Senior Program Associate II – Project Director at WestEd


Senior Program Associate II, Project Director

  • Location: US National – Work from Home
  • Full-time

Job Details

WestEd is a nonpartisan, nonprofit agency that conducts and applies research, develops evidence-based solutions, and provides services and resources in the realms of education, human development, and related fields, with the end goal of improving outcomes and ensuring equity for individuals from infancy through adulthood. WestEd has more than a dozen offices nationwide, from Massachusetts, Georgia, and Washington, DC, to Arizona and California, with headquarters in San Francisco.

WestEd is developing a suite of online and blended professional development content for California’s early childhood workforce. Between now and the end of 2022 over 300 hours of highly engaging, dynamic professional development content will be developed and delivered through a customized platform. The online and hybrid content will cover a range of topics and be designed to meet the needs of family, friend and neighbor providers, family child care providers, center- and school-based early childhood professionals, program directors, and coaches in California. The content development is funded through a variety of funding sources, including from the Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF) and the Preschool Development Grant Renewal (PDG-R).

Position Overview:

The Senior Program Associate II will apply expertise and experience in the area of early education and adult learning to bringing together stakeholders, actively facilitating content and implementation design, and working with state and local level leaders and stakeholders to develop impactful online learning opportunities and professional development for California’s early education and care workforce.

Primary duties include, but are not limited to, co-leading and organizing WestEd’s online professional development (OPD) areas of work; working closely with providers, directors, coaches, and other members of the early learning and care workforce to design and refine learning experiences that meet their needs and support career development; serving as a partner and liaison to the California Departments of Education and Social Services, First 5 California, and other state level stakeholders through the OPD planning and implementation process; contributing to the design and implementation of California’s supportive and responsive early learning and care system including, but not limited to, workforce development, professional learning and training, and encouraging innovation with attention to continuous improvement and performance.


This position requires experience and a track record of leading and/or collaborating with state, regional, and/or local early care and education agencies to implement and sustain workforce improvements. The ideal candidate is a recognized leader in the management of early education and care, is knowledgeable of early childhood workforce systems, exhibits strong communication (written and verbal) skills to diverse audiences, and can manage multiple priorities. The successful candidate will have the opportunity to undertake a variety of engaging and challenging projects within a forward-thinking environment.

  • An abiding commitment to excellence and equity and to making a positive impact on the lives of children.
  • Project Management: Identify and think through all necessary steps of a project, set appropriate deadlines, move seamlessly between prioritized tasks, identify required participants, and hold self and others accountable to outcomes and deadlines. Ability to manage large, complex projects to meet deadlines and stay within budgets.
  • Thoroughness: Ensure that one’s own and others’ work and information are complete and accurate; carefully prepare for meetings and presentations; follow up with others to ensure that agreements and commitments have been fulfilled.
  • Initiative: Proactively create and/or follow through on new ideas and strategies.
  • Excellent written communication skills and ability to articulate a compelling case for programs, present organizational objectives persuasively, and translate strategic concepts into compelling business cases and proposals.
  • Plan and deliver oral and written communications that make an impact and persuade intended audiences and influence priorities.
  • Communication Skills: Demonstrated ability to communicate in a collaborative manner with colleagues and partners at all levels, from frontline employees to executives and external representatives.
  • Strong network of colleagues and organizations and reputation in the early care and learning field.
  • Excellent analytical skills with the ability to communicate complex information in a clear manner.
  • Strong knowledge and understanding of the needs of the early learning and care workforce, early learning and care policy research, evidence-based practices, research on adult learning, professional learning systems, and best practices in online and blended learning.
  • At least 10 years of experience leading or managing complex projects and organizations similar in scope to the position responsibilities, including staff and contractor management and oversight, developing and implementing project plans to meet tight deadlines, creative problem solving, and engagement of diverse stakeholders.
  • A minimum of 10 years of experience providing substantive expertise and management support to senior/executive leadership within a fast-paced environment, with preference given for candidates familiar with WestEd policies, procedures, and digital business tools.
  • Demonstrated knowledge and skills related to early care and learning, particularly related to supporting and meeting the needs of California’s diverse early learning and care workforce, that leads to change in practices and/or policies oriented to affecting quality and impact.

Compensation is competitive depending on experience.

Note: Visa sponsorship is not available for this position. Successful candidates must be authorized to work in the United States.

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