Flexible, US

Senior Director, Programs, National Center for Family Philanthropy

The Organization

NCFP is a network of philanthropic families committed to a world that is vibrant, equitable, and resilient. We share proven practices, work through common challenges, and learn together to strengthen our ability to effect meaningful change. As we navigate individual journeys of reflection and transformation, we see the results of intentional, impactful giving.

We promote open inquiry and ongoing reflection to advance the practice of family philanthropy, and we value the partnerships and mutual respect that make it possible for families to discover their purpose and possibilities.

NCFP offers a range of programs and services to foster learning for philanthropic families. We understand family philanthropy has many points of inflection—moments to embrace proven practices and advance momentum or to stall out due to uncertainty and lack of clarity. All of our programs are rooted in a Family Giving Lifecycle that provides easy onramps for families to connect with us—to begin planning, learning, and accessing custom support and resources.

Our decades of experience working with philanthropic families uniquely position us as a reliable partner who meets families where they are and provides the support and services they need to move forward with long-term planning and day-to-day decision making with confidence.

NCFP has adopted a new strategic plan that calls for both an expansion in the number of families served as well as a deepening of their engagement toward more effective practices. The program model is shifting to prioritize relationship cultivation and management creating more tailored content. Community members will be more deeply engaged resulting in stronger outcomes for family giving and increased support for NCFP’s business model.

NCFP has added important roles to its diverse board and staff team, including a Chief Impact Officer, Director of Growth and Engagement, and additional programmatic staff. The Senior Director, Programs will be joining a dynamic team focused on strengthening the internal organization to best serve and support external partners and the broader philanthropy sector.

Position Overview

The Senior Director, Programs will join an extraordinary team of individuals and a thriving community of family philanthropists committed to advancing the capacity of mission-driven organizations to drive positive change in our communities. The Senior Director will bridge the various functions of the organization, ensuring programs are sustainable, impactful, and measurable. They will apply a strong equity lens to all the work across their portfolio. Responsibilities for the role will include:

Program Strategy, Implementation, and Evaluation (50%)

The senior director oversees NCFP’s program strategy, development, and implementation. The Senior Director will:

  • Refine and maintain program strategy in partnership with the CIO, ensuring that programs are meeting and advancing NCFP’s strategic goals, including making recommendations for changes in direction, additions, or replacements of program strategies.
  • Provide oversight for planning, implementation, and project management of events, including the National Forum on Family Philanthropy, Trustee Education Institute, CEO Retreats, and others.
  • Directly manage and help lead high-importance and high-visibility programs such as learning and action cohorts with critical partners.
  • Ensure that the program team evaluates its events and adapts to meet both the direction of the organization and the current and emergent needs of the audience.
  • Bring critical consciousness, equity fluency, entrepreneurship, and sector knowledge to the work of supporting philanthropic families to be more strategic and impactful in their giving.
  • Work closely with the director of growth and engagement, as well as directly engage with NCFP’s members to connect knowledge of NCFP’s membership with program design.
  • Engage with the broader sector to understand needs and offerings by other entities and how to design or refine NCFP’s offerings to be additive.

Program Team Management (30%)

The Senior Director is skilled in the art of culture building, change management, and people management. They will manage the program team and its individual members through building trusting, collaborative, and mutually accountable relationships. The Senior Director will:

  • Provide direct supervision for the program team (approximately 3-5 team members) helping them manage their workload and their growth.
  • Conduct annual performance reviews and support team members in annual goal setting.
  • Serve as a bridge between program team members and the chief impact officer while also fostering overall team cohesion, inclusive of the chief impact officer.
  • Ensure that individual program team member’s work is aligned with the overall organization-wide vision and goals.
  • Nurture a culture of continuous learning and collaboration with all parts of the organization.

Organization Engagement (10%)

  • Attend and participate in organization-wide meetings and retreats and lead content where requested.
  • Engage in leadership meetings and make connections across teams.
  • Provide culture leadership and foster an inclusive environment.

Consulting and Speaking Engagements (10%)

Each year NCFP leadership accepts a limited number of consulting engagements to facilitate family philanthropy learning agendas and speaking engagements on a variety of topics. In support of these, the senior director will participate in business development, lead engagements, and work closely with the communications team and others to develop content.


The ideal candidate will be first and foremost committed to NCFP’s mission and the visionary evolution of the organization. They will be eager to step in and help NCFP leverage design thinking and collaborative organizational development to increase investment from staff and partners resulting in more sustainable impact. They will be distinguished as a leader in racial equity and organizational development, and as a successful people-developer grounded in an asset-based approach.

While no one person will embody all the qualities below, the ideal candidate will possess many of the following professional and personal abilities, attributes, and experiences:

  • Experience with and passion for family giving and/or family philanthropy is essential.
  • A hands-on strategic leader who balances a sense of urgency with empathy and humility when building and maintaining relationships.
  • Highly developed emotional intelligence and active listening skills, and the ability to use interpersonal and political skills in collaborative ways.
  • Successful experience leading a multidisciplinary team and working effectively with persons from diverse cultural, social, and ethnic backgrounds; willingness to set aside a personal agenda in favor of organizational and/or community goals and objectives.
  • Strong relationship building and communication skills with the ability to have authentic dialogue around sensitive issues including strategic priorities.
  • Excellent writing, editing, analytical, and oral communication skills including the ability to collect, review, synthesize, and present information and findings.
  • Ability to multitask and meet deadlines within designated timeframes as well as demonstrated resourcefulness in setting priorities; strong organizational skills and exceptional attention to detail with the ability to work both independently, take initiative and contribute ideas for enhancing performance.
  • Exemplary public communication skills and experience participating in national and regional convenings as a panelist or keynote speaker.
  • An optimistic outlook and the humor, integrity, kindness, and patience necessary to work within a transformative environment.

How To Apply

For more about the National Center for Family Philanthropy, please visit: www.ncfp.org

This search is being led by Katherine Jacobs and Sarah Hecklau of the talent strategy firm, NPAG. Due to the pace of this search, candidates are strongly encouraged to apply as soon as possible. Candidates may submit their cover letter, outlining their interest and qualifications, along with their resume via NPAG’s website.

If you would like to submit a nomination for this role, please email Sarah at: shecklau@npag.com

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