Director - Office of Policy and Legislative Affairs (OPLA)

Washington, DC
Full Time
Senior Executive

OPEN:               November 27, 2023

CLOSE:             Open until filled

POSITION:         Director - Office of Policy and Legislative Affairs (OPLA)

SALARY:            ES9 ($133,350 to $161,471)

The Office of Policy and Legislative Affairs (OPLA) team facilitates the lines of communication between the Executive and the Council. OPLA offers analyses and advice to inform the implementation of the Mayor’s legislative and policy agenda.Tasked with coordinating the policy-making process between the Executive Office of the Mayor and District government agencies, as well as many independent entities across all clusters, works with Council members and their staff to ensure that they receive the necessary information to adopt legislation and conduct oversight. OPLA also guides the Mayor’s appointees through the confirmation process and reviews all executive rulemakings, reprogrammings, and contracts to ensure coordination with all relevant stakeholders, consistency and effective implementation.


The incumbent performs work under the general administrative direction of the Director of Intergovernmental Affairs , in consultation with the Mayor, his staff, agency heads, and others in the policy formulation/implementation process. The Director is given wide latitude in designing and executing research projects on the Mayor's evaluation agenda. The Director is expected to manage all aspects of the research process and to report on both progress and findings at established reporting periods or as necessary. Substantive supervision is a matter of a review for policy implications, not continual guidance. Management supervision is designed to ensure that research resources are available and sufficient to accomplish the research agenda established by the Mayor. Completed assignments require normal review by the Mayor. Written products are typically submitted to the Mayor for review and approval, through the Director of Intergovernmental Affairs and the Chief of Staff.



  • As a professional with extensive experience in the conduct of research, administration of research, and policy implementation, advises the Mayor, Chief of Staff, and City Administrator of the success and limits of policies and programs as implemented by executive agencies.
  • Working with the Director of Intergovernmental Affairs and Chief of Staff, build support among Council, and other policymakers to resource and execute the mayor's policy agenda.
  • Identify and conduct research and analysis of emerging policy issues, as well as those from the council, and other policy making bodies to inform, advance and support alignment of policy positions.
  • Support and coordinate with Deputy Mayors and agencies in achieving policy goals through effective legislation, communication troubleshooting, and oversight.
  • Engages council, and other policymakers to communicate constructive messages to key stakeholders, as well as build coalitions in support of policy initiatives.
  • Supervises the technical work of the Office of Policy and Legislative Affairs, including the selection of projects and programs to be evaluated, the development of research designs, the conduct of the research projects and the preparation of written reports.
  • Provides technical and editorial review of all scientific reports and papers prepared by the Office of Program Evaluation to ensure technical competence, readability, and policy clarity and sufficiency. Provides technical and editorial review of research reports from executive branch agencies as part of the mayoral review process.
  • Assists in the transformation of mayoral and legislative directives into implementable public policy by working with agency directors and staff in formulating goals and measurable objectives that link program interventions to expected outcomes.
  • Provides the Mayor with information on the cost and effectiveness of existing programs and new mayoral initiatives.
  • Consults with operating agency directors in implementing recommendations flowing from the evaluation process and to increase their utilization of evaluation in implementing policy.
  • Consults with agency directors on matters dealing with organizational analysis, budget management, management information system design, strategic planning, and using information to make program decisions.
  • Prepares policy papers and policy addresses for the Mayor, especially when related to the implications of evaluation studies conducted by the Office of Policy and Legislative Affairs.
  • Performs other related duties as assigned.



  • Requires Bachelor's degree in public policy, public administration or a related field.   
  • Requires 3-5 experience in policy and/or legislative development with documented experience working with legislative bodies at the local, state or federal level.
  • Requires demonstrated experience with policy development and the legislative process at a local, state or federal level.
  • Must have strong working knowledge of the District of Columbia's unique legislative process and District agency rule making procedures.
  • Mastery of evaluation design and management policy and policy research, program development, and strategic management concepts. Mastery of quantitative and qualitative data analysis.
  • Thorough understanding of data system design and management, benefit/cost analysis, econometrics, research design, statistical techniques, and field research.
  • Mastery of policy planning concepts and their application, program evaluations and concepts, and techniques. Mastery of internal policies, procedures and practices of the Office of Policy and Legislative Affairs, the Office of the City Administrator, and the Executive Office of the Mayor.
  • Mastery of and skill in problem solving, negotiation strategies, and project management. Expert management skill and experience in planning, organizing, directing and controlling apprenticeship systems.
  • Mastery of and skill in applying oral and written communication techniques to present evaluation findings effectively to both professional and lay audiences. Must be able to participate comfortably at the highest levels of government in all phases of public formulation and implementation.
  • Demonstrated experience in providing leadership in a supervisory capacity.
  • Ability-to supervise subordinates based on priorities, selective consideration of the difficulty, and the requirement of the assignments and their capabilities.
  • Mastery of a wide range of qualitative and/or quantitative methods for assessment and improvement of program effectiveness, and the improvement of complex management processes and systems.



There is a legal requirement that each new appointee to the Excepted and Executive Service either: (1) be domiciled in the District of Columbia at the time of appointment; or (2) establish District domicile within one hundred eighty (180) days of appointment.  The law also requires that Excepted and Executive Service employees maintain District domicile during the period of the appointment.  Failure to maintain District domicile during the period of the appointment will result in forfeiture of employment.



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