US Director of Fellow Search

Ashoka U.S. Arlington, Virginia


Position at Ashoka

Director of Fellow Search, for Ashoka U.S.
Ashoka: Innovators for the Public

Forty years ago, Ashoka changed the framework of the social sector by introducing the idea that there is nothing more powerful than a bold, new idea in the hands of an exceptional social entrepreneur.

Ashoka is aiming for its next paradigm shift: a world in which everyone can be a changemaker.  We're assembling a team of entrepreneurs and builders around the world to help us get there.  If this sounds like the kind of institution you want to be a part of, consider joining us.

Meet some of Ashoka’s nearly 4,000 Fellows here and hear what Ashoka Fellows say about Ashoka here.


Ashoka hires people who have been starting and transforming things all their lives, whether that’s a school newspaper, a large company, or a local movement.  We have a compelling opportunity for doers and changemakers who are passionate about spotting new ideas and building entrepreneurial teams.

The Director of Fellow Search for Ashoka U.S. will possess strong multi-tasking abilities, as well as creativity, passion and demonstrated commitment to positive social change and social entrepreneurship. This individual will be responsible for finding and selecting incoming classes of Ashoka Fellows in the United States.

The ideal candidate is:

  • Inquisitive, sociable, and eager and able to deeply connect with social entrepreneurs
  • Curious about ideas, and eager to really dig into what new ideas might work and why
  • Extremely compelling in written and oral communication
  • Comfortable with ambiguity and a self-starter
  • Fluent in English and Spanish
  • Able to multi-task and innovate efficiently in a fast-paced, entrepreneurial environment

The Director of Fellow Search for Ashoka U.S. will be responsible for:

Nominator engagement:
  • Cultivate and engage a national network of ‘trend-spotters’ that result in 100+ strong Ashoka Fellow leads per year.
  • Lead research and investigative work to identify individuals and organizations with transformative potential in their fields
  • Work with Venture team to screen for and shortlist most promising Ashoka Fellow candidates.
  • Design and deploy communication strategy for growing nominator / trend-spotter constituency
Candidate engagement:
  • Lead weekly screening calls with promising candidates.
  • Manage a portfolio of around 10 late-stage candidates at all times, accompanying roughly half through the final stages of the selection process each year.
  • Accompany candidates through the process requires the Director of Search to work collaboratively with the candidate on the 10+ page “Ashoka Summary Document”, design and lead several “deep dive” conversations, engage independent references, lead due diligence, and write the final set of candidate materials, including a compelling 5-6 page “Ashoka profile”.
  • A background in social entrepreneurship, organizing, participatory action research, and/or investigative journalism is ideal.
Knowledge management:
  • Routinely prepare short candidate summaries, longer-form new Fellow profiles, and memos/presentations on patterns and trends for internal and external use.
  • Work collaboratively with other content producers at Ashoka, media partners, designers, and video editors.
  • Work collaboratively with clusters of Fellows and colleagues to surface and support cross-cutting insights and opportunities
  • Ensure quality data on Salesforce and up-to-date tracking and engagement across constituencies 
Note: We will be expanding the Fellow search team beyond this role to include at least one (1) early-career associate (also based with our Washington, DC, team).

Location and Salary expectations:  
Arlington, VA; salary commensurate with experience.
How to apply: Apply via Jobvite. In addition to the prompts of the application, please attach a cover letter that includes the answers to these application questions below. Applications without responses to these three questions will be rejected automatically. Applicants can reapply at any time should they include the responses to these application questions.

Application Questions
1. What's a powerful idea or changemaker you've encountered in the last year or two? How did you come across it?
2. What qualities or skills would you bring to the work of interviewing Ashoka Fellow candidates?
3. What aspect of the role is most energizing to you?