Director of Research, Strategies &
Context: At the Sierra Club, we believe in the power of togetherness. Together, we remain committed to the fight for a healthy climate built on a foundation of environmental, racial, economic, and gender justice – a future where all people benefit from a healthy, thriving planet and a direct connection to nature. As the climate crisis and deeply entrenched systemic racism all fuel inequity, we will continue to fight for a bold, transformational agenda that recognizes the interconnectedness between our planet, our humanity, and our democracy. By recognizing that our destinies are tied, we continue to name that all things are fundamentally connected, and the overlap between ecology, race, gender, and representative government will move to either advance our collective humanity or to oppress it.
Sierra Club is comprised of staff across the country and a network of local chapters that support our grassroots engagement. We are also proud to be a unionized employer, with two labor unions representing more than half of our employees.
Scope: The Director for Research, Strategy, and Analysis leads and manages a team of Analysts who work to support Sierra Club’s national campaigns with research and analysis in relevant fields to address climate change, transform the energy economy, reduce harmful pollution from fossil fuels, and protect land, water, and wildlife . The Director supports the Analyst Team’s development of concepts for advancing campaign goals, assists in the development of key performance indicators and campaign goals, and reports on campaign performance results. The Director serves as a strategic advisor to campaign leadership, monitoring and analyzing internal and external data, leading or supervising internal and external campaign-relevant research, and surfacing opportunities and barriers that advance or hinder campaign outcomes. The Director does all of the above in a way that embodies the Sierra Club’s values and centers equity, inclusion, justice and movement building.
Our ideal candidate has advanced skills in quantitative and qualitative analysis, coupled with knowledge of economic sectors most connected to fossil fuels and clean energy, such as electricity, building electrification, transportation, and oil and gas extraction, and can use these skills in an advocacy context. Our candidate has the ability to translate analytic results and technical information into readily understandable and compelling narratives and materials that can be used by a wide range of stakeholders, including internal campaigns and leadership, advancement, communications, policy, and litigation teams. Our candidate is highly collaborative and can work across multiple internal teams, as well as with external donors and key stakeholders. Our ideal candidate is a compassionate manager who supports a team and can mentor and manage individuals. Our candidate is committed to addressing climate change and supporting justice, equity and inclusion both inside and outside the workplace.
Job activities include but are not limited to:
- Direct and participate in Research and Analytical Efforts in support of national campaigns. Identify new strategic approaches and research assessments or collaborations that advance campaign efforts. Identify gaps and opportunities, resource requirements, and outcomes or metrics for new approaches and assessments. Prioritize and delegate new analytics requests, provide guidance on methods, approaches, data sets, etc., review work products and provide feedback. Support the analyst team’s work to translate data and research into tools, materials, and formats for staff, volunteers, partners, and the general public. Support data sharing and governance across the Sierra Club.
- Manage the Analyst Team. Recruit, train, mentor, and support a team of analysts. Support the development of a team culture based on both individual and team strengths, build team capacity, expand knowledge base of team to meet team and organizational needs.
- Build Sierra Club sector partnership and leadership in campaign-relevant research, assessment, and strategy. Ensure that leading analyses are shared with partners or publicly. Support recruitment, management, and evaluation of external sector experts and consultants. Engage in peer-reviews when requested.
- Lead development of Key Performance Indicators and outcomes for national campaigns, support the creation of strategic, measurable, and equitable goals that ensure campaigns are on path toward achieving organization-wide goals.
- Develop Equity-Centered analysis of those most impacted by climate change, climate mitigations, and pollution from fossil fuel industries. Honor and incorporate the perspectives, strategies, and needs of front-line communities and those most impacted by climate change and energy system transitions.
- Support fundraising for our $80m+ annual cross-departmental campaigns budget, assisting our Office of Advancement on proposal development, donor presentations, analysis and reporting. Presents and/or engages in meetings with donors at request of campaign leadership.
- Project Management: form, lead, and/or participate on teams oriented around campaign goals. Track deadlines and tasks, and support collaboration across people with different skill sets and backgrounds. Identify challenges, and engage in quick problem-solving.
- Direct Campaign-wide reporting of strategy, results and progress, in collaboration with Sr. Director Financial and Performance Management, analyzing patterns/ trends/opportunities/barriers for Leadership, Staff, Capacities and Donors.
- Perform miscellaneous duties as directed.
The successful candidate must have the following skills and experience:
- Significant work experience that demonstrates exceptional qualitative and quantitative analytical skills, with experience in energy systems data, climate modeling, and/or resource economics in electricity, oil and gas, transportation, or related fields. Strongly preferred experience using data and analysis to achieve specific goals in a campaign environment.
- Track record of identifying and developing key strategies to advance goals and objectives.
- Experience managing, mentoring, and/or supporting colleagues to succeed in their work and develop professionally. Skillful at managing individuals and leading collaborative teams with a broad set of identities and skill sets to contribute at their highest level. Demonstrated ability to give and receive feedback.
- Understanding of how power, privilege, and oppression manifest at the individual, interpersonal, institutional, and cultural levels. Personal commitment to learning and growth, especially around racial equity. Proficient at proactively surfacing and navigating conflict in a generative, equitable way.
The strongest candidates will also demonstrate the following experience, skills and competencies:
- Skilled in using Excel and PowerPoint, knowledge of data visualization and spatial data software, experience in use of technology to support data systems.
- Proven ability to integrate data management and digital tools to inform strategy and track progress.
- Effective communicator who can present research, policy positions and other key points to different audiences.
- An emotionally intelligent, values, results, and relationships-oriented leader who can inspire staff, collaborate within and across departments, openness to giving and receiving direct compassionate feedback to support the achievement of our complex goals.
- Experience working successfully in a complex organization or entity, where buy-in and input is needed across a wide range of stakeholders.
- Understanding of and commitment to progressive environmental and climate advocacy, social justice, and the Sierra Club’s mission.
Compensation and Benefits
The salary range for this position is $140,000 – $150,000, non-negotiable.
The Sierra Club offers a competitive salary package commensurate with skills and experience plus excellent benefits that include medical, dental, and vision coverage, and a retirement savings 401(k) plan.
This is a category 2 exempt, non-represented managerial position.
Sierra Club is a 501(c)(4) non-profit organization. Sierra Club employees are not eligible to participate in the Federal Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Program.
Sierra Club values the expertise and talents of foreign nationals. Sierra Club sponsors both nonimmigrant and immigrant visas when certain criteria are met, based on immigration laws and organizational needs. Such sponsorship is at the discretion of the Department Head and Sierra Club Human Resources in consultation with the employee’s manager. The Sierra Club cannot guarantee the approval of a visa petition.
This position does not have an undergraduate education requirement. If you choose to include your education history, please remove your schools from your resume. You may leave your degree (e.g., “B.A. Philosophy”), but please remove any undergraduate and graduate school names.
This anonymous process is aimed at opening this opportunity to more candidates, reviewing applicants on performance assessments and mitigating bias in the decision making process.
Lastly, we are intentionally not asking for a cover letter, so please do not send one in with your application.