Palo Alto, CA

Chief Administrative Officer, Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation

The Organization

The Foundation

Gordon and Betty Moore established the foundation to create positive outcomes for future generations. Guided by this vision and the Statement of Founders’ Intent, we foster path-breaking scientific discovery, environmental conservation, patient care improvements and preservation of the special character of the San Francisco Bay Area.

Each day we strive to make a significant and positive impact on the world. Together, we work tirelessly to honor the vision of our founders and serve as stewards of the resources they entrusted to us. We establish specific strategies based on input from experts, identify partners who share our goals, and measure results along the way—all while making adjustments as needed. We build relationships and fund work in areas where we hope to make a significant impact. We’re okay with failing, as long as we learn from our mistakes. And we know that working together expands our ability to drive meaningful change.

We believe there can be no truly lasting change for the good if that change is not just and widely shared. Comprehending and incorporating values of diversity, equity, and inclusion in pursuing goals and refining strategies is vital to achieving our desired outcomes. These values weave through what we do and drive how we operate.

Position Summary

The foundation seeks a seasoned senior leader with excellent financial, leadership and organizational development skills to serve as Chief Administrative Officer (CAO).

The CAO will work in close strategic partnership with the President and executive team and play a critical role in driving the organization’s operational excellence. The CAO will lead the foundation’s infrastructure teams—human resources, finance, information technology, communications, and facilities—which are essential to the success of the foundation. The CAO will provide the organization-wide vision and leadership to ensure top-level financial oversight, efficient and effective operational systems, best practices in administrative and reporting procedures, a healthy, empowered workplace, and an engaged, inspired team. The CAO will model, integrate, and embed the Foundation’s Values and Attributes throughout the organization and in all aspects of day-to-day operations and play a key leadership role in driving the foundation to excellence.

The ideal candidate has 1) relevant senior-level experience leading operations and change management in large, complex organizations in any sector, such as a foundation, university, business, non-profit, or consulting firm; 2) sophisticated financial and business and operational acumen; 3) a track record of driving change across organizations and creating excellent, high functioning work environments; and 4) exceptional interpersonal skills and the ability to inspire and motivate others.

This position is based at our main office in Palo Alto, CA. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, foundation offices are temporarily closed until at least July 1, 2022, and work will initially occur remotely. Once our offices reopen, the foundation will shift to hybrid work arrangements, and all employees will work a minimum of eight days per month in their designated office.

Primary Responsibilities

  • Leadership – Infrastructure. Oversee operations in the areas of human resources, finance, information technology, communications, and facilities within the foundation. Establish and implement operational targets, policies, and procedures in these functional areas. Provide strategic direction and coordination across the several infrastructure units. Engage in ongoing research and information gathering to ensure the foundation is making well-informed plans about the present and future, understanding and anticipating any necessary changes to ensure operations exemplify best practices. Realize a best-in-class service organization to support the foundation’s mission, programs, staff, and grantees.
  • Leadership – Executive Committee.  Work in partnership with the President on a wide range of strategic, operational and organizational development issues within the foundation. Partner with the other members of the Executive Committee and staff to ensure the organization reaches its strategic goals.
  • Leadership – Values/Attributes. Model, integrate, and embed the foundation’s Values and Attributes throughout the organization and in all aspects of day-to-day operations and play a leadership role in driving the Foundation to be a highly effective, efficient, and healthy workplace. Inspire excellence at all levels of the organization.
  • Engaged and Inspired Staff. Oversee human resources functions to ensure state-of-the-art policies, practices and systems that recruit, support, and engage a highly qualified staff to help the foundation fulfill its mission.
  • Financial Oversight and Planning. Serve as the senior financial leader in the foundation. Lead the foundation’s annual budgeting processes working closely with the President and the executive team in the process. Manage against the budget and ensure adequate capacity is in place to fulfill commitments and carry out approved plans. Monitor planning implementation to ensure it stays within parameters of operating plan and budget. Oversee and coordinate finance department activities to maximize quality and efficiency of the department. Ensure that the foundation operates in a fiscally responsible manner.
  • Information Technology. Work with the information technology team to monitor systems related to financial and general operations, so that they meet established service and risk-level goals.
  • Communications. Oversee internal and external communication functions of the foundation to convey information and maintain alignment of understanding across foundation staff and external constituents.
  • Facilities. Manage the team responsible for the structure, function, and design of our LEED® Platinum facilities, to ensure staff are able to do their best work, supported by the office as a resource and venue for in-person and hybrid work.
  • Legal Compliance. Partner with the General Counsel to support compliance efforts across the Foundation.
  • Continuous Improvement. Improve the quality of the foundation’s internal systems, making the foundation a model of excellence for philanthropic operations.
  • Staff Management. Hire, coach, and develop a high-performing team of professionals to achieve operational and strategic excellence. Lead by example, maintaining a climate that attracts, retains, and motivates top quality people.


  • Advanced degree in business, finance, or related fields.
  • Education, training or experience in change management or organization development. Track record of success facilitating progressive organizational change and development within a large, complex organization.
  • A minimum of ten years’ experience in senior-level management experience in complex relevant organizations (e.g., a foundation, university, consulting or law firm, think tank etc.), preferably across multiple sectors.
  • Prior senior level operations experience leading the following or related functions:  finance, information technology, human resources, communications, facilities, or related functions.
  • Proven ability to work as a key business, financial and administrative partner to the President and to execute across the organization and with various stakeholders.
  • Experience either as an employee or board member of a nonprofit organization; must be familiar with nonprofit finance and accounting regulations and other relevant legal, and compliance issues.

Desired Competencies

  • Passionate and experienced in driving change across organizations and creating excellent, high functioning work environments. Strong leader who inspires and positively motivates others.
  • Superior management skills; ability to influence and engage staff at all levels throughout the organization.
  • Excellent judgment and creative problem-solving skills.
  • Strong mentoring, coaching experience to a team with diverse levels of expertise.
  • Creative results-oriented problem solver.
  • Exceptional written, oral, interpersonal, and presentation skills and the ability to effectively partner with the executive team, board of directors, staff and other stakeholders.
  • Open-minded, collegial, and able to develop relationships based on trust, confidence, and respect. Open to considering a diverse range of viewpoints. Builds effective coalitions to move the agenda forward and proactively solicits others’ views before making key decisions.
  • Unquestionable ethics and integrity.
  • Passion for the Foundation’s mission values and attributes.
  • Willingness to support and promote the foundation and colleagues through a commitment to enhancing the foundation’s considerations of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.

Our ideal candidate will demonstrate the following attributes that describe how we at the foundation strive to do our work with each other and our partners.

  • Committed to Excellence – We bring our best to all we do.
  • Passionate – Inspired by the vision of our founders, we are passionate about our work.
  • Collegial – We are part of a team striving toward common goals.
  • Open and Honest – We act with integrity, putting the good of the foundation first.
  • Humble and Self-Aware – Emulating our founders, we bring a sense of humility to our work.

Compensation and Benefits

The Moore Foundation provides a generous total compensation package that includes a competitive base salary and comprehensive benefits to support your life, health, and well-being.

The salary range for this position starts at $318,970 per year. Offers are based on the candidate’s years of experience and our practice of upholding salary equity within the foundation.

Health benefits include employer-paid options for medical insurance and employer-paid dental and vision insurance for employees and dependents; an employee assistance program; employer-paid disability, business travel, and life insurance benefits; paid parental leave; and pre-tax flexible spending accounts for medical and childcare expenses.

Other benefits include 6 weeks of paid time off per year of employment and 10 paid holidays; 401(k) retirement savings plan with a foundation contribution of up to 10% and a Roth 401(k) option; matching gifts program for qualifying charitable contributions; hybrid work arrangement; commuter benefits program; tuition assistance; and professional development opportunities.


The Moore Foundation requires that all employees be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, except as required by law. Any employment offer will be contingent upon satisfactory proof that you are fully vaccinated from COVID-19, subject to reasonable accommodations for medical or religious reasons, and/or as otherwise required by applicable law.

Application Process

Martha Montag Brown & Associates, LLC has been retained for this search. Interested and qualified candidates are encouraged to apply by sending a cover letter, resume and salary requirements by email to

The Moore Foundation is an equal opportunity employer and welcomes a diverse pool of applicants. We depend on individuals who possess varied skills, perspectives and expertise. We seek to recognize many forms of excellence in candidates, attract individuals with varied identities and backgrounds, and enable all employees to feel they belong and can contribute to the mission of the Moore Foundation.

We do not discriminate based on race, color, religion, creed, sex, gender (including pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions), national origin, ancestry, citizenship, age, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, military or veteran status, marital status, registered domestic partner status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, or on any other basis protected by applicable federal, state or local law. We also do not discriminate based on the perception that anyone has any of these characteristics or is associated with a person who has or is perceived as having any of these characteristics.

The foundation is committed to providing access, equal opportunity and reasonable accommodation for individuals with disabilities in employment, its programs, and operations. As part of this commitment, the foundation will ensure that persons with disabilities are provided reasonable accommodations.

If a reasonable accommodation is needed to participate in the job application process, please contact A request for an accommodation will be responded to within three business days. However, non-disability related requests, such as following up on an application, will not receive a response.

Pursuant to the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance, we will consider for employment qualified applicants with criminal histories in a manner consistent with the requirements of the ordinance.

Applicants must be legally authorized to work in the United States.

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