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Associate Vice President of Policy

The Fortune Society



Reports to: President and CEO and Executive Vice President

Status: Full Time; Regular; Exempt

Job Code: P101

Location: Long Island City

Date Prepared: April 12, 2017


Founded in 1967, The Fortune Society is recognized as one of the preeminent criminal justice service and advocacy nonprofits in the nation. Fortune is known for its cultural competence and prides itself on the diversity of its staff and leadership including the degree to which its management and staffing draws both from those traditionally trained and those who are themselves formerly incarcerated and provide both professional and life experience expertise.

Fortune has grown steadily over the years to an agency just under $35 million in annual budget with over 300 staff. We anticipate that we will keep growing, both in size and in depth of service.

Fortune has a dual mission: advocacy and service. The advocacy focuses on building a more just criminal justice system and reducing the barriers to reentry into society. The service side of Fortune has evolved to encompass a broad range of programs including alternatives to incarceration and discharge planning within correctional facilities, and a robust array of services in the community. Fortune’s community-based programs include court advocacy, licensed substance abuse treatment and mental health services, a full array of employment services ranging from job readiness through placement through hard skills training, an in-house school, a housing continuum ranging from emergency housing through permanent congregate and scattered site housing, group and individual counseling, assistance in obtaining benefits, a care management unit, HIV services, a nutrition program, and an arts program.

Fortune currently serves approximately 7000 people a year. Our client population mirrors the incarcerated population in being approximately 85% male and over 90% people of color. Our program models are recognized, both nationally and internationally for their quality and innovation.


The David Rothenberg Center for Public Policy provides the leadership role in Fortune’s policy development, advocacy, technical assistance, training, and community education efforts. DRCPP integrates Fortune’s internal expertise – the life experience of our formerly incarcerated staff and clients and our first-hand experience as a direct service provider – with research and evaluation to advocate for a fairer criminal justice system; promote effective program models and needed supports for people with criminal justice histories; and change the counterproductive laws and policies that create unfair barriers to the successful reentry of people with criminal justice histories into our communities.

A strong candidate will have deep personal and professional knowledge of criminal justice and other corollary policy issues ( housing, voting, education employment, etc. ) and extremely effective verbal communication skills. S/he will be lead advocacy and technical assistance programs, managing a network of national scope, developing and prioritizing programmatic activity, working with a wide range of stakeholders, and fundraising. S/he will have demonstrated the ability to work effectively as leader and as team member across race, class, education and life experience lines.

Position Summary:

Responsible for formulating DRCPP’s Policy’s advocacy and policy positions on key issues and coalition/community building activities.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

Fundraise to sustain the Center’s policy and advocacy activities beyond the first year funding commitment
Initiate, investigate and prepare Fortune policy statements on city, state and national criminal justice policy initiates;
Develop long and short term community/coalition strategy;
Develop short-term and long-term local and national technical assistance and training program;
Play range of roles in various criminal justice community meetings and forums including leadership as appropriate;
Take a leadership role in generating funding for the DRCPP including building relationships with foundations, individual donors, and government funders;
Implement “On the Ground” program and leadership in legislative relationships and initiatives, including those related to policy and those related to fund-raising through legislative member items and other sources;
Play leadership role around policy issues on Fortune’s Executive Team, in the agency as a whole, in the community, and with the Advocacy Committee of Fortune Society’s Board of Directors;
Develop and maintain community partnerships with other criminal justice policy advocacy organizations;
Further develop and strengthen relationships with local, state and national government partners and various grassroots coalitions;
Manage and respond to speaking engagement requests related to criminal justice issues;
Develop and implement internet list serve to disseminate relevant criminal justice information;
Participate in and/or coordinate print, television and radio speaking engagements;
Identify and recruit appropriate staff and clients for speaking engagements;
Develop and implement on-going internal speakers training and staff development around relevant criminal justice policy issues;
Develop and support internal and external community education initiatives; and
Other duties as assigned.

Supervisory Responsibilities:

Manages one or more employees, interns and volunteers.

Carries out supervisory responsibilities in accordance with the organization’s policies and applicable laws. Responsibilities include interviewing, hiring, and training employees; planning, assigning, and directing work; appraising performance; rewarding and addressing employee relations and resolving problems.


Bachelor’s level degree or equivalent competence and expertise;
Progressively responsible management experience or equivalent - 5+ years preferred;
Experience with and knowledge of community organizing and coalition building;
Extensive personal and professional knowledge of the criminal justice system and issues;
Extensive experience with staff development and training;
Demonstrated capacity to develop and maintain information systems;
Excellent reputation in the advocacy, research and/or service community;
Ability to manage and achieve multiple priorities;
Deep cultural competence, and demonstrated ability to play both leadership and supportive roles on teams that are diverse across many spectrums, including life experiences;
Deep personal and professional knowledge of, and experience with, the issues faced by Fortune clients;
Excellent verbal communication skills, and effective written communication skills; and
Ability to work with a team.

Travel and Scheduling Requirements – Extensive travel within New York City, to Albany, and possibly elsewhere for meetings and events. Willingness and ability to attend evening and weekend meetings and events, and to work flexible hours as needed.

Physical Demands:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The responsibilities and requirements listed are representative of the knowledge, skills, minimum education, training, licensing, experience and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions of the job.


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Posted on 04/20/17; CVMHA ID #10938