Website The Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation
The Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation (STBF) is now seeking nominations and applications for a Program Officer, Contraceptive Access and Policy in its Patients and Access portfolio. STBF is a private grant-making Foundation with a U.S. home office in Omaha, Nebraska, and a global office in Kigali, Rwanda. With annual spending in excess of $500 million, it is one of the largest private foundations in the U.S. The Foundation has only two main areas of grant making: 1) supporting efforts to reduce unintended pregnancy and access to safe abortion for women in the U.S. and around the world and 2) to enable low-income students in Nebraska to attend and succeed in college. The Foundation currently employs 52 staff across 19 states in the U.S. and 11 staff in Kigali, Rwanda.
The Program Officer (Contraceptive Access & Policy) plays an important role in developing and managing workplans focused on increasing access to contraception at the state and federal level. As the Foundation deepens its investments in this space, the Program Officer will support new partnerships to build and support a new federal program around reproductive health access. They will serve as a skilled strategic thinker, co-creator, and implementer of portfolio workplans that serve STBF’s goals. They will bring strong relationship-building skills to their role as a grant maker, developing trust-based and collaborative partnerships with portfolio grantees. The Program Officer will co-develop and then take responsibility for implementation of workplans that serve STBF’s goals, including identifying gaps or liabilities in movement work, securing internal or external stakeholder buy-in, seeking out new grantees, and shepherding new and existing grants through the proposal and reporting processes. They will uphold high standards for stewarding the Foundation’s resources, including budgeting, grant monitoring, and compliance. Managing goal-oriented work plans may additionally entail setting learning agendas, preparing grants for approval by Senior Program Officers, making budget recommendations, and communicating grantee progress or challenges to others. Additionally, in keeping with the values of STBF, they will collaborate across colleagues and join a diverse team of people deeply committed to equitable practices and reducing disparities in the workplace as well as in the field. This position reports to a Senior Program Officer in the Patients and Access portfolio.
The Program Officer will bring a deep spirit of humility, honesty, and collaboration to the role of grant maker. Their relationship-building skills will allow for collaborative, responsive, conscientious, and expert thought partnership with their grantees. They will conduct site visits to stay up to date on portfolio grantees’ work and attend or convene meetings as necessary to bring additional expertise to bear that informs USP’s work. They will contribute to reports for the STBF Board and develop or maintain relationships with other funders in the movement.
About US Programs
US Programs (USP) manages the Foundation’s grantmaking to ensure equitable, available, and supported access to abortion and contraception in the United States. Our unit supports numerous organizations in two main areas (or portfolios) of reproductive health, access, and justice movements. The first, referred to as Patients and Access, funds work to ensure access to abortion and contraception through support of individuals, health centers, clinicians, training facilities and related research. The second, Social Change, supports organizations focused on building longer term systems change through increasing social support for abortion, addressing public policy advocacy, communications and messaging, movement building, and litigation. USP is currently 16 people strong, based in Omaha and remotely throughout the U.S., with plans to grow steadily in the coming years to meet the evolving and rapidly changing realities of abortion and contraception access in the United States.
The Foundation is intent on safeguarding the values that drive our culture: Mission, Respect for Donor Intent, Appetite for Risk and Tolerance for Failure, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Humility, Passion Tempered by Objectivity and Evidence, Compassion and Love of Humanity, Honesty and Integrity, Kindness and Respect, and Shared Accountability.
The Program Officer, Research will need to have a genuine understanding of, and appreciation for, the significance of these values and aspirations and how they are operationalized in the work the Foundation undertakes. Finally, the candidate will need to be aligned with the Foundation’s progressive values, including unambiguous support for individual reproductive freedom.
WHAT YOU WILL DO
- Co-develop, implement, and manage strategies and goal-oriented portfolio work plans for US Programs, including by identifying gaps or opportunities to protect and expand contraceptive access through policy and systems change, securing internal or external stakeholder buy-in, seeking out new grantees, and shepherding new and existing grants through the proposal and reporting processes.
- Manage goal-oriented work plans, including by setting learning agendas, preparing grants for approval by Senior Program Officers, making budget recommendations, and communicating grantee progress or challenges to others.
- Serve as a partner and relationship-builder with grantees, applicants, other funders, and stakeholders through collaborative, responsive, and conscientious thought-partnership, collaboration, and guidance, and through participation in site visits, meetings, convenings, and conferences with grantees and funders to stay informed and bring additional expertise to bear.
- Contribute to reports for the STBF Board.
- Steward the foundation’s resources through budgeting, grant monitoring, and compliance, including by routinely tracking and forecasting portfolio budgets in conjunction with Senior Program Officers; carefully and objectively monitoring grants, and routinely communicating with grantees to provide both encouragement and constructive feedback, while assessing progress towards project goals; and reviewing grant proposals, budgets, and reports for both clarity and strategic alignment.
- With the support of Program Associates, ensure grants are processed correctly, reports are filed, and all documents are reviewed for compliance with both IRS regulations and USP guidelines and procedures.
- Collaborate internally to advance collective work and to uphold a strong team culture, including by actively engaging with colleagues at all levels, offering thought partnership across portfolios, proactively identifying opportunities, and offering suggestions for improving STBF’s collaborative work environment. Participates in unit-wide working groups where appropriate, including cross-functional strategic initiatives, STBF’s teamwide inclusion and racial equity committee, race-based caucuses, ad hoc planning committees, and other groups.
QUALIFICATIONS OF THE IDEAL CANDIDATE
While no one candidate will embody all the qualifications enumerated below, the ideal candidate will possess many of the following professional and personal abilities, attributes, and experiences:
Attributes for Success within this Role
- Seek input from and value the uniqueness of people from different groups and identities. Work effectively with individuals of diverse cultures, interpersonal styles, abilities, motivations, or backgrounds. Challenge practices or policies that may be exclusionary. Demonstrate a proven commitment to race equity.
- Develop and maintain effective working relationships with team members, internal and external partners and others using strong interpersonal skills. Work effectively with people outside formal authority to accomplish goals. Practice kindness, authenticity, and optimism when working with others.
- Demonstrate expansive knowledge of tools, methods, and resources in the area of reproductive health access, advocacy or policy development in the context of the movement systems and politics.
- Ask good questions and probe all sources for answers; see underlying or hidden patterns; look beyond the obvious and not stop at the first answers. Use rigorous logic and methods to learn, analyze and understand why problems occur; generate and implement creative, cost effective and realistic solutions.
- Look for new or alternative ideas from a wide range of sources. Consider future consequences and trends while considering future possibilities.
- Communicate effectively both in writing and verbally. Listen carefully and seek mutual understanding in daily interactions.
- Be comfortable in situations of conflict. Demonstrate an ability to say “no” when necessary and appropriate and have the confidence to choose the correct answer over the popular one. Show tolerance for ambiguity and be very comfortable with constant change brought on by internal and external pressures or expectations. Understand the value of flexibility and adaptability.
Background and Experience Qualifications
- Demonstrated knowledge in the U.S. contraceptive care safety net and relevant state and federal policies, including but not limited to Title X and Medicaid (including family planning waivers/demonstration projects and State Plan Amendments). Strong knowledge and experience with contraceptive care access and managing other people, projects, or initiatives. Specific knowledge of the non-profit work environment is highly valued; understanding of both direct patient care and organizational business considerations is also necessary.
- Demonstrated knowledge in one or more of the following areas: abortion and contraceptive methods, integration of reproductive health care into primary care settings, health care financing, causes and remedies of health disparities, health care delivery systems, barriers to reproductive access, reproductive and/or primary care clinical operations, health care quality standards, healthcare consumer/stakeholder engagement and patient experience, state and/or federal programs and policies that impact reproductive health care, or other relevant topical expertise.
- Preferred: Bachelor’s Degree in health care related field, political science, public health, health policy, gender studies, advocacy etc. OR 7+ years professional experience with increasing responsibility directly related to the role will be considered.
- Minimum 5 years of experience working in some aspect of contraceptive care or contraceptive policy including some program management responsibilities.
- Minimum 3 years of direct experience managing other people, relationships, projects, or processes.
- Preferred: Experience working in an environment with colleagues across multiple locations.
If working remotely, travel is expected up to 20% of the time, including coming to Omaha 3-5 times per year.
As part of our standard hiring process for new employees, employment will be contingent upon successful completion of a background check and proof of full vaccination against COVID-19 and any recommended booster doses, subject to applicable laws.
Compensation for the Program Officer role starts at $164,000. The Foundation also provides comprehensive benefits.
This search is being led by Cara Pearsall and Tyra Gravesande 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. It is encouraged that applicants submit their application by November 30, 2023.
Accommodations: If you require assistance due to a disability in the application or recruitment process, please submit a request to [email protected].
We are committed to creating a workplace where employees thrive both personally and professionally. This includes not only creating a diverse team where everyone feels represented, respected, and included, but also embedding these values across our work and practices. All applicants who are drawn to serve our mission will enjoy equality of opportunity and fair treatment without regard to race, color, age, religion, pregnancy, sex, sexual orientation, disability, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, genetic information, veteran status, marital status, and prior protected activity.