Diversity Hiring: Director of Operations and Finance

Essie Justice Group (Essie) is building grassroots power to dismantle the US incarceration system, the most egregious creator of racial and gender injustice of our time. We are a loving and powerful community of women with incarcerated loved ones—and include cisgender women, transgender women, formerly incarcerated women, gender non-conforming (gnc) people, elders, and young people.

Building a sustainable grassroots institution that can be leveraged in the fight for a Black Feminist future is a priority at Essie. Through the development of thoughtful organizing models, a vibrant organizational culture, and scalable structure our aim is to break the isolation of the 1 in 4 women who have loved ones behind bars and sustain bold decarceration advocacy through the leadership of women with loved ones behind bars. After seven years building an active membership across California, Essie is waging even more ambitious campaigns to divest from state-sponsored punitive control and invest in structures that support the self-determination, freedom, and dignity of Black women and gender non-conforming (gnc) people. In the midst of significant organizational growth, we are seeking an enthusiastic, mission-driven, and financially savvy Director of Operations & Finance to join our team.

At Essie, operations work is uncommonly prioritized as a key way we live our values. Building innovative approaches to non-profit functions that push us closer to a society free from race, gender, and class inequality will be an exciting challenge for this person. The Director of Operations & Finance is a steadfast and creative professional who thrives on managing a solid infrastructure from which an ambitious and visionary movement-building organization can be successful.

The Director of Operations & Finance designs and facilitates systems that strategically manage Essie’s resources. The ideal candidate is a highly collaborative, experienced, and confident leader who will be charged with overseeing a team to identify and implement operational and administrative solutions across the organization, including managing our financial and risk management systems, database, and facilities. This person approaches their organizational responsibilities with rigor, precision, and a strong connection to our politic, movement purpose, and goals of breaking isolation and bringing all of loved ones home. This accessible, trustworthy, and transparent leader operates from an unwavering commitment to ethics on a daily basis.

As a senior member of the organizational leadership, the Director of Operations & Finance reports to the Senior Director of Strategy & Operations and will help shape Essie’s present and future—contributing to strategic decision making in the present while helping to architect Essie’s internal growth in alignment with our values. At Essie, how we win is as important as what we achieve, and our ideal Director of Operations & Finance approaches Black Feminist organizational culture development and scaled organizing goals with equal rigor and commitment.


While no one candidate will embody all the qualifications enumerated below, the ideal candidate will possess many of the following professional and personal abilities, attributes and experiences:

Ideal Qualifications

  • 10+ years of experience in operations and finance with a minimum of 2 years serving in management role(s) within the nonprofit sector.
  • Superior knowledge of multiple operational functions and principles, including finance, risk management, and data management.
  • Impeccable attention to detail and effective writing, editing, and verbal communication skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to consistently make accurate and clear assessments about a constantly changing organizational landscape and with foresight, make determinations, produce insightful ideas, and set forth impactful next steps.
  • Meaningful experience supervising multiple full-time staff and experience supporting colleagues with direct experience of incarceration.
  • Significant experience supervising people in a way that acknowledges differentials in privilege and power, recognizes their gifts, encourages their confidence, supports their growth, and holds them accountable to standards.
  • Track record as a collaborative leader who excels in managing multiple projects and is comfortable working in a fast-paced and non-traditional work environment.
  • Adept with Mac operating systems, Google Suite, and MS Office Suite (especially Excel, Powerpoint and Word).
  • Commitment to the beliefs and values of Essie with a demonstrated passion for progressive politics, specifically in gender justice, race justice and ending mass incarceration.


  • Sees infrastructure as their contribution to people power. You care deeply about the impact of systems and processes on people. You believe that by demystifying inaccessible systems, you can help organizations and teams be more financially effective, and individual team members more confident in the process. Moving with a keen awareness of the organizational power inherent in your role, you can self-regulate in order to mitigate the harms of hierarchy.
  • Discernment and honesty we can trust. You are a thoughtful team member who acts in alignment with your integrity and are unfailingly trustworthy.
  • Sees #Woke as a verb. You are committed to continuously deepening and evolving your own understanding of systems of oppression through study, openness, and humility. And you easily recognize your own relationship to privilege and power, examining and shifting your behaviors as appropriate.
  • Uplifting and additive. You see mistakes as opportunities for growth; problems as catalysts for solutions, and inspire others along the journey. You carry a positive approach, can-do attitude, a sense of humor, and authentic kindness wherever you go.


The Director of Operations and Finance is a full-time, salaried, exempt position. This position is supervised by the Senior Director of Strategy. The salary for this position is between $120,000 – $140,000 depending on experience with full medical, dental, and vision benefits, optional 401(k), a substantial vacation package, and a monthly personal wellness stipend. The position is based in one of Essie’s offices in Oakland or Los Angeles, California. Essie has a mandatory COVID-19 vaccine policy.

This search is being led by Whitney HerringtonEmily Wexler, and Andres Marcuse-Gonzalez of NPAG. Please address a thoughtful cover letter to the “Essie Hiring Committee” outlining your interest and qualifications, and submit along with a resume through the hiring portal.

Essie Justice Group provides equal employment and advancement opportunities to all staff members. Employment decisions are based on merit, qualifications, and skills. Essie does not discriminate in employment opportunities or practices on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, immigration status, socioeconomic status, ancestry, age, size, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, familial status, veteran status, disability, AIDS/HIV status, medical condition, prior conviction, arrest history, traits historically associated with race, including, but not limited to, hair texture and protective hairstyles, or any other characteristic protected by law.

Essie values and specifically seeks applicants who are people with incarcerated loved ones; formerly incarcerated people; people of color; women; queer, transgender, gender non-conforming (gnc), and gender fluid people.

This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting, hiring, placement, performance assessment, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation, and training.

Equal Opportunity Employer!



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