Director/Senior Director, Human Security and International Policy

Reports to: Senior Vice President, National Security and International Policy
Staff reporting to this position: To be determined
Department: National Security and International Policy
Position classification: Exempt, full time
Minimum compensation: $92,000/$112,000


American Progress has an immediate opening for a Director/Senior Director of Human Security and International Policy in its National Security and International Policy department to lead the organization’s work in the field of human security. The incumbent will identify and prioritize policy ideas to address current and emerging transnational challenges and lead work with colleagues across the organization to drive solutions. The successful candidate will bring regional and country expertise to assess these transnational challenges and devise solutions that can also succeed at a global level. Issues such as the COVID-19 pandemic, climate change, displacement, and rising food insecurity have underlined the need to recommit to international cooperation and refocus on addressing the root causes of human insecurity. This workstream will study how the United States can drive collective action; reenvision its own assistance approach; and help tackle crosscutting challenges to human survival, livelihoods, and dignity.

The Director/Senior Director will direct a work plan focused initially on managing the pandemic internationally, mobilizing action to address the global refugee and displacement crisis, and seeking solutions to the challenges of food insecurity as priority topics within a broader human security agenda. The Director/Senior Director will lead policy outreach efforts, conceptualize a substantial research and policy implementation agenda, and manage relationships with outside stakeholders such as allied organizations, policymakers, and the media. The Director/Senior Director’s work will be driven by American Progress’ mission to improve the lives of all through bold, progressive ideas and leadership that changes not only the conversation, but the country. American Progress focuses on building connectivity between national security and international policy issues and the organization’s five crosscutting priorities:

  • Strengthening health and ending the pandemic
  • Building an economy for all
  • Tackling climate change and environmental injustice
  • Advancing racial equity and justice
  • Restoring social trust and strengthening democracy

This leader will help further build and manage a dynamic, high-performing department and collaborate with experts across American Progress and at other organizations in this policy space. The ideal candidate will have strong regional expertise (Africa expertise would be a plus), understanding of the current threats to human security, the political and policy challenges to mobilizing global action, the connections between human insecurity abroad and in the United States, executive and/or legislative branch experience, and relationships with key players in the field.


  • Provide day-to-day leadership of the human security policy efforts within the National Security and International Policy department and at American Progress.
  • Develop a policy, research, and communications agenda; maintain policy expertise in the field of human security.
  • Work with the department’s Senior Vice President and American Progress’ executive leadership to set the strategic direction for the organization’s priorities related to human security, including the development of crosscutting efforts.
  • Maintain relationships throughout American Progress, including with the Executive, Advocacy and Outreach, Communications, and Development departments.
  • Work closely with other policy experts at American Progress to find areas of collaboration and define shared messages and policy strategies.
  • Oversee the development of products—including reports, issue briefs, columns, op-eds, related events, and other routes—to disseminate information that advances the human security agenda in ways that increase opportunities to improve policy outcomes.
  • Assist the department’s Senior Vice President and the American Progress Development department in fundraising to meet the department’s work plan.
  • Promote department priorities and work products both inside and outside the organization.
  • Represent American Progress with respect to human security policy and related areas of expertise with the public, media, and other outside groups and individuals.
  • Build and maintain key relationships across the human security policy community, including with allied organizations and policymakers.
  • Keep American Progress staff updated on news and events related to relevant policy debates in Congress, the administration, international organizations, and abroad.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.

Requirements and qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree and relevant graduate degree or equivalent experience.
  • Demonstrated knowledge, expertise, and a professional record in the field of human security and related issues.
  • Deep knowledge of the political and policy challenges to human security around the world and the connections to similar issues in the United States.
  • Significant regional and/or country-specific expertise. Africa expertise is a plus.
  • Knowledge of federal policymaking and experience working with Congress, federal agencies, and/or relevant international organizations.
  • Established relationships with U.S. and foreign policymakers, advocates, and the human security policy and research community.
  • Excellent presentation, written, and oral communication skills.
  • Strong analytical skills. Quantitative skills are a plus.
  • Demonstrated ability to develop and implement strategic, long-term plans.
  • Significant management experience.
  • Ability to prioritize, multitask, and meet deadlines in a fast-paced environment.
  • Commitment to American Progress’ mission and goals.

American Progress offers a full and competitive benefit package. Candidates from diverse backgrounds are strongly encouraged to apply. This position is not represented by a union. The minimum salary for the Director is $92,000, and the minimum salary for the Senior Director is $112,000..

We will continue to monitor COVID-19 and the levels of community spread and adjust plans as needed for in-office work. Any changes to our current policy will be communicated at the time of hire. Updates will be posted on American Progress’ Jobs page.

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This announcement will remain posted until the position is filled. No phone calls, please.

Please note that only those individuals whose qualifications match the current needs of this position will be considered applicants and will receive responses from American Progress.

Thank you for your interest in American Progress.

Additional information

American Progress operates two separate nonprofit organizations to maximize the progressive agenda: the Center for American Progress and the Center for American Progress Action Fund. This job posting refers collectively to the two organizations under the name “American Progress.” The Center for American Progress is a nonpartisan 501(c)(3) tax-exempt research and educational institute. It undertakes research, public education and a limited amount of lobbying. The Center for American Progress Action Fund is a nonpartisan 501(c)(4) tax-exempt organization dedicated to achieving progress through action. It works to transform progressive ideas into policy through rapid-response communications, legislative action, grassroots organizing, political advocacy, and partnerships with other progressive leaders. The organizations share office space and employees.

American Progress is dedicated to promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion. Diversity is more than a commitment at American Progress—it is the foundation of what we do. American Progress recruits, employs, trains, compensates, and promotes regardless of race, religion, sex, national origin, ethnicity, age, disability, political affiliation, sexual orientation, gender identity, color, marital status, veteran status, medical condition, and all the other characteristics that make us unique.

For more information on the Center for American Progress, please go to For more information on the Center for American Progress Action Fund, please go to