St. Paul, MN

Grantmaking Officer (North Dakota focus), Bush Foundation

The Organization


The Bush Foundation invests in great ideas and the people who power them in Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, and the 23 Native nations that share the same geography. Founded in 1953 by Archibald and Edyth Bush, the Foundation stewards an endowment that has grown to $1.5 billion, operates with a staff of 32, and had a budget for 2021 of $70 million. The Foundation has always supported organizations and people to think bigger and think differently about what is possible in their communities and works to inspire and support creative problem solving – within and across sectors – to make the region better for everyone. ​

The global pandemic, the recession that deeply affected communities in the region, and the racial reckoning following the murder of George Floyd sparked extensive reflection at the Bush Foundation. Fortunately, its founders ensured that the Foundation’s purpose was open-ended, and could evolve and change as communities change and needs change.  ​

In this spirit, the Foundation recently announced several critical changes to its grantmaking strategies to be more open, more responsive and a stronger force for equitable change in the region. These strategies include prioritizing advancing racial equity, deepening community partnerships, expanding traditional priority areas to respond to more community-identified needs, working more openly and transparently, and giving fewer, larger grants . It is hoped that these changes will spur much-needed transformative change across the region and maximize the impact that the Bush Foundation can have. Learn more at


The Bush Foundation’s operating values guide everything we do and we try to live them in every aspect of our grantmaking & operations.

Spread Optimism

We encourage individuals and organizations to think bigger and think differently about what is possible. We are positive and supportive in our internal and external interactions. ​

Work Beyond Ourselves

We actively seek opportunities to work in true collaboration with others to have more impact. We are willing to both lead and follow. We candidly share what we learn with others. ​

Everybody Matters

We are a champion for both excellence and equity inside and out of the Foundation. We have fair, open and inclusive processes. We work to raise overall quality of life while also closing opportunity and achievement gaps.​

Steward Well

We demonstrate appreciation for the Foundation’s history and thoughtfully build on its legacy. We hold ourselves to high standards of integrity and accountability and conduct ourselves in a way we hope would make our founders proud. ​

More Good. Every Year. 

We are a true learning organization and work to be smarter and more effective every year. We never lose sight of the reason we exist: to do the most possible good with the resources left to the community by Archibald G. Bush.


This position will join with four other grantmaking officers (GOs) to ensure the Foundation is finding and considering the highest potential ideas from communities throughout the region and making decisions grounded in the understanding of community needs and capacities. Equity is central to the purpose of the Bush Foundation and woven throughout the work of inspiring and supporting creative problem solving to make the region better for everyone.  ​

The Grantmaking Officers work across the entire region in both rural and urban areas to assist in the development of strategy, outreach, and promotion of grant opportunities and grantee selection with an intentional focus on equity and inclusion. The specific focus of this position is to strengthen the ties between the Foundation and the communities and people in North Dakota or South Dakota, depending on the specific position.  ​

The Foundation’s main offices are in St. Paul, MN but it is anticipated that the individuals in these roles will live in either ND or SD, respectively. Once fully transitioned to the developing hybrid model, the GOs would be asked to travel to the St. Paul offices quarterly to participate in all staff meetings and activities.    ​

This role may require schedule flexibility and some travel occasionally to connect with people across the Bush Foundation region and participate in events or meet priority deadlines.


Work collaboratively to ensure we are open and responsive to the communities:

  • Manage and staff the ‘front door’ for the Foundation, including office hours and a hotline that can respond to a wide range of inquiries about funding opportunities such as organizational priorities, community initiatives and conversations about how to support individual leadership growth and development. ​

Review and research proposals to select grantees and fellows.

  • Review incoming applications for all programs, apply program criteria using independent judgement and work collaboratively with other team members to test assumptions and conclusions. ​
  • Conduct community due diligence and prepare write-up analysis. ​
  • Decide which proposals should be moved forward for further consideration.​

Find new ideas and people where investment might have a big impact.

  • Conduct targeted community outreach to identify ideas and people that might be strong candidates for Community Innovation, Bush Fellowship or other potential Foundation investments and partnerships.​
  • Stay informed on key issues in communities across the region, share learnings on big events/issues with all staff.​
  • Share what you know about collaborative problem-solving and community engagement practices in both internal and external settings. ​

Manage relationships with grantees and potential grantees. 

  • Manage relationships for a portfolio of grantees. ​
  • Provide coaching and support to grantees in order to bolster their problem-solving efforts and help them to think bigger and differently about their work.​
  • Provide feedback and coaching to declined applicants, in particular to those whose projects or proposals show great promise.​

Be an active and engaged partner with other Foundation staff.

  • Review, develop, implement and improve team workflows and projects. Work with staff across the Foundation to ensure coordination between programs and teams.​
  • Contribute to cross-foundation work and learning that advances the Foundation’s overall strategic goals. This would include activities like participating in ad hoc work teams, equity projects, strategic initiative work and organization-wide workshops and committees.​
  • Actively demonstrate core organizational values in performing all duties.


  • At least five years’ experience in public, nonprofit or related private sector field, preferably with some of that experience leading community engagement, leadership development and/or public policy activities. ​
  • Experience with community-serving organizations in North Dakota or South Dakota. That experience could include a wide range, including government entities, grass roots community groups and non-profits. ​
  • Significant experience building and maintaining effective partnerships in the region served by the Bush Foundation. Familiarity with the major issues, context and history of the people and communities in this region is a plus. ​
  • Demonstrated skills with reviewing grants and proposals, familiar with analyzing proposals to see how they fit with the criteria for the programs and offering feedback on how they can be improved. ​
  • Enjoys and is good at collaborative decision making, comfortable with offering and explaining own point of view, listening to diverging opinions and adjusting perspective. ​
  • Strong written and verbal communication, interpersonal, time and project management skills in order to effectively coordinate work assignments and relationships.​
  • Demonstrated skill in working effectively and supportively with applicants across a wide variety of issues and with people of different backgrounds and communities.


Reports to: Jackie Statum Allen, Grantmaking Director​

Classification: Full-Time Exempt​

Annual Salary: $109,725​

Benefits: Excellent benefits, including health, dental, life and disability insurance; generous retirement contributions; professional development and vacation, sick and holiday leave. ​

To Learn More:

Representatives from Bush Foundation will prepare an informational video to better introduce the Bush Foundation, the role, and key partners. The recording with closed captions will be posted on the website by Friday, March 18, 2022 and can be found at

How To Apply



  • Interested candidates complete the online application.​
  • Upload your resume and cover letter.​
  • Priority given to applications received by April 14, 2022. ​
  • If you are interested in the position, please inquire as soon as possible.​

Initial Screening

  • A Sagency Search Consultant may schedule an initial 15-20 minute phone call with qualified applicants. ​
  • Sagency Interview
  • A Sagency Search Consultant will schedule a 60-minute interview with specific candidates. ​

Online Assessment

  • After this initial interview process with Sagency, qualified candidates may be asked to complete an online assessment.​

Client Interviews

  • First-round interviews with Bush Foundation. ​

If you are interested, please submit your resume as soon as possible.
Thank you for your interest in this position.

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