New York

Vice President, Programs, Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice

The Organization

The Client
The Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice is the only philanthropic organization working exclusively to advance LGBTQI human rights around the globe. Astraea supports brilliant and brave grantee partners in the U.S. and internationally who challenge oppression and seed change. The Foundation’s founders—a cross-class, multi-racial group of women activists—dreamed of a women’s movement that centered the leadership of lesbians and women of color. For over four decades, Astraea has uniquely supported women’s rights and LBTQI movements working at the crossroads of gender justice, racial justice, bodily autonomy, sexual rights, and self-determination because we all deserve to live our lives freely, without fear, and with dignity. The first grantmaker to hundreds of organizations, Astraea plays a catalytic role for LGBTQI groups around the world – particularly those led by lesbian, bisexual and queer women, trans and gender nonconforming folks, intersex people, and people of color. Astraea’s grantmaking, capacity building, media and communications, and philanthropic advocacy programs support work to build powerful movements for justice. A proud public foundation and one of the first women’s funds in the world, in its 44-year history Astraea has granted over $49 million to LGBTQI activists and artists.

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Position Overview

The Position
This is a newly created position reporting to the Executive Director. In collaboration with the Executive and Program Teams, the Vice President, Programs will provide leadership to create a unified and coherent vision and direction for Astraea’s international and domestic programmatic work, including (but not limited to) grantmaking initiatives. This position will lead the refinement, implementation and evaluation of Astraea’s liberatory, feminist and trust-based approach to grantmaking. As a member of Astraea’s Executive Leadership Team, the VP will lead a collaborative process to develop a departmental strategic plan, iterative reflection and evaluation of programs and programmatic strategies, including employing participatory grantmaking practices aligned with movement needs, contribute to honing programmatic work under each pillar: grantmaking, accompaniment/capacity building, philanthropic advocacy, and research & communications, and play a key role in shaping Astraea’s broader long-term strategy. In addition, the Vice President will oversee the implementation of a knowledge management/Learning & Evaluation system that tracks Astraea’s impact, supports organizational learning, and positions the foundation as a leader in intersectional gender justice grantmaking. The VP will also be an active leader, contributor and collaborator to Astraea’s broader communications, engagement and development strategies.

  • Management and Organizational Leadership: The Vice President will be responsible for overseeing and managing a team of highly skilled and passionate Directors, AssociateDirectors and program staff who bring a depth of experience and understanding of the movements Astraea resources through its grantmaking. As such, the VP must be an astute manager of people and successful in developing and maintaining strategic partnerships with grantees, partners and resource people. The VP will oversee team goals, activities, operations, and performance and development of direct and indirect reports; oversee the program team budget; and cultivate and maintain an inclusive and equitable culture. Thisposition will also represent along with other program staff Astraea’s programming and impact to external audiences, including funding partners, donors and the board of directors.
  • Strategy and Vision: The Vice President will be responsible for collaboratively developing and implementing a vision for program evolution, aligned with Astraea’s feminist funding principles, and must be able to engage in critical thinking, innovate and influence how changes occur. The VP must also be able to effectively communicate program vision and strategies. Additional responsibilities include networking peers in the field to stay connected with emerging opportunities and maintaining current knowledge about trends, movements and policy developments across all areas of grantmaking.
  • Centering Equity and Anti-Oppression in all its forms: Astraea works externally to combat oppression in all forms by embracing intersectional queer feminism as part of a wider struggle for social justice, recognizing that sexism, transphobia, homophobia, misogyny, and restrictive gender norms harm everyone. Rooting its feminism in social justice, Astraea particularly supports Black, Indigenous, People of Color, and Global South & East movements and leadership. This position will be responsible for ensuring that these values and principles are embedded within Astraea’s grantmaking, accompaniment and philanthropic advocacy programs, as well as its internal culture.

The ideal candidate has demonstrated success in leading program strategy and related budgeting processes, experience managing remote and global teams, and is committed to nurturing a collaborative, values-aligned and vibrant work environment.

  • Required Skills and Experience
  • The successful candidate must have the following:
  • 10 plus years of progressively responsible experience in nonprofits or public or private philanthropy, ideally as a Senior Program Officer, Associate Director, or Director of Programs;
  • A track record of providing visionary leadership and effective management. Experience managing institutional growth and transformation;
  • Strong decision-making ability; organizational team-building skills;
  • Minimum five years of management and supervision experience, an inclusive leadership style, a commitment to distributive and feminist leadership, and the ability to motivate and develop direct reports, and build collaborative and accountable relationships;
  • Experience working transnationally and overseeing global programs. Ideally, experience managing global teams;
  • Ability to effectively resolve problems. Balances multiple needs, priorities and interests;
  • Ability to work in a collaborative environment and open to feedback from colleagues;
  • Broad knowledge and understanding of the needs and realities of LGBTQI movements around the world, especially in the geographic areas where Astraea works;
  • Deep, authentic knowledge of racial, economic and gender justice and experience applying these equity practices to programs and management;
  • Deep experience in conflict literacy and creating safe spaces where staff can share their authentic selves;
  • Strong communication skills, both internal and external;
  • An engaging and positive personality. Strong interpersonal skills;
  • Deep passion and commitment to honest and candid conversations and self-reflection about racial and economic justice, gender, privilege, social class, power dynamics and Americanism;
  • Knowledge of feminist leadership and funding principles, and comfort working in nontraditional ways;
  • Understanding and acceptance of Astraea’s core values and guiding principles;
  • Willingness to travel to represent the organization or speak at conferences, once the pandemic subsides;
  • Knowledge of Microsoft Office (Excel, Word, PowerPoint);
  • Bachelor’s or advanced degree, or commensurate work experience.
  • The ideal candidate will have the following:
  • Experience working within a social justice environment;
  • Expert facilitation and change management skills. Experience working within a Healing Justice and Transformative Justice framework;
  • International perspective and lived experience in the Global South and/or East;
  • An understanding of the fiscal and donor reporting requirements associated with global grassroots grantmaking;
  • Fluency in a language/languages other than English.

How To Apply

For individuals wishing to be considered, please submit a cover letter and résumé to:

Michelle Kristel, Managing Partner
McCormack + Kristel
Phone: 212.531.5003 | Fax: 212.203.9599
Email: | Website

All inquiries will be held in strict confidence. Please note that your education, dates of employment and other information will be verified prior to an offer.

Astraea is an equal opportunity employer committed to a diverse (multi-gender, cross-class and multi-racial), collaborative and sustainable work environment. We select, place, train, and promote the best- qualified individuals based upon relevant factors such as work quality, attitude, and experience so as to provide equal opportunity for all of our employees without regard to non-work-related factors such as sexual orientation, gender identity, or expression, race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, marital status, disability, economic status, personal appearance including height and weight, family responsibility, matriculation, political affiliation or any other status. If reasonable accommodation is needed to participate in the application and interview process, please express that with your cover letter and resume submission.

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