State Policy Network

Careers and Internships

About State Policy Network

State Policy Network (SPN) catalyzes thriving, durable freedom movements in every state, anchored by high-performing, independent think tanks. We support the growth and success of a collaborative and entrepreneurial network of 65 independent state think tank affiliates and over 90 partners, connecting talented state leaders so they can learn, challenge, and grow together, while advancing state policy reform initiatives.

Current Openings:

Events Director

SPN seeks an Events Director to join our fast-paced, growing events team. This senior level position will contribute to the development of organizational events strategy, help mentor and grow event team members, and help continue strengthening and scaling SPN’s overall efforts to create best-in-class events-related programming that advances SPN’s mission. The Events Director will also be responsible for event preparation, planning, and on-site execution of multiple events. This includes driving strategic content for key portions of SPN’s Annual Meeting, one of the largest events in the Liberty Movement, with over 1,300 attendees annually.

The ideal candidate will be an entrepreneurial, experienced events professional, able to manage an event from concept to completion, with an interest in helping advance SPN’s mission.   

Key Responsibilities

Strategy & Relationship Building

  • Partner with Senior Director of Event Strategy to develop and drive organization event strategy and measures.
  • Work across internal teams to collaborate and build strong partnerships for annual and long-term goals.
  • Ensure the highest level of customer service to reflect SPN’s brand to both internal and external customers.

Event Execution and Content Planning

  • Manage a portfolio of high-profile events, including driving strategic content management of key portions of SPN’s Annual Meeting; drive overall event execution timeline, including all event-related activities from logistics (including food/beverage needs, audio-visual/production needs, travel and venue) to marketing timeline and program development.
  • Ensure brand consistency and high-quality execution of each assigned organization event, in close partnership with SPN program owners.
  • Maintain and develop key vendor relationships in coordination with other event team members.

Budget, Metrics, and Processes

  • Track event performance and metrics to evaluate event effectiveness.
  • Calculate, track, and report event budget. Recommend adjustments as necessary throughout planning process to ensure event effectiveness and adjustments that may need to be made to achieve event goals.
  • Consistently look for opportunities to strengthen event team processes and procedures and make future events more effective


  • 7-10 years of experience, including lead event management, experience in event planning, and staff management and coaching.
  • Strong interest in furthering State Policy Network’s mission and impact.
  • Team player with upbeat personality, commitment to excellence, and superb interpersonal skills and a focus on customer service.
  • Demonstrated history of systems thinking and process creation.
  • A strong ability to prioritize and balance multiple projects effectively, and problem-solve in time-sensitive situations.
  • An understanding of best practices in an event setting for social media, event registration, and event communications (experience with event registration platforms, including Cvent, is preferred, or ability to learn these programs is required.)
  • Extensive contract negotiation skills and outstanding written and oral communications skills.
  • Proficient knowledge of Excel, Power Point, Word, Salesforce, and cloud-sharing programs.


The role will report to the Senior Director of Special Projects and Events.

This is a full-time position based in SPN’s headquarters (Arlington, VA) or in a virtual office. The position will require the ability to travel. (30%)

How to Apply

Qualified candidates should submit the following application materials in one PDF file:

  • Resume
  • Cover Letter detailing your interest in the position, SPN’s mission, and your salary requirements

Applications should be submitted to Talent Market via this link:


There is no application deadline for this position. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.  This job will remain posted on our site until it is filled.

Questions can be directed to Katelynn Barbosa, Director of Talent Engagement at Talent Market, who is assisting with the search:

While we thank all applicants in advance for their interest in this position, we are only able to contact those to whom we can offer an interview. Only direct applications will be considered. No phone calls, please.

Talent Market is a nonprofit entity dedicated to promoting liberty by helping free-market nonprofits identify talent for critical roles. We provide free consulting and recruiting services to free-market think tanks, policy organizations, research centers, and capacity-building institutions dedicated to advancing the principles of limited government and free enterprise.

Managing Director (LaunchPad)


State Policy Network is seeking a Managing Director to join our fast-paced, growing SPN LaunchPad team. This position is ideal for a market-oriented, entrepreneurial candidate, with prior business or consulting experience in organization development, innovation, and growth strategies.

The Managing Director is a senior-level position responsible for continuing to build out, and scale up, SPN’s LaunchPad Project, ensuring the project’s ambitious vision translates into a best-in-class opportunity for social and business entrepreneurs to hone innovative solutions addressing pressing problems impacting human flourishing in the states. The director will be responsible for working with the LaunchPad team to successfully drive the project from strategy implementation through measurable impact. The role will require the development of the methodology and implementation for project recruitment, project selection, “Brain Trust” recruitment and engagement, Incubator Event content and program, as well as day-to-day program team management. Blending strategic thinking with business expertise, the director will work alongside entrepreneurs at each stage of the LaunchPad experience, helping them develop and implement strategies that accelerate their project’s implementation, growth, and outcomes.

This position reports directly to SPN’s Senior Vice President for Communications and can be remote or hybrid.

The LaunchPad Managing Director will also assist with recruitment and engagement of experts, mentors, and coaches in the LaunchPad community.

We have retained the Executive Search Practice group @RobertHalf for this search.

About SPN’s LaunchPad Project

State Policy Network’s LaunchPad is an ecosystem where social and business entrepreneurs hone innovative solutions to address pressing problems related to human freedom and civil society in the states. A Brain Trust of transformative thinkers, like-minded innovators, and veteran entrepreneurs help create this ecosystem.

We invite up to ten idea entrepreneurs to advance their project in an exclusive, intensive two-day LaunchPad in-person event, where participants pitch their idea to the Brain Trust.

In the months leading up to the two-day event, the SPN team will work with each project and project owner to prepare for the in-person event. This preparation process is called the DISCOVERY phase.

The two-day intensive is our INCUBATOR EVENT. Using a co-creation process, assumptions are tested, ideas improved, and an action plan is developed in concert with Brain Trust members.  Up to 50 Brain Trust members will be at the work session. These individuals are experts in their fields, successful entrepreneurs, and transformative thinkers. A handful will be grant-makers and investors. Brain Trust members are self-organizing and are free to choose where they lend their expertise.

Idea entrepreneurs who successfully complete the INCUBATOR EVENT, and who need key resources to successfully launch, advance to the INCUBATOR PLUS. There the project owner is provided the type of intense structure, training, mentorship, and investor networking required to potentially move toward remarkable success.


  • Develop and drive an executable and measurable vision along with strategic objectives for LaunchPad, in collaboration with SPN’s VP of Strategy and the Leadership Team of SPN.
  • Drive LaunchPad recruitment and selection process, ensuring a robust pool of high-potential projects (Note for future years: We anticipate 20-25 projects throughout the year, with at least 10 of those projects moving forward into the Incubator Plus or some level of engagement after the incubator event.)
  • Drive recruitment plan and engagement for Brain Trust members, in partnership with SPN VP of Strategy and Development Team lead.
  • Develop and execute an outreach strategy to build the LaunchPad pipeline, identifying and cultivating relationships with potential future partners.
  • Partner with Lead Facilitator throughout Discovery Phrase to work with selected project owners, as needed, to prepare for the Incubator event
  • Create and execute high-value LaunchPad Incubator event experience, in partnership with event project manager
  • Develop and manage the implementation of rich post-Incubator event programming, including the Incubator Plus, to ensure project owners with promising projects receive the support needed to move their idea toward a successful launch, including a customized needs assessment for each entrepreneur and project, and the crafting of individualized plans and related connections to assist entrepreneur in follow-up execution.
  • Continually track projects to note marketing and fundraising opportunities and provide information to key team members to capitalize on those opportunities; provide consistent communication and coordination about LaunchPad with SPN staff.
  • Develop and build coaching and mentorship bench, utilizing LaunchPad Brain Trust members. Build strong relationships with these existing partners and resources.
  • Oversee operations of LaunchPad Project team, including management of project budgets and program staff and contractors.


  • 8-10+ years previous work experience in business and project management, including scenario planning, and using
  • 8-10+ years previous work experience in business and project management, including scenario planning, and using optimization techniques to solve project and business problems.
  • A passion for social innovation and entrepreneurship.
  • Entrepreneurial experience across multiple industry sectors preferred.
  • Demonstrated knowledge and experience in policy, advocacy, business, marketing, and finance.
  • Strong knowledge of fundamental business concepts and excellent problem-solving skills with ability to set benchmarks and measures; evaluation methods; identify root causes related to positive or negative results; and recommend solutions and experiments to test project viability.
  • Able to cultivate, build, and maintain strong working relationships with individuals from diverse backgrounds and perspectives.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Excellent analytical skills and ability to use data and statistics to solve project and organizational problems along with strong Microsoft Office professional skills.
  • A Bachelor’s degree in Business, Management, Public Administration is required.
  • An advanced degree like a M.B.A., M.P.H, M.P.A., J.D. is preferred.

How to apply

If interested, please contact:

Kevin Hicar, Senior Principal, (202) 572-8312 or