Associate Director of Workforce Innovation and the National Network of Sector Partners


Jim Torrens has worked for more than 15 years helping workforce agencies, industries, educational institutions, community groups, unions, and others work together more effectively to meet employer needs for skilled employees and to create opportunities for job-seekers and workers.

At the Insight Center, Jim researches workforce policy and best practices, analyzes economic and labor market data, provides training and consultation, produces useful publications and resources, and facilitates planning, particularly related to the development of sector partnerships and career pathways. In his role supporting the National Network of Sector Partners (NNSP), Jim fosters communication and peer learning, provides communications, publications, and trainings that keep NNSP members informed and build knowledge in the sector field, and engages sector initiatives in learning communities, advocacy efforts, and participation in the direction of NNSP.

Prior to joining the Insight Center, Jim developed and managed workforce partnerships involving public workforce agencies, community colleges, community-based organizations, and businesses. During his seven-year tenure at Jewish Vocational Service (JVS) in San Francisco, Jim oversaw implementation of the agency’s sectoral training strategies in health care, information technology, and legal services, and guided the development of new training programs, including environmental services for healthcare, computer systems administration, bank services, home care, and retail customer service. Jim also played a lead role in the agency’s restructuring along industry sector lines and development of a new model for engagement of employer partners.

A former teacher, Jim has provided education and skills training throughout his career to homeless youth and adults, immigrant and refugee youth, and adults making the transition from welfare-to-work. Jim holds a Bachelor’s degree from Harvard University and is a Marano Fellow, having completed the Aspen Institute’s Sector Skills Academy.