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Associate Director

Job Description and Application Requirements:

Wisconsin Literacy, Inc. (WL), the leading state adult and family literacy agency in Wisconsin, seeks an Associate Director to help fulfill its mission to change lives by strengthening literacy statewide. It does this by offering training, professional development, resources, and advocacy to 70+ adult and family literacy agencies. With our local members, we help people improve their lives through literacy services, English language acquisition, work readiness, citizenship,

GED completion, and digital literacy. WL also supports a division, Wisconsin Health Literacy (WHL), which works to improve how people access, understand and act upon health information and services by promoting clear communication between individuals and health care.

WL is a growing organization with a staff and board of creative and dedicated people who support the organization’s core values of lifelong learning, collaboration, integrity, inclusion and equity, innovation, and teamwork. Passion for moving people forward through literacy and education is a constant among the team. WL has a current annual budget of more than $2 million and a total of 12 staff including five serving from regional offices.

Reporting to the Executive Director, the Associate Director has both internal and external facing responsibilities. The Associate Director partners closely with the Executive Director to chart WL’s planned response to organizational opportunities and challenges and plays a critical role as strategic thought-partner for the Executive Director.

The Associate Director also works to create high engagement from staff, board, member organizations, and other partners and to resolve day-to-day issues before they reach the Executive Director. The Associate Director plays a critical role in shaping and implementing the organization’s strategy, including oversight of staff, member services and programs, operations, communications, and grants management of state and federal funding.


To fulfill WL’s mission, the Associate Director will:

  • Provide effective and inspiring leadership of program staff by being actively involved in all programs and services, developing a broad and deep knowledge of their purpose, role, and contribution to the organization and its mission
  • Ensure WL’s external programming and internal culture, policies, and practices align with the organization’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • Promote adult and family literacy and the work of WL’s member agencies through relationship building, communications, presentations, and WL hosted events
  • Possess knowledge of adult and family literacy, health literacy, and workforce development issues and identify ways to strengthen and develop new partnerships
  • Maintain relationships and advocate for adult and family literacy funding from state agency heads and corporate and foundation leadership
  • Serve as an advisor and co-strategist to the Executive Director, providing sound counsel, short-term and long-term planning, program evaluation, and confidentiality
  • Adopt and implement a database management system for more detailed accounting of program outcome measures
  • Assist the Executive Director in preparing necessary documents and reports for 6 board meetings per year, reflecting measurable outcomes on programs and projects
  • Attend and co-lead Staff Leadership Team meetings
  • Maintain a flexible work schedule to meet the demands of management
  • Work closely with the WL Director of Finance and Administration to prepare program budgets and monitor their results


  • Bachelor’s degree in education, public administration, or related experience
  • 5-8 years of successful experience in overseeing staff and operations of a state agency or nonprofit organization
  • Experience in the field of adult literacy, workforce development, government service, or related field
  • Experience with and deep commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives for internal (staff and board) and external audiences
  • Understanding of state and federal funding and reporting requirements
  • Demonstrated ability to collaborate and multi-task
  • Ability to translate broad goals into achievable steps
  • Excellent researching, writing, public speaking, advocacy, and analytical skills
  • Strong record of leading key organizational functions and teams with a targeted focus on continuous improvement
  • Experience working with boards of directors
  • Knowledge of government agencies and their contracting practices with community organizations and the nonprofit sector
  • Knowledge of key nonprofit organizational activities including fundraising, human resources, marketing, and communications
  • Willingness, availability, and ability to travel occasionally statewide and nationally, including overnight and multi-day travel. Must have a valid driver’s license.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Master’s degree in education, public administration, or related field
  • Five years of experience in adult literacy, workforce development, or related field
  • Demonstrated understanding of the Adult Education and Family Literacy Act (AEFLA) and the Workforce Investment and Opportunity Act (WIOA)
  • Experience representing agency needs with stakeholders in leadership positions 


  • Medical, dental, and vision
  • Life Insurance
  • 401 (k) matching
  • Short- and Long-Term Disability
  • Flexible spending account or health saving account

Salary will be commensurate with experience or in the range of $65,000 to $70,000 annually.

To apply, provide:

  • a letter of interest outlining your education and experience as it relates to the job description;
  • resume; and
  • three professional references.

Send your application by email to You may also mail it to Michele Erikson, Wisconsin Literacy, 211 S. Paterson St. Suite 170, Madison, WI, 53703. 

Deadline is December 1st.