New York Health Foundation
New York, New York
June 15, 2022
The Director of Policy and Research will work in close partnership with the President & CEO and the Vice Presidents of Programs and Communications to undergird the Foundation’s work with analysis and to develop a proactive policy agenda that supports and magnifies outcomes in the Foundation’s key programmatic areas.
The Director of Policy and Research plays a leadership role in building the capacity of the Foundation to shape, align, and respond to public policy developments. Position priorities for this cross-cutting role include:
- Work closely with program and communications staff to build the Foundation’s internal analytic capabilities.
- Generate policy and research ideas and publications for external distribution.
- Guide the Foundation’s research and evaluation efforts related to its own performance and that of its grantees.
The Director must be an instinctual collaborator who will work in close partnership with the leadership and staff of the Foundation’s programmatic and communications departments. They will be strategic, and a creative and entrepreneurial thinker; a prolific writer and producer of analytic products; and a rigorous and sensitive reviewer of other people’s work. The position is an ideal fit for a candidate who is mission-oriented, strategic, creative, and collaborative, and who cares deeply about having an impact on health care and public health. In this role, the Director will join the dedicated staff in a collegial atmosphere and work with internal and external partners to advance NYHealth’s work.
This position is hybrid remote/in-person in the Foundation’s New York City office, with at least two days per week expected in the office. The position may require occasional travel to Albany, other regions of New York State, and/or Washington, D.C.
This position reports directly to the President and CEO of the Foundation and will be a member of the Foundation’s senior leadership team that addresses a multitude of high-level organizational issues. The Director will hire and manage a team of two additional staff to comprise the Policy and Research Department.
Salary and Benefits
The salary range for this position is $175,000–$200,000, depending on experience and qualifications. NYHealth also offers a generous package of benefits, including employer-paid health insurance; dental, vision, and life insurance; employer contribution to a 403b retirement account; and wellness and commuting benefits, among others.
Proof of full COVID-19 vaccination is required for employment.
The New York Health Foundation welcomes applications from people of all cultures, backgrounds, and experiences, and values having a diverse staff. Individuals from historically marginalized populations are encouraged to apply. Employment opportunities are based upon individual capabilities and qualifications without regard to race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, age, national origin, disability, veteran status, or any other protected characteristic as established under law.
The Director of Policy and Research will be responsible for:
- Conceiving and Executing a Policy and Research Agency for the Foundation
The Director of Policy and Research will track key New York State, municipal, and federal policy initiatives that are relevant to the Foundation’s work. The Director will build in-depth knowledge of those developments, serve as an in-house resource to staff, and identify ways in which the Foundation can align with or respond to those policy developments.
Much of the work in the Foundation’s program areas has a strong policy orientation. The Director will identify policy and research opportunities that closely align with and support the Foundation’s programmatic priorities. The Director of Policy and Research will conceive of and implement quantitative or qualitative research projects to be conducted internally by the policy team and/or other Foundation staff.
Crucially, the Director must have an intrinsic understanding of how the Foundation’s research can be actionable, relevant, and applicable in real-life settings to influence policy and practice. The Director and their staff will analyze data and other materials and author issue briefs, data briefs, white papers, or other publications relevant to the Foundation’s priorities. As part of the Foundation’s activist philanthropy model, the Director will also collaborate on the preparation of testimonies to elected officials, public comments on proposed rules and regulations, and opinion pieces such as letters to the editor or op-eds.
- Supporting the Foundation’s Grantmaking and Communications
The Director of Policy and Research will collaborate with other staff to support such key functions as grantmaking and communications. The Director will contribute to designing policy work and research/evaluation performed by grantees for the Foundation as well as assist with identifying and selecting qualified grantees to carry out such work. The Director will be an in-house resource to program staff and participate in evaluating projects undertaken by the Foundation and its grantees. The Director will serve as a quality control officer for Foundation reports and publications, ensuring that the information is accurate and timely and that the key issues are communicated properly.
The Director of Policy and Research will also collaborate closely with the Foundation’s communications staff to identify policy-relevant messages and findings and shape them for public dissemination. The Director will work will communications staff to proactively design dissemination strategies for internally produced research, including the identification of and outreach to key stakeholders and audiences. The Director will sometimes serve as a media spokesperson for the Foundation and represent the organization to key audiences through public presentations, legislative testimony, and webinars.
- Measuring Organizational Effectiveness
The Director of Policy and Research will participate in evaluating the performance of the Foundation’s programs. They will conceptualize and manage the Foundation’s annual progress report. This includes developing reasonable metrics, in collaboration with the Vice President of Programs and other staff, to assess the Foundation’s programmatic work; identifying or generating data sources for those metrics; and ensuring that progress toward metrics is regularly updated.
The Director of Policy and Research must be a seasoned researcher; an action-oriented, dynamic, and creative individual with a talent and track record of influencing health policy; and demonstrate a proven ability to collaborate with others.
Additional qualifications include:
- An advanced degree in a relevant field is required; a doctoral degree is preferred;
- At least 10 years of work experience, including three years in a leadership position;
- Extensive experience and knowledge of health policy, especially with regard to New York State;
- A prolific writer and producer of analytic materials, with a track record of publication;
- Understanding of policymaking processes (e.g., legislative, regulatory, rulemaking) and experience with preparing public comments and testimonies and conducting educational briefings for decision-makers;
- Quantitative research skills and facility with various data sets;
- Networks of professional contacts, including policymakers, researchers, and community-based organizations;
- Exceptional communication skills—both written and oral—and the ability to translate research into policy-relevant and actionable messages;
- Excellent interpersonal skills;
- Demonstrated ability to implement and manage multiple priorities effectively;
- Proven ability to directly manage and mentor staff;
- Judgment, integrity, ability to listen with sensitivity to others, and ability to work across diverse cultures; and
- Personally motivated to support the Foundation’s mission and goals.
This search is conducted by DRG Talent.
About the Organization
NYHealth is a private and independent foundation dedicated to improving the health of all New Yorkers. NYHealth began operations in 2006; today, it has approximately $320 million in assets, as well as a $16 million annual grants and operations budget.
The Foundation is committed to making grants, but also to making a difference beyond grant dollars: informing health care policy and practice; spreading effective programs to improve the health system; serving as a convener of health leaders across the State; and providing technical assistance to grantees and partners.
Today, the Foundation concentrates its initiatives in three program areas: Empowering Health Care Consumers; Healthy Food, Healthy Lives; and Veterans’ Heath. NYHealth also engages in responsive grantmaking through a Special Projects Fund.