Senior Director, Health Group

Location US-DC-Washington
Posted Date 11 months ago(10/7/2020 4:34 PM)
Job ID
Program-Government Performance
The Pew Charitable Trusts


The Pew Charitable Trusts uses data to make a difference. For more than 70 years, we have focused on serving the public, invigorating civic life, conducting nonpartisan research, advancing effective public policies and practices, and achieving tangible results. Through rigorous inquiry and knowledge sharing, we inform and engage public-spirited citizens and organizations, linking diverse interests to pursue common cause. We are a dedicated team of researchers, communicators, advocates, subject matter experts, and professionals working on some of today’s big challenges – and we know we are more effective and creative collectively than we are individually. With Philadelphia as our hometown and the majority of our staff located in Washington, D.C., our U.S. and international staff find working at Pew personally and professionally rewarding.
Wise stewardship of resources allows Pew employees to pursue work that strategically furthers our mission in significant and measurable ways. We collaborate with a diverse range of philanthropic partners, public and private organizations, and concerned citizens who share our interest in fact-based solutions and goal-driven initiatives to improve society. Pew attracts top talent, people of integrity who are service-oriented and willing to take on challenging assignments. We provide competitive pay and benefits, a healthy work-life balance, and a respectful and inclusive workplace. Pew employees are proud of their colleagues, proud of where they work, and proud of the institution’s reputation.
The Government Performance Portfolio within Program
Pew’s government performance work identifies and advances effective approaches to help solve complex challenges at all levels of government in the United States. 
The portfolio’s work can be traced back to our founders’ early efforts to improve the lives of Americans by supporting efforts that promoted health, civic engagement, and democratic ideals. Today, we conduct research on emerging topics, develop data-driven reports, and highlight innovative, non-partisan approaches in addressing complex problems at the federal, state, and local levels as well as the interplay that can occur between jurisdictions. Current initiatives focus on health, fiscal and economic policy, and safety and justice, and take into account significant trends such as evolving technologies, and the increasing racial and ethnic diversity in the United States population.
Our teams explore and advance effective, evidence-based policies using credible, timely, and accessible research, assessing public support for change, identifying approaches that have proved successful elsewhere, and bringing together diverse perspectives to find common ground. We work in collaboration with organizations that share our commitment to rigorous research, measurable results, and public service, and we focus on developing durable policy change. In addition, our teams use strategic outreach and dissemination to ensure that good information is widely communicated to decision-makers, media, influential stakeholders, and the public.
Position Overview
The senior director for the health group – which contemplates a wide spectrum of health issues and defines “health” broadly to include public health and social determinants of health – is based in Pew’s Washington, D.C., office. This position manages directors and project directors, as well as other project leadership and reports to the vice president and head of government performance.
The senior director will oversee seven existing projects, which focus on the following issues: 1) food safety; 2) antibiotic resistance; 3) health care products; 4) health information technology; 5) oral health care; 6) the role of local and state government in advancing aspects of community health; and 7) substance use disorder. These efforts have demonstrated success in driving policy change at the local, state, and federal level. We are exploring opportunities to develop additional initiatives for consideration by Pew’s board, which build on the experience and insight developed through previous health projects.  
The annual combined budget of these projects exceeds $15 million. The health group comprises approximately 70 staff.  
The senior director, in partnership with Pew leadership and the existing health directors and project directors, will be a lead spokesperson for Pew’s health work at the local, state, and federal level.  S/he will be responsible for the oversight of the execution of existing projects, the wind-down of projects that have met their objectives, the exploration of new areas of focus, and the launch of new projects. 
The senior director will be instrumental in establishing and maintaining a compelling set of priorities and organizing framework for the health group’s work; communicating the vision of the group’s work to both internal and external stakeholders; identifying opportunities to strengthen existing lines of work and develop new lines of work at Pew by collaborating across the institution, including with other program units (e.g.  safety and justice, environment, research and science, Philadelphia); playing a leadership role in the institution as a member of Pew’s management team; and enhancing the health group’s relationships with external stakeholders including government officials and representatives from the nonprofit, private, and academic sectors.


  • Provide strategic guidance to position the health group’s directors and project directors to realize objectives, build cohesive teams, and ensure professional development and mentoring of staff.
  • Work with directors and project directors to ensure a continuing commitment to inclusion and diversity; build and maintain a culture of excellence and accountability; establish positive and productive teams; and effectively manage and coach individual staff by providing appropriate opportunities for professional development.
  • Strategize the full life-cycle of initiatives, including standing up new projects, providing leadership and direction through different phases, and leading planning for wind-down, hand-off or closeout of projects.
  • Partner with the vice president and head of government performance and the government performance portfolio leadership team on strategic planning.
  • Work with the Pew leadership team to plan, develop, and execute a strategic vision for Pew’s relationship with local, state, and federal government.
  • Collaborate with leaders in government performance and the program strategy team to advance the goals of individual existing projects and to develop materials for the board of directors.
  • Speak on behalf of Pew’s projects and priorities to external audiences, including providing testimony to government officials and other key stakeholders.
  • Partner with vice president and head of government performance and Pew’s philanthropic partnerships group to cultivate relationships with potential donors (i.e., both foundations and individuals) for the purpose of securing financial resources needed to achieve program objectives.
  • Oversee operational aspects of the health group. Ensure staff comply with institutional procedures and policies including compliance with federal, state, and local lobbying and ethics laws. Engage with counterparts in operations units to review the health group’s role in existing processes and identify opportunities to enhance those processes and streamline protocols.
  • Review externally-targeted publications (e.g., reports, media statements, and other work products) and internal documents (e.g., documents related to human resources requirements, reporting to the board of directors, and contracts with external parties).
  • Develop and maintain partnerships with associations of government officials, non-profit organizations, government agencies, and other key individuals and institutions.
  • Contribute to and participate in tasks of the program department as assigned and participate in Pew-wide projects as requested.


  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience required.
  • Minimum of 15 years of professional experience in related field, with responsibility for strategic planning, idea development, project management, and a sophisticated understanding of the formulation of policy is required.
  • Minimum of 8 years of direct supervisory experience engaging in performance management processes for direct reports, providing career development advice and counsel for direct reports, and oversight of these responsibilities for direct reports’ teams.
  • Prior to commencing employment with Pew, candidates for this position who were registered to lobby in any jurisdiction must certify termination of previous registration(s) and provide copies of termination notices with said jurisdiction(s) to Pew.
  • Demonstrated success managing and developing public policy campaigns, which includes demonstrated success partnering with health organizations and translating health research into language and concepts that are accessible and compelling to audiences without health expertise.
  • Experience running multiple projects and programs concurrently preferred.
  • A strong results orientation, with a track record of solving problems creatively.
  • Media-savvy and politically astute. 
  • Excellent analytic and problem-solving skills.
  • Strong interpersonal skills; an excellent listener who works productively and diplomatically with a wide array of people and institutions. 
  • Persuasive and effective at “selling” ideas and gaining support and commitment for initiatives from individuals and organizations capable of providing financial support for Pew projects.
  • Excellent time and project-management skills. Highly flexible, with the ability to juggle multiple priorities, adjust to changing circumstances, remain attentive to details and identify resources for projects.
  • The ability to make decisions after contemplating various courses of action, justify recommendations, and to be responsive, clear and firm with colleagues and partners.
  • Excellent communications skills, including an ease in briefly summarizing the essence of issues and means to address them. Strong oral, presentation, facilitation, and written communication skills such that complex ideas, thoughts and concepts are clearly articulated for a general audience. Clear, effective writing style and editing skills. 
  • Strong operational management acumen. Ability to analyze budgetary information, assess organizational needs and problem solve within a large institution.  
  • Ability to fit into the creative, fast-paced, and highly professional corporate culture of Pew, which emphasizes excellence, collegiality, and teamwork.
This position requires occasional travel to develop and manage partnerships, attend conferences and meetings, and perform other business.
Total Rewards
We offer a competitive salary and benefit program, including: comprehensive, affordable health care through medical, dental, and vision coverage; financial security with life and disability insurance; opportunities to save using health savings and flexible spending accounts; retirement benefits to help prepare for the future; and work/life benefits to maintain a good balance.
The Pew Charitable Trusts is an equal opportunity employer, committed to a diverse and inclusive workplace. Pew considers qualified applicants for employment without regard to age, sex, ethnicity, religion, disability, marital status, sexual orientation or gender identity, military/veteran status, or any other basis prohibited by applicable law.


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