Job Title: Executive Director
PVN ID: JJ-1604-001146
Category: Research

Key Features

Misdemeanor Justice Project
Full Time
Depends on Qualifications
Closing Date
Jun 22, 2016 (Or Until Filled)


Job Description

General Description

The Research Network on Misdemeanor Justice:

The Research Network on Misdemeanor Justice is being launched at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City.  The goal of the Research Network is to use the power of data analytics to inform policy conversations and reform regarding the enforcement of low level offenses.

The Research Network on Misdemeanor Justice is part of the Misdemeanor Justice Project (MJP). The MJP has produced a series of reports examining trends in the enforcement of low-level offenses in New York City (and to a lesser extent New York State) including misdemeanor arrests, criminal summonses, and pedestrian stops. We have analyzed data by demographics (i.e., gender, race, and age), charges, dispositions, and sentences. These works have substantially informed criminal justice reform in New York City. The Research Network will identify six additional cities to create a network focused on similar analyses to determine local trends in the enforcement of low-level offenses and understand multi-site differences.

The Research Network on Misdemeanor Justice will strive to provide an empirical framework to inform data-driven policy initiatives at local, state, and national levels.  The Research Network is fully committed to working with criminal justice practitioners to obtain accurate data, provide objective analyses, and disseminate our findings to key stakeholders in the community, renowned scholars, and policy-makers to spur a national discourse on the enforcement of low-level offenses. 

The Research Network will provide funding to research partners, academic institutions, and/or not-for-profit institutes in these cities to build infrastructure that will allow them to collect and monitor local criminal justice trends including arrests practices and pretrial detention.  The project will launch in July, 2016.

The Laura and John Arnold Foundation is funding the Research Network on Misdemeanor Justice for a three-year span.   

Position: The Executive Director (ED) will have strategic and operational responsibility for the Research Network on Misdemeanor Justice. The ED will report to the Principal Investigators of the Research Network and work with the PIs to develop the vision and strategic plan of the Research Network. With the PIs, the ED will execute the mission of the Research Network and coordinate and expand the project with the six other cities.

The ED will serve as the leader for the Research Network. S/he will work with the PIs to recruit staff.  The ED will lead, inspire, and manage the Research Network staff.  S/he will manage a multi-million dollar budget as well as collaborate with data and research partners, advisory board members, academics, and policymakers.  The ED will develop an understanding of other cities’ perspectives and agendas, foster collaboration among these cities, and facilitate dialogue among these partners in exercising clear communication.

The ED will review the established goals and action plan, monitor operations, and expand on the research model of the Research Network. The ED will work in conjunction with staff members to understand the goals of current funders, data partners, and other stakeholders, assessing their comparative strengths and finding the most effective use of their capabilities. The ED will develop a comprehensive strategy for research analyses to inform current criminal justice and policy discussions at the local, state, and federal level. Along the way, the ED will build strategic relationships with current and future funders and partners.  

The ED will communicate with sponsors on work progress, project amendments, and project results, as appropriate. The ED will author, co-author, and/or coordinate the development of reports, papers, articles, and other written findings. The ED will organize, chair, and present at symposia, colloquia and other research or academic meetings. The ED will interface with the highest levels of local, state and, federal agencies and with various stakeholders.

By design, the Research Network invites a diverse collection of professionals within criminal justice to the table, ranging from law enforcement officers, district attorneys, public advocates, and research analysts. The Research Network values the variety of expertise that each member brings – it is in these differences that the ED will find success in capturing the perspectives of all relevant parties by holding stakeholder and advisory board meetings. In this role, the ED must be able to effectively manage and utilize the contributions of each member without bias.  

Other Duties

Other Duties:

Leadership and Management

  • Observe and enforce all RF policies on ownership of intellectual property, use of facilities and equipment, and investigation on human subjects;
  • Creates confidentiality protocols and ensures their observance;
  • Maintain quality control for all project deliverables and project websites;
  • Ensure that deliverables are on track and assist with problem solving and providing guidance to barriers;
  • Recruit and staff positions, train staff, oversee time and leave by staff, evaluate staff performance and take disciplinary actions when needed, all consistent with RF Human Resources policies;
  • Authorize expenditures, track expenses, and operate within a budget consistent with RF policies and sponsor requirements;
  • Delegate day-to-day oversight of these activities to staff;
  • Oversee project completion and final storage/distribution of project records and equipment;
  • Performs the duties of lower level positions as needed.


  • Establish relationships with cities agencies, funders, advisory board members, data partners, community groups, and other organizations to further achieve goals of organization
  • Clearly, articulate messages to current and potential funders, partners, and stakeholders.
  • Work with and manage third-party consultants (i.e. external affairs and online-web presence) with the aim of strengthening the Research Network profile;
  • Use public relations to enhance the visibility and awareness of the Research Network as well as to garner new opportunities;
  • Establish the Research Network as a leader on data-driven research, informing policy discussions and utilizing partner assets to amplify the mission and strategic plan(s).



Core Competencies

  • Intellectual mastery of a field of knowledge, or specialty, pertinent to the research area, as evidenced in areas of study, teaching, publication and/or research background;
  • Knowledge of cutting-edge research in the field;
  • Ability to conceive, author, and advocate for a research project, investigation, or analytic activity, consistent with the state-of-knowledge in the field and consistent with the requirements of the grant sponsors;
  • Ability to author, publish, and present findings to a community of scholars in the field, utilizing professional publications, colloquia, symposia, reports, demonstrations, performances, etc. consistent with the scope and nature of the project and the requirements of the sponsor;
  • Ability to organize and direct the work of a team of researchers, administrative staff, and support staff in achieving the goals of the project within deadlines and within budget constraints;
  • Ability to build and maintain relationship with sponsors, data partners, research partners, and stakeholders;
  • Ability to exercise intellectual leadership in resolving research issues, re-conceiving and re-directing project activities as needed, and maintaining clarity of goals;
  • Ability to recruit, hire, and train effective qualified staff;
  • Ability to monitor and evaluate the work of others, consistent with RF policies and contracts;
  • Ability to develop and monitor budgets consistent with RF policies;
  • Ability to train and direct subordinate researchers in the techniques, applications, practices, etc. important to the field of inquiry;
  • Ability to work effectively with staff, associates, and internal and external constituents;
  • Ability to communicate effectively with and convey complex concepts, intricate processes, and sophisticated statistical findings to other researchers, supervisors, students, sponsors, administrators, and, when appropriate, the public; ability to listen and respond to the concerns/ideas of others;
  • Knowledge of policies regarding intellectual property, use of facilities and equipment, allocation of time and materials to project costs, and utilization of University IT resources;
  • Knowledge of protocols for safe conduct of research including the study of human subjects and establishment of safety reporting procedures.


Ideal Qualifications of the Executive Director

  • A PhD in an appropriate field of study OR an equivalent mastery as evidenced in exceptional research leadership and accomplishment and successful administration of research and/or policy projects;
  • Demonstrated ability to build relationships and network;
  • Strong familiarity with the criminal justice and policy world (ideally at the local, state, and federal levels) with at least 5-7 years of experience;
  • Experience with developing high-performance teams, setting strategic objectives, and managing a budget in a research-based setting;
  • Experience working with advisory boards, data partners, and stakeholders;
  • Strong public relations experience with the ability to engage a wide range of city-agencies and varying perspectives on project goals and the media;
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills; a persuasive and passionate communicator with excellent interpersonal and project management skills