Assistant State Director (M1)

Save the Children

Staff whose work requires or potentially could require any in-person interaction with Save the Children colleagues, partners, or beneficiaries must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 unless otherwise required by law. Save the Children complies with federal, state, and local laws with regard to accommodations related to this policy.


Save the Children’s U.S. Programs (USP) division is committed to ensuring that all children in rural America have a healthy, strong foundation to thrive as learners and in life. Our goals are to increase kindergarten readiness and grade-level literacy and math proficiency for children in under-resourced rural communities. Save the Children is seeking an Assistant State Director, Arkansas. In this role, you will oversee a team of education and early childhood Lead Associates, and will be responsible for managing performance to ensure all programmatic and partnership deliverables are met. You serve as the lead for Child Safeguarding in the state, and work collaboratively with state and national colleagues to continuously improve our programs, partnerships and overall sustainability.

What You’ll Be Doing (Essential Duties)

Program Quality 30%

  • Responsible for overall state program performance; ensuring high-quality program delivery and that annual state program results targets are met or exceeded.
  • Ensure program enrollment goals are met and maintained across all partner sites.
  • Serve as the Child Safeguarding Focal Point for the state, ensuring all staff, partners and volunteers are trained to prevent, identify and report incidents; monitoring reports and addressing incidents, and working with the SCUS Director of Child Safeguarding to implement updates and ensure effective application of policies and procedures.
  • Conduct frequent program data reviews to ensure timely and accurate data entry, identify trends, and address gaps in program performance.
  • Coordinate and support the delivery of partner program training, results-reviews and lessons learned meetings, and ongoing technical assistance.
  • Work with Lead Associates and Advisors to collaboratively identify modified approaches and provide customized program interventions as needed.
  • In the event Save the Children responds to a disaster in the state, collaborate with the U.S. Emergencies team and response team on the ground to support any response and recovery needs.

Partnership Management: 30%

  • Responsible for establishing, managing, and maintaining healthy relationships with program-delivery and emergency network partners across the state.
  • In collaboration with the State Director, establish state-, district-, and site-level partnership strategies; building relationships with key stakeholders, conducting partner selection analyses, maintaining a prospective partner pipeline, and supporting the acquisition of funding for program expansion.
  • Oversee the site-level annual Partner Planning and budget negotiation process across the state; ensuring partner plans and budgets are completed on time, and align with program strategy and donor requirements.
  • Responsible for ensuring that all programs across the state start on time, are adequately staffed, and have all program supplies and resources needed for implementation across the program year.
  • Troubleshoot partner issues requiring escalation, and work collaboratively to resolve conflicts that could negatively impact programming and/or the partnership.

Management and Operational Excellence: 20%

  • Support the development and management of state-level annual budget and plan; ensuring compliance with finance, operations and donor requirements.
  • Work with State Director to oversee the state portfolio of partner sub-awards; ensuring efficient and allowable use of funds.
  • Provide regular, timely communication to State Director and other key team members as needed with progress updates, partner/program concerns, and other key areas of operation.
  • Responsible for ensuring state staff and partners have access to strong knowledge management tools and resources needed for program implementation, data entry, monitoring, sharing practices, and managing daily operations.
  • Build and maintain a high performing team – participate in the development of state organizational design and staffing plan; work with Human Resources/Talent Attraction and Acquisition to lead recruitment efforts for state Program Specialist staff; and promote staff learning and development goals.
  • Work with the Operations coordinator to ensure equitable and timely distribution of Gifts In Kind (GIK).
  • Support other state projects and initiatives as assigned.

State Strategic Support: 20%

  • Work closely with State Director to develop and implement state growth and expansion plan(s).
  • Support the advancement of USPA’s Policy and Advocacy goals at the State-level and communicate advocacy efforts with partners, as needed.
  • Participate in activities that increase the visibility and support of Save the Children’s work in the state.
  • Serve as a core member of the kindergarten readiness and third grade reading and math USP results teams.

Required Qualifications

  • Minimum of a Bachelor Degree or equivalent experience, plus at least 5 years of relevant experience
  • Professional proficiency in MS Office suite
  • Professional proficiency in spoken and written English
  • Demonstrated ability to communicate and collaborate effectively with individuals and teams at all levels, both internally and externally, with a demonstrated clear understanding of, and ability to convey, issues related to poverty in rural communities
  • Demonstrated commitment to fostering and maintaining and environment of diversity, inclusion, and belonging.
  • Willingness and ability to travel, regionally and nationally, up to 35% of the time.

This position may require the incumbent to operate a motor vehicle to fulfill certain essential functions of the job. The incumbent should maintain a valid driver’s license and remain in compliance with any Save the Children policies pertaining to the safe operation of motor vehicles.

Why you should join the Save the Children Team…

Save the Children US offers outstanding benefits that include health, dental, vision and life insurances, pet insurance, short-term and long-term disability coverage, an Employee Assistance Program, 403(b), generous vacation, personal sick leave, family leave, parental/adoption leave, commuter benefits, dress for your day, and much more.

Click here to learn more about how Save the Children US will invest in YOU!

About Save the Children

Save the Children believes every child deserves a future. In the United States and around the world, we give children a healthy start in life, the opportunity to learn and protection from harm. We do whatever it takes for children – every day and in times of crisis – transforming their lives and the future we share.

Our work for children and their families requires that we commit—at every opportunity—to work together to identify and dismantle persistent systemic and structural racism, inequality, and any other forms of discrimination in this country and beyond. As an anti-racist organization, Save the Children will not tolerate discrimination in any form—in our employment practices, amongst our staff, in our leadership or toward the people we serve. We stand in solidarity with
all people to fight for equal rights, justice, inclusion, and belonging.

We provide equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and qualified applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, ancestry, sexual orientation, national origin, age, handicap, disability, marital status, or status as a veteran. Save the Children complies with all applicable laws.

Save the Children is committed to conducting its programs and operations in a manner that is safe for the children it serves and helping protect the children with whom we are in contact. All Save the Children representatives are explicitly prohibited from engaging in any activity that may result in any kind of child abuse. In addition, it is Save the Children’s policy to create and proactively maintain an environment that aims to prevent and deter any actions and omissions, whether deliberate or inadvertent, that place children at the risk of any kind of child abuse. All our representatives are expected to conduct themselves in a manner consistent with this commitment and obligation.

Save the Children is committed to minimizing safety and security risks for our valued employees, ensuring all are given training, support and information to reduce their risk exposure while maximizing the impact of our programs for children and families. Our shared duty, both agency and individual, is to seek and maintain safe working conditions for all.

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