Small businesses uplift communities and anchor local economies, while creating opportunities for themselves, their families, their employees, and our neighborhoods. Yet entrepreneurs who are people of color, women, and immigrants often struggle to secure capital and resources, as they are systematically shut out from traditional financing.
Accion Opportunity Fund is an unparalleled financial support system that provides these small business owners with access to capital, networks, and coaching. We work to build inclusive and accessible options for these determined business owners. For over 25 years we have served a client base that is nearly 90% women, people of color, or immigrants.
In addition to providing resources and loans to small businesses, we also conduct original research, advocate for policy changes, and finance community construction projects in low-income neighborhoods through our New Markets Tax Credit program.
Together, we are building a diverse, vibrant community where opportunity, knowledge, and access to capital are within reach.
For more information about us, visit https://aofund.org/
Reporting to the Chief Legal and Regulatory Strategy Officer, the Vice President, Research & Policy is responsible for leading all aspects of Accion Opportunity Fund’s high-quality, community-based research and targeted public policy advocacy at the local, state, and federal level. These activities will advance racial, gender and economic equity while also generating new awareness and support for Accion Opportunity Fund. The role directly or indirectly manages a variety of dynamic projects including research for publication, events, legislative and regulatory advocacy and working in partnership with stakeholders including staff, board members, policy makers, partners, and coalitions.
- Lead the development, coordination, and successful execution of Accion Opportunity Fund’s policy priorities and research strategy.
- Serve as thought-leader on small business access to capital and other topics relevant to AOF’s mission and activities.
- Represent AOF as spokesperson with policy makers, media, and others at events and presentations.
- Supervise and support the Policy and Evaluation team members, including goal setting, professional development, performance management, and collaboration on projects and initiatives.
activities may include:
- Craft and expand policy strategy for Accion Opportunity Fund in new and existing markets.
- Analyze, gather input, and write official comments on legislative and regulatory issues affecting Accion Opportunity Fund and our mission to build more inclusive and accessible financial options for small businesses.
- Sponsor and advance legislation in support of Accion Opportunity Fund’s mission and the broader CDFI field.
- Develop and maintain relationships with public officials and their staff at the local, state, and federal level, including applicable FSOC (Financial Stability Oversight Council) agencies.
- Manage Accion Opportunity Fund’s fiscal sponsorship of the Responsible Business Lending Coalition.
- Explore and participate in additional coalitions and trade associations as appropriate.
- Monitor and report on state and federal lobbying activity.
- Oversee all ongoing and one-time organizational research and evaluation initiatives.
- Identify new research priorities in partnership with Accion Opportunity Fund leadership and Evaluation Officer; support project design and management activities; support management of external research consultants.
- Oversee socio-economic data collection and reporting across AOF programs.
- Support writing and editing of research publications and communications.
- Monitor and summarize relevant third-party research.
- Manage departmental budget; hire and manage contractors.
- Oversee relationship with PR and marketing to craft public messages on policy and research topics.
- Write and review op-eds, articles, and other publications for consistency with Accion Opportunity Fund’s policy and research work.
Manage relationship and activities with Accion Opportunity
Fund’s Community Impact Advisory Board.
Highly qualified candidates will share Accion Opportunity Fund’s commitment to its mission and will embody the organization’s core values bringing a broad range of skills and experience including, but not limited to:
- Demonstrated commitment to Accion Opportunity Fund’s mission and values.
- 7+ years leading policy and/or research activities.
- Bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university.
- Master’s degree in public policy, public administration or business preferred.
- Superior written and oral communication skills including cultural competency.
- Experience with public speaking and media relations.
- Ability to manage multiple projects in a fast-moving environment.
- Demonstrated ability to inspire and manage teams to achieve results collaboratively.
- Demonstrated results in public policy advocacy and lobbying at the state and/or federal level.
- Demonstrated knowledge of research methods and outcomes measurement.
- Knowledge and experience in one or more of these topic areas: Small business lending, financial services, CDFIs.
- Ability to travel.
Perks & Benefits
Our mission is what motivates us to come to work each day. We know that happy employees are productive employees, which is why we offer a comprehensive benefits package that includes:
- Competitive salary commensurate with experience.
- An environment that values work-life balance.
- 100% company-funded Medical, Dental, Vision, Life & Disability coverage for employees (Based upon your plan selection). 90% company-funded dependent coverage (Based upon your plan selection).
- Voluntary benefits with payroll deduction for Supplemental Life & AD&D insurance, Auto/Renters/Homeowners insurance, Pet Insurance and Legal plans.
- Tax deferred & Roth 403(b) Retirement Plan with employer match. Employer match increases with tenure.
- Paid vacation days (increased with tenure), 12 paid holidays, and 10 Sick days, and family leave days per year.
- This is a fully remote (work from home) position.
Diverse candidates are encouraged to apply, especially BIPOC.
Accion Opportunity Fund is an Equal Opportunity Employer. aofund.org