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Senior Advisor, Maternal and Infant Health Innovation


Job Summary

In 2019, New Jersey First Lady Tammy Murphy launched Nurture NJ, a statewide initiative committed to ensuring equity in maternal and infant health outcomes for Black and Brown women, and to reducing overall maternal and infant mortality and morbidity in the state. To advance a core recommendation of the Nurture NJ strategic plan, NJEDA is developing a first-of-its-kind Maternal and Infant Health Innovation Center (“the Center”) in Trenton, in partnership with the Office of the First Lady, and in close coordination with state interagency partners, the City of Trenton and local community residents and stakeholders. The Center is intended to be a resource for both equitable delivery of health care services, an incubator of new innovations to drive improved maternal and infant health outcomes, and a central hub for New Jersey’s stakeholders dedicated to improving the health of New Jersey’s babies and mothers. The Center aims to catalyze innovation and serve as a vital anchor for Nurture NJ, as the state works to achieve the goal of making New Jersey the safest and most equitable place in the nation to give birth and raise a baby.

 In March 2022, NJEDA’s board approved a partnership with the John S. Watson Institute for Urban Policy and Research at Kean University (“Watson Institute”) to lead community engagement efforts to inform development of the Center. In tandem with the Watson Institute’s work, NJEDA has engaged real estate firm JLL to begin site planning efforts including preliminary site assessment and spatial renderings for the Center. 

Governor Murphy’s FY22 and FY23 budgets have appropriated $2.9 million to NJEDA for planning and scoping the Center, and $20 million to NJEDA for construction of the Center.  


Reporting to the Executive Vice President for Economic Security and working closely with NJEDA’s Real Estate team, the Senior Advisor, Maternal and Infant Health Innovation will play a critical leadership role in the program and partnership development, community engagement, project management, program design, partnership structure, and implementation of the Center  NJEDA is expected to serve as the developer of the Center, and will facilitate partnerships while the Center is being developed. NJEDA will acquire, own, and improve the site selected to host the Center. NJEDA will design and construct the Center and expects to enter into a long-term master lease with the Center Lead.


$99,871 - $110,968

Note: The NJEDA currently offers a hybrid work schedule for up to 2 days of telecommute work from home. To participate, you will be required to have high speed home internet access and a managers approval. This program does not supersede the "New Jersey First Act", which requires newly hired NJEDA employees to establish and then maintain, principal residence in the State of New Jersey.


Essential Duties and Responsibilities


  • The Senior Advisor, Maternal and Infant Health Innovation provides strategic vision, leadership and management to guide the creation, partnership development, program development, and community engagement to establish the Maternal and Infant Health Innovation Center.
  • Identify, develop, and implement programmatic and strategic partnerships to be housed at the Center which may include but are not limited to:
    • Comprehensive clinical services with continuity of care to serve women before conception, during pregnancy, and after birth, including reproductive health and gynecological services, pre- and post-natal obstetric care, and newborn care and pediatric services.
    • An academic and workforce training center focused on expanding the perinatal workforce in New Jersey and beyond, including Midwives and Community-based Doulas, Community Health Workers, as well as continuing education for the existing perinatal workforce.
    • Innovation and co-working space for researchers and entrepreneurs focused on developing technology, therapeutics, and other solutions to address maternal and infant health challenges.
    • A data collaborative to collect and analyze maternal and infant health data across the state, with particular attention to racial disparities in outcomes. This data collaborative will amplify data trends and convene key stakeholders to discuss trends in maternal and infant health outcomes.
    • A policy and research non-profit or governmental organization focused on long-term stewardship of this vital policy arena and establishing New Jersey as the national leader in combating the scourge of maternal and infant health racial disparities. scope of services  
  • Serve as subject matter expert on maternal and infant health, with an emphasis on catalyzing new innovations to improve maternal and infant health across the state and scaling those approaches to have potential national and international impact through their partnership with the Center, while also addressing the immediate needs of and investing in the people of Trenton’s health and wellbeing. Two specific areas of focus will be:

    • Understanding, listening to, and incorporating the needs, history and perspectives of the Trenton community throughout the development, implementation and launch of the Center

    • Taking a strengths-based approach, determine how the Center can best complement, leverage, and partner with current services offered in Trenton while assessing gaps and addressing unmet needs.
  • Coordinate and engage with the Office of the First Lady and an array of stakeholders about the Center’s development and progress, including state agencies (Departments of Health, Human Services, Children and Families, Treasury, Office of the Secretary of Higher Education, etc.), the City of Trenton, mothers, families, policymakers, service providers, and local residents.
  • Act as key liaison with the Watson Institute, which is completing the first phase of its comprehensive, community-based participatory research initiative to identify the types of services and activities that will be central components of the Center. The second phase of work will begin in 2023 and will include ongoing engagement with Trenton stakeholders and residents focused on better understanding: a) current programs and service offerings for expectant mothers and infants and gaps in the service landscape; b) opportunities to leverage existing community assets; and c) models for equitable, culturally competent service delivery. 
  • Facilitate connections between Watson Institute, JLL, and NJEDA’s Real Estate team to incorporate community engagement on the Center’s potential structure and service offerings into the location and building development process, including feedback from Trenton residents and service providers gathered through collaborative service design to understand the vision for the types of services offered through the Center and models for equitable, culturally competent service delivery.
  • Serve as point person on initiatives and programs that build on Governor Murphy’s commitment to growing the innovation economy through investment in its people, ecosystem, physical space, and public and private research, including NJEDA’s partnership with the New Jersey Commission on Science, Innovation and Technology (CSIT) to launch the Maternal and Infant Health Research and Development (R&D) Seed Grant Program. The Center offers a path toward achieving these goals with a focus on both catalyzing new innovations and burgeoning industries to improve maternal and infant health across the state and scaling those approaches to have potential national and international impact, while also addressing the immediate needs of and investing in the people of Trenton’s health and wellbeing.
  • Promotes teamwork and communication to encourage an interactive, cooperative, collaborative and customer focused work environment among division, EDA staff and external customers.
  • Must complete annual and semiannual self-assessment, as required.
  • Performs other duties and special projects, as assigned.


Required Skills and Abilities


Relevant industry experience

  • Deep knowledge (or) experience around maternal and infant health, health equity, community development, and/or social determinants of health
  • Strong track record of stakeholder engagement and ability to engage credibly and thoughtfully in conversations with community members, service providers, industry, nonprofit, and government leaders

Entrepreneurial leadership

  • Comfort working cross organizationally to achieve alignment and ensure successful implementation of initiatives
  • Demonstrated ability to self-motivate and self-lead own work planning and execution with a strong results orientation
  • Exceptional history of strong performance and consistent high-quality delivery on commitments
  • Ability to prioritize own workload - must be highly organized, detail-oriented, handle various tasks simultaneously, and work independently within limited time constrains with little supervision
  • Energetic, flexible, collaborative and proactive; a leader who can positively and productively impact both strategic and tactical initiatives
  • Ability to adapt to changes in work environment and manage competing demands
  • Excellent judgement, negotiation, and conflict-resolution skills
  • Demonstrates respectful behavior and promotes teamwork and communication to encourage an interactive, cooperative, collaborative and customer focused work environment among division, EDA staff and external customers.

Problem solving and communication

  • Demonstrated proficiency in creative and analytical problem solving, including the ability to structure issues, define critical analyses or facts required, execute complex analyses with limited errors and oversight, synthesize findings, and propose actionable solutions
  • Exceptional written (presentation, memos, and emails), oral, interpersonal and presentation skills, and the ability to effectively interface with a broad range of audiences
  • Must be able to maintain confidentiality and deal effectively and diplomatically with business professionals and EDA staff
  • Ability to communicate effectively both verbally and in writing; proficient in grammar, spelling and editing; and foster communications with business professionals and EDA staff
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office Suite and the ability to learn new software packages

Management and ownership mindset

  • History of demonstrating respectful behavior and promoting teamwork and communication to encourage an interactive, cooperative, collaborative and customer-focused work environment among public and private stakeholders
  • Comfort encouraging new ideas, initiatives, and contributions; creates opportunities for change
  • Demonstrated ability maintaining strong ethical orientation, including exercising sound financial stewardship of the organization’s assets and controls expenses whenever possible
  • Ability to oversee a budget and ensure funds are applied in the most cost-effective way

Required Qualifications

Education and Experience Requirements

  • Bachelors’ degree, preferably with an emphasis in public health, social services, non-profit, or public administration, social work, policy, and/or equivalent experience
  • Seven to ten years of practical experience related to maternal health, infant health, community development, social services, or other relevant field
  • Minimum of seven years of program development and management experience
  • Strong preference for candidates with knowledge and familiarity with the Trenton community and service provider offerings in the broader Trenton region
  • Excellent relationship building skills and ability to foster and maintain a cross-sectoral team of diverse community and political stakeholders

 Advanced degree or industry specific certification may be substituted for 1 year of experience


Physical Demands

  • Minimal
  • Ability to work outside normal business hours, as needed


  • As necessary to events, meetings, businesses, etc.

 Certificates and Licenses Required

  • License: Staff are required to possess a driver's license valid in New Jersey only if the operation of a vehicle, rather than employee mobility, is necessary to perform the essentials duties of the position.


The examples of work for this title are for illustrative purposes only. A particular position using this title may not perform all duties listed in this job description. Conversely, all duties performed on the job may not be listed. This job description is intended to convey information essential to understanding the scope, general nature and level of work performed by job holders within this job.  This job description is not intended to be an exhaustive list of qualifications, skills, efforts, duties, responsibilities or working conditions associated with the position.


Your employment at NJEDA is voluntary and subject to termination by you or NJEDA at will, with or without cause, or with or without notice, at any time.  Nothing in this job description shall be interpreted to conflict, eliminate or modify the employment-at-will status of NJEDA employees. 


This position is considered exempt and is excluded from minimum wage, overtime regulations, and other rights and protections afforded nonexempt workers under the FLSA.


NJEDA reserves the right to amend/revise this job description as necessary to meet current and changing business needs.


Equal Opportunity Employer


Position Requirements

  • Foreign degrees/transcripts must be evaluated by a reputable evaluation service at your own expense and must be submitted prior to a start date. If this cannot be provided within 21 days of an offer the offer will be rescinded.
  • Must comply with the “New Jersey First Act” which requires employees hired after September 1, 2011 to reside in New Jersey. Non-New Jersey resident employees must relocate to New Jersey within one year of their date of hire and provide proof of residency to Human Resources.
  • Must complete an Outside Activity Questionnaire (disclosure of outside office or employment) on an annual basis.


Interested in this opportunity?  Apply online HERE, or refer this job to a friend HERE

Job ID: 2022-1862

Category/Department: Economic Security

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