Description

J OB SUMMARY

Wellspring Philanthropic Fund (WPF) seeks a Program Officer to join its Racial Justice Program. Launched in 2016, WPF’s Racial Justice Program envisions a day when Black people and other people of color in all corners of the U.S. thrive and experience full participation in the U.S. democracy. In service of this vision, the program provides grants and field support that build power within Black communities and communities of color creating a more just and equitable society by challenging anti-Black racism and White supremacy that perpetuate structural racism and a racialized criminalization system.

WPF seeks to hire a Racial Justice Program Officer with deep knowledge of the U.S. criminalization system who shares our core institutional and program values, including:

  • Humility: openness to listening to and learning from groups and leaders working on the ground, from colleagues in philanthropy and across WPF, and to elevating the work of our grantees, not ourselves,
  • Respect: for WPF grantees and colleagues, their perspectives, pressures, and contributions,
  • Teamwork: a desire to work collaboratively and supportively with grantees and WPF colleagues, and
  • Courage: to support work that is bold, strategic, and informed by those most impacted by criminalization and injustice.

K E Y RESPONSIBILITIES

The Racial Justice Program at Wellspring Philanthropic Fund is dynamic and growing. Under the direction of the Racial Justice Program Director, the Racial Justice Program Officer will work in close collaboration with three program teammates to continue building out an ambitious grantmaking strategy and rooting the program within WPF and the philanthropic sector. The Program Officer’s responsibilities fall in to three broad categories, each of which is central to the role:

Gr an tmaking: The Racial Justice Program Officer, in collaboration with the Program Director, will shape and manage a portfolio of grantees within the Racial Justice Program grantmaking strategy. The Program Officer must listen to and learn from the racial and criminal justice fields the program supports, including formerly incarcerated people and communities of color directly impacted by criminalization and punishment, and Black communities and other communities of color building movements for social justice. Specific grantmaking tasks include:

  • Staying abreast of new developments and trends in the field, and providing analyses to synthesize implications for the program,
  • Undertaking initial screening of potential grantees; analyzing and assessing background information; conducting site visits; soliciting and developing funding proposals; and writing concise and clear grant recommendations,
  • Managing grantee relationships, reviewing progress reports, conducting evaluations of grantee programs, and monitoring use of grant funds, and
  • Ensuring adherence to internal grantmaking processes via appropriate documentation, grant budgeting, data entry and reporting.

Organizational engagement : The Racial Justice Program Officer will work in close alignment with others on the Racial Justice Program team and across WPF, and will contribute to the success of the program and of WPF. The Program Officer will work both independently and collaboratively toward program and WPF goals. Organizational engagement activities will include:

  • Supporting and contributing to Racial Justice Program processes and infrastructure, including weekly meetings and annual retreats,
  • Shaping and participating in internal program presentations, including staff lunches and workshops,
  • Advancing institution‐wide initiatives, including by serving on internal committees and/or task forces,
  • Collaborating in learning and grantmaking with colleagues from across WPF, and
  • Communicating the program’s progress and challenges across the Foundation.

External Relations : The Racial Justice Program Officer will represent WPF and the Racial Justice Program in the philanthropic community and the fields we support. External relations activities will include:

  • Engaging with peer funders and community-based organizations working in fields relevant to the Racial Justice Program, including mass criminalization and incarceration, civic engagement, youth leadership, economic justice, public health, and narrative change,
  • Engaging in creative use of convenings, co-funding partnerships, pooled funds and other tools with different actors to promote a common grantmaking agenda and advance learning in the philanthropic and advocacy sectors, and
  • As appropriate, appearing on panels at funder conferences highlighting our grantees’ work and progress made under the program’s grantmaking strategy

Requirements

K N OWLEDGE, SKILLS, QUALIFICATIONS

The ideal candidate is passionate about social justice and building power in Black communities and communities of color, and has a bold vision of what is possible. WPF seeks a colleague eager to learn, grow, and be part of an enterprise larger than themselves. Candidates should possess the following knowledge, skills and qualifications:

  • Minimum of seven years of experience with a social justice organization or in philanthropy
  • Demonstrated ability to establish and maintain close, collegial and effective working relationships with colleagues and grantees of diverse backgrounds and perspectives
  • Deep knowledge and understanding of criminalization of communities of color and the criminal justice system—personal experience with criminalization or the criminal justice system is a plus
  • Ability to think and work intersectionally, particularly with regard to race, class, gender, sexual orientation, and gender identity
  • Familiarity with organizing and power building strategies
  • Strong research, analytic, problem solving and writing skills, and ability to synthesize information clearly and concisely
  • Close attention to follow-up and detail
  • Ability to communicate clearly and persuasively, orally and in writing
  • Ability to plan and manage multiple priorities on different timelines
  • Ability to handle confidential information with c omplete discretion
  • Ability to travel extensively (30-40% time)
  • Understands and values social justice, including racial and gender equity as an organizational operating principle—and is committed to continued learning on issues related to race, gender, equity, diversity, and inclusion.

Responsibilities

K E Y RESPONSIBILITIES

The Racial Justice Program at Wellspring Philanthropic Fund is dynamic and growing. Under the direction of the Racial Justice Program Director, the Racial Justice Program Officer will work in close collaboration with three program teammates to continue building out an ambitious grantmaking strategy and rooting the program within WPF and the philanthropic sector. The Program Officer’s responsibilities fall in to three broad categories, each of which is central to the role:

Gr an tmaking: The Racial Justice Program Officer, in collaboration with the Program Director, will shape and manage a portfolio of grantees within the Racial Justice Program grantmaking strategy. The Program Officer must listen to and learn from the racial and criminal justice fields the program supports, including formerly incarcerated people and communities of color directly impacted by criminalization and punishment, and Black communities and other communities of color building movements for social justice. Specific grantmaking tasks include:

  • Staying abreast of new developments and trends in the field, and providing analyses to synthesize implications for the program,
  • Undertaking initial screening of potential grantees; analyzing and assessing background information; conducting site visits; soliciting and developing funding proposals; and writing concise and clear grant recommendations,
  • Managing grantee relationships, reviewing progress reports, conducting evaluations of grantee programs, and monitoring use of grant funds, and
  • Ensuring adherence to internal grantmaking processes via appropriate documentation, grant budgeting, data entry and reporting.

Organizational engagement : The Racial Justice Program Officer will work in close alignment with others on the Racial Justice Program team and across WPF, and will contribute to the success of the program and of WPF. The Program Officer will work both independently and collaboratively toward program and WPF goals. Organizational engagement activities will include:

  • Supporting and contributing to Racial Justice Program processes and infrastructure, including weekly meetings and annual retreats,
  • Shaping and participating in internal program presentations, including staff lunches and workshops,
  • Advancing institution‐wide initiatives, including by serving on internal committees and/or task forces,
  • Collaborating in learning and grantmaking with colleagues from across WPF, and
  • Communicating the program’s progress and challenges across the Foundation.

External Relations : The Racial Justice Program Officer will represent WPF and the Racial Justice Program in the philanthropic community and the fields we support. External relations activities will include:

  • Engaging with peer funders and community-based organizations working in fields relevant to the Racial Justice Program, including mass criminalization and incarceration, civic engagement, youth leadership, economic justice, public health, and narrative change,
  • Engaging in creative use of convenings, co-funding partnerships, pooled funds and other tools with different actors to promote a common grantmaking agenda and advance learning in the philanthropic and advocacy sectors, and
  • As appropriate, appearing on panels at funder conferences highlighting our grantees’ work and progress made under the program’s grantmaking strategy

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