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Senior Strategic Researcher – Southern Program


Location: Jackson, Miss. or Birmingham, Ala.
Position: Senior Strategic Researcher
Department: Southern Program
Position Type: Full-time Exempt
Reports to: Southern Program Director 
Salary Range: $67,500 – $80,000
Deadline to apply: Until Filled
Start date: Sept. 1, 2023

At this critical time for lower-income, frontline communities and people of color, Jobs to Move America (JMA) is uniquely positioned to advance a powerful agenda for equitable job creation and climate justice. As the U.S. builds out a new green manufacturing sector, we must make sure that these companies create good jobs for all. As the Senior Strategic Researcher, you will support JMA’s  Southern Program by helping to lead campaigns for community benefits agreements (CBAs) in Alabama and Mississippi, developing strategies and tactics to engage companies and communities, and fighting for corporate accountability.  Read more about our program here.

Who we are  ─ About Jobs to Move America:

JMA is a national strategic policy center that supports reinvesting taxpayer dollars to create good jobs and a fair and prosperous society. We are committed to reclaiming our government as a force for good, expanding access to clean jobs for all working people, and transforming our economy through coalition building and policy development that centers environmental sustainability, racial and gender justice.

JMA is partnered with the AFL-CIO and more than half a dozen international labor unions. JMA also maintains regional coalitions of community, faith, environmental, and civil rights organizations across the U.S. We have offices in California, New York, Illinois, and staff in Alabama and Mississippi. We are quickly expanding.

To learn more, visit our website:

About the position:

Jobs to Move America (JMA) is seeking a Senior Strategic Researcher for its Southern Program. Under the supervision of the Southern Program Director, the senior researcher will conduct the strategic corporate research needed to develop and win campaigns for community benefits agreements (CBAs) in Mississippi and Alabama. 

They will be responsible for the development of a new campaign in Mississippi and the implementation of a campaign in Alabama, both of which will follow JMA’s “clean tech organizing” model.

What You’ll Do ─  Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Take initiative and do lead thinking to help execute up to two CBA campaigns (one in Alabama, one in Mississippi) to encourage global manufacturing firms to create family-sustaining U.S. jobs and generate economic opportunities for low-income communities, communities of color, women, and other groups that have historically faced systematic barriers to accessing family-sustaining jobs.
  • Lead efforts to complete strategic corporate profiles of firms in Alabama and Mississippi following a comprehensive framework provided by the Southern Director.
  • Help lead the development of strategies for engaging with communities and workers, federal and municipal agencies, corporate shareholders, and more.
  • Take initiative to routinely develop and carry out tactics to further these strategies;
  • Fight for transparency and accountability on state, local and federal levels so that companies receiving public funding can be held accountable to their promises;
  • Prepare, file and track public records requests.
  • Design and administer original surveys to workers, company representatives, industry leaders, etc.
  • Write and publish white papers and research reports that illustrate key findings to a variety of audiences.
  • Comply with all organizational policies and procedures, including timely attention to administrative responsibilities.
  • Contribute to JMA’s organizational development, for example assisting with fundraising, providing peer evaluations, and participating in JMA staff committees (not to exceed 20% of the time).

About you ─ Required Qualifications:

  • At least five years of full-time experience as a researcher for a labor union, community organizing project, impact investing firm, environmental justice group, or relevant academic project; OR at least five years of full-time experience as a journalist with strong investigative reporting clips.
  • Demonstrated commitment to economic, racial, gender, and social justice movements. 
  • Ability to work well in a team and take initiative. Detail-oriented and accountable to team goals and individual work plan.
  • Experience and comfort working in multicultural settings.
  • Excellent writing skills for a policy-making audience, including ability to succinctly summarize findings.
  • Strong verbal communication skills and experience making presentations for a wide range of audiences, including testimonies to community organizations.
  • Proficiency in using Microsoft Excel to execute complex formulas and to create illustrative graphs and charts. Experience with statistics to conduct data analysis.
  • Proficiency in basic qualitative research skills, including internet searches, interviews, surveys, and organizing focus groups.
  • Experience analyzing policy options and components, providing recommendations on policy options.

Extra consideration will be given to candidates who:

  • Have completed an intensive strategic corporate research (SCR) course;
  • Have experience working with an individual and/or group from a marginalized community;
  • Have experience working in the labor movement and/or community-labor coalitions;
  • Are fluent speaking a language other than English;
  • Have a bachelor’s degree, especially in public policy, economics, urban planning, or similar program, or equivalent experience.
  • Have personal ties or desire to live and work in Mississippi, Alabama or Tennessee.

Other Physical Requirements:

Regular travel across Alabama and Mississippi will be required. Occasional weekend and evening work is required. Must have access to reliable transportation.

What Else You Should KnowCompensation/Benefits:

  • Salary Range $67,500-$80,000.
  • 100% employer-paid medical, dental, and vision premiums for the employee and dependents
  • Generous paid time off including 12 personal days, 12 federal holidays, and 2 floating holidays each year. JMA has a paid, two week winter break at the end of each December. Staff can accrue up to 20 vacation days and 20 sick days. After 5 years of work, all staff are eligible for 3 months of sabbatical leave.
  • 401(k) plan with 5% employer contribution after 6 months of employment
  • Flexible spending account (FSA)
  • Cell phone reimbursement 
  • Utility/Internet monthly stipend for those working from home
  • Work from home office set up provided if needed
  • Training and professional development opportunities are available upon completion of the probationary period
  • A strong commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion policies and practices 
  • Qualifying Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) employer
  • JMA is a unionized workplace. This position is included in the collective bargaining agreement. 

How to Apply:
Complete the form at this link and upload a cover letter and resume, and three work references. Only applications submitted via this process and/or meet the minimum requirements. No phone calls, please.

JMA Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Statement 
We are an EEO/affirmative action employer and encourage applications from all qualified candidates regardless of race, ethnicity, age, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, religion, or disability. We work to ensure fair treatment of applicants and employees and actively enforce zero-tolerance policies against discrimination and sexual harassment.  Those who identify as persons of color, women, veterans, or formerly incarcerated persons, and/or have had experience working with one or more of those groups are strongly encouraged to apply.

JMA Diversity and Inclusion Statement
JMA believes that diverse, engaged, and motivated employees are essential to achieving our goals of economic, racial, and social justice. JMA believes that each employee’s voice is valuable and that when all employees contribute ideas to the organization’s operation, it enhances the success of the organization overall.

In order to assist us in achieving our goals as a diverse and inclusive workforce, we ask optional self-identification questions in the job application.