Vice President of Programs
Remote (preference for Washington, DC or Los Angeles, CA)
Type of Job
$200,000 – $245,000
Sep 19, 2023
About the job
The Climate + Clean Energy Equity Fund (Equity Fund) is a philanthropic fund dedicated to supporting a multi-state infrastructure of community-based organizations building power to advance an equitable clean energy future. With a proven approach to driving impact and a highly effective set of stakeholders and investors, the Equity Fund is facing a number of exciting opportunities. With the field that the Equity Fund supports growing quickly and public investments in clean energy transition accelerating, the Fund is spinning out of its fiscal sponsorship and establishing a new, independent institution that can meet the needs of the growing and dynamic ecosystem of grassroots organizations and expand their collective impact. Poised for significant growth, the Equity Fund has evolved and is growing its executive leadership structure and operating model to lead effective strategy, systems, and culture for the team. To that end, the Equity Fund invites nominations and applications for the position of Vice President of Programs, who will provide important, executive leadership to both its 501(c)(3), and the Climate Equity Action Fund, 501(c)(4), and the field of climate philanthropy during this dynamic time.
The Vice President of Programs will be responsible for driving the Equity Fund/Action Fund’s grantmaking and programmatic strategies to achieve its mission of building the power of racially diverse communities to advance equitable climate policies. Immediate opportunities for impact include:
- Lead staff on the Grants and PowerBuilding team to develop grantmaking goals and strategies to win equitable climate policies and campaigns by prioritizing grassroots organizing and building power in the Equity Fund’s 13 portfolio states.
- Lead staff on the Policy Accelerator and Communications Accelerator teams to support grantee partners to build key policy and communications capacities and campaigns that leverage and maximize the power of community-led solutions.
- Lead the Program team to sharpen, integrate, and refine its strategies to accelerate success across the Fund’s portfolio through continual analysis, learning, and innovation.
- Advance grantmaking approaches and models that prioritize organizing, equity, building power, and building deep partnerships and trust with grantee organizations.
- Drive philanthropy to support and accelerate social change impact through innovation, creativity, and bold action.
Staff Leadership and Management
- Inspire, mentor, and manage staff by guiding the Program Team through change and continued growth while maintaining high standards of professionalism and impact.
- Foster a culture that promotes trust, respect, equity, integrity, and operates with a movement-building orientation.
The ideal candidate for VP of Programs will be a seasoned, mature manager and skilled communicator who thrives in a complex, diverse, and multi-stakeholder environment within a start-up culture; and has demonstrated success developing and deploying philanthropic resources to implement a multipronged strategy for successful outcomes in a campaign or public policy environment. They will have executive experience managing high-performing teams and driving collaborative decision-making, and will be able to shift appropriately between the roles of skilled tactician, team coach, manager, and visionary leader. They will ideally bring experience in community-driven processes of passing and implementing climate policy, organizing and power building experience, grantmaking or re-granting experience, and additional lived and professional experience relevant to the Equity Fund’s work. They will be an entrepreneurial, results-driven, relationship builder who is committed to the Equity Fund’s mission and values of power building to accelerate the transition to an equitable clean energy future.
ABOUT THE ORGANIZATION
The Climate + Clean Energy Equity Fund (the Equity Fund) is supporting a multi-state infrastructure of community-based organizations building power needed to advance an equitable clean energy future. The Equity Fund is strategically building power by:
- Investing in the leadership and organizing of diverse communities (Black, Latinx, AAPI, Indigenous people, and communities bearing the brunt of climate change);
- Engaging voters in these communities through nonpartisan civic engagement campaigns; and
- Winning climate and clean energy policy solutions that reflect the priorities of communities and advance racial, economic, and environmental justice.
Founded in 2016, the Equity Fund partners with organizations in 13 states (Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Virginia), and will expand its reach to additional states in the coming years.
Grassroots groups advocating for and organizing communities of color, Indigenous, working class and rural communities – often people hardest hit by climate change – are accomplishing critical work to build the collective power of communities. These communities are often the strongest supporters of climate policy and are a key political force to advance community demands and win durable policy change. The Equity Fund serves as a conduit for foundations and donors to partner with and support these grassroots organizations across the country. Because of Equity Fund’s expertise and deep relationships with community-led groups working at the intersection of climate change and economic, racial, and environmental justice, the Equity Fund can identify and nurture local grantee partners that have large-scale bases of members and track records of winning policy victories in their cities and states. The team then works to synthesize and share lessons learned from their grantee partners so that foundations and donors can better understand how grassroots groups can more effectively build power to advance climate solutions and then develop and coordinate funding strategies that will have the greatest results.
OPPORTUNITIES & EXPECTATIONS FOR THE VICE PRESIDENT OF PROGRAMS
The Vice President of Programs will serve as a critical member of the Executive Team and advance the Equity Fund’s mission by leading the Equity Fund and Action Fund’s programmatic priorities. Reporting to the President, and in collaboration with the President and program leads, the VP of Programs will drive the planning and execution of the Equity Fund’s Grants and Power Building, Communications Accelerator, and Policy Accelerator program strategies and goals.
As an experienced and decisive leader who knows how to foster relationship building and collaboration across teams to drive progress, the VP of Programs will advance a strategy for climate equity that is centered around building the power of diverse communities to advance equitable climate policies. This role is internal-strategy oriented, driving the big picture strategy and prioritization of the Funds’ programmatic work alongside external relationship building with funders, allied organizations, and grantee partners. The successful candidate will refine and clarify process for each programmatic function, ensuring that the Program Team understands the details of a sharpening theory of change, the process through which their input is received and considered, and how their work connects to the organization's mission and impact.
The VP of Programs will be responsible for providing leadership and driving success in the following key areas:
Organizational & Strategic Leadership
- Work closely with the President and other Executive Team members to develop a clear, long-term vision and strategic direction for all Equity Fund and Action Fund program strategies and priorities.
- Serve as an executive manager and decision-maker, providing the organizational leadership required to establish processes for team input to strategy, while driving positive change and ensuring strategic alignment, integration, and execution across programs and departments.
- Support fundraising and cultivation of funder relationships to drive the organization’s theory of change, anchor the organization’s role in the climate movement, and to gain visibility and opportunities for the Equity Fund and Action Fund.
- Ensure strong cross-organizational collaborative approaches and strong communication, transparency and information sharing are nurtured and deepened.
- Partner with the President on the strategic direction and agendas for Board meetings, including the creation of memos, reports, and presentations.
- Support a positive organizational culture of collaboration, dedication to equity, values, creativity, and respect for a wide range of voices and perspectives.
Program Management & Execution
- In partnership with the directors on the program team, develop, implement, and execute cohesive program-wide and state-specific strategies across programmatic areas to support mission impact by translating strategies into actionable workplans with measurable outcomes.
- Oversee grantmaking and creation of docket memos, strategy papers, and reports for the program team.
- Drive Equity Fund and Action Fund organizational planning, prioritization, and budgeting processes by working collaboratively with leaders across Equity Fund and Action Fund to ensure priorities are successfully executed and objectives met on time.
- Ensure cross-departmental work is cohesive and working groups hold strategic priorities at the core, ensuring program leadership is aligned around bodies of work.
- Foster a collaborative and results-oriented culture supported by systems and processes that help drive agile executive decision-making and reinforce accountability for those directly carrying out Equity Fund and Action Fund strategies.
- Assess progress on strategic objectives and communicate that progress to the Executive Team, the Board, and staff.
- Support, coach, supervise, and develop program leadership and team members, and maintain a trusting, inclusive, equitable, high-performing team culture.
- Provide mentorship and constructive and timely feedback to foster a collaborative environment that develops strengths, improves weaknesses, and encourages continuous learning.
- Directly manage 2-3 employees and indirectly oversee a program department of 13, with the potential for additional team growth.
- Oversee the daily workflow of direct program leadership reports.
- Recruit, interview, hire, and train staff, including managing discipline and termination of employees in accordance with organization’s policy.
- Establish a regular meeting cadence for the program team to support alignment and efficiency in the work.
Shared Organization Responsibilities
- Champion the Equity Fund and Action Fund’s theory of change and mission of empowering the communities most disproportionately impacted by climate change.
- Develop relationships with and support colleagues across all teams, recognizing that each individual brings a unique background and perspective to the work.
- Model and nurture a growth mindset and continuous learning posture when facing new situations by collaborating to find fresh solutions, taking on the challenge of unfamiliar tasks, and externalizing lessons learned from failures and mistakes.
In recognition of the fluidity of the work and ecosystem that the Equity Fund operates in, other duties may be assigned based on organizational needs.
QUALIFICATIONS OF THE IDEAL CANDIDATE
The VP of Programs will be committed to racial, economic, and social justice. 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:
Strategic Vision and Core Knowledge
- Broad knowledge of the climate philanthropy field and an understanding of the historical context, institutions, and systems that combine to compound the effects of climate change on people of color and other disenfranchised groups in the United States.
- Ability to apply both a macro and state-level view on relevant trends in climate change organizing, politics, policy, and communications, with a strong curiosity and interest in tracking the needs and developing areas of the field.
- A proven thought leader with an understanding of and ability to articulate the value proposition for the emergent role that intermediary funders play in supporting nonprofit infrastructure and capacity building in communities.
- Demonstrated passion for and investment in advancing justice and equity. Highly developed critical consciousness and a combination of professional and lived experience aligned with the Equity Fund’s mission and values.
- A background in organizing, power building, and/or community-driven processes of passing and implementing climate policy.
- 10+ years of demonstrated leadership experience in strategy, programming, and other related fields within the social justice movement and/or philanthropy.
- 10+ years of deep supervisory and management experience in leadership of large, complex, and multidisciplinary teams.
- A track record in managing complex plans, projects, budgets, and deadlines that require coordination across multiple stakeholders and with minimal support.
- Experience building relationships and working in partnership with diverse audiences and stakeholders, including funders, elected officials, community leaders, grassroots organizations, and coalition partners.
- Experience working within the broader climate movement and in state-level political landscape, including working with state, local, and federal decision makers, partner groups, communities, and/or with 501(c)(4) organizations.
- Superb communication and external relations skills and demonstrated success in building an organization’s profile and reputation in regional, state, national, and professional communities.
Management and Team Leadership
- Experience mentoring, developing, and providing leadership to high-performing, multi-disciplinary teams to achieve project/program goals.
- Cultivation of a relational work environment that builds trust, collaboration, communication, and seeks to foster a culture of equity, transparency, accountability, and integrity.
- Commitment to creating a strong and healthy workplace that centers diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging and reflects internally the values the Equity Fund advocates for externally.
Systems and Processes
- Experience designing and building systems and processes to support multidisciplinary programs and a willingness to rethink or improve upon established systems and processes.
- Ability to assess and identify pain points in a growing organization and devise strategies to ensure that processes and systems are being developed in a strategic manner to guide growth.
- An inclusive, collaborative, and agile management style and the ability to bring joy, good humor, and purpose to the work environment.
COMPENSATION, BENEFITS & LOCATION/SCHEDULE
The Equity Fund offers a competitive and holistic total rewards package that includes salary and benefits. Comprehensive benefits package that includes 100% employer-paid health, dental, and vision insurance; 3% automatic contribution and a 3% employer match on 401(k) contributions; pre-tax transportation benefits; and paid holiday, vacation, sick, and volunteer time off. The target salary range for this role is $200,000 – $245,000.
This role is remote with a preference for Washington, DC or Los Angeles, CA.
More information about The Climate + Clean Energy Equity Fund may be found at: www.theequityfund.org
This search is being conducted with assistance from Katherine Jacobs 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 Climate + Clean Energy Equity Fund is a project of New Venture Fund (NVF), a 501(c)(3) public charity that incubates new and innovative public-interest projects and grant-making programs. NVF is committed to attracting, developing, and retaining exceptional people, and to creating a work environment that is dynamic, rewarding, and enables each of us to realize our potential. NVF’s work environment is safe and open to all employees and partners, respecting the full spectrum of race, color, religious creed, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, political affiliation, ancestry, age, disability, genetic information, veteran status, and all other classifications protected by law in the locality and/or state in which you are working.
To center the safety and well-being of its employees, New Venture Fund requires that any employee who is required to conduct in-person activities for their job must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 within four weeks of their start date. This position may require candidates to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Accommodations may be sought and approved in accordance with the law by contacting human resources at HR@newventurefund.org.