Associate Director of Operations
Washington, DC 
Posted 10 days ago
Job Description
Associate Director of Operations
Location:Washington, DC

The Aspen Institute is an educational and policy studies organization based in Washington, DC. Its mission is to foster leadership based on enduring values and to provide a nonpartisan venue for dealing with critical issues. The Institute has campuses in Aspen, Colorado, and on the Wye River on Maryland's Eastern Shore. It also maintains offices in New York City and has an international network of partners.

The Center for Native American Youth: Our vision is for all Native American youth to lead full and healthy lives, to have equal access to opportunity, and to draw strength from their culture and inspire one another. CNAY is a national advocacy organization working to improve the health, safety, and overall well-being of Native American youth ages 24 and under. Founded by former US Senator Byron Dorgan, CNAY is a policy program within the Aspen Institute, headquartered in Washington, DC. While a part of the Aspen Institute, CNAY is also overseen by a Board of Advisors. We strive to bring greater national attention to the issues facing Native American youth while fostering community-driven solutions, with special emphasis on youth suicide prevention. More information is available here: .

Associate Director, Operations

As a member of the senior leadership team with the Associate Director of External Affairs and the Senior Fellow, the Associate Director, Operations will work closely with the Executive Director to:

  • Lead organizational management and operations strategy
  • Serve as key liaison with Aspen departments including financial services, accounting, human resources, legal, information technology
  • Oversee budget and reporting process for CNAY, working closely with financial services unit, reporting and consulting regularly with the Executive Director to ensure on-track budgeting
  • Oversee grant/funder development, administration and reporting-consult with Executive Director on emerging funding opportunities to develop effective budgets for proposals
  • Oversee funding proposal development process, work with CNAY staff and departments to ensure high-caliber proposals. Develop clear and accountable systems to ensure proper narrative and financial reporting for grants and other funders in consultation with appropriate Aspen departments.
  • Effectively manage and support a full-time staff of 3 program coordinators, with additional fellows and interns as-needed. Effective management systems will include supporting staff with professional development goals, development and accountability to work plans in consultation with the Executive Director, and financial planning for any necessary growth opportunities.
  • Oversee relationships, reporting, and finances for contractors and vendors, ensuring on-time payment of invoices, contract development and revisions and other needs.
  • Lead CNAY organizational development and systems including developing and maintaining team workplace policies, risk management, team-specific legal policies and resources, professional development and HR, support of ED in strategic and planning processes to ensure effective organizational systems that ensure success of mission and goals.

This position demands strong management and operations skills for a growing program. The Associate Director for Operations will work closely with the Executive Director to lead on operations for CNAY and manage several full-time staff members. The Associate Director for Operations will address staffing and day-to-day management issues and lead on workplan and CNAY staffing goals being met. They will also be responsible for helping build a positive and strong team culture along with other senior leadership team members. The Associate Director for Operations will have primary responsibility to track and administer grants, manage evaluation efforts, organizational development, budget and budget reporting and other day-to-day operations. The position will lead the development of a strong operations structure supported by accountable systems, working in concert with the Aspen finance, legal, human resources, and other support teams.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:
Senior Leadership Team

  • Meet regularly with Executive Director, Associate Director of External Affairs and Senior Fellow to discuss overall CNAY programming, strengthen team roles and responsibilities, identify and discuss team-wide challenges and opportunities, and agree on upcoming priorities.
  • Support the Executive Director on fundraising and development related to CNAY's communications strategy
  • Support Executive Director with strategic planning, grant proposal design, and budgeting for communications-related programming.

Executive Organizational Development and Operations

  • Supervise 3-4 full-time program staff including fellows, interns, program assistants, coordinators, and associates.
  • Coordinate closely with Executive Director to serve as deputy operations manager when Executive Director is unavailable, ensuring the team has support to execute deliverables efficiently.
  • Manage recruitment and onboarding process for new hires.
  • Identify opportunities to improve the quality and impact of CNAY, as well as to improve its process efficiency.
  • Identify professional development opportunities and resources for staff
  • Contribute to development of intra-organizational operations protocols with Aspen Institute programs and leadership as appropriate, in conjunction with Executive Director.

Program Management

  • Effectively manage projects, including multiple concurrent efforts.
  • Conduct research, analyze data, and provide overall support to the development of CNAY programs.
  • Design and implement evaluation collection efforts, including analysis of data and other information to assess program effectiveness and otherwise inform projects and presentation of evaluation summaries.
  • Manage meetings and oversee logistical elements of CNAY events and convenings, including participant travel and management of on-site event logistics.
  • Other duties, as assigned.

Sustainability and Grants Management

  • Support Executive Director in fundraising efforts, including the development of grant applications and funder follow-up.
  • Support Executive Director in developing annual budgets for CNAY, as well as for individual programs.
  • Lead and manage the development of funder reports and serve as secondary point of contact for funders.
  • Support the Executive Director by working with Aspen's financial services team to produce regular financial reports, develop draft financial reports for funders, and other financial reporting as needed.
Principal Interactions

Works directly with CNAY program staff and Executive Director. Has routine interaction with project partners and constituents, advisory council members, Board members, funders and CNAY staff.

Knowledge, Education and Experience:

  • At least 5 years of proven management, including junior and senior team members within a large organization.
  • Proven experience developing and tracking budgets through common online systems (Host Analytics a +), strong understanding of nonprofit revenue and reporting systems, ability to tailor reporting according to several audiences including ED, boards, funders
  • Strong experience in grant and funder proposal development for institutional foundations, individual donors, and corporations.
  • Clear and concise writing ability
  • Strong experience in organizational systems and ability to adapt systems to needs of work teams
  • Experience working in a culturally-sensitive way with diverse communities with a special emphasis on Native American communities
  • Project management skills and experience, with an ability to work both independently and productively with small internal teams and larger extended teams that include contractors and third-party partners.
  • Proven experience directly supervising several full time staff and supporting their professional development needs while addressing team challenges.
  • Bachelor's degree required. Advanced degree in a relevant field strongly preferred.
  • At least five years of related experience, with track record of accomplishment and growth, an advanced degree can substitute for some work experience.
  • Professional content knowledge of Native American youth and Indian affairs.
  • Ability to quickly shift priorities to meet immediate program needs while keeping long-term goals and projects on track.
  • Attention to detail and internal drive to "get it right."
  • Experience with program evaluation methods.

The Aspen Institute is an Equal Opportunity Employer and complies with all District and federal laws. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, or protected veteran or disabled status and will not be discriminated against.

Candidate must have the ability to work under pressure and handle stress. Candidate must also have the ability to meet the regular attendance policy of the Aspen Institute.


Job Summary
Start Date
As soon as possible
Employment Term and Type
Regular, Full Time
Required Education
Bachelor's Degree
Required Experience
5+ years
Email this Job to Yourself or a Friend
Indicates required fields