The Foundation for Government Accountability (FGA) is seeking a Senior Fellow to provide technical assistance in formulating, establishing, and advancing FGA welfare policy reforms. This is an exciting opportunity for someone who loves to dig into the meat of a policy and really understand it, but who also loves to sit down with a governor’s chief of staff or a legislative leader to share those ideas and help them overcome obstacles to implementing the reforms in their state.
The Senior Fellow will develop and deliver legislative testimony, conduct key policy briefings, produce policy memos and public comments on welfare issues, educate legislators and other stakeholders, assist in research and development of new policy reforms, participate in media interviews, and provide internal and external technical assistance on welfare policy.
What does a typical day look like? One day the Senior Fellow will travel to a state to deliver a legislative testimony, brief a legislative caucus and a roomful of allies, meet with agency leaders to address their concerns, and then meet a reporter for coffee to talk about how FGA’s policies will improve lives in that state. Another day the Senior Fellow will write a memo for a governor about how to implement a policy, jump on a radio show to promote the power of work to improve lives, help a member of FGA’s research team rewrite an FAQ sheet, and respond to technical questions from the State Affairs Team about welfare work requirements. The common thread will be to develop a deep expertise on FGA’s welfare reforms and be a resource to internal and external partners who are working to adopt and implement the reforms at the state and federal level.
An ideal candidate will have three to five years of relevant experience and a track record of successfully producing or managing welfare-related policy activities. They will view new and complex ideas as an exciting challenge. They are skilled at synthesizing complex ideas and communicating them simply and effectively, as FGA’s goal is not simply to write about policy but to see it enacted. The right person for this job will have demonstrated an ability to navigate policy information, including legislation and regulations.
While this role is focused on reforming government welfare programs, FGA’s welfare agenda is closely linked to creating job opportunities and reducing health care costs, as the ultimate goal does not end with getting folks off welfare, but with giving millions of Americans an opportunity to pursue the American Dream. The Senior Fellow will get a chance to coordinate with our other policy fellows and work in concert with them to push an ambitious opportunity agenda.
A track record of effective and clear written communication is also necessary, including the ability to write technically. Ideal candidates will be flexible and able to thrive in a dynamic, fast-paced environment. They will be comfortable moving between research, writing, outreach, and interpersonal work, including frequent travel (average of six days of travel every month) and meeting new people.
CULTURE & FIT
Success at FGA depends not only on a person’s skills, but also on their ability to fit the culture of FGA. If you answer “yes” to all the following questions, then you may be a fit for the team if your skill sets match the requirements below. The vast majority of those who don’t get hired or don’t last at FGA are due to a lack of fit with these values, so they really matter. Be prepared to have very candid conversations about them in our interview process.
- Do you wholeheartedly agree with the policies that we advocate (see org for a full description), and the underlying principles that people’s lives are made better through work, not government welfare, and that a free market creates greater freedom and equality than any command-and-control government system?
- Do you agree that embracing the realities of politics is necessary to have success in changing public policy?
- Do you tend to be the one who initiates conversations with colleagues, rather than waiting for them to come to you?
- Are you comfortable creating your own structure for work, such as setting work hours, setting your own priorities, and creating clarity and a workplan from a broad goal?
- Does it motivate you to think about working with a team of world-class professionals who are held to a very high standard of getting results?
- Do you seize opportunities to try new things or improve a skill that’s relevant to your company or role?
- Are you able to build meaningful relationships (creating trust) with people you only see face-to-face a few times a year?
- Do you tend to lead teams by creating clarity about goals and progress, rather than proscribing the steps they need to take?
- Are you aware of your strengths and weaknesses, and do you have a practice of getting help from others to mitigate your weaknesses?
- Does it bother you if others take all the credit for the work you do?
ROLES & RESPONSIBILITIES
The Senior Fellow will have five primary roles:
- Produce and deliver legislative testimony and briefings
- Write public comments and memos related to welfare reforms
- Advance and promote reforms—including media appearances and serving as a public spokesperson for welfare issues
- Lead field-testing for welfare issues in the Research and Development process
- Educate policymakers and other stakeholders on welfare issues
These roles break down into a number of responsibilities. Some of the key responsibilities are:
Testimony and Briefings
- Work with policymakers, stakeholders, and colleagues to monitor and track needed testimony
- Prepare and provide testimony in multiple states each legislative session
- Conduct in-state briefings focused on FGA reforms
Public Comments and Memos
- Develop public comments in response to regulatory action at the federal and state level regarding welfare reform areas
- Produce policy memos on relevant welfare issues
- Produce rapid response technical assistance information
- Engage with media for interviews and responses as a public spokesperson for welfare issues
- Participate in public events, including speaking on panels and other presentations at policy events
Field Test for Research and Development
- Propose and develop new or adjusted welfare reform ideas to evaluate through the R&D process
- Act as the department lead for field testing new welfare reforms in the R&D process
- Develop and maintain a network of reliable industry professionals to engage with on new policy areas
- Assist with other R&D process steps as needed
- Act as primary lead for educating policymakers, partners, allies, and internal staff on welfare policy reforms
- Provide a technical and policy review of relevant proposed legislation, regulation, and policy guidance
- Build a comprehensive and proactive strategy for internally educating FGA staff
- Work closely with FGA colleagues to conduct outreach and education events as needed
TIMING, LOCATION, AND COMPENSATION
FGA is seeking to fill this position no later than June 1. FGA’s staff work remotely, therefore the location for this position is flexible. Fairly significant travel will be required, likely 15-20 trips per year. All travel expenses are covered. FGA offers salary and benefits that are very competitive, including a retirement program, a health benefit, and a generous paid leave plan.
To apply, qualified candidates should submit the following application materials in one PDF document:
- Cover letter detailing why you would be a good fit for the FGA culture, why you want to work with us, and what kind of value you would bring to the FGA team. Please also include your salary requirements and your availability for travel.
Applications should be submitted to Talent Market via this link: talentmarket.org/apply-for-your-dream-job/.
Questions can be directed to Lauren Skiver, Talent Manager at Talent Market, who is assisting with the search: [email protected]
While we thank all applicants in advance for their interest in this position, we are only able to contact those to whom we can offer an interview. No phone calls, please.
Talent Market is a nonprofit entity dedicated to promoting liberty by helping free-market nonprofits identify talent for critical roles. We provide free consulting and recruiting services to free-market think tanks, policy organizations, research centers, and capacity-building institutions dedicated to advancing the principles of limited government and free enterprise.