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Director of Talent and Human Resources

Operations & IT | Oakland, CA | Full Time

Job Description


About Us

Reading Partners launched in 2001 with the mission to expand opportunities for children in underserved communities by fostering a lifelong love of reading, developing strong literacy skills, and building the confidence and self-esteem critical to empowerment and community development.  Reading Partners provides children with robust one-on-one reading support through a structured, research-based curriculum that engages students and provides basic building blocks to supplement their academic growth.  On average, Reading Partners students gain 1.7 months of reading skills for every month in the program.

Working in partnership with teachers, schools, and community volunteers, Reading Partners has grown from serving 100 students in 2003 in northern California with a budget of $180,000 to serving over 2,900 students in California, Washington, D.C., New York, Texas, and Maryland with a budget of almost $8M.  A recipient of significant Social Innovation Fund funding through the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation, Reading Partners has plans for continued rapid growth into other regions.  For more information about Reading Partners, please visit

Position Description

Reading Partners is conducting a nationwide search to find an experienced, entrepreneurial Director of Talent to lead talent recruitment and development for the nationally-scaling organization.  Over the last 6 years the organization has grown from 6 employees to nearly 200 and anticipates growing the staff by 50% annually within the coming years.  The successful candidate for this position will have a proven investment in the education reform and nonprofit sector.  With strong relationship cultivation and building skills, this person will create the strategic vision for how the talent department will operate as the organization grows within existing regions and into new parts of the country.  S/he will have experience aligning talent management practices with strategic organizational initiatives and will build performance management systems to support the talent assessment and staff development planning process from either leading a talent department or managing and developing staff. S/he will also cultivate and promote a positive organizational culture both internally and externally that is in line with the values and mission of Reading Partners, with the goal of retaining the entrepreneurial aspects as the company grows to become a national institution.

Reporting Relationships

The Director of Talent and Human Resources will report to the Chief Financial Officer and is a member of the Reading Partners Management Team.  Direct reports include a Human Resources Manger, who in turn manages a Human Resources Coordinator. Though Reading Partners is headquartered in Oakland, CA, this person will work closely with all departments and regional offices throughout the United States and can be based outside of Oakland. 

Key Responsibilities

Talent Strategy and Departmental Leadership

  • Oversee the talent department staff in carrying out all strategic and tactical aspects of human resources for Reading Partners
  • Create the vision and lead the overall national recruitment, employee development and retention strategy for an organization growing its headcount by 50% per year
  • Develop an employer brand strategy for Reading Partners that communicates our culture and positions us as a highly desirable workplace and retains employees amidst high-paced growth
  • Keep up-to-date on understanding of regulations, laws, industry trends, practices, and developments regarding human resources that may affect Reading Partners and advise management and employees accordingly
  • Lead organizational design and position description development, ensuring that roles are clearly scoped and strategically situated within the overall organizational structure

External Relationships

  • Manage and expand relationships with key recruitment partners, including top tier colleges and universities and other national education nonprofits
  • Develop a broad network of contacts within the national education reform movement, fostering an ability to serve as an internal headhunter for Reading Partners maintaining a constant recruitment pipeline

Talent Management and Organizational Development

  • Lead Reading Partners’ internal talent development and retention processes, including strategies to identify high performing employees and cultivate them for promotion
  • Oversee development of effective hiring processes and personally lead the search process for key executive positions, leading search committees composed of board members and senior staff
  • Train and coach staff in best practices of candidate recruitment, interviewing and evaluation as well as performance evaluation and overall staff development
  • Oversee and adapt an existing Management Training Program, taking a best-in-class approach to in-service professional development for rising staff and develop other training programs as necessary
  • Support managers in developing, implementing, and tracking annual professional development plans for all employees
  • Steward Reading Partners’ compensation and benefits programs, ensuring that the organization is in the 75th percentile or higher in providing pay and other rewards to employees
  • Regularly assess and report on employee morale with an attitude of continuous improvement, constantly seeking opportunities to better support employees and foster their professional development while supporting positive employer/employee relationships that promote a high level of morale and motivation
  • Create and lead strategies to create a strong sense of organizational bond between employees working in different parts of the country
  • Oversee and strengthen the performance management system for an organization with a deep commitment to data-based programming and decision-making; ensure that supervisors are trained to effectively use this system and provide guidelines and coaching to managers as needed around intervention plans and holistic performance improvement


  • At least 5 years in senior leadership role, ideally in human resource positions or as a team leader with experience in employee recruitment, development, and retention
  • Proven track record of helping high-growth organizations scale through talent acquisition and development
  • Ability to think strategically and build systems and processes for successful long-term human capital management
  • Excellent analytic, problem solving and coaching skills
  • Extensive experience in strategic planning and implementation as well as project/team management
  • Strong commitment to Reading Partners’ mission and ability to embody Reading Partner’s employer brand to serve as a visible external representative of the organization
  • Exceptional people and communication skills, with a strong customer service mentality
  • A fun and collaborative teammate who pitches in wherever necessary
  • Ability and flexibility to travel up to 25% of the time
  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience required; advanced degree in education or related field preferred

To Apply 

Please upload a resume and thoughtful cover letter outlining how your skills and experience meet the qualifications of the position, in Word format, to Michael Lombardo, CEO, at Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.


Reading Partners is an Equal Opportunity Employer with a strong commitment to diversity in the workplace.

About Commongood Careers

Reading Partners has partnered with Commongood Careers to conduct the search for a Director of Talent. Commongood Careers is a mission-driven search firm that supports the hiring needs of the nation’s most innovative and high-performing nonprofit organizations. Since its founding in 2006, Commongood Careers has completed over 500 searches at 150 organizations in 26 states. Founded and staffed by nonprofit professionals, Commongood Careers offers personalized, engaged services to jobseekers and organizations throughout the hiring process, as well as access to a wealth of knowledge about nonprofit careers. Learn more about nonprofit jobs at Commongood Careers.