Rob Katz and Elana Amsterdam are deeply focused on utilizing their resources for positive social change. Rob is the co-founder of the Katz Amsterdam Foundation and executive chairperson of the Board of Directors of Vail Resorts. He served as the Chief Executive Officer of Vail Resorts from 2006-2021, and led the company through more than a decade of significant growth and incredible success. Elana Amsterdam is an entrepreneur, New York Times bestselling author, and founder of Elana’s Pantry. Over the last several years, Rob and Elana have contributed nearly $200 million to their family foundation and charitable trust.
The initial focus of the Katz Amsterdam Foundation and Charitable Trust has been mental and behavioral health in mountain communities where Vail Resorts operates. Rob and Elana feel a strong connection to each mountain community, especially because it is where so many of the company’s employees and their families live and work. They understand that each community has felt a tremendous and personal impact from mental health and substance abuse issues, which has been amplified by a lack of services and stigma that is very real. With the utmost respect for the complexities involved in such critical issues, the Katz Amsterdam Foundation has focused on learning and partnering with community, non-profit, and local government leaders. In June 2021, the Foundation announced a new nationwide focus area related to social and racial justice and now has focused these efforts in two areas: civic engagement and reproductive health. The Foundation seeks to award grants to organizations across the country to support existing social and racial justice efforts, create proximity to lived experiences of others, and help build networks of BIPOC leadership.
The Katz Amsterdam Foundation (KAF) is pleased to invite nominations and applications for the position of Civic Engagement/Reproductive Health Program Director. The Katz Amsterdam Foundation strives to be a catalyst for eliminating inequities, increasing access to opportunity, and improving outcomes for all. The Foundation has spent the first few years focused on striving to address inequities in three key issue areas: mental and behavioral health, civic engagement, and now reproductive health. There have been long-standing racial disparities in each of these issue areas, and KAF utilizes a racial equity lens to help address those disparities.
The Katz Amsterdam Foundation works in partnership with communities to advance just and equitable approaches to accessing mental, behavioral, and reproductive healthcare and protecting our civil rights by increasing civic engagement and participation in our multiracial democracy. We do this work by addressing systemic injustice, racial and social disparities in mental health, reproductive health, and well-being. As a foundation, our priority is to support community-driven work that meaningfully improves the lives of all individuals and the social well-being of our communities.
The ideal candidate will bring a strong commitment to social justice and the mission of KAF as well as experience and dedication to the core areas of civic engagement and reproductive health and rights. They will bring an innovative and strategic mindset as a natural connector who can engage and articulate impact.
CIVIC ENGAGEMENT AND REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH PROGRAMS
At an exciting time of growth, KAF is expanding its strategy to invest in civic engagement and reproductive health work, each of which are expected to encompass $2-3 million in annual grantmaking. The civic engagement work will begin focused on efforts in two to three states, and potentially grow over time. The national reproductive health effort launched in 2022 and is at the early stages of strategic planning. The Program Director will work closely with the Co-Founders and the Executive Director to stand up these new initiatives and build out a strategy. The Foundation is currently working through a strategic planning process, with support from Jessyca Dudley and Bold Ventures, a strategic advisory firm that works to transform and democratize philanthropy, and will identify key issue areas where the Foundation can make a meaningful impact and best align with current efforts to advance racial justice. KAF sees opportunities for the Foundation to support racial equity in the areas of civic engagement and reproductive health in particular. The new Program Director will join a small but ambitious team to move the work from vision to reality.
QUESTIONS TO CONSIDER FOR THE NEW PROGRAM DIRECTOR
The new Program Director will join the Foundation during this unprecedented time to address timely social challenges in partnership with organizations working on intractable social issues. The Program Director will join a small and extraordinary team of individuals who are passionate about eradicating social disparities, with the goal of bringing to life the civic engagement and reproductive health programmatic strategies. The new Program Director will be a systems thinker, strategic communicator, and partnership-builder with a deep commitment to civic engagement and reproductive health. They will bring knowledge of the landscape of strategies across sectors that are effectively moving the needle on these core areas, with the capacity to conduct effective diligence and discovery that generates and vets ideas, fosters relationships, and conceives action steps to drive the work forward. They will collaborate with donor and c3 tables, and will identify gaps in order to engage BIPOC-led organizations engaged in long-term organizing efforts.
The Program Director will bring a broad network of leaders and influencers at the national and/or state levels and an understanding of how to influence policy and systems change at the national and community levels. In concert with the Senior Grants Manager, they will be responsible for recommending grants for Board approval and supporting grantee partnerships to success and impact.
Below are questions to consider for interested candidates:
- Are you passionate about voting rights and the true realization of a multi-racial democracy?
- Are you dedicated to ensuring reproductive health and rights for all?
- Do you bring experience in embedding a racial equity and justice lens to your work at all levels?
- Are you skilled at measuring and articulating the impact of potential grantee organizations?
- Are you comfortable engaging with people from all sorts of cultural backgrounds?
- Are you able to synthesize lots of information into clear and condensed summaries?
- Do you like working in start-up, entrepreneurial environments?
- Are you motivated to take on new challenges?
QUALIFICATIONS OF THE IDEAL CANDIDATE
While we value your educational and academic achievements, we want to focus on the relevant work experiences you’ve had in this field. Ideal experiences, attributes, and skillsets for candidates include:
- Demonstrated commitment to the core areas of civic engagement and reproductive health and rights.
- Innovative and strategic thinker with multiple years of experience implementing programs, grants, or other relevant initiatives in the civic engagement or reproductive health space.
- Political, organizing, and electoral experience with demonstrated examples of success.
- Experience engaging community-based organizations for long term impact.
- Sophisticated racial equity and justice analysis coupled with experience embedding a racial equity and justice lens in all aspects of work and strategy.
- Interest in philanthropy as a tool for social justice and change.
- Entrepreneurial approach to leading portfolios of work with iterative engagement by decision makers/leadership.
COMPENSATION AND BENEFITS
The salary range for the Program Director is approximately $145K to $170K, commensurate with experience, and a benefits package including health care benefits through QSEHRA (Qualified Small Employer HRA) plan that reimburses premiums and out-of-pocket expenses. The Katz Amsterdam Foundation is based in Colorado, but you don’t have to be. KAF will support this role to work remotely, but there will be some travel involved. The Program Director will get to visit some remarkable locations to engage with KAF’s stakeholders.
How To Apply
More information about the Katz Amsterdam Foundation may be found at: katzamsterdam.org
This search is being led by Cara Pearsall and Danielle Higa of NPAG. Candidates may submit their cover letter, outlining their interest and qualifications, along with their resume via NPAG’s website.
The Katz Amsterdam Foundation believes that long-standing systemic inequities in our culture continue to harm already marginalized populations in our country, especially people of color. In order to begin to repair these injustices, we believe that these communities must be centered in the work we do. We strongly encourage applications from people of color.