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Healing to Advocacy Program Manager

This job is no longer available

Oakland, CA, United States

The Opportunity

Essie Justice Group (Essie) is building grassroots power to dismantle the US incarceration system, the most egregious creator of racial and gender injustice of our time. We are a loving and powerful community of women with incarcerated loved ones and include cisgender women, transgender women, formerly incarcerated women, gender nonconforming people, elders, and young people. We want to reach the 1 in 4 women who have loved ones behind bars and bring them into our sisterhood for social justice. After five years of iterating our Healing to Advocacy organizing model, we’ve graduated 17 Healing to Advocacy Program cohorts (“cohorts”) of over 100 women to date. By the end of next month, this number increases to 29 cohorts of over 250 women in our California membership. We are ready to scale our program to support the first national community of women with incarcerated loved ones in the United States. We seek an exceptional, values-driven leader to join our team as the Healing to Advocacy Program Manager with the purpose of launching and supporting member cohorts comprised of women with incarcerated loved ones across the state and eventually spanning the entire country.  

The person filling this position understands and believes passionately in people power and is deeply interested in leadership development and growth of the people most impacted by the systems we seek to change. The Healing to Advocacy Program Manager is a crucial leader within our organization charged with managing staff and the day-to-day operations of Essie’s signature organizing program. The ideal candidate is a master project manager and executor who thoroughly enjoys implementing large and growing programs. The Healing to Advocacy Program Manager will also have an important role in recommending iterations and leading in implementing program changes.  

At the end of the day, what this person loves to do is make sure things happen and happen well. The ideal candidate can thoughtfully create work plans, delegate and support others in program implementation, bring out the best in staff, contractors and members through strong management and people skills, and is able to drive themselves and the staff they supervise towards goals.   


Areas of Responsibility: 

Core Responsibilities

Manage Community Organizing Program & Train Member Leaders

  • Manage staff and oversee the day-to-day operations of the member-led Healing to Advocacy Program.
    • Coordinate and oversee the implementation of a multi-step member recruitment strategy (involving thousands of nomination letters from incarcerated people, coordinating a nominations committee to make phone calls to the nominees, filling dozens of member cohorts).
    • Coordinate the agenda and facilitate 2-3 Facilitator Training Retreats to prepare members to run cohorts in their areas. 
    • Launch cohorts and provide adequate support to members who facilitate cohorts in as many as 15-20 different locations across the state.
    • Coordinate a team to ensure that 2-4 Graduation events occur per year that graduate multiple cohorts each and officially welcome cohort participants into Essie’s advocacy body and membership. 
    • Manage data and administration goals during all parts of the program.
    • Create a top-notch logistics plan to reduce barriers to participation. Solve complex logistical problems related to the different parts of the program and in response to the needs of members.  
  • Hold external relationships necessary to run the overall program successfully.
  • Plans agendas and serve as Lead Facilitator in multi-day retreats and trainings related to the Healing to Advocacy Program. 

Team Leadership

  • Co-design and implement a program evaluation system that ensures the program is meeting its stated goals as set by the Director of Membership & Organizing and the collaboratively created Operational Plan.  
  • Provide input on programmatic improvements. 
  • Manage and train staff and contractors who are carrying out core functions of the Healing to Advocacy Program (i.e. childcare, staff organizers, trainers, graphic designers) to achieve set organizational goals together. 
  • Oversee member retention, recruitment, evaluation, and data management systems design related to the program.

Who We’re Looking For 

Ideal Qualifications

  • A minimum of 3 to 5 years experience in program implementation, preferably in community organizing or direct services contexts. 
  • Understands and demonstrates knowledge of best practices in recruitment, retention, and culture-setting.
  • Excellent prioritization skills (i.e. understands the difference between what’s important, urgent and what is neither).
  • Advanced experience in facilitating retreats, workshops, and/or popular education trainings.
  • Experience supervising people in a way that acknowledges differentials in privilege and power, recognizes their gifts, encourages their confidence, supports their growth, and holds them accountable to standards and achieving collective goals. 
  • Effective writing, editing, and verbal communication skills.
  • Track record as a collaborative leader who excels in managing multiple projects.


  • Effective and efficient, people-centered project manager. Building people power at scale to end systems of oppression is your passion. You are a master delegator and demonstrate flexibility and professional maturity in being able to think while in the middle of a web of complexity. You can lead from an authentic and calm place to help others feel confident, assured and hopeful that possibilities exist in the face of challenge or uncertainty. You build air-tight plans, through your skill as an “if, then” thinker — mitigating risks of a plan failing by imagining and preparing for various scenarios, smart prioritization, and advance problem-solving.
  • Identifies root causes. You think about challenges from a big picture lens, wondering if what you observe is a symptom of a broader problem, and identifying possible patterns and solutions to address it. 
  • Sees #Woke as a verb. You are committed to continuously deepening and evolving your own understanding of systems of oppression through study, openness, and humility. And you easily recognize your own relationship to privilege and power, examining and shifting your behaviors as appropriate.
  • Values people, process, and results. You are an exceptionally hard worker. You have an uncanny ability to create an inspiring environment in which stuff gets done with speed, great impact, and focus.
  • Discernment we can trust. You are a thoughtful communicator who acts in alignment with your integrity. You are a confident and collaborative decision-maker and unfailingly trustworthy.
  • Uplifting and additive. You see mistakes as opportunities for growth; problems as catalysts for solutions, and inspire others along the journey. You carry a positive approach, can-do attitude, a sense of humor, and authentic kindness wherever you go.

The Position

The Healing to Advocacy Program Manager is a full-time exempt position. This position leads the Healing to Advocacy Program and reports to the Director of Membership & Organizing. The salary for this position is between $76,000-$82,000 depending on experience with full medical, dental, and vision benefits, optional 401(k), a substantial vacation package, and a monthly personal wellness stipend. The position can be based at either of Essie’s offices in Los Angeles or Oakland.

How to Apply: 

To Apply
Please address a thoughtful cover letter to the “Essie Hiring Committee” and submit along with a resume through our hiring portal (

Essie values and specifically seeks applicants who are people with incarcerated loved ones, formerly incarcerated people, people of color, women, queer, transgender, gender non-conforming, and gender fluid people. We welcome applicants who thrive in the pursuit of social justice. 

Essie Justice Group provides equal employment and advancement opportunities to all staff members. Employment decisions are based on merit, qualifications, and skills. Essie does not discriminate in employment opportunities or practices on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, ancestry, age, size, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, familial status, veteran status, disability, AIDS/HIV status, medical condition, prior conviction, arrest history or any other characteristic protected by law.

Additional Information: 

About Essie Justice Group

Essie Justice Group is a non profit organization of women with incarcerated loved ones taking on the rampant injustices created by mass incarceration. Our award-winning Healing to Advocacy Model brings women together to heal, build collective power, and drive social change. Learn more at

Organization Info

Listing Stats

Post Date: 
Sep 21 2019
Active Until: 
Oct 21 2019
Hiring Organization: 
Essie Justice Group