Jobs Board

Program Officer, Racial Equity and Community Engagement (W.K. Kellogg Foundation)

Company Name

W.K. Kellogg Foundation

Company City

Battle Creek

Company State


Job Location

Location Flexible

Company Information

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation with headquarters in Battle Creek, Michigan is a leading philanthropic institution supporting thriving children, working families, equitable communities, and the dynamic connection between the three.

Job Description


“Embedded within all we do are commitments to advancing racial equity and racial healing, to developing leaders and to engaging communities in solving their own problems. We call these our DNA and believe they are essential to creating the conditions that propel vulnerable children to achieve success.”

Advancing the core values of the Foundation in strategic grantmaking, the Program Officer, Racial Equity and Community Engagement (RECE), on WKKF’s DNA team, is responsible for identifying and nurturing opportunities for affecting positive policy and systemic change within communities and executing investments and collaborations that are aligned with the Foundation’s strategic priorities. The Program Officer will work closely with colleagues within the Foundation, philanthropy, and the field to ensure that the Kellogg Foundation leverages opportunities to advance racial equity and racial healing, develop leaders, and engage communities. The Program Officer will lead a portfolio of work dedicated to expanding investments and calling on colleague foundations and field leaders to advance work and practices that intentionally address the most pressing challenges facing communities and champion racial equity.

The Program Officer will have the following responsibilities:

Enhance relationships among the Foundation, grantees, and partners:

• Maintain strong, authentic relationships with grant seekers and grantees, ensuring understanding of WKKF program direction, goals, and expectations.
• Develop and maintain strategic relationships to leverage participation of peer foundations, businesses, communities, governmental agencies, Native Nations, and key decision makers in alignment with WKKF core values and program interests.
Drive effective grantmaking strategies
• Bring vision for and ability to articulate and advance strategic end goals that can be achieved through partnership and philanthropy to improve the lives of children and their families.
• Articulate explicit change strategies and convene key stakeholders and intermediaries as appropriate.
• Contribute to the overall strategic direction for the organization and assigned core programming area and provide input into the development of programming efforts.
• Work with key internal and external partners, identify and recommend grantmaking opportunities that leverage WKKF investments for maximum impact in creating systemic change.

Lead grant making, grant management, and grant program evaluation processes for portfolio:

• Screen and recommend grants for funding, prepare funding documents, conduct site visits, and manage and monitor a grant portfolio.
• Provide high level technical assistance to grantees, including consultation on model development, partnership negotiations, leadership capacity building, coaching, etc.
• Incorporate assessment components into program efforts to measure progress and impact.

The Program Officer’s work and the work of the Program team at the Foundation ensures WKKF is distributing its funds efficiently and effectively to communities and organizations supporting the conditions for thriving children and families in areas of racial equity and racial healing, leadership development, and authentic community engagement.

Job Qualifications


Success in the Program Officer role will require a passion to further the WKKF mission and a commitment to core values of diversity and inclusion, intercultural awareness, openness, collaboration, and stewardship.

The ideal candidate will first and foremost be a:

Relationship Builder and Effective Communicator: The Program Officer will have the capacity to have authentic dialogue around sensitive issues, have highly developed emotional intelligence and active listening skills, and the ability to use interpersonal and political skills in collaborative, diplomatic ways. They will have comfort with and the ability to work effectively within communities, including appreciating historical contexts, discerning nuances of relationships and power dynamics, and understanding racial/ethnic realities while centering community needs and desires. Additionally, the Program Officer will have the proven ability to be a strong facilitator and presenter; having the ability to respond to, design and execute on the Foundation’s internal and external requests to speak about racial equity strategies, learning topics, and approaches.
Strategic Systems Thinker: The Program Officer will have demonstrated institutional knowledge and sophisticated understanding of racial equity, social equity, community organizing principles, racial and cultural differences; an understanding of systemic and institutional racial bias; understanding of issues and concerns of communities of color. They will understand disparities, opportunities, and related systems at the local, state, tribal, and federal levels to stimulate appropriate programming directions and capitalize on emerging opportunities. The Program Officer will have experience applying their understanding of broad social and systemic forces that affect communities and families to shape programming efforts.
Networked Leader: The Program Officer will bring strong networks that equip and enable leaders committed to racial equity to advance the health, education, and economic well-being of children, families, and communities.

Additional skills and attributes that will be important to the Program Officer’s success include:

Professional Experience

• Bachelor’s degree in a field relevant to assigned area is required and an advanced degree is preferred.
• Minimum five years of related work experience and demonstrated success in a field or fields relevant to assigned responsibilities. Significant relevant work experience with strong networks and contacts with deep and comprehensive understanding of program design and development, systems, networking, and community change is preferred.
Experience in and knowledge of most of the following areas is required: racial equity, dismantling systemic racism, community organizing principles, racial and cultural differences; an understanding of developing leaders and engaging communities in solving their own problems.
• Experience in the formation or management of effective strategic and operational partnerships with other organizations.
• Experience in leading and facilitating conversations around advancing racial equity and racial healing, developing leaders, and engaging communities.
• Experience working across multi-cultural and multi-ethnic teams with a high degree of emotional intelligence.
• Ability to establish trust, understanding, and strong thought partnership in the development of the foundation’s vision for racial equity combined with the adeptness to translate that vision into priorities and goals and align relevant resources effectively.
• Experience in the design and execution of effective strategies surrounding critical issues driving opportunity gaps, poverty, and inequality in communities and the corresponding approaches adopted at the local, regional, tribal, and national level to address these issues.

Personal Attributes

• Highly responsive; strong propensity to provide excellent customer service and support.
• High tolerance for ambiguity and ability to adapt quickly to change.
• Demonstrate agility in day-to-day work.
• Demonstrated commitment to mindfulness, resilience, and ongoing personal development

How to Apply

More information about the W.K. Kellogg Foundation may be found at:

This search is being led by Katherine Jacobs, Chaz Chapman, and Sharon Gerstman of NPAG. Due to the pace of this search, candidates are strongly encouraged to apply as soon as possible. Candidates may submit their cover letter, outlining their interest and qualifications, along with their resume via NPAG’s website.

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation is an equal opportunity employer and proudly values diversity. Candidates of all backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

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