What we're doing:
The Council of State Governments (CSG) Justice Center is seeking an individual to join a team working on Justice Counts, an exciting new project focused on making criminal justice data more usable and accessible to policymakers. This full-time policy analyst position will be responsible for the state engagement component of the project. The ideal candidate has strong communication skills and a proven ability to foster collaboration among teammates and stakeholders with diverse perspectives. The policy analyst will build and maintain relationships with state and local policymakers and criminal justice practitioners. S/he will work with state and local stakeholders to facilitate the collection of public criminal justice data and will share insights from those data with policymakers. S/he will be committed to providing vital information and support as policymakers and stakeholders seek outcomes that improve public safety in a complex and politically sensitive environment. The policy analyst also will assist with other facets of the project including the development and implementation of core metrics to drive budget and policy decisions, design and creation of online resources for policymakers and stakeholders, and more.
The policy analyst will (A) work directly with policymakers and stakeholders to provide insight into criminal justice trends in each state and (B) support the development and implementation of core criminal justice metrics through the Justice Counts initiative.
The person in this position will:
- Serve as the main point of contact for communications with as many as 30 states by fostering relationships with legislators, legislative staff, staff in governors' offices, agency directors, court administrators and judges, system leaders, state-level association leaders/staff, staff from project partner organizations, and others as applicable to ensure the smooth functioning of the project;
- Collaborate with staff from the CSG Justice Center's Research Division to understand recent trends in states' criminal justice systems, facilitate timely development of state-specific data briefs, and craft clear and compelling narratives about those trends for distribution to state policymakers;
- Work with other members of the CSG Justice Center team and project partners, as applicable, to share insights about recent trends in state criminal justice systems with state policymakers;
- Leverage relationships with state policymakers to facilitate interest among states to implement the newly developed core metrics and to receive technical assistance to implement the metrics;
- Support the work of a Justice Counts national steering committee and multiple issue-specific subcommittees, which may include organizing meetings and calls and developing presentations;
- Use project management skills to coordinate deliverables with team members and monitor spending/budgets;
- Summarize technical assistance activities, in writing and orally, to project funders on a regular basis; and
- Develop and expand a knowledge base on criminal justice system dynamics and apply that learning to project planning and recommendations.
Qualified candidates should have at least four years of work experience with implementing evidence-based practices in criminal justice, strategic planning and organizational change, analyzing and using data to drive systems change, and/or working with state or local policymakers. Experience specifically in the fields of criminal justice, policy analysis, behavioral health, housing, or a related discipline preferred. In addition, we are seeking candidates who excel in project management, are results oriented, can manage multiple deliverables at once, and have strong critical thinking skills. Ideal candidates will work well both independently and in teams and take initiative to solve problems. The ideal candidate should have
- A track record of delivering high-quality work and seeing projects through to completion even in the face of obstacles;
- Experience effectively managing multiple projects and coordinating with a team;
- Demonstrated strategic planning and implementation experience that led to systemic change;
- Experience using data to track progress and advance project goals;
- Excellent research, writing, and editing skills and an analytical mind;
- Experience building and maintaining professional relationships with a diverse array of people from outside organizations;
- Willingness to travel, several times per year, when it is safe to do so; and
- Work experience specifically in criminal justice, housing, behavioral health, policy analysis, or related discipline (preferred).