Our vision is a Chicago that offers education, prosperity, and hope for all. The Foundation awards $7 million in grants each year across four main program areas: Arts Learning, Education, Employment and Health. Across all of our funding areas, our focus is on helping organizations: Build capacity to enhance the quality of services and better assess the impact of programs; Develop successful program innovations that other organizations in the field can learn from or adopt; and Share knowledge so that information which can help low-income communities and individuals is widely and readily available. For more information on the Foundation’s grantmaking priorities, please refer to the Fry Foundation’s website and the Foundation’s annual reports at www.FryFoundation.org.
The Lloyd A. Fry Foundation seeks a Program Officer to develop and lead the Foundation’s Employment grantmaking. Based in Chicago, our Employment Program addresses our commitment to helping families and individuals move out of poverty. We support comprehensive job training programs that help low-income individuals improve their ability to compete for living-wage jobs and careers. We are particularly interested in:
Vocational training programs that help low-income job seekers acquire the skills and knowledge necessary to compete for jobs in industries that are important to the region’s economy. Bridge programs that help low-skilled adults simultaneously attain the education and employment skills necessary to access jobs with career advancement potential. The Foundation seeks to support innovative approaches and knowledge which can help to advance practice in the field. To achieve this, we seek a candidate who is able to: identify trends and common challenges across organizations; investigate new topics quickly; synthesize a wide range of information; and adapt and apply ideas across new contexts.
The Program Officer has the following responsibilities:
- Oversee the employment grant portfolio, work with colleagues and the board of directors to identify programmatic goals and strategies, and manage and plan the program grant budget;
- Actively identify challenges that can be addressed through the Foundation’s grantmaking and opportunities that have the potential to advance program goals;
- Solicit and review proposals and letters of inquiry, arrange and manage site visits, prepare proposals for board review, and present written and verbal recommendations to the board of directors.
- Prepare decline letters and work to communicate clearly with grantees as well as with organizations that do not receive support from the Fry Foundation;
- Work with grantees to support collaborative work; help organizations advance knowledge and practice in the field; and provide guidance and assistance on program strategy, assessments, and other aspects of building capacity and program development.
Program Officer Qualifications:
- Five or more years work experience in the employment field;
- Bachelor’s degree is required; Advanced degree is preferred;
- Excellent written and verbal communication skills along with strong analytic and research abilities;
- Welcomes and actively contributes to intellectual give and take -- asks thoughtful questions,
- Is open-minded, is comfortable challenging ideas and benefits from being challenged;
- Experience in the nonprofit sector is preferred.
Interested applicants should send a resume and cover letter which clearly articulates how their skills and experience meet the responsibilities and requirements noted above via email to:
Subject line should read:
Applicant’s Name Employment