Chicago, IL

Program Associate, Julian Grace Foundation

The Organization

The Julian Grace Foundation is an entrepreneurial private foundation that does high-engagement grant making in order to create a just, unified and hopeful world. To achieve this mission, the Foundation’s grants support organizations and programs primarily in the Chicagoland area, as well as parts of Central America, the Caribbean, and Israel. The Foundation’s investments are also mission-aligned with Environmental, Social and Governmental (ESG) screens and a priority on high-impact investments. The Foundation also recently made a specific commitment to racial justice, centering the communities and people directly impacted by structural racism in its grantmaking and investment strategies.

The office is in walking distance to the Highland Park stop on the Metra Union Pacific North Line. Our staff are currently working remote, although we anticipate transitioning in the fall to a hybrid model with time at the office for meeting and collaboration.

Position Overview

The Program Associate will support the Foundation team in all aspects of the Foundation’s grant review and grantmaking, with a particular focus on the area of community organizing and advocacy in Chicagoland with a racial justice lens.  This is a new position to provide additional capacity and expertise as the Foundation lives into its current commitment to racial justice. Responsibilities will include the following:

·       Support programmatic strategy development, with a Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (JEDI) lens, including examining, interpreting, researching, and refining as needed foundation grantmaking priorities and metrics.

·       Conduct site visits, review applications, financials and materials, as well as regular reporting and provide the Foundation’s Board of Directors with thoughtful, well-reasoned written analysis and recommendations.

·       Develop and maintain trusting relationships with grantee partners as part of due diligence and share learning with the staff team and Board of Directors.

·       Under supervision of Senior Program Officer, manage the screening process of prospective grantee organizations and areas of interest, including preparing research, leading initial exploratory communications with nonprofit leaders and drafting written analysis and recommendations.

·       Support the youth board’s grantmaking by co-facilitating meetings and participating in the planning process.

·       Conduct research on key issue areas and grant making strategies by other funders.

·       Participate in sector learning spaces, including philanthropic initiatives, external events and professional development opportunities.

·       Assist in preparation of Board meeting materials and reports and periodic board communications.

·       Attend external events and professional development opportunities, representing the Foundation.

·       Perform special projects and other duties as assigned.

Required Qualifications:

The ideal candidate brings a strong commitment to racial justice, experience in community organizing and/or advocacy and a desire to be a part of a collaborative, entrepreneurial team. This position requires a bachelor’s degree (or equivalent experience) and 3-5 years relevant professional experience with community organizing and/or advocacy organizations. Individuals must be available to travel to grantee partners and attend occasional meetings outside regular work hours, as needed.  The work requires use of Microsoft Office, Outlook, Google and Internet programs. As we return to travel this position may require occasional domestic and international travel.

Desired competencies include the following:

  • Communication Skills – Strong writing skills and ability to communicate with grantee partners, constituents, board members and external subject matter experts is essential.  Must have skills that are effective with non-native English speakers and strong cross-cultural communication.  Strong customer-service orientation and excellent relationship-building skills.

·       Confidentiality – Impeccable integrity to maintain strictest confidentiality to ensure that privileged and/or proprietary information is adequately safeguarded against disclosure.

·       Critical Thinking – Ability to understand our mission and ensure all grantee partners are working efficiently and effectively to support that goal.  Excellent ability to synthesize information and research on topics related to the foundation’s mission and operations. Strong judgement and ability to consider a situation that may arise, and determine appropriate action steps.

·       Responsibility – Diligent and self-motivated, with the ability to prioritize, multi-task and work independently and drive projects forwards, as well as work collaboratively as a member of a team.

·       Collaboration – Willingness to assist in any function of the small team, make decisions collaboratively, and work with team members to prioritize multiple tasks with varying deadlines. Ask for assistance as needed, as well as understand the goals of the organization and put those above individual needs.

·       Flexibility – Willingness to thrive with change and interest in working in a start-up environment.

·       Technical aptitude – Strong attention to detail and ability to create analytical reports using qualitative and quantitative data. Basic understanding of financial information, including audited financial statements and accounting reports.

The Julian Grace Foundation is an equal opportunity employer committed to hiring a diverse work force at all levels of the organization. We value and encourage the contributions of our employees and work to create an environment where everyone can reach his or her full potential and achieve outstanding results.  If you meet the qualifications, you will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, disability, genetic information, marital status, amnesty or status as a covered veteran or any other classification in accordance with applicable federal, state and local laws.

Compensation and Benefits:

The Julian Grace Foundation provides a competitive compensation package. Benefits include health, dental, life, and disability insurance; three-weeks paid time off in the first year; contribution to a retirement plan; and a flexible work environment. This opportunity is a full-time, exempt position based in Chicagoland. The salary range is $55,000 – $70,000.

How To Apply

Candidates can apply to the job posting at INDEED and are welcome to contact our human resources consultant who is managing the hiring process at:

Applications accepted until position is filled.

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