Job & Internship Opportunities




Executive Director Opportunity

Applications Due: January 30, 2015

Virginia21 seeks a strategic and creative Executive Director to shape, inspire, and manage the organization’s future in collaboration with a talented staff, a deeply committed Board of Directors, and an energetic group of student leaders.

Leading VA21 is like building the car while you are trying to drive it; it is a moving target on a shifting landscape. A successful VA21 Executive Director is an entrepreneur able to press forward on big-picture, long-term goals while also managing the day-to-day risks and operations of a small 501(c)3 non-profit organization. The ideal candidate must be able to thrive under these dynamics and be able to drive a small staff that is fully committed to ensuring young people have a seat at the table in the decisions that impact their future.

The ideal candidate will be comfortable calling a prospective donor to ask them for $10,000, delivering a speech to a group of college presidents, organizing and attending meetings, engaging student members with the Governor, legislators, and community leaders, and speaking on the record about the education and economic challenges facing millennials…all in one week.

About Virginia21

Virginia21 is a 501(c)3 organization that has engaged over 100,000 young people in the political process by providing information, directing advocacy and coordinating political action on a non-partisan agenda that includes higher education, economic development, and good government.

We seek to teach young people the importance of leadership in solving the biggest challenges of our future and to equip them with the tools to meet those challenges effectively. The next generation of young people will be our future community, business, and political leaders, and it is up to them to decide how ready they will be to take on the challenge of building and growing our Commonwealth. It is up to them to decide what kind of Virginia they want to call home. Virginia21 teaches that leadership cannot wait; we need the next generation now more than ever.

About the Position

The Executive Director reports to the Board of Directors. Key responsibilities include:


  • Exhibit a passion for and dedication to the advancement of Virginia21’s mission and the young people it educates and represents.
  • Provide overall strategic leadership, vision, direction, and guidance.
  • Ensure VA21 has the human, financial, and operational resources to fulfill its mission.
  • Provide direct oversight of VA21 staff through hiring, training, and professional development.


  • Serve as the chief fundraising strategist — Develop the plan and execute.
  • Forge, maintain, and enhance relationships with donors, funding partners, and all key organizational stakeholders.
  • Engage the Board of Directors in fundraising activities.


  • Serve as a subject matter expert and on-the-record spokesperson to the media and broader community on a wide variety of issues facing young Virginians.
  • Work with VA21 student members, staff, and key stakeholders to develop and execute the organization’s legislative agenda and communications plan.
  • Develop new and grow existing relationships with members of the Executive Branch, General Assembly members and staff, and relevant state agency representatives.
  • Maintain a close working relationship with the higher education lobbying community.


  • Oversee the development and implementation of annual work plans and internal systems and processes needed to enable the organization to meet its goals.
  • Develop the annual budget in partnership with staff and the Board of Directors.
  • Oversee the financial performance of VA21 in partnership with the Board.
  • Ensure compliance will all applicable federal, state, and local regulations.


  • Support Board members’ efforts to govern and support the organization in a meaningful way. Provide support through scheduling, information, counsel, and ensuring the board has the tools needed to fulfill their legal and philanthropic commitments to VA21.

Ideal Experience & Qualities

  • 4-6 years experience working on political campaigns and/or issue advocacy.
  • 2+ years experience working at the executive leadership team level.
  • Passion empowering young people to solve big problems—college affordability, economic opportunity, civic participation, and the list goes on.
  • Demonstrated experience maintaining mission-focused stamina while navigating strong personalities, multiple audiences, ambiguity, multiple deadlines, and shifts in the political landscape.
  • Strong fiscal management and budgetary experience with $250,000+ budgets.
  • Prior experience working on campaigns and/or issue advocacy.
  • A bachelor’s degree.
  • Excellent public speaking abilities in small and large groups.
  • Ultimately, the ideal candidate likes to run things, build stuff, and is good at it.

Compensation & Benefits

This is a full-time position that requires a willingness to work some evenings and weekends and travel within the state and occasionally to DC. The salary is commensurate with experience and includes a competitive benefits package.

How to Apply

All applications will be given serious consideration. All applications will be acknowledged via an e-mail receipt and be held confidentially within the Search Committee. Phone and in-person Interviews will be conducted in February 2015 and March 2015; we anticipate a hiring decision made shortly thereafter.

Please submit a resume and cover letter by January 30, 2015.

  1. Cover letters should be no more than 2 pages in length. In your cover letter, please share how your personal interest and passions specifically correlate to the mission and purpose of Virginia21. Answer the questions: Why VA21? Why now?
  2. We request all applications via e-mail, in PDF format (cover letter and resume combined into one document) emailed to:

Any questions?

Please contact Tom Kramer at (804) 513-8221.