Maine Philanthropy Center

Building Connections for Maine Grantmakers

Anonymous Foundation seeks Senior Program Director

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

About the position

Intentional Philanthropy is committed to providing unparalleled service to family and independent foundations seeking to make meaningful impact through their grantmaking. We are seeking a personable, strategic thinker with strong ties to Maine and northern New England to serve as Senior Program Director for a client foundation whose grantmaking is heavily invested in the region. This position is an exciting opportunity for someone wishing to play a lead role in the creation of a local grantmaking strategy for a forward-thinking foundation in the early stages of its development.

The foundation’s grantmaking budget is approximately $4,000,000 annually split evenly between New England and Puerto Rico. A full year of grantmaking will consist of an estimated 25-35 grants. As one of the lead program staff for the foundation whose focus is on youth resiliency, wellness, and agriculture in New England and Puerto Rico, candidates must be based in Maine and able to travel several times a year between Maine and Puerto Rico.

Core responsibilities

Directors at IP:

  • Serve as a primary point of contact with clients, grantees and other external parties
  • Coordinate and integrate high level strategic goals for the client, project and/or company
  • Effectively direct full projects or work streams by creating project plans, managing own workflow and delegating to teammates as appropriate
  • Facilitate client meetings, and clearly communicate progress in succinct written formats
  • Ensure work/team results reflect field best practices and deliver timely, client-ready work
  • Answer most client inquiries independently based on field knowledge and experience; bring new information, learning from outside to the team
  • Make decisions using sound judgement, and maintain a positive attitude and a sense of humor
  • Contribute to firm growth and development by mentoring and managing staff, supporting company culture, managing budgets and participating in company-wide strategic planning

Key responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

Strategic grantmaking

  • Lead the New England portfolio of the foundation that grants approximately $2,000,000 annually.
  • Support the Board’s continued refinement of its mission and grantmaking objectives by providing knowledge and expertise gained through research and interaction in the field.
  • Design and manage grantmaking initiatives that advance the Foundation’s strategic direction.
  • Serve as the primary contact for meeting with existing and prospective grantees.
  • Perform and document necessary due diligence on prospective grantees to ensure programmatic excellence; include field research on best practices and relevant policy.
  • Conduct strategic, purposeful site visits, and document with clear and concise reports.
  • Handle correspondence, telephone, and personal contact with trustees, applicants, and grantees regarding grantmaking guidelines and processes. Maintain relationships with existing grantees, connecting regularly to review progress. Provide technical assistance and/or appropriate feedback as necessary.
  • Review final grant reports to assess whether reporting, performance criteria, and proposed project outcomes have been met. Document findings.
  • Work closely with other funders and community/nonprofit leaders to identify needs and promote opportunities for grantmaking and collaboration that align with the Foundation’s mission, interests, and funding priorities.

Knowledge base development

  • Inform the Foundation’s strategic grantmaking by regularly sharing accumulated knowledge in a clear and concise manner with fellow staff and Board for collective understanding.
  • Support or co-facilitate Board discussions to further define strategic objectives that align with the Foundation’s grantmaking focus. Implement approved strategy.
  • Stay apprised of and document relevant policies, landscape activity, promising strategies, and best practices that may impact philanthropic focus and strategy.
  • Support the active engagement of the Board in the work of the Foundation by identifying appropriate learning opportunities and developing clear and concise briefing materials.

Foundation management

  • Develop and manage overall project scope and work plans, including complex project timelines and budgets in partnership with the client team and senior-level support.
  • Design board meetings agendas to conduct business, meet learning objectives and educate and advise Foundation staff and boards on best practices, trends and leadership opportunities in their chosen philanthropic focus areas and overall foundation management.
  • Provide governance oversight, ensure adherence to regulations, bylaws, and policies and maintenance of required records and insurance.
  • Maintain accurate and complete financial and administrative records for managed foundation clients including bookkeeping oversight, development of annual grant and operating budgets, monitoring expenses and accountability for client operating budgets.
  • Collaborate with the Puerto Rico Director and Grants & Operations Manager to ensure a cohesive grantmaking strategy and completely IRS-compliant foundation management.


The Senior Program Director must be able to work both independently and in collaboration with grantees, funding partners, staff colleagues and Board members, and must possess a commitment to excellence and a desire to serve the best interests of the Foundation and its grantees.

An advanced degree in an appropriate field and ten plus years of relevant experience are ideal. This position requires 3-6 business trips per year and occasional weekend board meetings.

About Intentional Philanthropy

Intentional Philanthropy is a philanthropic advisory and management firm serving family foundations and independent foundations on grantmaking strategy, family foundation succession and foundation management. We help foundations define the change they want to see in the world, develop a strategy to accomplish that change, and vet and evaluate the nonprofits capable of bringing that vision to reality.

We work with individuals and families at all stages of their philanthropic journey. We help those just starting out as well as those with years of practice.

We pride ourselves on providing right-sized solutions to our clients’ needs. Our work is high quality, yet our style remains down to earth and approachable. We value each other, our clients, and the dreams they have entrusted to us as their partners.

How to apply

To be considered, candidates must submit a resume and cover letter detailing their relevant experience and specific interest in the company and the position to Please use this exact subject line: Senior Program Director

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