Solidarity Center

Solidarity Center

Senior Program Officer

Based in Washington, DC


The Solidarity Center is the largest U.S.-based international worker rights organization. Its programs are based on the principle that, by exercising their right to freedom of association and forming trade unions and democratic worker rights organizations, working people can collectively improve their workplaces, call on governments to uphold laws and protect human rights, and be a force for democracy, social justice and inclusive economic development. Its programs in more than 60 countries focus on human and worker rights awareness, union skills, occupational safety and health, gender equality, migration and human trafficking and pro-legal strategies, bolstering workers in an increasingly informal economy. Founded in 1997 by the AFL-CIO to tackle the enormous challenges workers face in the global economy, the Solidarity Center works to promote democratic rights and respect for workers; raise public awareness about abuses of the world’s most vulnerable workers; and, above all, help the world’s workers secure a voice in their societies and the global economy.

Summary of Position: This is the most senior bargaining unit program position. The Senior Program Officer is responsible for day-to-day support and counsel to field offices and programs. This individual is thoroughly conversant with all aspects of regional program activities and current events relevant to the on-going political, economic, social and trade union developments in the region. This individual is the main contact between the Washington office and the field. This individual has working knowledge of and experience in USG regulations and procedures related to the funding and management of grants.

The Senior Program Officer writes persuasive proposals, describes complex activities and develops budgets for those activities. This individual participates in the development and implementation of trade union development programs. This individual produces well-written program reports and evaluations. This individual monitors programs to meet budget targets and programmatic results. This individual prepares and exchanges information and coordinates activities with other sections of the Center, as required. This individual provides advice and guidance to Field Representatives for the development and implementation of programs, the drafting and submission of concept papers and project proposals to donor organizations, and the effective management of field offices and programs. This individual draws on their experience to initiate program proposals and seek funding.

The Senior Program Officer assists and advises the Coordinator on details of programs in assigned country(ies) of responsibility. This individual works closely with AFL-CIO affiliates to coordinate their participation in the development and implementation of Solidarity Center programs, at the request of the Coordinator and within approved communications guidelines. This individual assists with and, when necessary, provides logistical support for international visitors and participants in Washington-based programs conducted by the Solidarity Center, AFL-CIO, affiliates, GUFs and/or other related organizations. This individual represents the Center at various meetings and conferences in the U.S. and abroad. This individual coordinates with Washington-based NGOs, and U.S. Government agencies. This individual has the experience and presence necessary to represent accurately and effectively in public fora and in private meetings with donor organizations, partner organizations, and national and international public and private organizations, the policies and programs of the Center and the AFL-CIO. This individual travels to the region and is able to fill in for Field Representatives on a temporary or indefinite basis.

The Senior Program Officer directs the work of other staff in the program/regional office, and assumes the responsibilities of the Coordinator in their absence, with the exception of hiring, firing, promotion or discipline.

Basic Qualifications: A Senior Program Officer must have the ability to work independently and without supervision and must have extensive knowledge of international relations and trade union and socio-economic and political developments in the U.S. and abroad. Previous trade union experience, and/or experience in the Solidarity Center as a Program Officer III are required. This individual must be capable of managing multiple assignments simultaneously and of making substantive decisions that have major effects on costs and completion of projects. This individual must have, at a minimum, a bachelor’s degree in political science, international relations, labor relations or related fields and/or ten years equivalent work experience. Good communications and writing skills are a must. Computer literacy for word processing and simple spreadsheets is required. This individual must have the ability to work and interact easily with a wide variety of people. Persons considered for this position must agree to accept temporary or indefinite assignments as a field representative, based on the needs of the Center. Fluency in a foreign language is a plus and may be a requirement for some Program Officer positions.

Supervisor: Regional Program Director

Specific Duties:

  • Provide field offices with programmatic financial and administrative support;
  • Write/edit proposals, reports, letters, and other correspondence;
  • Conduct issue research for headquarters and field offices;
  • Assist field offices to arrange study tours in the U.S. for visitors from the region, and conduct meetings with a wide variety of visitors from the region;
  • Coordinate with the Center’s other program and functional offices and assist in their work as required;
  • Develop coalition-building contacts with U.S. labor, government and non-governmental organizations in the Washington area;
  • Provide guidance to field offices on AFL-CIO and Center policies and priorities and serve as a liaison between the Center and AFL-CIO affiliates, GUFs, ITUC, its regional organizations and the ILO;
  • Assist and advise field offices in program development and proposal writing;
  • Develop and implement regional and sub-regional programs and programs in countries without a resident field representative;
  • Provide field offices with information on USAID, NED, and U.S. government rules and regulations that affect program management;
  • Recruit outside program consultants and other technical staff in accordance with field needs;
  • Provide technical assistance and support to conduct program evaluations of field projects and recruiting evaluators;
  •  Support field trips by Center personnel;
  • Share information on country conditions and labor issues as requested by Washington-based U.S. government offices and Congress;
  • Travel on a TDY basis to conduct and/or oversee program development and/or implementation in countries without a Center field office;
  • Work closely with AFL-CIO affiliates to coordinate their participation in the development and implementation of Solidarity Center programs, within approved communications guidelines.
  • Monitor programs to meet budget targets;
  • Represent the Solidarity Center as directed;
  • Furnish financial and administrative support services to field offices, and provide advice and guidance to field offices on grants management and funding procedures;
  • Initiate concept papers and program proposals and seeks funding for same;
  • Direct the work of program officers, assistants and secretaries in the program/regional office; and
  • Assume the responsibilities of the Coordinator in their absence, with the exception of hiring, firing, promoting or disciplining staff.

Apply HERE!

The Solidarity Center is an equal employment opportunity employer that does not discriminate against any person employed or seeking employment based on race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national or ethnic origin, age, marital status, disability, veteran status or any other status protected under applicable law. Women and minority candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.

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