Jobs Board

Program Associate, Climate & Clean Energy (Heising-Simons Foundation)

Company Name

Heising-Simons Foundation

Company City

San Francisco Bay Area

Company State


Job Location

San Francisco Bay Area

Company Information

About the Foundation

The Heising-Simons Foundation is a family foundation based in Los Altos and San Francisco, California. The Foundation works with its many partners to advance sustainable solutions in climate and clean energy, enable groundbreaking research in science, enhance the education of our youngest learners, and support human rights for all people. In 2021, the Foundation awarded more than $141 million in grants. The Foundation’s grantmaking is guided by the values of humility, courage, justice, opportunity, sustainability, innovation, relationships, and integrity.

Job Description

Position Summary

The Program Associate (PA) provides administrative and program-related support to the Foundation’s Climate & Clean Energy (CCE) team. The goal of the Foundation’s CCE program is to protect people and the planet from the worst impacts of climate change by cutting pollution and accelerating the transition to a clean energy future. We aim to help make energy clean, affordable, safe, and reliable for all.

In 2021, the CCE team made 61 grants totaling approximately $25M in grant funding through the Foundation and 17 grants totaling $10.4M through the Heising-Simons Action Fund. It is anticipated that the volume and amount will increase from 2021 to 2022. In 2022, the CCE team will be staffed by two PAs, two Program Officers (PO), and the Program Director (PD). This role will work in partnership with the current and outgoing PAs to provide support to the team’s PD and POs. Although the majority of this role will work with the CCE Team, the PA will also support POs in other program areas as needed.

The anticipated start date for this position is on or around March 1. This full-time (37.5 hours per week) non-exempt (hourly) position reports to the PD of the CCE team. This position can be located in either our Los Altos or San Francisco office. In 2022, the Heising-Simons Foundation will be piloting a hybrid work environment. During the pilot, this position may work remotely and/or from one of our Foundation offices. Staff will be required to be on-site for a minimum of 10 days per quarter and as needed to successfully fulfill their responsibilities. We will re-evaluate this hybrid work scenario for 2023.

This position is an opportunity to learn about the fields of climate and clean energy and philanthropy. Candidates are not expected to have experience in all areas listed in the job posting. The primary responsibilities of the Program Associate are to:

  • Serve as the first point of contact for grantees and grant seekers.
  • Work closely with the Grants Management team to ensure that grantmaking adheres to the Foundation’s grantmaking and contracting policies, procedures, and deadlines.
  • Provide administrative support to the Program Officer and Program Director, ranging from calendaring to research.

Primary Responsibilities

  • Provide grants administration support.
  • Invite grantees to the Foundation’s grantee portal and offer technical assistance to support the successful completion and submission of grant proposals and reports.
  • Track grant start and end dates, due dates for deliverables and reports, and changes to grant timelines and scopes of work. Ensure team members and grantees are aware of upcoming deadlines.
  • Keep grant files and contacts current by entering and updating grant information.
  • Regularly update the program’s grantmaking budget.
  • Conduct research to inform the due diligence process as well as the program’s grantmaking, including: (1) Reviewing organizations’ websites for information about their mission, staff, board members, and recent projects or accomplishments; (2) Reviewing organizations’ financials to conduct an initial assessment of financial stability; and (3) Reviewing reports, products, and press to gather background information on prospective grantees.
  • Work with team members to draft, format, and proofread written materials for grants, including grant summaries, budgets, and overview memos.
  • Provide administrative support.
  • Manage calendars and meeting requests daily and make travel and other logistical arrangements, as needed.
  • Arrange and attend meetings and phone/video conferences, and plan logistics of convenings ranging from 2 to 50 attendees.
  • Plan and attend grantee site visits, when team members visit grantees to learn more about their work.
  • Work with team members to draft, format, and proofread materials, including memos, spreadsheets, PowerPoint presentations, and other documents.
  • Track and help manage the program’s workflow and deadlines.
  • Support the management of contracts by monitoring expenditures and submitting invoices and authorized expenses to the Director of Finance for payment.
  • Support the CCE program’s strategy development, learning, and evaluation.
  • Communicate the CCE program’s strategy and grantmaking guidelines to internal colleagues and in external meetings.
  • Communicate the Foundation’s history, values, and programs in external meetings.
  • Support strategic planning activities, including collating historical grants data and other information and contributing to strategies and presentations.
  • Conduct research, analyze data, and prepare reports, as guided by the POs and PD.
  • Contribute to team DEI process and strategy development.
  • Track current research, policy changes, and trends in the areas of energy, climate, and philanthropy by reviewing news and professional publications and by attending related conferences, meetings, and other events.
  • Provide regular feedback to supervisor and colleagues both informally and as a part of the annual review process.

Foundation-wide Responsibilities

  • Pitch-in across the Foundation, as important deadlines or events approach.
  • Participate in Foundation-wide committees; diversity, equity, and inclusion work; and internal culture-building.
  • Participate in Foundation-wide training sessions.
  • Help the Foundation promote and maintain environmentally friendly office practices.

Compensation and Benefits

The target starting salary for this position is $74,000-$87,000 per year, depending on geographic location and experience.

We offer a comprehensive employee benefits package that includes employer-paid medical, dental, and vision insurance for employees and dependents, long term disability, business travel and life insurance, flexible spending accounts for medical and child care expenses, a 401(k) plan (with a matching contribution of up to 16%), commuting assistance, an employee assistance program (EAP), mental health counseling, tuition reimbursement and a generous professional development budget, matching gifts, fitness reimbursements, fertility and adoption assistance, and identity theft protection. In addition, we allow flexible schedules and some telecommuting with the manager’s approval.

Paid time off includes:

Vacation: 3 weeks/year, with increases based on tenure
Sick: 12 days/year
Personal Days: 2 days/year
Family Medical Leave: 10 days/year
Parental Leave: 8-16 weeks/year, depending on tenure
Holidays include: Martin Luther King, Jr. Day; President’s Day; Memorial Day; Juneteenth; Independence Day; Labor Day; Veterans Day; Thanksgiving Day (and the day after); Year-End Break (Christmas Eve through New Year’s Day)

Job Qualifications

  • Relevant work experience providing administrative support.
  • Interest in climate and clean energy policy.
  • Able to manage and prioritize a large volume of tasks and deadlines with attention to detail.
  • Able to read, write, and produce professional written materials in English.
  • Able to communicate and work with people of different backgrounds internally and externally to achieve shared goals.
  • Reliable, resourceful, proactive, and motivated to find creative solutions to improve efficiency and effectiveness.
  • Able and willing to quickly learn and use new systems of technology, such as Microsoft Office applications, Salesforce, Zoom, and Box.
  • Able to produce presentations in PowerPoint and maintain databases is a plus.
  • Committed to living the Foundation’s values.
  • Flexible and willing to assist others, when needed.
  • Must be available for occasional travel between our San Francisco and Los Altos offices or to other meetings, conferences, and convenings with grantees or other stakeholders.

How to Apply

Click here to apply.

The Foundation is an equal opportunity employer and welcomes a diverse pool of applicants. Foundation policy prohibits unlawful discrimination based on race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, pregnancy, national origin, ancestry, citizenship, age, marital status, physical disability, mental disability, military service, legally protected medical condition, or any other consideration made unlawful by federal, state, or local laws. Reasonable accommodation will be made so that qualified applicants with disabilities may participate in the application process. Please advise in writing of special needs at the time of application.

Our success is dependent on our ability to build teams that include people with different experiences and expertise and who can challenge each other’s assumptions with new viewpoints and bring different perspectives to the team. We encourage women, people of color, formerly incarcerated individuals, immigrants, LGBTQ+, people with disabilities, and others with diverse perspectives and experiences to apply.


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