The University of Maryland’s National Center for Smart Growth (NCSG) is seeking a highly motivated Project Coordinator to support a new initiative focused on preventing small business displacement in gentrifying neighborhoods across the U.S. The purpose of the project is to build a national community of practice that promotes innovation, develops social capital, skills, and capacities, and facilitates knowledge sharing among small business leaders, including small business owners, community-based organizations, technical assistance providers, advocacy organizations, and policymakers. This multi-year, multi-phased collective impact initiative has three key goals:

Build national knowledge communities around important areas of policy and practice;
Identify, evaluate, and share promising practices and policies; and
Facilitate community- and capacity-building among small business leaders to encourage adoption of impactful strategies.
This Project Coordinator will support the Project Director, Dr. Willow Lung-Amam, and the core team of researchers and practitioners. The Project Coordinator will also coordinate and facilitate the activities of support staff, consultants, and community of practice members. The Project Coordinator will report to the Project Director and receive strategic direction from the project team, including the NCSG Director. Further information about the initiative can be found below.

The intended term of the project is 2.5 years based on agreed-upon benchmarks of accomplishment, with an option for renewal dependent upon funding and other factors. This is a full-time, salaried University of Maryland, exempt, Contingent II staff position. Benefits include healthcare, retirement, and university tuition remission.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Project Management
  • Monitoring and managing implementation of all project-related tasks.
  • Maintaining key project infrastructure, including the project website and databases.
  • Personnel Management
  • Managing key project personnel, including website and media consultants, facilitators, evaluation consultants, and graduate students.
  • Supporting project team and consultants in organizing and facilitating information sharing among community of practice members in online and in-person meetings.
  • Outreach to and coordination with project advisory board, sponsors, consultants, and community of practice members.
  • Event Coordination
  • Coordinating regular meetings among core project teams and other project partners.
  • Working with conference planners to assemble national and regional convenings, including assistance with travel arrangements and accommodations.
  • Research and Evaluation Support
  • Assisting core project team and other community of practice members in publishing project reports and articles.
  • Assisting project team in evaluating the impact of the initiative, including facilitating interviews and surveys.
  • Project communication and funding
  • Managing project communication and media promotion, including social media channels.
  • Assisting in grant applications for ongoing project funding.

Preferred Job Qualifications:

  • Experience leading cross-sector, multi-year projects in large organizational settings, particularly those with a national and/or international scope.
  • Superb project management skills and expertise, including experience working with and coordinating large teams of up to 50 collaborators.
  • Experience developing and managing large databases, including integrated website databases.
  • Experience coordinating large in-person and virtual events.
  • Proficiency with a wide variety of software and systems for project and database management, and/or event management systems.
  • Fundraising or grant writing experience.
  • Experience managing large communication and media campaigns, including familiarity with traditional and social media platforms.
  • Experience related to invoicing, financial management, and accounting.
  • Educational degrees related to public administration or organizational management.
  • Substantive knowledge related to small businesses, minority- and immigrant communities, public policy, urban planning, economic development and/or redevelopment.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Commitment to racial and economic equity and justice.
  • Non-English language speaking and writing abilities, especially Spanish.
  • People that identify with historically marginalized groups based on gender, race, ethnicity, and nationality are especially encouraged to apply.

About the Project:

The project aims to build a national network of small business leaders working to support diverse, thriving small business in gentrifying neighborhoods. Small businesses are a vital part of economically healthy, socially vibrant, and environmentally sustainable communities. They are also highly vulnerable to displacement and financial stress when neighborhoods gentrify. This is particularly true for minority- and immigrant-owned businesses. COVID-19 and the resulting economic collapse have further exposed and heightened these vulnerabilities.

The project will provide small business leaders with the tools and capacity to combat the conditions that make disadvantaged businesses in gentrifying neighborhoods vulnerable to displacement. The community of small business owners, nonprofit organizations, technical assistance providers, policymakers, scholars, and government agencies will work together to identify, evaluate, and share promising place-based interventions and advocate for effective anti-displacement strategies in cities and metropolitan regions around the U.S.

By working across sectors and metropolitan regions, a community of practitioners will help small businesses remain resilient in the face of change and benefit from new neighborhood investments. In doing so, the project will also ensure that disadvantaged business owners, workers, and residents build greater financial health, wealth, and long-term stability.


Interested candidates should upload a letter of interest (3-page maximum) and resume to The position is open immediately and will remain open until filled. Applicants will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Interested applicants are encouraged to apply as soon as possible.

Salary Range: $60,160 – $75,150 + benefits (as described above)