Assistant Director, Federal Initiatives

Salary Range: $65,000.00 To $71,000.00, Annually

The Assistant Director, Federal Initiatives supports the Executive Director in implementing TWC’s portfolio of fellowships programs and is a key role for delivering on The Washington Center’s promise to learners to provide them with a transformational experience – setting them on a course of achievement and leadership. The person in this role serves as the first line of support for TWC’s federal agency partners. The Assistant Director is responsible for leading the project team, providing guidance on program best-practices and logistics coordination, as well as training and onboarding of new team members. This individual must set the standard in applicant management and selection, participant support, stakeholder relations and data management through example and team accountability, providing decision- making and overseeing day-to-day activities of fellowship programs designed to attract outstanding individuals from all ethnic, racial and social backgrounds.

The Washington Center is a majority remote organization: for most employees, employment with TWC will not be contingent on physical presence in an office space. The Washington Center does have some physical space in Washington, D.C. and the individual in this role is expected to work in-person as and when the need arises.


Essential Functions

Team Management and Leadership

  • Oversee manager / advisor and their direct reports to ensure team meets enrollment goals and delivers quality programs.  
  • Liaise across departments to build and implement strategy for successful federal agency recruitment, professional development / career readiness programming, and student services support.  
  • Manage, mentor and coach direct reports in manner that allows team members to fulfill their potential.
  • Ensure accuracy and adherence to program requirements by program team.
  • Serve as proxy for Executive Director.            

Strategic and Operational Oversight

    • Work closely with Contract Management Specialist to monitor program budgets and participant reimbursements in compliance with contracts/agreements.
    • Manage fulfillment of contractual obligations with agency partners including tracking and completion of program milestones, participant withdrawals, dismissals and timeline exceptions - request extension of project period as needed.
    • Lead / oversee program events including facilitation of applicant selection process, orientation and professional development workshop series including travel and logistics.
    • Oversee program evaluations, building lessons-learned and collecting feedback to demonstrate program impact.
    • Develop, revise, and maintain training/onboarding resources and guides to build consistency and operational effectiveness within department.
    • Utilize technological tools to improve collection, standardization, and centralization of program metrics, outreach contacts, and participant communication.
    • Other duties as assigned.

    Stakeholder Management and Business Development

        • Serve as primary point of contact for agency partners and other clients providing excellent customer service. Clients may include, but are not limited to: sub-contractors, travel and housing companies, and university/college officials.
        • Plan and lead periodic check-ins with partner agencies and program team.
        • Review/ submit quarterly programmatic reports for agency partners.
        • Actively build networks with fellowship alumni, other agency staff, and program stakeholders including agency representatives, and university partners.
        • Assist with client requests for information and funding partner proposal development for renewals and new business.
        • Liaise with the Office of Marketing and Communications to develop and implement marketing and public relations resources to increase TWC’s visibility with the federal government and other potential program partners.  

        Required Education and Experience

        An equivalent combination of education, training, and experience will be considered:

        • Master’s degree required
        • 3+ years of progressively responsible work experience 
        • Experience managing a high performing team
        • Track record of managing federal grants/contracts 
        • Experience serving federal government agencies

        Preferred Education/Qualifications and Experience

        • Familiarity with Foreign Service assignments 
        • Experience working with college students / early career professionals
        • Experience securing new business opportunities

        Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

        • Ability to manage multiple projects and work collaboratively
        • Excellent client relations skills 
        • Excellent oral and written communication skills 
        • Proven ability to articulate organizational objectives 
        • Organized and detail orientated 
        • Ability to develop systems for tracking information and knowledge 
        • Easily adaptable
        • Independent judgment and initiative

        Supervisory Responsibility

        • This position will supervise 4 or more staff members.

        The Washington Center’s Values

        Values which guide our mission work in every regard – internally and externally:

        • Equity & Inclusion
        • Learning
        • Connection & Collaboration
        • Integrity
        • Impact

        Equipment Used to Perform the Job 

        May be representative but not all inclusive of those commonly associated with this position:

        • Cloud-based technologies
        • Standard office equipment including a computer, job-related software and printer

        Physical Abilities 

        Commonly associated with the performance of the functions of this job. Reasonable accommodation can be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform described essential functions of this job. These physical demands are representative of the physical requirements necessary for an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job: 

        • Specific vision abilities required for this job include close vision to work on a computer.
        • While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to sit, use repetitive wrist, hand, and/or finger movement, reach with hands and arms and talk or hear.

        Application Instructions

        To apply to this position, please do so via our online application form

        This job description no way states or implies that these are the only duties performed by the employee occupying this position.  Employees may be required to follow other job-related instructions and to perform other job-related duties as requested, subject to all applicable state and federal laws.

        Certain job functions described herein may be subjected to possible modification in accordance with applicable state and federal laws. 

        The Washington Center is an Equal Opportunity Employer. It is the policy of The Washington Center to provide equal employment opportunities without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, marital status, veteran status, sexual orientation, genetic information or any other protected characteristic under applicable law. Provisions in applicable laws providing for bona fide occupational qualifications, business necessity or age limitations will be adhered to by the organization where appropriate.

        The Washington Center stands in solidarity with all marginalized communities. We believe communities are strengthened by the inclusion of and equity for all people. Racism, hate, and violence have no place in our society, and we condemn all such acts. We are committed to becoming an anti-racist and anti-hate organization.

        We commit to continuously striving for diversity, equity and inclusion through ongoing education and self-awareness. At The Washington Center, each person brings unique and varied experiences which inform our thoughts, actions, and decision-making processes. Our mission is to create an inclusive, safe environment for our staff and our students, where everyone’s differences are celebrated, every perspective is valued, and everyone feels safe to bring forth their authentic selves.