Giselle Piantedosi, Director of Human Resources, Union of Concerned Scientists, www.ucsusa.org
Working for a nonprofit is as competitive as seeking a position in any sector!
Cambridge, Massachusetts is home to many global organizations striving to improve society. One exceptional nonprofit is The Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS). According to Human Resource lead Giselle Piantedosi, “Our mission is to put rigorous, independent science to work to solve our planet's most pressing problems. We combine technical analysis and effective citizen advocacy to create innovative, practical solutions for a healthy, safe, and sustainable future.”
As with many people serving advocacy organizations, Giselle loves her work: “To be able to come to work every day and contribute to this mission gets me up in the morning. Prior to UCS, I worked helping homeless men with job training and employment and providing HR for a public health organization.”
What kind of positions are available at UCS? Giselle offers, “We are a national organization, so we employ a range of people—in finance, fundraising, communications, and also scientists, technical experts, and advocates.” She adds tips for those drawn to similar advocacy and nonprofit careers: “Campaign experience, science or advocacy internships/fellowships, strong communications skills and project management—in the nonprofit world you need the ability to get projects done efficiently.”
In addition, Giselle said UCS actively pursues diversity in its workforce: “We are also working hard to attract diverse candidates as the environmental field doesn’t have enough representation from people of color, and often it is these communities who are disproportionately affected by inequitable access to healthy food, climate change, and other pollution. “
A competitive feature of UCS is location: "All of our offices (Cambridge, Washington DC, Oakland CA, Chicago) have easy access to public transportation and strong sustainability practices,” said Giselle, and she utilizes the best tools in her field to secure the best candidates: “I use industry salary survey databases to remain competitive and we have a transparent compensation system for our employees.”
PHOTO CREDIT: Giselle Piantedosi, SHRM-SCP/SHRP-HRCI, Director of Human Resources, Union of Concerned Scientists, Cambridge, MA
Alison Harris, is a communications professional in Greater Boston. She served in Governor Patrick’s administration, held three rising PR positions at Harvard, wrote for the Boston Herald, and worked for Liz Claiborne and Tommy Hilfiger.