Chief of Staff - The Opportunity Network

Location: New York, NY

Type: Full Time

Min. Experience: Senior Manager/Supervisor


The Organization:                                                                                     

Founded in 2003, The Opportunity Network seeks to level the playing field for students from underserved high schools by supporting them on the path to “best-fit” college and career opportunities. We believe networks of support are essential ingredients for success, so we take an innovative approach by underscoring the power of personal connections and professional relationships as vital complements to skills, passions, aptitude, and work experience.

 OppNet is a national thought leader, recognized as an innovator in the college access and success field because of its integration of Career FluencyⓇ-- early, rigorous and sustained career preparation--into their equally intensive college guidance and support programming. Over six years, our OppNet Fellows master college and career skills and competencies, including making “best fit” college choices, transitioning to college, advocating for themselves, increasing career awareness, building networks, mobilizing social capital, excelling in five summers of internships, giving back as mentors, and finding their passions on their way to “best-fit” careers.

This year, The Opportunity Network will serve 770 students in its OppNet Fellows program in New York City, in which 98% of Fellows matriculate at selective, 4-year colleges; 95% of Fellows graduate college in six years and 85% secure career-track jobs or graduate school admission within six months of graduation. Alumni work across a broad spectrum of industries and organizations. OppNet will expand serve nearly 1,000 Fellows by 2020.

 Beyond its direct-service Fellows program,OppNet also trains schools and community-based organizations to deliver its Career FluencyⓇ curriculum to the students they serve. This year, OppNet Partnerships served 2,500  students across the country, and will expand further.


The Opportunity:              

OppNet’s first-ever Chief of Staff will play an integral role on the senior leadership team, distilling big ideas, executing them across the organization and helping to answer and operationalize our most important strategic questions.

Through building relationships across the entire organization and being an active participant at the center of all of our work, the COS will build strong relationships with the staff and contribute to deepening and elevating OppNet's diversity, equity, and inclusion practices.  The Chief of Staff will maximize the workflow and effectiveness of the senior leadership team to fulfill our mission & vision. 

Working across four main domains - strategic communications, board engagement, organizational development and executive projects - the COS will report to the CEO and collaborate closely with the President/COO and Chief Development Officer, ensuring the organization’s vision, communications, strategies, and execution are aligned at the highest level.

Sample day to day responsibilities would include:                                                                                                                                                                                                                          

  • Codify and streamline protocol and processes for communicating information to internal and external stakeholders
  • Operationalize senior leadership team meeting structures, ensuring preparation, facilitation and follow up are organized and action oriented
  • Ensure all internal and external communication is vetted through an equity, anti-bias lens and reflects the organization’s values and commitment to equity and inclusivity
  • In partnership with CEO and Chief Development Officer, develop strategy to elevate and maximize board engagement
  • Project manage real estate research, analysis and procurement for OppNet’s next office location
  • With senior leadership team, analyze organizational growth data against institutional KPIs to consider additional factors to grow and sustain the organization                                                                                              

Desired Outcomes Include:

  • Design and implement strategic internal communications strategy which integrates and aligns with  the  organization’s core values and commitment to diversity equity and inclusivity, and ensures employees regularly receive key organizational information
  • Operationalize CEO’s vision for effective external communications, including drafting of strategic communications action plan and its respective resource allocation plan
  • Create systemized process for overall coordination and communication with board
  • Develop leadership team and all staff meeting workflows that ensure they are optimally prepared for and framed, highly effective and action oriented
  • Identify and secure a new office and develop project plan for relocation/occupation
  • Conduct needs assessment for monthly staff development and use data to inform the formalization and integration of organization-wide staff development opportunities 


Ideal Candidates:

  • Are extraordinarily passionate about our work and mission, demonstrated through a track record of working in support of social justice, equity and/or first gen college students
  • Have equally strong strategic thinking and project execution abilities
  • Bring an orientation of anti-bias and equity to all facets of work
  • Love the challenge of synthesizing and executing big picture ideas
  • Are able to bring and build process, structure and systems to ambiguous contexts
  • Can balance high degree of autonomy with high degree of collaboration and thought partnership
  • Are formidable writers, able to adopt different voices, and have experience working directly or indirectly in a communications capacity
  • Can distill various perspectives and information down to concise key points
  • Understand highly effective practices for board engagement
  • Are outstanding relationship builders able to engage wide range of stakeholders
  • Excel at managing up and managing laterally
  • Bring strong proficiency in understanding data and using data to drive decision-making
  • Demonstrate maturity, professionalism, poise, and excellent judgment
  • Ideally have ten or more years of professional experience including having served on a leadership and/or worked in close partnership with an organizational leader or board
  • Possess a Bachelor’s degree from a U.S. accredited college/university, advanced degree preferred                                                                      


Commensurate with experience, plus benefits including 401K and retirement matching, generous paid and sick time off, and professional development.

Commitment to Diversity and Equal Opportunity Employment Policy:

OppNet is committed to providing equal employment opportunities to all qualified individuals and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, national origin,or disability. OppNet actively works to create an inclusive organization, where everyone can thrive, and where we can be the best partner possible to the students we serve. Candidates from diverse backgrounds are encouraged to apply.



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