July 30, 2020
Employment Program Officer Position Announcement
The Lloyd A. Fry Foundation seeks a Program Officer to develop and lead the Foundation’s Employment grantmaking. Based in Chicago, our Employment Program addresses our commitment to helping families and individuals move out of poverty. We support comprehensive job training programs that help low-income individuals improve their ability to compete for living-wage jobs and careers. We are particularly interested in:
● Vocational training programs that help low-income job seekers acquire the skills and knowledge
necessary to compete for jobs in industries that are important to the region’s economy.
● Bridge programs that help low-skilled adults simultaneously attain the education and
employment skills necessary to access jobs with career advancement potential.
The Foundation seeks to support innovative approaches and knowledge which can help to advance practice in the field. To achieve this, we seek a candidate who is able to: identify trends and common challenges across organizations; investigate new topics quickly; synthesize a wide range of information; and adapt and apply ideas across new contexts.
Program Officer Responsibilities/Core Competencies:
The core competencies required to carry out the Program Officer responsibilities are as follows:
● STRATEGIC PROGRAM ADMINISTRATOR - Oversee the employment grant portfolio, work with colleagues and the board of directors to identify programmatic goals and strategies,
and manage and plan the program grant budget;
● FORWARD-LOOKING SYSTEMS LEVEL THINKER - Actively identify challenges and
opportunities that can be addressed through the Foundation’s grantmaking and program
strategies that have the potential to advance employment goals -- this includes staying current on best practices and relevant employment policies at the local, state and federal levels;
● ARTICULATE ADVOCATE - Solicit and review proposals and letters of inquiry, arrange and
manage site visits, prepare proposals for board review, and present written and verbal
recommendations to the board of directors. Prepare decline letters and work to communicate
clearly with grantees as well as with organizations that do not receive support from the Fry
● COLLABORATOR - Work with grantees to support collaborative work; help organizations
advance knowledge and practice in the field; and provide guidance and assistance on program strategy, assessments, and other aspects of building capacity and program development; and
● ENGAGED LEADER - Actively engage with other philanthropies, government agencies and civic leaders in the employment field to facilitate and leverage collective action on shared priorities.
Program Officer Qualifications:
∙ Five or more years work experience in the employment field;
∙ Bachelor’s degree is required; Advanced degree is preferred;
∙ Excellent written and verbal communication skills along with strong analytic and research
∙ Welcomes and actively contributes to intellectual give and take -- asks thoughtful questions,
is open-minded, is comfortable challenging ideas and benefits from being challenged; and
∙ Experience in the nonprofit sector is preferred
The Program Officer will be a full-time employee of the Foundation with competitive compensation and benefits. The Program Officer will report to the President. The Foundation seeks to fill this position as soon as possible and will work actively to build a highly diverse pool of candidates.
Interested applicants should send a resume and cover letter, which clearly articulates how their skills and experience meet the responsibilities and requirements noted above, via email to:with only the candidate’s name in the subject line.