Chief People Officer (Flexible; Preferred locations are Atlanta, Chicago, Washington D.C., or New York Metro)

  • Korn Ferry is leading the search for Teach For America's Chief People Officer. In order to be considered for this role,

you must apply by sending your application materials to [email protected].com.*

Reporting Relationship: Josh Griggs; EVP, Talent, Operations and Chief Financial Officer.

Teach For America's Core Tenets

Vision: One day, all children in this nation will have the opportunity to attain an excellent education.

The problem as we see it: Potential is equally distributed across lines of race and class, but opportunity is not. Today in America, the circumstances of a child's birth predict the opportunities she has in life. Children growing up in historically marginalized and disenfranchised communities lack access to a broad spectrum of resources and opportunities, and attend schools that are not equipped to meet their extra needs. This disproportionately impacts children of color, who are more than two times more likely to be born into poverty, who bear an additional burden of low expectations and other biases stemming from institutional racism, and who now constitute nearly half of all children in American public schools. Our public education system, which has remained largely unchanged for 100 years, is not designed to give students agency to overcome the barriers they face to lead and shape the dynamic, global world into which they will graduate.

Our Theory of Systemic Change: Solving this problem will take many interventions from many directions over a prolonged period of time: no single solution is sufficient to bring about an equitable and excellent education for all children. Our mission and approach draws on three lessons from enduring systems-change efforts throughout history. First, change requires sustained leadership inside and outside of the system challenging conventional wisdom and the status quo by demonstrating what's possible. Second, change requires a broad and diverse coalition of people united around common purpose and shared values, working together to translate insights from proof points of possibility into policy and practice. Third, the effort must be shaped by those most directly impacted by the injustice, and led by those with personal proximity to the problem and its complexity.

Our Mission: Teach For America finds, develops, and supports a diverse network of leaders who expand opportunity for children from classrooms, schools, and every sector and field that shapes the broader systems in which schools operate.

Our Approach:

  • We find promising leaders: The questions underlying educational inequity demand the imagination and sustained focus of our nation's most promising leaders. We recruit outstanding and diverse leaders early in their careers, who have demonstrated evidence of the values and leadership necessary to expand opportunity and access for all children inside and outside of the classroom. We ask leaders to make a lifelong commitment that begins with two years teaching in a public school, partnering with children and families most acutely impacted by educational inequity.
  • We develop and cultivate the leadership skills and mindsets necessary for systems - change through classroom teaching: We develop leaders who go beyond traditional expectations to advance the academic and personal growth of their students and help to strengthen their schools. In doing so, they expand their perspectives, knowledge, and skill as educators, advocates, and systems-change leaders. Great teaching is necessary to ensure children realize their potential and have the full agency they need and deserve in life. Teaching is also a profound act of leadership, and foundational for courageous individual and collective leadership in the long fight for educational equity and excellence. In partnership with schools, families, local universities, other organizations, and businesses in the community, we provide initial training, ongoing professional development, and access to an unparalleled resource and support network.
  • We support the individual and collective leadership, relationships, and learning of those in our network throughout their lifetime: Throughout their lives, as their careers take shape, we help alumni connect with each other and with high-impact opportunities to continue to grow and learn in pursuit of collective impact. Informed and inspired by their students, many alumni choose to teach in high-need schools and communities beyond their two-year commitments. Others lead from many sectors that shape the context and conditions in which schools operate: they are school and district leaders; policy makers; founders of advocacy organizations; social entrepreneurs; and business, philanthropic, and civic leaders working to make change.

Our Core Values:

Our core values define who we are at our best and guide our work together.

  • Pursue Equity: We work to change practices, structures, and policies to realize educational equity for all children. As we do so, we actively examine our roles in perpetuating inequitable systems.
  • Strengthen Community: We assume responsibility for our collective strength by developing relationships, building diverse and inclusive coalitions, and challenging one another to be our best. We act with empathy and extend grace to ourselves and others.
  • Achieve Impact: We pursue ambitious, meaningful outcomes that lead to access and opportunity for all children. We hold ourselves to high standards, make data-informed decisions, and orient to long-term success.
  • Choose Courage: We act on our beliefs and values, especially when it's hard. We center our efforts on the aspirations of our students and their families.
  • Act with Humility: We acknowledge the limitations of our perspectives. We seek different points of view and historical context to evolve our thinking and actions.
  • Demonstrate Resilience: We see every challenge as an opportunity to think expansively about solutions. When faced with obstacles, we deepen our resolve, adapt, and persist with optimism.
  • Learn Continuously: We operate with curiosity and embrace new ideas to innovate and constantly improve. We take informed risks and learn from successes, setbacks, and each other.

Your Opportunity for Impact:

The Chief People Office is responsible for ensuring Teach For America has the people strategy, supports, policies, processes, and systems to accelerate our collective progress towards our vision that one day, all children in this nation will have the opportunity to attain an excellent education.

At TFA, we believe all staff can contribute to lasting change and are at the heart of realizing our collective vision. The Chief People Officer will make this a reality by ensuring we have the talent and culture strategies and plans as an organization to:

  • ensure that all staff can bring diverse strengths, perspectives, and experiences to the table while sharing two powerful things in common: a commitment to live daily into our core values and diversity, equity, and inclusion commitments, and a focus on making individual and collective impact towards our mission.
  • create three things together in our workplace: establishing a deep learning culture; creating a model of equity and inclusion in a highly diverse organization; and building game-changing teams

Given all of this, we are looking for a Chief People Officer who will ensure our Human Assets team and executive leaders across the organization develop and deliver on these talent and culture plans to bring our impact to the next level to ensure the long-term success of both the team and our entire organization.

Chief People Officer Profile

  • Embodies and models our core values and is grounded in the mission of our organization, ensuring that we are making meaningful difference in the lives of kids and as part of communities.
  • Has exceptional vision and strategic thinking skills to support HA and the broader organization as both go through critical phases of re-imagination and transformation.
  • Is a strong team leader, manager, coach, and relationship builder in order to make sure we are having the greatest impact as an organization.
  • Demonstrates strong culture leadership with a record of success around building a supportive, learning, values-centered, and outcomes-driven culture at an enterprise level.
  • Proficiency in core diversity, equity, and inclusiveness (DEI) competencies and capabilities as well as experience and comfort leading staff-facing DEI-specific strategy and initiatives.
  • Cares deeply about and has credibility with our people because of past achievements - this includes staff members of all backgrounds and leaders from across the organization.
  • Demonstrates learning as an understanding and orientation with comfort asking questions and learning on the job, as well as leading strategy that is focused on learning, innovation and collective leadership.
  • Has proven experience navigating complex and challenging work dynamics, displays strong emotional intelligence and is comfortable navigating a complex organization to get work done.
  • Curiosity, interest, and ideally experience with workforce/generational and org-design trends given the current composition of our staff and organization.
  • Is capable of leading through change to inform the long-term success of the organization and the HA team.
  • Values and champions HR compliance work and its importance for the organization.


Professional Experience / Qualifications

The successful candidate must have a history of high-level Human Assets leadership experience and accomplishments within a complex mission-driven organization, and a track record of working effectively across all levels of an organization; including the ability to lead organizational change. Prior experience in education is desirable.

Preferred Human Resources Experience, Skills and Abilities

  • Progressively responsible track record of demonstrated successes of 10 or more years managing a diverse workforce in planning, organizational effectiveness, problem solving, facilitation, and decision-making skills and competencies.
  • Demonstrated experience in working with a mission focused, diverse, multi-generational and geographically dispersed workforce.
  • Demonstrated expertise with a record of achievement in presenting and evaluating proactive and competitive Human Assets practices, and recommending courses of action for development of senior leadership.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills, as well as strong presentation and influencing skills.
  • Must have an ability to travel between 25% - 50%, much of it will be self-directed.

Principal Duties and Responsibilities

  • Lead the realization of Teach for America's Talent Strategy by assuring clarity of objectives, prioritization, development of the timeline and implementation plans.
  • Lead, develop, organize, manage and evolve Teach For America's Human Assets function which includes strategic people partnership; talent acquisition/management; staff learning and development; enterprise-wide talent strategy, culture, diversity, equity and inclusiveness work; total rewards; corporate HR policies and procedures; HR technology; benefits; and staff relations.
  • Develop and maintain innovative Human Assets initiatives and programs to support Teach For America's mission, values, entrepreneurial spirit, and strategic objectives. Translate, in collaboration with senior leadership, the organization's strategic plan into Human Assets strategic and tactical plans.
  • Create HR strategies that enhance the ability to develop and retain a highly educated, motivated, diverse and effective workforce that supports the strategic efforts of Teach For America.
  • Ensure existence of workplace conditions and quality management that support staff engagement and work-life balance and optimum productivity.
  • Oversee the use of HR technologies to optimize data-driven human resource management.
  • Ensure that the best-qualified candidates from a diverse pool are sourced, identified and selected to support the unique mission-driven needs of the organization.
  • Partner with senior and executive leadership team to develop a Human Assets plan that addresses the opportunities and challenges of Teach For America's future workforce requirements.

Year One Critical Success Factors

  • Successfully implement TFA's Talent Strategy work in a way that is impact-oriented and responsive to staff and team leaders' needs across the organization.
  • Understand talent strategy and broader TFA "people" needs, assess current Human Assets function, and develop and begin to implement a plan to transform the Human Assets Organization.
  • Lead HA to bring to life the staff-facing components of TFA's new core values and diversity, equity and inclusiveness statement in partnership with the Office of the CEO.
  • Develop collaborative and trusted working relationships with regional and national leadership.
  • Break down silos with the HA team and ensure a strong, integrated and thriving team culture.


A Bachelor's degree in Human Resources, Business, or related field and a minimum of ten years of full-time, relevant experience. An advanced degree in Human Resources or related field is desirable, as are Human Resources certifications.

Benefits and Salary

Salary for this position is competitive and depends on prior experience. In addition, a comprehensive benefits package is included. Learn more at

Commitment to Diversity and Equal Opportunity Employment Policy

Teach For America encourages individuals of all ethnic, racial, and socioeconomic backgrounds to apply for this position. We are committed to maximizing the diversity of our organization, as we want to engage all those who can contribute to this effort. Learn more about our diversity on staff:

Teach For America is committed to providing equal employment opportunities to all qualified individuals and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, age, marital status, veteran status, pregnancy, parental status, genetic information or characteristics (or those of a family member) or any other basis prohibited by applicable law.

This job description reflects Teach For America's assignment of essential functions and qualifications of the role. Nothing in this herein restricts management's right to assign, reassign or eliminate duties and responsibilities to this role at any time.

  • Korn Ferry is leading the search for Teach For America's Chief People Officer. In order to be considered for this role,

you must apply by sending your application materials to [email protected]*

Meet Some of Teach For America's Employees

Aimée B.

Manager, Teacher Leadership Development

Aimée supports new corps members, helping TFA’s first and second year teachers navigate the classroom and successfully educate students.

Jace G.

Director, Finance & Strategy

Jace manages TFA’s expenses and fundraising, and he uses data to build spending and growth strategies that will maximize TFA’s impact for students.

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