Jobs Board

Senior Program Associate, Arts and Culture (Mellon Foundation)

Company Name

Mellon Foundation

Company City

New York

Company State


Job Location

New York, NY

Company Information

The Mellon Foundation (“Foundation”) is a not-for-profit, grant making organization that believes that the arts and humanities are where we express our complex humanity, and that everyone deserves the beauty, transcendence, and freedom to be found there. Through its grants, the Foundation seeks to build just communities enriched by meaning and empowered by critical thinking, where ideas and imagination can thrive. The Foundation makes grants in four core program areas—Higher Learning, Public Knowledge, Arts and Culture, and Humanities in Place—and through its signature Presidential Initiatives.

The Foundation seeks a Senior Program Associate in the Arts and Culture (AC) program. Please note that Mellon maintains a hybrid work schedule, with three days/week in person at the Foundation’s Manhattan offices.

Job Description

The Senior Program Associate (SPA) will be a strategic thinker and thought partner in the AC program. The position reports to the Program Director and is a key collaborator with AC program officers and program staff, colleagues in other programs (particularly with grant managers and legal counsel), and on special projects and initiatives across the Foundation. In addition to collaborative work across the Foundation, this position requires independent work, staying abreast of field-wide trends, as well as reviewing and monitoring grant activities and preparing grant recommendation materials. The work is highly detail-oriented and requires consistent accuracy, the ability to anticipate outcomes, multi-tasking, flexibility, efficiency, patience, and discretion.

Position Details:

Responsibilities may include, but will not be limited to, the following:

• Seek and understand relevant knowledge across the fields and disciplines in which the program is situated.
• Actively identify and participate in the formulation of new proposals for funding, particularly with regard to the program’s dance strategy and support for individual arts.
• Advise grantees in preparation and revision of the narrative and financial components of proposals.
• Project manage grant-related initiatives, convenings, projects, and/or areas of exploration related to AC’s strategic priorities.
• Monitor grantee performance, including communication with directors and primary investigators. Execute related follow up.
• Collaborate on key planning activities for the program, including: the program’s annual grantmaking budget and expenditures; preparing final proposals, supporting materials,and summary and analytical documents for board meetings; and developing effective site visits to and convenings of grantees and collaborators.
• Draft dockets of grant recommendations and special reports to the Trustees and senior staff as requested by program leaders.
• Participate in meetings with current and potential grantees and maintain notes.
• Supervise program assistants on routine grant management, including reports, modifications, extensions, matching payments, etc., identifying issues and challenges as they relate to the strategic priorities of the program and recommending solutions.
• Build, maintain, and expand a network of professional contacts for information sharing and potential grantmaking opportunities and collaborations.
• Represent the Arts and Culture program at public meetings and conferences as assigned.
• Undertake research in connection with current and new initiatives.
• Maintain a visible presence in the field through regular attendance of grantee and non-grantee performances, showings, exhibitions, and installations.
• Liaise with the communications team on website features, program related copy, and other Foundation communications as well as Arts and Culture-specific communications.
• Respond to general inquiries, and requests for information and unsolicited funding.

Mellon offers a generous total reward package that provides base salary as well as a comprehensive benefits program. Mellon is committed to providing compensation that is competitive and equitable within the philanthropic sector. The estimated salary range for this role is $135,000-$175,000. The amount of pay offered will be determined by several factors, including but not limited to qualifications, unique skills, credentials or experience that is expected to impact the candidate’s contribution to the role. We will also consider market data as well as the Foundation’s internal pay equity framework.

Please note that Mellon maintains a hybrid work schedule, with three days/week in person at the Foundation’s Manhattan offices.

Job Qualifications

Candidate Qualifications:

• A Bachelor’s Degree in an arts related field is required. A Master’s degree in a related field is preferred.
• A minimum of 7 years of experience working in a cultural institution or philanthropy is also required.
• Demonstrated knowledge of organizational practices and field-wide trends in arts and culture;
• Fluency in speaking to and addressing issues pertaining to racial and social justice and how they impact the arts and culture sector;
• Deep curiosity and passion for learning;
• Strong experience in financial analysis and program administration.
• Facility with survey design and complex data analysis a plus;
• Ability to think nimbly and connect ideas and practices;
• Exceptional oral, written, and visual communication and presentation skills, including public speaking;
• Excellent analytic, critical thinking, and organizational skills with a precise attention to detail;
• Experience working both independently and collaboratively in a high-volume and fast- paced environment to complete assignments on regular deadlines;
• A self-starter mentality as well as an ability to anticipate and solve problems proactively, effectively cope with change, shift gears comfortably, decide and act without having the full picture;
• Demonstrated capacity to influence, negotiate, and facilitate processes in a collegial manner;
• Commitment to promoting and maintaining a collegial and collaborative work environment;
• Willingness to attend performances regularly, travel for conferences, site visits, and meetings with active and potential grantees and other stakeholders;
• A high degree of competency in the MS Office suite, particularly Excel and Word;
• Experience with Fluxx, Sharepoint, or other asset management system preferred.

How to Apply

Candidates should apply by submitting online a thoughtful cover letter describing fit for the position and a resume.

The Foundation will consider each response carefully, but only contact those individuals it believes are most qualified for the position.

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