Manager of 100,000 Opportunities Initiative


Thrive Chicago ( is a local initiative modeled after and supported by the national StriveTogether Network, which provides a roadmap for harnessing the power of collective impact. By bringing together organizations across multiple sectors, agreeing on common outcomes of focus, and uniting efforts spanning the entire continuum from cradle to career, Thrive Chicago will result in citywide alignment of goals that benefits all children.

Launched in August of 2015 to create more pathways to economic opportunity for young adults, the 100,000 Opportunities Initiative ( aims to be the largest employer-led coalition in the country. This coalition has committed to engaging at least 100,000 opportunity youth (16-24 year olds who are not in school and not working) by 2018 through part-time and full-time jobs, apprenticeships, and internships. After launching the national effort here in August, Chicago was chosen as of the first of five demonstration cities. This includes developing and implementing a comprehensive employment preparation, placement and retention strategy. Thrive Chicago, in partnership with other local stakeholders like the Chicago Cook Workforce Partnership, is leading this effort.

Job Summary

This new national effort will leverage Thrive’s collective impact expertise and engage our diverse network of stakeholders to prepare and connect thousands of young adults with employment opportunities over the next several years. As an integral member of Thrive’s dynamic and growing team, the 100k Project Manager will work with key partners both locally and nationally to lead Chicago’s strategy development and day-to-day operationalization of the 100k Opportunities Initiative. Additionally, he or she will serve as the primary point of contact and project manager for the wide range of stakeholders engaged in implementing the 100k Initiative in Chicago, including: public institutions, community based organizations, funders, and employers. This skilled project manager will ensure the timely and effective completion of all the initiative’s work streams. He or she will work closely with the Thrive Employment Change Network leader as well as the rest of Thrive team to ensure the 100k initiative activities align with and leverages the rest of Thrive’s work.


Responsibilities include but will not be limited to:

  • Lead the strategic design and operationalization all aspects of Chicago’s 100k Initiative in partnership with other initiative stakeholders (including the Chicago Cook Workforce Partnership, the Mayor’s Office, Chicago Public Schools, City Colleges of Chicago, Department of Family and Support Services, and community based organizations).
  • Project manage, facilitate, and provide technical assistance to achieve overall objectives and complete deliverables of the 100k initiative.
  • Disseminate clear, accurate, and timely information across the multiple institutions that serve youth (i.e. CPS, DFSS, Mayor’s Office, CCC) to ensure they – and their respective networks of organizations – have the resources and tools they need to effectively connect youth to 100k professional development and hiring opportunities.
  • Work closely with business relations specialist at the Chicago Cook Workforce Partnership to plan and coordinate bi-monthly hiring events and support their engagement of 100k Coalition employers in order to ensure seamless alignment between supply (youth facing) and demand (employer facing) activities.
  • Serve as the day-to-day contact for national funders and partners (i.e. Aspen Forum for Community Solutions, Schultz Family Foundation, Starbucks, Jobs for the Future).
  • Work closely with the Employment Change Network lead to ensure 100k activities align with and complement broader Change Network initiatives whenever possible.
  • Manage to agreed upon action plans to ensure on time completion of all tasks, propose adjustments to timeline if needed.
  • Provide project management support and develop process improvement methods and tools.
  • Develop and cultivate relationships with community stakeholders, including practitioners in the education, faith, nonprofit, philanthropic, and civic sectors.
  • Support the ongoing collaborative work of the 100k initiative by filling a variety of support roles including the coordination of meetings, events, and community presentations.
  • Assist with grant reporting related to the 100k initiative.
  • Work closely with Thrive staff to create and implement communication strategies for various stakeholder groups including Change Networks members, Leadership Council members, public institutions, education and non-profit partners.

Qualifications and Skills

  • Passionate about realizing Thrive Chicago’s vision: Chicago is a city where all succeed in education, career, and life.
  • Bachelor’s degree required with at least 5 years of relevant work experience. Master’s degree preferred.
  • Familiarity with collective impact and non-profit sector preferred.
  • Knowledge of the education and workforce development systems preferred.
  • Demonstrated ability to manage the scope, requirements, deliverables, timeline, and resource needs of complex, multi-stakeholder projects. Knowledge of project management fundamentals and experience managing projects are essential.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills. Must be an effective communicator with multiple audiences, including community based organizations, foundations, researchers, and educators. Must be able to communicate technical information to a wide variety of audiences.
  • Strong strategic thinking skills.
  • Be self-motivated, able to take initiative, and have a positive personality.
  • Good organizational skills and high attention to detail required.
  • Advanced skills in Microsoft Excel, Word, and PowerPoint.

Compensation and Benefits

Salary and benefits will be competitive and commensurate with experience.

Application Instructions

Please submit a resume to Jennifer Keeling ([email protected]). We will review applications on a rolling basis, so it is to your advantage to apply as soon as possible.

Thrive Chicago believes in equal employment opportunities for all, regardless of color, religion, sex, national origin, disability or any other legally protected classification. Thrive’s policy is to hire and promote the most qualified applicants and to comply with all federal, state and local equal employment opportunity laws.

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