Jobs Board

Associate General Counsel (The David and Lucile Packard Foundation)

Company Name

The David and Lucile Packard Foundation

Company City

Los Altos

Company State


Job Location

Los Altos, CA

Company Information

We work with people and communities to create enduring solutions for just societies and a healthy, resilient natural world. Over our nearly 60-year history, we have worked with thousands of organizations and leaders in the U.S. and worldwide to advance progress in the critical areas of science, ocean and land conservation, climate change, women’s reproductive health and rights, and the well-being of children, families, and communities. At a time of multiple, intertwined crises globally and here in the U.S., the Packard Foundation began in 2021 a long-planned review of our grantmaking strategies. The first step of our process was to rearticulate our vision and mission, reexamine our organizational values, and create a strategic framework that builds on and honors the Packard Foundation’s past while advancing justice and equity in all that we do.

OUR VISION: A just and equitable world where both people and nature flourish.

Our new vision embraces a future where both people and nature flourish in a more just and equitable world. We explicitly acknowledge that the fate of people and the natural environment are inextricably linked. Solutions to the complex challenges we face must account for this interconnectedness.

OUR MISSION: We work with people and communities to create enduring solutions for just societies and a healthy, resilient natural world.

Our new mission takes on the critical work of addressing root causes of the challenges we face and mobilizing people for collective action. In addition to building on approaches that have guided our philanthropy for decades — working in partnership, committing to issues over the long-term, and grounding our work in science, knowledge, and data – we focus on understanding the systems that either accelerate or impede progress. It is only through just and equitable systems that we can find and sustain solutions to some of the biggest challenges we face today.

OUR VALUES: Equity, Integrity, Belief in Individual Leadership, Thinking Big, Respect, and Effectiveness.

In addition to clarifying our long-held values, we added equity. We will champion equity by treating people with dignity, honoring a range of ideas and perspectives from those closest to the issues, creating inclusive processes, and funding people who have been historically excluded to spur progress for all. For more information, including our definitions of key concepts, please visit our website.

Job Description

About the Department
The purpose of the Office of General Counsel is to oversee all legal work for the Foundation, advise the Board and management, support grantmaking and other activities, and ensure compliance with tax laws governing private foundations.

About the Role
The Associate General Counsel supports the work of the Office of the General Counsel and will assist in advising on grantmaking, governance issues, tax, and limited investment work. This role is responsible for providing legal representation to the Foundation and for supporting staff by providing counsel on a variety of complex issues. The position includes ongoing work as well as short and long term projects such as policy development, Board presentations and materials, and research and analysis of tax and grantmaking issues. This role has deep knowledge about out how foundations operate and the legal requirements that private foundations must follow.

Primary Duties and Responsibilities
Analyze legal issues that affect the Foundation and its activities at the local, state, federal and international levels and prepare written analysis with conclusions, recommendations, policy suggestions, and proposed implementation plans to meet the Foundation’s standards of integrity and effectiveness and goal of creating staff friendly policies and internal systems.

  • Advise management and staff on laws applicable to private foundations; provide support to management and staff on grantmaking and other activities at federal, state, and international levels.
  • Review complex grantmaking, contract, intellectual property and other issues; troubleshoot issues with staff and assist staff in finding and implementing proper solutions and monitor as needed.
  • Assist in developing and delivering training on legal issues.
  • Build and maintain strong relationships with outside counsel.
  • Identify areas and processes for improvement, make recommendations, and implement and communicate changes.
  • Represent the Foundation internally and in interactions with individuals and organizations external to the Foundation.
  • Support the Foundation’s internal processes and system.
  • Lead and facilitate Foundation-wide projects and contribute to other teams.
  • Support the Office of the General Counsel to make work more effective and efficient.
  • Other projects and work as assigned.

Job Qualifications


  • Experienced as a thoughtful and trusted advisor to management and staff.
  • Research and present solutions to complex issues.
  • Exercise judgment within defined and undefined practices and policies to determine appropriate action.
  • Resolve issues in a timely and accurate manner.
  • Review complex grant documents and other materials, and identify potential technical issues.
  • Manage multiple projects.
  • Work on assignments that are complex in nature where excellent judgment is required in resolving problems and making recommendations.
  • Manage confidential and sensitive data and situations.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

  • J.D. from an accredited institution and a minimum of 6 years of related work experience and Admission to the California bar.
  • Prior employment at a law firm, in-house corporate experience, and/or work at a private foundation or large nonprofit is preferred with specific experience advising private foundation clients.
  • Experience advising governing boards and senior management of complex, international organizations.
  • Strong analytical skills and ability to understand complex and nuanced legal concepts and analysis and explain those to non-lawyers and create practical processes, guidance, and training.
  • Demonstrated working knowledge of laws applicable to 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations and laws applicable to private foundations, including in certain foreign jurisdictions.
  • Demonstrated expertise in several of the core areas of work listed below:
    • Rules applicable to grantmaking to nonprofit, for-profit, and other non 501(c)(3) organizations.
    • Rules for working with foreign charitable organizations and in foreign jurisdictions.
    • Intellectual property, content management, and licensing.
    • Contract review and contract management, with experience in international contract issues.
    • Program-related investments and mission investments.
    • Tax reporting requirements, including the 990-PF and required attachments.
    • Employment law.
  • Demonstrated excellent research, writing, presentation, and communication skills.
  • Excellent judgment as reflected in a professional record of successfully and independently providing counsel to clients.
  • Excellent project and team management experience.
  • Ability to set priorities and anticipate information needed by others as projects and situations develop; ability to juggle multiple demands, organize time and identify resources for projects.
  • Strong facilitation, teamwork, and client-service skills; experience exercising influence and managing change while setting an open and inclusive tone with others.
  • Comfort with ambiguity and the ability to work through challenging complex situations; experience with resolving challenging problems.
  • Experience which demonstrates discretion in handing information of a sensitive and confidential nature; attention to detail and accuracy.
  • Ability to interface effectively in a professional, courteous, culturally sensitive, and tactful manner.
  • Administratively self-sufficient.
  • Demonstrated skill with Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and SharePoint.

Compensation and Benefits
The position is full-time. The salary range for this position starts at $220,000 per year. Offers are based on the candidate’s years of experience and our practice of upholding salary equity within the foundation.

The David and Lucile Packard Foundation offers excellent benefits for eligible employees. Current benefits include medical (HMO and HDHPs), dental and vision coverage; 15% employer contribution to employee retirement plan; life insurance, disability insurance, vacation, and sick leave; an adoption benefit; fertility benefit; a financial wellness program; health advocacy services, paid time off to volunteer for nonprofit organizations; matching grants for employee contributions to tax exempt organizations; commute assistance; and tuition assistance.

Hybrid Work Policy
The Packard Foundation’s current Hybrid Work Policy is that staff are expected to be in the office on Tuesdays and Wednesdays each week.

The David and Lucile Packard Foundation requires that all staff be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, except as required by law. Any employment offer will be contingent upon satisfactory proof that you are fully vaccinated from COVID-19, subject to reasonable accommodations for medical or religious reasons, and/or as otherwise required by applicable law.

How to Apply

Apply online on our website.

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