Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion Partner

National Resources Defense Council
1152 15th St NW #300
Washington, D.C., DC 20005
United States
Job Description

NRDC is a non-profit environmental advocacy organization. We use law, science, and the support of 3.1 million members and online activists to protect the planet's wildlife and wild places and to ensure the rights of all people to clean air, clean water, and healthy communities. NRDC was founded in 1970 and our people helped write some of America's bedrock environmental laws, including the Clean Water Act and many of the implementing regulations. Today, our team of more than 700 lawyers, scientists, economists, policy advocates, communications experts, and others work across the United States and the globe from our offices in Beijing; Bozeman, Montana; Chicago; New Delhi; New York; San Francisco; Santa Monica; and Washington, D.C. 


NRDC is seeking a Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion Partner to work with the DEI team in Chicago or other NRDC office locations. 


Position Summary

We're searching for an experienced Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) practitioner with strong employee relations experience to ensure a positive employment climate and culture. In collaboration with our HR Employee Relations and HR Partners, the DEI Partner recommends, implements and executes customized interventions to meaningfully address DEI-related employee relations issues within internal client groups. Interventions include, but are not limited to, coaching, counseling, mediation, training and development.


In collaboration with HR Employee Relations and HR Partners, the DEI Partner works with senior leaders, managers, and team members as a DEI subject-matter expert and culture carrier. Using deep DEI expertise and superb interpersonal and emotional intelligence skills, along with NRDC-specific dignity framework and equity tools, the DEI Partner works to ensure dignity and equity are understood, championed, and upheld throughout NRDC.


Reporting to the Managing Director, DEI, this role partners very closely with the HR Employee Relations and HR Partner team. This is an ideal role for someone with deep DEI subject matter expertise with the ability to coach leaders and employees across levels. The successful candidate is a collaborative, action-oriented, and resourceful leader who is capable of quickly establishing themselves as a credible strategic partner. The DEI Partner is trustworthy, empathetic, and engaging, and operates with a high level of cultural sensitivity. They have a keen ability to effectively coach and teach others how to embody DEI principles, practices, and values, especially in difficult situations.


In close collaboration with the HR Partnership team, the DEI Partner uses the foundation of NRDC’s DEI principles, dignity framework and equity tools to:

  • Recommend, implement and execute customized interventions to meaningfully address DEI-related employee relations issues within internal client groups. Interventions include, but are not limited to, coaching, counseling, mediation, training and development.
  • Provide DEI subject matter expertise, strategic guidance and tactical support to employees at all levels on DEI-related matters.
  • Act as a strategic partner to managers and function leaders, providing expert guidance and tactical support on how to embed DEI principles into business strategies, practices, and decision-making processes.
  • Identify DEI opportunity areas specific to internal client groups’ DEI competencies, and design and implement solutions aligned with NRDC’s dignity framework and equity tools.
  • Collaborate with internal clients to understand their needs and partner with other HR SME’s including HR Partners, Talent Management, Talent Acquisition, Analytics, Compensation, and Communications to customize solutions ensuring DEI best practices and principles are incorporated into solutions.
  • Consult with leaders on fostering an inclusive culture, identifying areas for improvement, and implementing strategies to address systemic barriers and biases.
  • Partner with the Director of DEI Learning to develop and deliver relevant training programs, workshops, and resources to increase awareness, knowledge, and skills related to diversity, equity, and inclusion topics.
  • Provide guidance and support to managers and function leaders in implementing inclusive practices, mitigating bias, and promoting cultural competency.
  • Coach leaders, managers, and employees on specific and challenging situations related to sensitive DEI-related topics
  • Mediate conversations related to sensitive DEI-related topics
  • Work with NRDC’s ERGs to understand NRDC challenges related to DEI and implement effective interventions in support of increasing DEI competency across the organization
  • Provide hands-on Employee Relations guidance and support in matters related to DEI, including change management, investigations, and employment actions. 
  • Recommend and implement appropriate corrective or development interventions related to DEI employee relations issues to address the issues effectively. Provide insight and feedback to leaders and other stakeholders as appropriate.


  • 5-7 years directly related experience, including at least 4+ years of experience in Human Resources and 4+ years in DEI. 
  • At least 4 years’ experience in successful coaching and mediation related to DEI.  
  • Experience successfully leading and executing successful DEI interventions from conceptualization to implementation is required. 
  • Experience and credibility as a leader in an environment where the ability to influence, work across a complex matrix, and build relationships is critical. 
  • Deep understanding of diversity, equity, and inclusion principles and best practices, along with knowledge of relevant legislation and regulations.  
  • Skills and experience in analyzing and diagnosing business problems to identify root causes. 
  • Bachelor’s degree in a related field required, or equivalent combination of education and experience. 
  • Strong project management skills, with the ability to lead and execute multiple initiatives simultaneously. 
  • Superb communications, interpersonal, and emotional intelligence skills  
  • Ability to demonstrate constant professionalism when interacting with others, maintain professional relationships, and exhibit impartiality.  
  • Strong relationship-building, diplomacy, and negotiation skills with the ability to empathize with others. 
  • A willingness to roll up your sleeves and dig in. 
  • Ability to thrive in an ambiguous and rapidly changing environment. 
  • Excellent time management skills with a proven ability to handle competing priorities and meet deadlines.  
  • Proven acuity in MS office suite, with strength in Power Point, Word, and Excel. 
  • Coaching certifications preferred 
  • Mediation certification preferred 
  • DEI certification preferred 
  • HR certification preferred 

NRDC is committed to advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion, both in our work and in our workplace. We believe that celebrating and actively welcoming diverse voices and perspectives is essential to solving the planet's most pressing environmental problems, and we encourage applications from candidates whose identities have been historically under-represented in the environmental movement. 


We are an equal opportunity employer and do not discriminate in hiring or employment on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, marital status, sexual orientation, national origin, citizenship, age, disability, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state, or local law. Pursuant to the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance, we will consider for employment qualified applicants with arrest and conviction records.  


We offer competitive salaries, excellent benefits, and a supportive working environment. Salary is based on a nonprofit scale and is commensurate with skills and experience. Internal equity will be reviewed and considered to determine a final offer. For this position, the salary range is $100,000 to $115,000.  


Our offices are open and we are operating in a hybrid model. We offer NRDCers flexibility, and we ask them to come into the office and spend meaningful time there in collaboration with their colleagues. We call this purposeful presence. 


As a science-based organization, NRDC aims to do our part to help contain the COVID-19 public health crisis. For the sake of health, safety, and equity, we ask that people be vaccinated unless they have an approved medical or religious accommodation or other exemption in accordance with state and local law. We consider a person to be vaccinated two weeks after receiving one full course of a CDC-approved vaccine. In accordance with state or local law, new hires will be asked to attest to vaccination, those wishing to do so may request medical or religious accommodations or other exemptions via NRDC Employee Relations. NRDC treats all vaccine-related data confidentially, in keeping with local, state, and federal laws. 



1152 15th St NW #300
Washington, D.C. DC 20005
United States