MacArthur Foundation in search of a Program Officer, Justice Reform


Program Officer, Justice Reform

Location: Chicago, IL, USA
Employment Duration: Full time
Application Deadline: Until Filled


General Summary:

— Manage grantmaking activities with a focus on criminal and juvenile justice and related policies and practices.

— Participate in the design and implementation of grantmaking strategies.

— Identify prospective grant recipients.

— Review and evaluate proposals.

— Prepare grant descriptions for administrative and board consideration.

— Maintain relationships with individuals and organizations relevant to the fields of interest.

— Monitor the performance of grantees and the implementation of grant strategies.

— Organize meetings with prospective grantees, grantees, and program advisors.

— Represent the Foundation at program-related meetings and conferences.

— Participate in planning future program strategies.

— Build, maintain, and strengthen relationships with state and local leaders involved in justice reform, and coordinate and provide oversight of grantees and participate in other national justice policy and system reform efforts.

— Experience in strategic communications and project management is essential.

— Familiarity with criminal and juvenile justice systems and systems reform is highly desired.

— Regular travel is required.


Essential Responsibilities and Duties:

— Evaluate grant proposals.

— Conduct background research and prepare grant recommendations for funding.

— Write extensively for internal purposes.

—  Implement and adapt current long-term grantmaking strategies.

— Apply expertise in relevant field(s) to the development and implementation of grantmaking strategies.

— Meet with prospective grantees and others in relevant fields.

— Conduct research projects and monitor the performance of research grants.

— Manage a caseload of active grants, and prepare information and reports as needed.

— Maintain accurate records and monitor the performance of grants.

— Keep abreast of current events and issues in the field.

— Build and sustain relationships with key actors in the field.

— Assist in the design of and implementation of grantmaking strategies as they evolve and of new initiatives.

— Perform other duties as assigned.


Knowledge, Skills, and Experience:

— Significant experience working in justice policy or related public policy areas (e.g., human services, public administration).

— Advanced related graduate training is required.

— Must have deep knowledge and appreciation of the substance and dynamics of public policy relevant to justice reform, including other institutions and systems.

— The ability to make effective connections among state and local officials, the courts, practitioners, and advocates is essential.

— Practical “on the ground” experience with public systems is highly desirable.

— Experience as a policy professional is beneficial.

— Proven ability to be a strong team player, excellent interpersonal skills, and professional oral and written communications, including the ability to write for publication and make public presentations.

— Must be experienced with the full array of current digital tools and applications, eager to experiment with new technologies as they are developed, and comfortable using “virtual” processes and tools (e.g., virtual meetings, document sharing, etc.).

— Must be well-organized and efficient at managing multiple tasks, self-confidant, diplomatic and collegial, and have high professional standards and good judgment.

The Foundation is an Equal Opportunity Employer and benefits from the various perspectives and talents of a racially and culturally diverse staff.

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