Troy, MI

Special Assistant to the President, The Kresge Foundation

The Organization

The Kresge Foundation is one of the top 20 largest private foundations in the U.S. Our staff of over 100 employees works to expand opportunities in America’s cities for people with low incomes. We do this through grantmaking and social investing nationally in arts and culture, education, environment, health, human services and placed-based work in Detroit, Memphis, New Orleans and other parts of the country.

Our state-of-the-art headquarters maintains an array of energy-efficient, water-conserving and health-promoting features. The foundation also operates an office in Detroit’s Midtown district.

Position Overview

The Special Assistant to the President (“Special Assistant”) reports directly to the President & CEO. As a member of Kresge’s Executive Office, the Special Assistant also interfaces regularly with the Chief Investment Officer, Chief Financial and Administrative Officer, Vice President of Programs, and Program Managing Directors, serving as a thought partner, driver, and on-the-ground implementer of some of our top strategic and organizational priorities.

The position is a one-year appointment with the possibility of a second-year extension.

Previous and current Special Assistants have worked on top foundation priorities, including:

·       Served as coordinator and thought partner on Kresge’s diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) task force which is responsible for stewarding the foundation’s DEI journey and learning opportunities.

·       Served as a program officer for several grants focused on supporting and advancing racial justice and small business recovery in the city of Detroit.

·       Served on the Executive Cabinet during the COVID-19 Pandemic and provided advice on Foundation-wide decisions in response to office policies relating to pandemic.

·       Co-led the start-up of the American Cities Practice, Kresge’s national comprehensive community development practice.

·       Directed the foundation’s response to the Center for Effective Philanthropy’s Grantee Experience Survey, successfully implementing 20 recommendations across the foundation.


Primary responsibilities

The Special Assistant responsibilities will focus in these core areas:

·       Leading critical enterprise-level projects to be completed during the course of the Fellowship.

·       Working closely with the President & CEO and executive team on top internal and external facing priorities

·       Deepening the foundation’s enterprise-level capacity by:

o   Driving critical initiatives out of the Executive Office from conception to completion

o   Leading internal forums to deepen collaboration and co-investment across programs.

o   Helping to shape internal and external communications around what teams are learning in their separate and joint work in places and topics.

o   Driving efforts to expand the Foundation’s national presence and elevate the visibility and impact of its activities.

·       Deepening our cross-disciplinary, cross-sector work in cities of interest (e.g., Detroit, New Orleans, and Memphis) and on issues of significance (e.g., housing, urban economic development, civil rights)

·       Exploring other areas of deep interest to the Special Assistant – (e.g., alternate forms of capital for social impact with the Foundation’s Social Investments Program, or community development initiatives with the American Cities Practice or Detroit Program).

·       Other duties as assigned.


·       Bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience required. Master’s degree preferred.

·       Three to five years of work experience.

·       Deep commitment to the mission of the Kresge Foundation.

·       Demonstrated understanding and commitment to equity.

·       Experience collaborating with and leading diverse stakeholder groups.

·       Deep intellectual dexterity and curiosity across widely varied subject matter.

·       Demonstrated experience identifying and remediating complex organizational/strategy issues that result in measurably improved impacts.

·       Experience with the design and implementation of a range of organizational development and performance improvement initiatives.

·       Record of entrepreneurial spirit and innovations that achieved important impacts.

·       Collaborative and inclusive leadership style.

·       Ability to build coalitions and work with multi-disciplinary teams.

·       Strong project management skills and the ability to manage multiple projects and priorities.

·       Ability to inspire trust.

·       Excellent oral and written communication skills and ability to persuade.

·       Demonstrated and compelling presentation skills.

Application deadline for this position is 11:59pm EST on May 13, 2021.

Kresge is proud to be an Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action employer and strongly encourages applications from people of color, persons with disabilities, women, and LGBT applicants. We do not discriminate based upon race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, status as a protected veteran, status as an individual with a disability or other applicable legally protected characteristics.

Please note: Due to the coronavirus pandemic, all Kresge staff are working remotely, and our Troy and Detroit offices remain closed until further notice. Kresge staff will not be traveling or attending in-person meetings during this time. Thank you for your understanding.

How To Apply

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