Job Opening: Strategist – Atlanta, GA

Job Summary

The Strategist is responsible for the management of strategic priorities of the Institute for Capacity Building in conjunction with UNCF and ICB leadership. Reporting to the Director of Strategy of UNCF’s Institute for Capacity Building (ICB), the Strategist will work with the Institute for Capacity Building and internal and external stakeholders to support efforts to conceptualize, research, draft, promote and secure funding for new concepts and programs that improve capacity and institutional outcomes at Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

The Director of Strategy will be a proven leader with demonstrated ability and prior achievements in communications, research, program development, concept generation and professional relationship-building. As the leader of ICB’s strategy team, the position will require an individual that is comfortable with leadership, collaborative, entrepreneurial and a self-starter. The individual selected for this position must possess a deep understanding of higher education, program development, legal contracting, non-profit and philanthropic leadership and the strengths and challenges of Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

Successful candidates will join the Institute for Capacity Building team which is headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia. In addition to specific roles and responsibilities, ICB team members have proven to be successful when they:

  • Are driven to serve people and institutions that are often undervalued and overlooked;
  • Embrace collaboration as a critical value to ensure effective teamwork and adoption of best practices;
  • Seek out opportunities to innovate and improve upon conventional practices and procedures;
  • Take personal responsibility for executing key projects and developing relationships; and
  • Operate with a sense of mission and purpose.

Responsibilities and Duties

The Strategist reports to the Director of Strategy, Institute for Capacity Building. S/he will have the following key responsibilities:

  • Manage incubation of new programs and concepts that build the capacity of HBCUs, including leading background research, drafting of proposal materials and internal and external socialization processes.
  • Identify, build relationships and spearhead efforts to secure funding with key funders and philanthropies.
  • Oversee the development of the Bethune Center, ICB’s strategy on human capital development at HBCUs.
  • Manage the ICB Strategy team, including ICB’s Senior Program Manager (Leadership Programs), Policy Analyst and Data Analyst.
  • Serve as ICB liaison to the UNCF Law Department to execute contracts and agreements related to new concepts and programs.
  • Coordinate with the Frederick D. Patterson Research Institute to drive ICB’s strategic priorities and communications.
  • Support the development of ICB’s network engagement strategy by building connections with HBCUs and other higher education institutions, educational intermediaries, funders, community organizations and workforce stakeholders.


  • An outstanding record of academic and professional achievement
  • Significant experience in the design and implementation of higher education and/or professional development programming
  • Experience in using digital mediums and platforms to facilitate learning across multiple stakeholder groups
  • Demonstrated experience in new program development, leadership, strategic planning, and contracting
  • Strong ability to communicate both verbally and in writing
  • Ability to move deftly between big picture and details
  • Comfort with concurrently managing multiple ongoing projects in different phases
  • Thrives with detail and deadlines
  • Strong cognitive and emotional management (CEM) skills
  • Ability and high comfortability operating at the most detailed level
  • Thrives with execution of deadlines
  • Strong multi-tasker, and operates with high degree of flexibility to adapt to changing needs and direction
  • Bachelor’s degree; graduate or professional degree in law, higher education, policy or administration preferred
  • 5-7 years of relevant work experience is required
  • Commitment to education and social justice

Additionally, the individual must be a self-starter, who is able to problem-solve and take on a wide range of tasks to deliver results; collegial and professional manner; excellent communication and interpersonal skills.

Click here to apply.

About UNCF

The United Negro College Fund (UNCF), the nation’s largest and most effective minority education organization, has been an engine of minority educational achievement for more than 70 years. UNCF’s mission is to build a robust and nationally recognized pipeline of black students who, because of UNCF support, become highly qualified college graduates. In addition, UNCF ensures that its member institutions remain respected models of best practices in moving students to and through college. Since its inception in 1944, UNCF has raised over $4.5 billion in private support, distributed more scholarships to help minorities attend school than any entity outside of the federal government, and enabled more than 425,000 minority and low-income students to graduate from UNCF’s member historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) and launch professional careers. UNCF is committed to closing the educational attainment gap between African Americans and other populations by increasing postsecondary access and success for students from underrepresented groups, particularly low-income and first-generation students.

About ICB

Launched in 2006, UNCF’s Institute for Capacity Building (ICB) provides targeted capacity-building resources to help HBCUs improve their resilience. We define resilience as the institution’s ability to improve its operation today and future-proof them for tomorrow. ICB’s engagement equips UNCF member institutions, and other HBCUs and PBIs, to provide high-quality educational experiences to their students and the broader Black community. ICB’s work focuses on three areas critical to HBCU success: institutional effectiveness, academic competitiveness, and financial viability. Beyond our strategic advisory and project management support, ICB serves as an innovation hub for Black colleges, connecting institutions to funders, best practices, resources, and subject matter experts both within and outside of UNCF.