Managing Director of Advocacy

Location: Chicago, IL

Impact for Equity, a highly regarded and impactful public interest law and policy center, seeks a mission-driven Managing Director of Advocacy to co-create and lead Impact for Equity’s work advancing transformational change and racial, economic, and social justice. 


Impact for Equity, formerly BPI, is a public interest law and policy center that has been at the front lines of the fight for social justice in the Chicago region for over fifty years. Known for its innovative and effective advocacy for racial and economic equity, today Impact for Equity is deeply engaged in advancing systemic change in policing, the criminal legal system, and housing.

With collaboration as a core value, Impact for Equity partners with people directly impacted by racial and economic injustice and the community-based organizations that serve them. The organization’s tenacious lawyers and policy staff employ a combination of legal tools, policy research, organizing, advocacy, and convening to achieve transformational change. Impact for Equity works to develop nuanced policies and programs, advance effective strategies, catalyze strong coalitions, and advance progress toward its overarching vision of a state where every person has the right and opportunity to live their fullest life in a thriving community and free of systemic barriers.  A collaborative and stimulating workplace, Impact for Equity is committed to offering opportunities to learn, grow, and contribute meaningfully to work that advances racial, economic, and social justice.

The Position

Impact for Equity seeks a mission-driven individual with substantial experience in legal and policy change advocacy and a demonstrated commitment to racial and social justice to join our team as Managing Director of Advocacy.   As a key senior leader at Impact for Equity, the Managing Director of Advocacy will co-create and drive impact through Impact for Equity’s advocacy work, including by providing strategic direction and leadership, directing specific advocacy initiatives, engaging in legal and policy advocacy, and by developing and maintaining external partnership and connection to Impact for Equity’s work.  The Managing Director of Advocacy will work collaboratively across the organization to advance Impact for Equity’s advocacy agenda and will serve as a significant voice in shaping the overall direction of the organization.


The role will report directly to the Executive Director, and responsibilities will include:

Strategic Leadership for Advocacy

  • Lead an innovative and comprehensive advocacy strategy that integrates policy, advocacy, and community-centered organizing with legal strategy to pursue transformational change and racial, economic, and social justice in Chicago and Illinois;
  • Work with Program Directors, advocacy staff, and across Impact for Equity to execute high-impact, effective advocacy;
  • Apply both a big picture vision and attention to detail to further Impact for Equity’s strong foundation of advocacy across program areas;
  • Foster and ensure effective performance in program teams, including consistent communication, translation of vision to action steps, and utilization of systems to assess progress against objectives and measurable impact;
  • Mentor and support program staff and supervisors to ensure they have the skills and tools necessary to advance Impact for Equity’s work with an eye towards their professional and leadership development;
  • Contribute to the effective administration of Impact for Equity, including participation in recruitment and hiring;
  • Help lead a trusting, welcoming, rigorous, collaborative, and accountable advocacy environment;

Engagement in Legal and Policy Systems Advocacy 

  • Identify, develop, and implement legal and policy strategies consistent with Impact for Equity’s advocacy priorities, which may include policy development, legislative advocacy, litigation, education, convening, and other relevant, effective strategies;
  • Conduct a broad variety of legal advocacy, including counseling advocates and policy makers; drafting and reviewing legislation; and, where appropriate, litigating in federal and state courts;
  • Prepare, review, and edit memos, briefs, reports, comments, advocacy materials, and presentations in a variety of formats to engage a diverse range of constituents;
  • Engage in and provide guidance on public policy advocacy, legislative engagement, and legislative advocacy aligned with program priorities;
  • Represent Impact for Equity in meetings with policymakers, community members, and other stakeholders;

External Engagement and Community Building

  • Develop and maintain strong, collaborative relationships with leaders and organizations in the field, including community-based organizations, movement partners, allies, stakeholders, communities affected by our work, government officials, and systems stakeholders;
  • Serve as a spokesperson with the media and at other public speaking engagements that further Impact for Equity’s mission;
  • Participate in messaging, media strategy, and other communications to ensure use of these tools in all aspects of advocacy;
  • Build out and manage pro bono partnerships and opportunities;
  • Collaborate with the Managing Director of Development and External Relations to nurture, develop, and maintain efforts that build partnerships with philanthropic partners and donors; and
  • Be visible in the community and work closely with other professional, civic, and private organizations.


  • Ten or more years’ experience in public interest law and/or policy. Proven history of creative and high impact advocacy and demonstrated leadership.  Experience in litigation, community organizing, communications, and legislative advocacy preferred;
  • Experience effectively identifying systemic issues and advocating for systemic change collaboratively with community leaders and stakeholders;
  • Strong strategic leadership skills with demonstrated experience in contributing to organization-wide agendas and setting priorities, preferably in a non-profit setting;
  • Outstanding writing and communication skills, including oral advocacy, legal and policy writing, and producing information for publication and media engagement;
  • Management experience including hiring, supervising, mentoring, and training a group of diverse attorneys and policy specialists, and managing people who are themselves already established leaders;
  • Experience measuring advocacy program performance and effective strategic plan implementation;
  • Generative and able to work successfully individually and in teams to advance mission-centered priorities in a lean, highly collaborative, high volume, and entrepreneurial environment;
  • Ability to use technology creatively and effectively;
  • Experience engaging in creative problem solving and taking initiative, while utilizing a solutions-oriented approach and exhibiting flexibility and good judgement;
  • Excellent track record of working with individuals and communities with diverse identities;
  • Highly collaborative with the desire to consult and share information with colleagues and to respectfully resolve differences;
  • Demonstrated commitment to the Impact for Equity values of equity, inclusion, and shared power;
  • Ability to travel within Illinois and nationally as needed;
  • Bilingual language fluency a plus; and
  • Juris Doctor degree and admission to the Illinois Bar.

The salary for this position is commensurate with experience with a likely range between $140,000-150,000.

This is a full-time, salaried position with some evening and weekend hours required.

Impact for Equity offers a generous benefits plan that includes health/ dental/ vision insurance; a 403(b) retirement plan; holiday, vacation, and sick PTO; a cell phone benefit; and a hybrid work schedule.

To Apply

Please apply by sending a resume, writing sample, and a cover letter explaining your interest and qualifications for this position to  Please note the name of the position in the subject line of your email. If your candidacy advances, you will be asked to provide a list of three professional references.

Impact for Equity currently maintains a hybrid work environment with days in the office each week.  Impact for Equity requires all employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as a condition of employment. Accordingly, successful candidates must submit proof of vaccination prior to the commencement of employment, unless they qualify for a reasonable accommodation for bona fide medical or religious reasons.

Impact for Equity is an equal opportunity employer.  We value a diverse workforce and an inclusive culture.  We strongly encourage applications from people of color, immigrants, people with disabilities, members of the LGBTQ community, people with lived experience of poverty, and people from underrepresented and historically marginalized groups.

Reasonable accommodation will be made so that applicants with disabilities may participate in the application process.  Please advise in writing of special needs at the time of application.

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