San Francisco, CA

Program Officer, Water, Pisces Foundation

The Organization
At the Pisces Foundation, we believe if we act now and boldly, we can quickly accelerate to a world where people and nature thrive together. We support organizations, advocates, and activists who, working together, are doing what’s necessary to have clean and abundant water, a safe climate, and kids with the environmental know-how to create a sustainable world. By mainstreaming powerful new and equitable solutions, we will spark immediate gains and lasting benefits for people and nature. We know that our Foundation’s vision, of people and nature thriving together, can only be realized in an equitable and just world. We are committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion as a foundation.

The Pisces Foundation provides grants to nonprofit organizations to further our goal of creating a world where people and nature thrive together. The Foundation’s 990-PFs provide information about our finances, operations, and grantmaking. To learn more about Pisces’ work and collaborations—including our grant recipients—visit our website, follow us on Twitter, and consult Pisces’ profiles on GuideStar and LinkedIn.

Position Overview:

Program Officer
The Foundation seeks a Program Officer to lead its Water Program. This position reports to the President and will play an important role in a dynamic philanthropy. The position is based in San Francisco. The Water Program focuses on advancing a transformation in water management in the United States, anchored in cities and delivering cleaner water, sufficient supply, and greener shared spaces. If we invest in catalyzing a systems change to One Water management in cities that are “ready to move,” we will help make a One Water approach the standard approach across the country and do so in a way that is equitable, just, and effective.

Essential duties
1. Oversee, implement, and regularly evaluate the Foundation’s Water strategy:
• Implement, improve, and evolve the Program’s strategic plan to achieve program goals by overseeing grantmaking, including planning, research and development, partnership building, and due diligence.
• Implement Foundation systems for learning and evaluation of grants and the effectiveness of the overall strategy, including site visits (when appropriate).
• Develop and launch approaches for accessible grantmaking, like request for proposals and other participatory grantmaking strategies working collaboratively with external partners.
• Work with President and colleagues in the Environmental Education and Climate & Energy Programs to develop cross-program and Foundation-wide grant initiatives.
• Provide clear, concise, and insightful written analyses of grant proposals and reports, and organize grant dockets for review and approval.
• Effectively manage consultants as needed.
• Work with the President and other staff on non-grantmaking aspects of the strategy, including convenings.

2. Represent the Foundation to external entities:
• Cultivate equitable and effective relationships with new and existing partners and grantees.
• Communicate directly with Pisces Foundation stakeholders via speaking engagements, written blogs, social media, and more.
• Build strategic relationships with other foundations, organizations, and consultants, presenting Foundation views or providing technical expertise, and promoting collaboration and coordination between entities.
• Manage relationships with partner and grantee organizations and the implementation of program concepts with responsiveness and approachability.
• Provide clear communications and guidance to grantees, applicants, and other interested parties.
• Contribute to the Foundation’s presence in relevant funder, NGO, academic, and for-profit networks.

3. Internal management, learning, and collaboration:
• Work with colleagues to contribute to a culture of learning within the Foundation, including developing ongoing learning agendas for staff and trustees and preparing presentations and written and oral analyses.

4. Collaborate with the Water Program Associate, demonstrating excellent management, communication, professional development, and mentoring skills:
• Create an inspiring program team environment with an open communication culture, providing effective guidance
• Set clear team goals, delegate tasks, and set deadlines for internal program team
• Act proactively to ensure smooth team operations and effective collaboration
• Suggest and organize team-building activities and encourage a culture of creativity and growth
• Coach and mentor the Program Associate, providing and inviting regular feedback

5. Maintain currency and fluency in key issues in the field, especially on water management and philanthropy best practices:
• Maintain and share knowledge within the Foundation related to current events, state and federal water policy, research, trends, and relevant political landscapes.
• Attend or plan training and networking events with grantees and funding partners.

6. Support organizational development by assisting the Chief Operating Officer with select internal operational tasks, as needed.
• Lead occasional foundation-wide projects that advance the Foundation’s organizational goals.

Skills and Qualifications
• Strong knowledge of water and environmental research, policy, and practice;
• Demonstrable commitment to justice, diversity, equity, and inclusion;
• Experience in the development and execution of strategy to achieve social goals, ideally in a philanthropic context;
• Understanding of social movements and capacity to iteratively improve program implementation by thinking critically about theories of change and working with others to sort and select joint goals and mount and maintain scaled action;
• Understanding of the complex interactions among philanthropy, the private or nonprofit sector, and government, and a depth and range of contacts across relevant organizations;
• Excellent analytical and problem-solving skills. Strategic and creative thinker who can forge new ground;
• Self-starter, highly-motivated, resourceful, and able to manage multiple projects simultaneously;
• Excellent organizational skills, attention to detail and commitment to high quality work;
• Advanced degree preferred and at least 10 years’ experience in nonprofits, foundations, educational institutions, business, or equivalent relevant experience, including some experience directly managing others;
• Excellent interpersonal, verbal, and written communication skills. Demonstrated ability to communicate clearly and effectively to a range of audiences in meetings, over email, and through formal work products and presentations. Experience adapting communication style to different cultural environments.
• Experience with and aptitude for collaboration across a range of colleagues and stakeholders. Ability to represent the Foundation and build relationships with stakeholders, including staff, board members, partners, and grantees with a respectful and authentic manner. Experience working directly with people from diverse racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic backgrounds. Flexibility, emotional intelligence, and a willingness to help others.
• Ability to accommodate travel (once it is safe to do so).

Physical Demands
The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this position. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. While performing this position, the employee is regularly required to operate a personal computer for up to 8 hours a day, to talk on the telephone or webcam for multiple hours per day, to travel by plane and car service, and to have the ability to talk and hear. The employee is occasionally required to lift and/or move up to 10 pounds.

Pisces Foundation offers an excellent compensation package including platinum-level health and welfare benefits, parental leave, and generous retirement contributions. Our salaries are competitive, reflect our geographic location and field, and are commensurate with experience. Pisces Foundation participates in multiple compensation surveys for grantmaking organizations and conducts an annual review of market-based salary trends.

How To Apply:
Applicants may send a PDF document including a cover letter, resume, and relevant supporting documents (e.g., writing sample, speeches, publications, podcasts) to with the subject line, “WATER PROGRAM OFFICER POSITION.” See for more information on the foundation.

Applications will be considered on a rolling basis through March 30, 2021.

We know there are strong candidates who may not have all the qualifications above. If you have skills and experiences that we have not thought of and would be an asset to the role, please apply. The Foundation encourages people of color, those from under-resourced communities, immigrants, LGBTQ+, and others with diverse backgrounds and with a variety of skills, experiences, and ideas. We are an equal opportunity employer. Employment selection and related decisions are made without regard to sex, gender identity/expression, sexual orientation, race, age, disability, religion, national origin, color, marital or veteran status, or any other protected class.

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