Executive Director

This position is with the Institute for Learning (IFL) at the Learning Research and Development Center (LRDC) at the Unviersity of Pittsburgh.

Founded in 1995, The Institute for Learning (IFL) works to ensure that every student – especially those traditionally underserved due to income, race, and language – has access to high-level texts, tasks, and high-quality learning opportunities to build critical thinking and deep reasoning skills that are required for success. IFL believes the way to achieve equitable and sustainable change is to focus on coherent, evidence-based learning for all educators across an educational system.

The Institute for Learning is a branch of the Learning Research and Development Center (LRDC) at the University of Pittsburgh that bridges research and practice. The IFL helps educators bring research-backed teaching and learning into classrooms, helping students reach the high standards demanded by today’s colleges and workforce. It serves as a professional development leader to increase instructional effectiveness across numerous school districts, nationally.


The Institute for Learning has built a strong, national reputation as a leader in K-12 professional development. The Executive Director will be stepping into leading the IFL at an exciting time in their journey. This leader’s impact will be felt nationally, as they manage and grow the relationships IFL establishes with districts and charters in service of all students.


Key Responsibilities of the Executive Director include:

  • Strategic priorities & organizational leadership (~40% of role):
    • In support of the Learning Research and Development Center, chart and execute on a strategic vision for the IFL;
    • Manage the IFL’s rhythm of business, including University relationships and external partnerships. Ensure that relationships are strong and goals are being met.
  • Business management experience (~30% of role)
    • Run the IFL like a business with a clear vision, strategy, and goals for measuring impact and growth;
    • Manage service lines to ensure clean books, accountability, and sustainability.
    • Work in collaboration with the director to plan and execute meetings with the External Advisory Board.
  • People strategy & operations (~20% of role):
    • Oversee hiring and recruiting systems, and develop a comprehensive talent strategy, including professional development and team culture.


To fulfill these responsibilities, the ideal Executive Director candidate has:

  • Commitment to and experience advancing an equity and justice agenda; training in how to lead for diversity, equity, and inclusion;
  • 10+ years of leadership experience and demonstrated success in a K-12 school organization, nonprofit, or education-focused organization, preferably serving socioeconomically disadvantaged students;
  • Culturally competent and self-reflective leader who has a commitment to and track record of promoting a strong culture of diversity, equity, and inclusion;
  • Shares a commitment to teaching and learning at all levels of the educational system and IFL’s stance toward disciplinary specific teaching and learning practices. Ideally, someone with specific disciplinary expertise in one or more of the content areas;
  • Experience and demonstrated success exploring, implementing, and refining research-based education practices;
  • Experience with research and / or collaborating with researchers;
  • Familiar with fundraising and comfortable with building strong connections to individual donors, foundation leaders, and others in the philanthropic community;
  • Strong communicator with professors, higher education administrators;
  • A high-level, strategic thinker who focuses on ROI and operational efficiencies, and brings senior-level leadership experience;
  • Strong skills in planning, organizing, and oral and written communication, including strong presentation skills.
  • Demonstrated business and financial acumen; experience building and managing a budget.
  • Advanced degree (MA, MS, PhD, EdD) in education or a related field (e.g., MBA);
  • Ability to travel including some overnight stays, as needed.


This position offers a competitive salary of $145,000 – $165,000. The Institute for Learning offers comprehensive health benefits including medical, dental, vision, retirement savings and tuition discount for self, spouse/domestic partner, and undergraduate dependent child(ren). This is a full-time exempt position.

The IFL is an equal opportunity employer and an organization that values diversity. Recruiting staff to create an inclusive organization is a priority, and we encourage applicants from all backgrounds. Candidates are evaluated solely on their qualifications to perform the work required

  The University of Pittsburgh is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer and values equality of opportunity, human dignity and diversity. EOE, including disability/vets The University of Pittsburgh requires all Pitt constituents (employees and students) on all campuses to be vaccinated against COVID-19 or have an approved exemption. Visit to learn more about this requirement. 

Assignment Category Full-time regular
Campus Pittsburgh
Required Attachments Curriculum Vitae