJ is invigorating and renewing itself and its network, and is seeking candidates skilled in organizational management. The Programs and Network Co-Director will lead and oversee the programs, network, and related staff as a major responsibility. The following describes the general qualifications for this position, although there may be some adjustments to the final job descriptions based on the experience and skill sets that each Co-Director brings.

Overview of Interfaith Worker Justice
Interfaith Worker Justice (IWJ) has been a leader in the fight for economic and worker justice in the United States since 1996. The organization consists of a national network that builds collective power by advancing workers’ rights through unions, worker centers, and other expressions of the labor movement and by engaging diverse faith communities and allies in joint action, from grassroots organizing to shaping policy at the local, state, and national levels. Currently, IWJ has affiliated more than 60 organizations within the IWJ network, including a diversity of interfaith groups and worker centers.

IWJ works with its partners and allies to influence the national conversation on its core issues: wage theft, living wages, paid sick days and workplace standards, and protecting the rights of workers to organize. IWJ also works with and through its affiliated worker centers and interfaith bodies to organize and support workers in their campaigns and to pass pro-worker legislation at the local, state, and national levels. With a unique and growing network of advocates, IWJ influences both government and corporate policies throughout the United States.

IWJ is a national 501(c)(3) organization with a budget of approximately $1 million, skilled staff, a diverse board at the national level, and an amazing network of affiliates with powerful local leaders and activists. The IWJ network plays a critical role in the economic justice landscape across the country.

The Purpose of the Co-Directors

  • Encourage the affiliates’ leadership and vision in building the worker justice movement.
  • Lead the Board to strengthen, nourish, promote, and execute the mission of the organization.
  • Invigorate the network through an inclusive and participatory process, campaigns, and actions.
  • Administer the overall growth and work of the organization.

The position is directly accountable to the Board of Directors.

The Programs and Network Co-Director will be based in Chicago, IL, but there may be some flexibility for the right candidate. This position will require regular national travel. Approximately 30 percent of the Programs and Network Co-Director’s time will likely be spent traveling to represent the organization, meet with funders, strengthen relationships with allies, and develop new partnerships.

Key Roles and Responsibilities
Fulfill IWJ's mission through visionary, responsive, and creative thinking and implementation, rooted in current trends within the worker justice movement.

Public Representation and Leadership

  • Lead IWJ’s collaborative creation of an inspiring vision for a more just society, highlighting the role of the worker centers in the workers' justice movement and the role of the religious community in advocating for worker justice.
  • Build and strengthen relationships with key union, religious, and worker center movement leaders.
  • Frame issues of labor and faith within a critical and compelling analysis.
  • Take affiliates’ agenda and campaigns to the national arena and campaign tables.
  • Represent IWJ with the media.
  • Represent IWJ at denominational high-level meetings on economic and worker justice.
  • Build and maintain good relationships with sister organizations including but not limited to key union, religious, and worker center movement leaders.
  • Participate in public policy tables as necessary.
  • Write and speak on key trending issues on which IWJ and strategic partners are working.
  • Provide religious framework for worker justice movement, which includes writing theological reflections and articles on economic justice and current campaigns.


  • Lead and create a teamwork environment.
  • Supervise staff related to programs, organizing, campaigns and networks by providing measurable deliverables, consistent feedback, and coaching and by setting clear expectations.
  • Assist in providing program content for grant proposals and reports and coordinate with program staff on reporting deliverables met and setting goals for new proposals.
  • Coordinate and facilitate quarterly programs and staff retreats.
  • Work with the organizing team to ensure the connection of the training efforts to overall affiliates’ goals and conduct project planning and assessment.
  • While daily staff tasks will be accountable to the Programs and Network Co-Director, the co-directors will be jointly responsible for staff oversight, including evaluations, hiring, and, if necessary, firing.

Oversee the programs-, campaigns-, and network-related budget. Track all income sources, especially restricted funds for particular programs, training, organizing, and affiliates.


  • Help ensure sustainable funding by providing programmatic input for fundraising events and grants.
  • Coordinate grant reports ensuring that program staff are reporting on deliverables.
  • Develop strong relationships with foundation staff and large donors.
  • Challenge unions, faith organizations, individuals, law firms, and other organizations to support the work of IWJ and its affiliates.

Board of Directors
In collaboration with the Finance and Operations Co-Director

  • Participate in all board meetings and retreats and serve as liaison between the board and staff.
  • Assist the board’s decision-making process by providing strong recommendations for overall organizational goals and strategy.
  • Work with the board on recruiting and involving board members.


  • Perform other tasks as requested by the Board.
  • Perform other tasks as needed in order to rebuild and maintain a healthy, sustainable organization.


  • At least five years of experience organizing, working with workers centers, labor, and faith communities, or equivalent experience.
  • Share progressive values that have guided IWJ to build the worker justice movement, and have a deep commitment to dignity, justice, and peace.
  • Strong commitment, relationships, and experience working with worker centers, faith communities, and labor organizations, with an interfaith approach in the religious world, and working in partnership with faith and labor.
  • Proven leadership as a visionary, adaptable, charismatic, and passionate leader and public spokesperson who can inspire and organize the board, staff, and constituents to act and accomplish their goals.
  • Successful experience with fundraising and knowledge of building relationships with foundation staff and major donors.
  • Excellent communication and listening skills with a demonstrated understanding of how to communicate in the faith and labor worlds.
  • Demonstrated ability to work independently while working in strategic and efficient ways as well as an ability to identify when guidance or support is needed.
  • Ability to problem-solve and build unity and to engage in positive conflict resolution and constructive solution-oriented conversations.
  • Experience in managing diverse sectors with a race, gender, religious, and class analysis
  • Experience working effectively with a board and as a board member.
  • Management experience (supervision, finances) and experience in building an organization or new programs.
  • Ability to engage with media and social media.
  • Be able to work some evenings and some weekends.
  • Bilingual English and Spanish is a big plus.

This is a full-time, exempt position. The salary is within a range based on experience. Interfaith Worker Justice is dedicated to ensuring workers’ rights and offers full and comprehensive benefits to its employees, including medical, dental, and disability, 401k retirement plan with organizational contribution, pre-tax transportation plan, and a competitive salary. Interfaith Worker Justice is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Application Process
Candidates are encouraged to apply ASAP; we are prepared to hire when we find the right candidate. To apply, please send resume (maximum two pages) and cover letter describing qualifications and interest in the position, and the availability for a preliminary interview by August 2, 2019. Please include at least three professional references (references not contacted until you have had a successful interview). Email applications to and put “Programs and Network Co-Director” in the subject line.

Applications without a cover letter will not be considered. Applications may be accepted after August 2, 2019 if the search is extended. No calls, please. Women and people of color are encouraged to apply.