The Sobrato Organization
Bayshore Nonprofit Center (Palo Alto, CA)
Founded by John A. Sobrato in 1979 and led by CEO Matthew Sonsini and President Rob Hollister, The Sobrato Organization remains a family-owned firm known for integrity and dedication, with no outside investors or joint venture partners. Since 1953, the Sobrato Family has played a pivotal role in shaping Silicon Valley through its real estate development. Its office, and R&D projects comprise 7.5 million square feet, most of which are Class A, mid-rise office buildings. The firm also owns 30 apartment communities totaling 6,700 units along the West Coast. Through Sobrato Philanthropies, the firm has donated more than $379 million in cash and real estate to the Silicon Valley community.
Reporting to the Director – Thriving Region, the Senior Program Officer (SPO), Strengthening Communities will lead a team focusing on communities with high social vulnerability in priorities communities across the region, including San Mateo County (East Palo Alto, Shoreview, and Daly City) Santa Clara County (Gilroy) and Southern Alameda County (Hayward and unincorporated areas). This SPO will focus on designing, implementing, and adapting the approach to grantmaking, community engagement, and capacity building. The SPO will curate a network of grantees, tenants, and partner funders that bolsters, networks, coalitions, and community infrastructure to ensure responsive ecosystems. The SPO will make grant, nonprofit space, and resource allocation recommendations that support partners’ goals.
The SPO will manage the team based at the Palo Alto Center, supporting a collaborative and positive working relationship with effective communication to advance grantmaking, convening and center activation. The SPO will also work closely with peer SPOs, the Director team, and evaluation partners to implement the Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning approach, ensuring feedback loops support grantees, tenants, local partners, and Sobrato staff in reciprocal learning and refinements. This work will also feed into the Silicon Valley Program’s approach to regional policy advocacy and sector leadership.
This role will be a key member of the Silicon Valley Program team and support the implementation of a multi-year commitment to strengthening community infrastructure and community capacity for the organizations supporting low-wage housing insecure residents towards economic mobility pathways. This candidate will enjoy taking creative approaches and be able to engage with a broad network of stakeholders – grantees, tenants, public officials, peer funders and community residents.
Responsibilities and Tasks
Job Responsibility 1: Program Planning and Implementation within the Geographic Ecosystem
% of Time: 25
– Designs, implements, and adapts the geographic-based approach to grantmaking, community engagement/centering community, and capacity building.
– Gathers information needed to inform program recommendations, including researching and summarizing background on community issues, prospective organizations, and active partners.
– Implements the ME&L approach in that geography and ensure feedback loops to support partners, Sobrato staff in reciprocal learning and refinements.
– Plans, budgets, and ensures adequate resources support grantee/tenant portfolio.
Job Responsibility 2: Grantmaking & Portfolio Management
% of Time: 30
– Identifies, conducts diligence, and advances grantmaking opportunities; manages grants portfolio.
– Schedules, attends, and documents key outcomes of grantee site visits, and tracks action items and follow-ups.
– Supports the team in the proposal application and grant renewal process.
– Supports the team in planning and development of new grants.
– Responds to general e-mail inquiries about the Foundation and/or funding requests.
– Support capital investment processes when there are aligned opportunities.
– Manages program grantmaking process, team coordination, due diligence, docket production, and cross-team communications.
Job Responsibility 3: Network Cultivation & Space Activation
% of Time: 25
– Builds relationship-management and communications approach with regional stakeholders (grantees, tenants, philanthropic partners, businesses and public officials)
– Operates as a network weaver and convener to connect institutions and organizations.
– Cultivates connective tissue across partners and leverages grants and nonprofit space to advance economic mobility goals.
– Utilizes nonprofit center space to support partners’ needs and ensure activated, accessible opportunities within Palo Alto Nonprofit Center that foster a sense of belonging.
– Implements community engagement and center activation strategy
– Leads or participates in committees and collaboratives relevant to local program goals.
Job Responsibility 4: Management and Communications
% of Time: 15
– Manages and supervises the geographic-based team, building collaborative and positive working relationships and effective communication.
– Develops the team’s overall culture and leadership.
– Supports team in developing programmatic and grantmaking goals and workplans.
– Develops internal and external communications, updates, and reports for the grantee/tenant portfolio.
Other Responsibilities as Assigned % of Time:
% of Time: 5
– Other duties as assigned
Education / Training
– Minimum Bachelor’s degree required or equivalent combination of education and work experience in the philanthropic, nonprofit, education, and/or public sector.
– 5-7 years+ experience in grantmaking, strategically investing grant funds and other resources with due diligence and high accountability.
– 3-5 years experience in convening, network weaving, and partner cultivation.
– Experience in program implementation in the philanthropic or nonprofit sector.
– Strong written and verbal communication skills to effectively interact with diverse internal and external stakeholders.
– Experience demonstrating program impact by aligning implementation with monitoring, evaluation, and learning.
– Track record in community development, community engagement, community building or community organizing, understanding how to embed community voice, lived experience, and diversity, equity and inclusion in recommendations.
– Experience using Fluxx Grants Management Software
– Familiarity with the Silicon Valley region
– Ability to drive key deliverables effectively and efficiently.
– Ability to be proactive and constantly prioritize responsibilities in a fast-moving and rapidly changing environment.
– Works well independently and within a team, demonstrating great initiative, flexibility, and collaboration.
– Exercises good judgment.