Union Square Awards hiring for Program Officer

February 8, 2011

Established by an anonymous donor in 1998, the Union Square Awards supports grassroots activism in New York City. It identifies organizations that have not yet received substantial funding or recognition but that are making notable contributions to the City. As of 2010, more than 225 organizations had received the Award and more than $15 million distributed. Regrants and technical assistance programs are also offered to help recipients build long-term sustainability.

The Union Square Awards seeks a Program Officer to work closely with and report to the Executive Director. The position will have administrative oversight of the Union Square Awards regrants and technical assistance programs with responsibility for evaluation, grants management, strategic planning and development of dynamic programs. It requires significant experience in the nonprofit community as well as strong organizational, analytical, evaluative, program management, and communication skills.

The Union Square Awards consists of a five-person staff in a highly collaborative and organized workplace to meet the needs of community and grantee organizations; staff members participate in creating workplans and in developing programs, along with meticulously documenting office processes and best practices. The organization also partners with foundations and other philanthropic organizations in New York City to create joint programs that build capacity that supports progressive social change. The ideal candidate will value maintaining our current systems and processes as well as the opportunity to develop them further in the future.

Areas of responsibilities:

1.    Grants Administration

·    Overall responsibility for regrants administration, proposal review, assessment and evaluation, and distribution.

·    Conducts site visits, prepares written evaluations, and writes organizational profiles to submit for panel review.

·    Prepares requests for proposals and coordinates review process.

·    Manages contracting process.

·    Monitors reporting and contract compliance.

·    Engages in ongoing assessment of project grantees and their needs.

2.    Organizational Assistance & Support

·    Assesses needs, conceptualizes programmatic ideas and strategies, and generates proposals for program development.

·    Liaison with consultants and vendors engaged in technical assistance programs.

3.    Strategic Planning and Program Design

·    Assists with program planning, implementation, and evaluation.

·    Provides programmatic expertise and identifies priorities, gaps, and trends.

·    Assists with writing a wide range of materials such as RFP’s and grantee evaluations.

4.    Other Duties

·    Oversees and monitors grant-related financial and reporting documents.

·    Engages in other duties as needed and assigned by the Director.


Minimum of five years experience in the nonprofit sector with, at least, three years of experience in program evaluation and grant making or in a leadership role in a nonprofit.

Knowledgeable about a range of social, legal, and financial issues facing nonprofit groups and organizations.

·    Experienced strategic thinker, planner and doer: able to synthesize varied experience, information, and context in order to create solutions.

·    Minimum of three years of experience in program design and implementation.

·    Outstanding writing skills: capable of composing a wide range of written materials that communicate effectively with regard to format, style, and grammar usage.

·    Highly organized, unusually detail-oriented, and able to handle a variety of administrative and other tasks accurately.

·    Demonstrated high-quality work ethic: strives to do the best work at all times.

·    A problem solver with a ‘can-do’ attitude and creative energy: believes that all things are possible, seeks new and inventive solutions to challenges and needs, and is eager to learn.

·    Extremely capable of working independently and also a real team player: someone with initiative, enthusiasm, flexibility, and able to collaborate with the other members of the organization.

·    Fluency in Windows, Microsoft Office Suite, and Google apps.

·    Strong interpersonal skills: a warm and energetic individual capable of communicating respectfully and openly with people of varied ages, races, and class backgrounds.

·    BA required. Graduate degree or equivalent experience in a related field preferred.

·    Community organizing experience a plus.

BENEFITS: Competitive salary and benefits.

TO APPLY: Please send the name and address of two professional references, your resume, and a cover letter including responses to the following two questions:

1.    What specifically draws you to the position and the organization?

2.    If you were selected as the Union Square Awards Program Officer, what principles and processes would guide your recommendations about the organization’s grant making?

Send to search@unionsquareawards.org by March 7, 2011. Please put ‘Program Officer’ in the subject line of your email and respond to the above two questions in less than 1.5 pages. Applications must be received no later than the closing date. No fax or telephone inquiries.

The Union Square Awards is an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer and is committed to having a richly diverse workplace.

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