Assistant Program Director

Emory University Atlanta, GA
assistant director director assistant research management institute training events administrative meetings operational marketing
February 1, 2023
Emory University
Atlanta, GA
Discover Your Career at Emory University:

Emory University is a leading research university that fosters excellence and attracts world-class talent to innovate today and prepare leaders for the future. We welcome candidates who can contribute to the diversity and excellence of our academic community.


The James Weldon Johnson Institute for the Study of Race and Difference (JWJI) is a vibrant research center dedicated to promoting scholarship regarding issues of race and all of its intersections. Housed in the College of Arts and Sciences at Emory University, JWJI’s goal is to promote Emory as a hub of cutting-edge, multi- and interdisciplinary research on race, ethnicity and intersectionality in the United States. JWJI seeks to leverage its rich resources—its proximity to a renowned faculty of Emory-based scholars who produce acclaimed research on race and difference; a library with vast archives of the African American experience; and its geographic location in Atlanta, a key site of civil rights struggle, past and present—to promote the dissemination of new scholarship about the experiences of racial and ethnic minorities and to support the efforts of scholars nationally to continue to pursue research topics that deeply interrogate questions related to race and difference and that contribute to our prescriptive understanding of how to promote reconciliation and equity.


  • Assists in directing the strategic planning, development, and implementation of programs.
  • Represents the organization at meetings, conferences and other events.
  • May develop and present speeches or presentations to generate or enhance awareness of program(s).
  • Provides technical support by evaluating established processes, conducting training, attending operational meetings and networking with affiliated groups.
  • Monitors progress toward achieving established objectives and deadlines.
  • Participates in planning, administering and monitoring program related budgets.
  • Conducts research, designs new initiatives, and collaborates with others to ensure program(s) remain viable.
  • May serve on, hold office in, or chair committees.
  • May write publishable articles and papers.
  • May supervise staff.
  • Oversees or assists in developing operational and statistical reports for management and regulatory agencies.
  • Ensures required records and documentation are maintained. Performs related responsibilities as required.


JWJI offers a wide variety of programs. Our public events include a weekly colloquium and a quarterly evening speakers’ series. We also coordinate and facilitate programming for Emory College’s Latinx and Native American/Indigenous Studies faculty initiatives.

Our premiere program is the Visiting Scholars Program. Funded by a generous grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Visiting Scholars program convenes a national group of scholars at Emory for a yearlong fellowship. During their residency, fellows finish a major project like a dissertation (for our graduate student fellows) or a book project (for our post-doctoral fellows).

JWJI seeks to hire an assistant director to help the director grow and expand the mission of the institute. The assistant director will play a critical role in the day-to-day management of the institute. The responsibilities of the job are wide-ranging and require tremendous flexibility and an extensive skill set. Despite the multifaceted nature of the job, this role is primarily an administrative role. Once hired, the assistant director should expect to play the following roles (among others):

  • Office management/Chief of staff role. The assistant director is the lead staff for a unit that includes two other full time employees. In addition to the FTE’s, the assistant director will interface with student employees engaged in administrative and research tasks for the institute and will also be the administrative face for a rotating cast of visiting faculty members.

  • Project management for approximately three dozen public programs annually. The assistant director will be responsible for overseeing logistics arrangements and handling legal matters like colloquium speaker contracts and release forms. They will also assist the director in overseeing the logistical arrangements for the annual fellowship selection process, can attract over 200 applications annually.

  • Marketing. The assistant director will be the point person for advertising for all of our public events and communications with key constituents through our newsletter and annual reports. The assistant director also oversees advertising for the Visiting Scholars Program (This may involve travel with the director to various conferences for recruitment purposes). The assistant director is also responsible for maintaining the institute’s website.

  • Grant management. The assistant director assists the director in completing grant applications and when successful, in fulfilling the reporting requirements of our major foundation donors.

  • Relationship management. JWJI has many partners at Emory, in the wider Atlanta community, and beyond Atlanta who help it fulfill its mission. A strong assistant director will help to create systems intended to cultivate and maintain these relationships.

  • Development. While the assistant director plays a supportive role to the director on this dimension, they will be involved in fundraising efforts, whether in helping to plan fundraisers or in contributing to grant proposals and creating materials for interested donors.

  • Bachelor's degree in a field related to the program(s) and five years of program related experience, OR equivalent combination of experience, education, and training.

  • Applicants with work experience in higher education or in academic settings (or their equivalent) are strongly preferred.
  • Applicants should be familiar with the rhythms of the academic calendar and with norms for both oral and written scholarly production.
  • Significant marketing or public relations experience (this includes graphic and web design experience) is a plus, as is academic training in scholarly subfields that address issues related to race and difference.

NOTE: Position tasks are generally required to be performed in-person at an Emory University location. Remote work from home day options may be granted at department discretion. Emory reserves the right to change remote work status with notice to employee.

Emory Supports a Diverse and Inclusive Culture:

To ensure the safety of our campus community, the COVID-19 vaccine is required. For more information on the University and Hospital policies and potential exemptions, please see our website.

Emory University is dedicated to providing equal opportunities and equal access to all individuals regardless of race, color, religion, ethnic or national origin, gender, genetic information, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, and veteran's status. Emory University does not discriminate in admissions, educational programs, or employment on the basis of any factor stated above or prohibited under applicable law. Students, faculty, and staff are assured of participation in University programs and in the use of facilities without such discrimination. Emory University complies with Executive Order 11246, as amended, Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Vietnam Era Veteran's Readjustment Assistance Act, and applicable executive orders, federal and state regulations regarding nondiscrimination, equal opportunity and affirmative action. Emory University is committed to achieving a diverse workforce through application of its affirmative action, equal opportunity and nondiscrimination policy in all aspects of employment including recruitment, hiring, promotions, transfers, discipline, terminations, wage and salary administration, benefits, and training. Inquiries regarding this policy should be directed to the Emory University Department of Equity and Inclusion, 201 Dowman Drive, Administration Building, Atlanta, GA 30322. Telephone: 404-727-9867 (V) | 404-712-2049 (TDD).

Emory University is committed to providing reasonable accommodations to qualified individuals with disabilities upon request. To request this document in an alternate format or to request a reasonable accommodation, please contact the Department of Accessibility Services at 404-727-9877 (V) | 404-712-2049 (TDD). Please note that one week advance notice is preferred.

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