Director, Health Policy & Communication

The International Rescue Committee (IRC) responds to the world’s worst humanitarian crises, helping to restore health, safety, education, economic wellbeing, and power to people devastated by conflict and disaster. Founded in 1933 at the call of Albert Einstein, the IRC is one of the world’s largest international humanitarian non-governmental organizations (INGO), at work in more than 40 countries and more than 25 U.S. cities helping people to survive, reclaim control of their future and strengthen their communities. A force for humanity, IRC employees delivers lasting impact by restoring safety, dignity and hope to millions. If you’re a solutions-driven, passionate change-maker, come join us in positively impacting the lives of millions of people world-wide for a better future.

The Health Technical Unit is a dynamic team of more than 70 professionals working across different health sectors. They provide IRC’s 40 plus country offices and emergency response team with world class technical expertise, capacity building and a cross-country view of what works to achieve outcomes in terms of scientific evidence and practical experience. The HU also leads a focused policy change agenda, influencing UN, donor, and national policy to support strengthened health outcomes for IRC’s clients.

The Director, Health Policy and Communication sits within the IRC’s Health Technical Unit. The Director, Health Policy and Communication will work with the Senior Director for Health and the Global Practice Leads to sharpen and advance policy solutions in each of IRCs health priority areas: nutrition, immunization, contraception, infectious disease prevention and control, last mile health and clean water. The Director, Health Policy will analyze, synthesize and develop novel framings of the major problems driving health inequalities and poor health outcomes for IRCs clients. In response to these problems and challenges, the Director Health Policy and Communication will design and articulate innovative, ambitious, persuasive policy solutions to improve the health of IRC clients. The Director, Health Policy and Communication will collaborate with Advocacy and Influence, Communication colleagues on strategies to drive these solutions to market. The Director will support Health Unit led and high-impact strategic business development by providing excellent policy insights and solutions.
This position reports to the Senior Director for Health and sits on the Health Unit’s Senior Management Team.

Major Responsibilities:

● Drive IRC’s thought leadership agenda on health through a combination of technical expertise, policy analysis, strategy and synthesis,

● Provide analytic and strategic support to drive forward the Health Unit’s 2023-2027 strategy with particular focus on policy solutions, systems change efforts, and the influence agenda, and ensure strategic priority leads are supported to advance policy and influence in their areas of work.

● Collaborate with Health Unit Global Practice Leads for each subsector and relevant colleagues from the Research and Innovation teams to develop evidence-based policy solutions and influence agendas that drive the translation of research to practice.

● Collaborate with senior colleagues in IRCs Policy & Solutions, Advocacy & Influence, Communication and Humanitarian Systems Change teams and the President Office to provide input on global solutions from a health perspective and ensure coherence across global efforts and health specific efforts.

● Support the Movement against Malnutrition, IRC’s cross functional effort to ensure no child dies of acute malnutrition. by

o Refining and driving IRCs policy solutions strategy on malnutrition by ensuring technical strength and fidelity to the evidence-base

● Lead the design, development, and delivery of products to advance and amplify health policy efforts and solutions. Provide insights, ideas and solutions from a health perspective to support IRC’s signature policy products.

● Develop innovative partnerships and foster relationships with key global health institutions, leaders and influencers

● Lead Health Unit-led strategic policy and advocacy business development, and donor relations, working closely with the Director of Program Development and Partnership, and the Grant Operations and Analytics Team

● Lead and oversee the drafting of policy and communication material for placement in internal and external medium

● Oversee the production of the annual health impact report

● Supervise the Health Advocacy Advisor, Regional Research Uptake Advisor and Health Communications Officer

Job Requirements:

Work Experience:

● A minimum of 12+ years of progressive experiences in public health, health policy and communication

● Experience researching, conducting analysis, and developing policy recommendations that bring clarity and insight to complex global health issues.

● Experience developing, publishing and advancing policy solutions for health issues in humanitarian or development settings

● Experience building partnerships and engaging with partners in the health sector •

● Experience managing a team, and getting buy-in for ideas outside of direct management line

● Track record of publications demonstrating expertise in relevant health issues and facility with policy strategy, analysis and communications

Demonstrated Skills and Proficiencies:

● Extensive knowledge of global health policy issues and institutions relevant to humanitarian settings and IRC focus sub sectors.

● Network of policy experts in relevant issue areas

● Ability to think strategically, synthesize complex information and develop innovative policy and advocacy approaches

● Exceptionally strong communication skills including the ability to convey detailed, specialized and technical information in a ways that is clear and engaging.

● Demonstrated ability to communicate and collaborate successfully with experts, high level decision-makers, and colleagues in the humanitarian and development fields.

● Demonstrated ability to engage in high-level strategic thinking as well as detailed design, analysis and drafting.

● Strong dedication to IRC’s mission and values. Fluency with the humanitarian sector, key parts of IRC’s strategy, and existing policy strategy

● Demonstrated ability to scale seed ideas, particularly in complex or ambiguous environments

● Proven leadership skills, including of teams and projects that require collaboration beyond direct management lines

Education: Advanced academic degree background in public health, public policy or a closely related field;

**Language Skills:**Fluency in English is required, French is an asset

Preferred experience & skills:

* Experience working in cross-cultural settings desirable

* Experience working with media desirable

* Advocacy experience is desirable

Working Environment:

● Standard office working environment

● Some international travel as needed up to 10%

● This role may require working remotely full or part time and part time remote employees may be required to share workspace.


Posted pay ranges apply to US-based candidates. Ranges are based on various factors including the labor market, job type, internal equity, and budget. Exact offers are calibrated by work location, individual candidate experience and skills relative to the defined job requirements.

US Benefits:

The IRC offers a comprehensive and highly competitive set of benefits. All US employees are eligible for sick time, a 403b retirement savings plans: up to 4.5% immediately vested matching contribution, plus an 3-7% additional IRC contribution, and an Employee Assistance Program which is available to our staff and their families to support in times of crisis and mental health struggles.

In addition, full-time employees are eligible for 10 US paid holidays, 20-25 paid time off days, disability & life insurance, medical, dental, and vision insurance (employee contribution starting at $135, $7, and $5 per month respectively) and FSA for healthcare, childcare, and commuter costs. Part-time employees are eligible for a proportionate amount of paid time off. These additional benefits apply to employees who work at least 6 months within a 12 month time period.

Standard of Professional Conduct: The IRC and the IRC workers must adhere to the values and principles outlined in the IRC Way – our Code of Conduct. These are Integrity, Service, Accountability, and Equality.

Commitment to Gender, Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion: The IRC is committed to creating a diverse, inclusive, respectful, and safe work environment where all persons are treated fairly, with dignity and respect. The IRC expressly prohibits and will not tolerate discrimination, harassment, retaliation, or bullying of the IRC persons in any work setting. We aim to increase the representation of women, people that are from country and communities we serve, and people who identify as races and ethnicities that are under-represented in global power structures.

How to apply

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