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Principal Director, Operations

The Principal Director, Operations is responsible for leading Elevate’s operational processes, systems, and tools. This role will support Elevate’s Chief Operating Officer and executive team in creating, implementing, managing, supporting, and reporting on the processes needed to optimize Elevate’s operations. These systems primarily support Elevate’s ability to effectively manage the execution of our projects and the associated financial portfolio, which includes budgeting, forecasting, and financial analysis. The Principal Director, Operations, works along the entire range of Elevate systems and processes in support of Elevate’s community-centric approach to designing, developing, implementing, and evaluating our portfolio of equitable, inclusive, and diverse clean energy programming

The Principal Director, Operations reports to the Chief Operating Officer. This position is located in Chicago, Illinois and is currently remote with in-person meetings as needed.


  • In coordination with Elevate’s legal team, support the design and implementation of contracts management processes including the coordination of systems and tools for timely contract execution with the general counsel, paralegal, business development team, COO, CFO, and various program leads and project managers.
  • In coordination with Elevate’s Project Management Board (PMB), assist Project Managers in developing the necessary project planning and tracking approaches to ensure grant and contract compliance, including providing guidance on work plans, project performance and goals tracking, and reporting.
  • Support the “Manage” phase of Elevate’s project management process, which includes monthly budget and resource management, reviewing key project performance metrics, and supporting the metrics reporting functions of Elevate’s project management tool, Unanet.
  • Working with Elevate leadership, design, staff, and implement an Elevate Project Management Office (PMO) to ensure consistent processes, Project Manager training, and support.
  • Coordinate with Elevate’s operational, program, and finance teams on short and long-term financial performance requirements for projects, including rates, contract financial goals and metrics, invoicing and payment terms, and overall financial portfolio requirements and support Project Managers in ensuring contract and project budget inputs are consistent with these expectations.
  • Work with the operations team and support Elevate’s leadership to turn overarching strategy into a comprehensive program development and implementation of annual plan and goals.
  • Provide operational support and coordination for the quarterly board meetings.
  • Report regularly to the COO on the progress of all operational activities.
  • Work with the accounting and finance teams on the annual budget.
  • Provide operational support, guidance, and insights into Elevate’s other related processes, including responding to RFPs, drafting proposals, and strategic planning.
  • Ensure accuracy and uniformity (via templates, common language, and consistent processes) of Elevate’s operational processes and documentation.
  • Coordinate as necessary with Elevate staff on operational process compliance needs, including the support of training and reporting requirements.

Qualifications and Skills

  • Bachelor’s degree in a related field or equivalent experience
  • Deep operational and project management background required, with an emphasis on strategic planning, contract management, budgeting, and administration
  • A minimum of 10 years of demonstrated experience overseeing operational systems and processes
  • Ability to independently leverage critical thinking skills to address real-world issues based on project needs and/or project best practices
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Self-starter and innovator
  • Process-oriented team player with demonstrated ability to work under pressure
  • Ability to manage multiple projects/tasks simultaneously and focus on critical priorities with minimum supervision
  • Proficiency in MS Office applications (PowerPoint, Outlook, Word, Excel, SharePoint, Access)

Organization Description

We design and implement programs that reduce costs, protect people and the environment, and ensure the benefits of clean and efficient energy use reach those who need them most.

At Elevate, the greatest asset of our organization is the kind of people we attract. Elevate employees co-create our energetic and collaborative environment, where constant learning and service to others take priority. We empower individuals to challenge conventional thinking in pursuit of innovation and we seek dynamic, hardworking team members who are inspired to work with people of diverse backgrounds and perspectives. Every day we make a difference by placing our team, clients, and community partners first. From our mission to our focus on staff wellbeing and career development opportunities, there’s no better place to grow your career than Elevate.

Anti-Discrimination Policy

Elevate is an equal opportunity employer that does not discriminate against any employee or job applicant based on race, color, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, age, disability, veteran status, or marital status. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including, but not limited to, hiring, termination, promotion, transfer, layoff, leaves of absence, compensation, and training.

To Apply

To apply, please submit your cover letter and resume through our candidate portal at Search for “Principal Director, Operations” to find the position listing.

Please note that Elevate will only contact candidates via an email address. We will never ask a candidate for payment of any kind as part of the hiring or onboarding process or send payment to any candidate prior to completing the hiring and onboarding process.

No phone calls please.

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