Strategy Officer for Federal Policy

Strategy Officer for Federal Policy

Job Title:  Strategy Officer, Federal Policy
Department:  Public Policy
Reports to:  Strategy Director for Federal Policy
FLSA Status: Exempt
Location: Washington, D.C.
Compensation: $86,000 – $104,000, commensurate with experience
Benefits include:  Health insurance (medical, dental, and vision), 401(k), pension, paid vacation and sick time, paid leave, 100% employer-paid group life, and long-term disability


The strategy officer for federal policy works with the director to implement Lumina’s strategy, approach, and portfolio of federal policy grants and contracts designed to increase credential attainment.  The strategy officer works to build and maintain relationships with the foundation’s federal policy partners. In addition, the officer should be conversant with an array of strategies and reforms that address equity, quality, scale, and innovation to dramatically increase the enrollment, persistence, and completion of post-high school credentials, particularly for learners of color and adults.

This position works in a collaborative and integrated manner across all other areas of the foundation to ensure that the goals of Lumina’s Strategic Plan are realized, and to assist the nation in making significant improvements in credential attainment.

The Role

  • Commitment to Racial Equity: The officer advances Lumina’s commitment to addressing systemic racism and barriers to learning after high school among students of color. The officer will promote racial and ethnic diversity and inclusion in hiring, grantmaking, contracting, and decision-making and pursue fair and just outcomes for students through Lumina’s work. The officer will share Lumina’s commitment to racial justice and equity with external partners.
  • Strategy Conceptualization and Leadership: Manage an assigned portfolio of grants and contracts through the lifecycle, proactively addressing questions and concerns, and communicating with director on ways to support, enhance, or pivot in strategy execution.
  • Strategy Analysis and Synthesis: Analyze and synthesize information across a variety of sources, and then make recommendations to the Strategy Director and executive team member about the design, development, and piloting of new initiatives; partner on integrated strategy approaches that aim to scale promising practices. Likewise, Strategy Officers need to have the critical thinking skills necessary to extract key lessons from past or current work, and to use those learnings to both shape and inform future work. Finally, Strategy Officers must be strong writers who can both review and revise incoming material, as well as convey their thoughts and Lumina’s key messages in a clear and articulate manner.
  • Portfolio Design and Management: Responsible for leveraging existing relationships with trusted colleagues and cultivating new partnerships to develop a portfolio of grants and contracts related to the assigned strand of work. The Strategy Officer must constantly stay abreast of key issues and players in the field in order to assess how the portfolio can be enhanced.\
  • Integration and Collaboration: Collaborate in an intentional and forward-thinking way with colleagues across the organization to maximize the impact of the Foundation’s resources. Lumina is a matrixed organization and staff are responsible for alignment across programs. Examples include working closely with the 2 and 4-Year Institutions teams to support strategies targeting enrollment and re-enrollment, student success, and expansion of employment-aligned credential program; and working with Strategic Impact to develop metrics and targets to ensure grants and contracts are designed to produce results, with Human Network Design so that convenings are used as a key tool to advance strategic priorities, with Communications to advance communication strategies related to the federal policy objectives, and with Impact Investing to explore alternative ways of supporting mission-aligned efforts. Importantly, the Strategy Officer will deeply engage his or her supervisor consistently for feedback, guidance, and alignment.


  • Bachelor’s degree or an equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • At least five (5) years of experience preferably in the higher education, nonprofit, public and/or philanthropic sectors. Knowledge of federal policy issues including higher education and federal fiscal policy. Demonstrated success in influencing and affecting policy change. Experience with policy development, analysis and implementation or some other mix of relevant skills and experience are preferred.

Skills, Competencies, and Characteristics

  • Ability to learn quickly and connect learning to ongoing conversations related to the assigned body of work.
  • Ability to make decisions in concert with others without complete information and to thrive in an outcomes-oriented, continuously evolving work environment in which thinking beyond the curve is encouraged.
  • Project management skills with demonstrated ability to execute and follow through to achieve intended results, by following through on commitments, prioritizing work, and managing time and resources well.
  • Experience building and managing diverse networks that support efforts to produce systemic change.
  • Excellent verbal communication skills, with the ability to communicate accurately, effectively, and in ways appropriate to different audiences.
  • Strong writer, with the ability to review, revise and synthesize a variety of information and help connect the Foundation’s work to broader discussions within the higher education landscape.
  • Ability to manage internal and external constituents, projects, and budgets.
  • Analytical, problem-solving, and research abilities and an ability to coordinate with researchers and program evaluators.
  • Capable of applying adaptive problem-solving skills in response to unforeseen challenges and new assignments.
  • Ability to prioritize a wide range of duties and responsibilities, organize tasks, and remain flexible to changing and multiple requests.
  • Ability to work collegially and diplomatically across the organization and audience groups, with an ability to resolve any conflicts.
  • Exercise sound judgment in handling sensitive or confidential information.
    • Ability to use technology effectively, including Microsoft Office 365 products such as Excel, Outlook, Word and Teams, and the Fluxx grants and contracts database.

Work Environment and Physical Demands

  • Work is performed in an office environment, mostly sedentary.
  • Visual and auditory acuity for extensive use of various forms of technology.
  • Travels 10-20%, including overnight stays.

This description is only a summary of the typical job functions, not an exhaustive list of all possible responsibilities, and may be subject to change at any time due to reasonable accommodation or other reasons.

Applicants should send the following to the e-mail address below:

  • a letter of interest, and
  • a resume as an attachment outlining experience relevant to the position.

Human Resources
Equal Opportunity Employer

About Lumina Foundation

Lumina Foundation is an independent, private foundation in Indianapolis committed to making opportunities for learning beyond high school available to all. We envision a system that is easy to navigate, delivers fair results, and meets the nation’s talent needs through a broad range of credentials. Our goal is to prepare people for informed citizenship and success in a global economy.

Lumina is working with partners to design a learning system that gives every person—regardless of race and ethnicity, income, or other socioeconomic factors—the opportunities that only education and training after high school can provide. We work with governmental, nonprofit, and private-sector organizations to achieve our mission. Our work relies on strategic communication, empowering leaders who can bring about change, policy outreach to state and federal officials, investments in proven and promising practices, and targeted efforts to measure and evaluate progress.

Lumina has a passionate and committed staff. It is among the nation’s top private foundations, with an endowment exceeding $1.5 billion.