David Altstadt is a director in JFF’s Policy & Advocacy unit. He develops nonpartisan policy solutions and cultivates partnerships with policymakers, practitioners, and advocates to influence the direction of national and state policies governing education, workforce development, and poverty alleviation programs.
His responsibilities include writing policy reports and convening the Policy Leadership Trust, which draws on the expertise of community college leaders to develop practice-informed policies. He has also contributed to the Big Blur and other major JFF initiatives and served as the executive producer of JFF’s When Policy Meets Practice podcast.
Before joining JFF full time, David worked as a consultant for JFF, the Aspen Institute, and the Working Poor Families Project, conducting research and providing policy analysis on postsecondary and workforce development initiatives.
He has also managed community-based workforce development projects, including his local community’s annual career expo. Earlier in his career, he was a senior research associate with Community Research Partners, manager of the Ohio Workforce Coalition, and a journalist with the Employment & Training Reporter, among other publications.
David has served on the boards of directors of several nonprofit organizations in his home state of Vermont, including a homeless shelter, an adult literacy organization, and a regional economic development initiative.
He says he was drawn to JFF because of the organization’s commitment to economic advancement for all, and because it offers a unique opportunity to develop policy recommendations that are grounded in practitioner-informed insights.
David holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Ohio University and a master’s in liberal studies with a concentration in social and public policy from Georgetown University.
A father of two school-age children, he enjoys playing basketball and the drums, and hiking, bike-riding, and kayaking in and around his hometown of Brattleboro, Vermont.