Administrative/Program Associate (NMEF)

About the Nellie Mae Education Foundation

The Nellie Mae Education Foundation (NMEF) champions efforts that prioritize community goals that challenge racial inequities and advance excellent, student-centered public education for all New England youth.

As the largest philanthropy in New England dedicated exclusively to education, we work to ensure that all youth have access to excellent and equitable public education that prepares them to succeed and thrive in community. Our new grantmaking strategy, announced in early 2020, centers on racial equity in public education and includes grant funds for:

  • Supporting Organizations Led by People of Color;
  • Advancing Community-School Partnerships;
  • Amplifying Youth Voice;
  • Building Movements and Networks;
  • Strengthening State and National Coalitions; and
  • Championing Student-Centered Learning

In addition to our grantmaking, we are committed to using our voice, privilege, and power to advance and advocate for racial equity in our education system and to identify, call out, and dismantle the systems and policies that have led to a disproportionate number of negative outcomes for people of color. In all of our work, we have committed to a race-equity-focused and community-centered approach. We commit to actively engaging with the communities we serve, and those most impacted, regarding solutions, investments, and resources for their community.

Headquartered in Quincy, MA, our team is comprised of mission-driven professionals who share a commitment to putting youth and communities at the forefront, operating with a racial equity lens, building collaborative relationships, supporting community-driven change, and continuing to learn, adapt, and improve.

For more information on NMEF, please visit


The Opportunity

The Administrative/Program Associate (Associate) provides programmatic and administrative support to various aspects of the NMEF's work, partnering closely with the Grantmaking/Programs team and the Vice President of Finance and Administration. Reporting to the Director of Grantmaking, they will act as an essential resource and central conduit for coordinating program logistics, supporting internal communications and responding to external inquiries and requests, and supporting the overall execution of NMEF's activities. They will proactively anticipate needs, harmonize resources, troubleshoot obstacles, and approach their work with a growth mindset and learning orientation. The Associate will play a critical role in data management in Salesforce; provide technical assistance to staff and external partners; and support the overall project management of grantmaking activities. This role offers a learning opportunity and launching pad for an individual with strong organizational and project management skills, as well as an interest in education, racial equity, and/or community-centered work, who wishes to gain experience in philanthropy.


Key Responsibilities

Specifically, the Administrative/Program Associate will:

  • Support the program team in the development and implementation of grantmaking activities:
    • Develop, draft, and assist in the creation of concept papers, memos, reports, and board materials
    • Conduct research on existing grantees and potential partners
    • Track and report on project funds, timelines, goals, and desired outcomes
    • Maintain accurate records of grantees and prospective grantees across multiple platforms
  • Connect with grantees and community groups to stay informed of events, activities, and developments in education in local communities
    • Track inquiries, manage responses, and provide technical assistance
    • Arrange site visits, coordinate logistics with external partners, and support learning for due diligence engagements
  • Support the use and maintenance of NMEF's Salesforce database, and help others in leveraging this tool effectively
  • Assist with planning, scheduling, coordinating, and implementing NMEF events, activities, and meetings
  • Develop and manage contracts with vendors
  • Ensure the timely submission of internal reports, expense reports, project deliverables
  • Assist with a number of administrative/operational functions in direct connection to the VP of Finance and Administration
  • Engage in special projects and other tasks as needed

Candidate Profile

As the incoming Program Officer, you will possess many, though perhaps not all, of the following characteristics and qualifications:

  • You bring at least 5 years' experience the area of nonprofit, education, administration, or other community-based, nonprofit, or philanthropic work.
  • You share NMEF's commitment to improving the educational experiences of children and youth living and learning in underserved and marginalized communities and schools.
  • You are aligned with our core organizational competencies: race-equity-focused and community-centered; building and nurturing collaborative relationships; adaptable and adaptive leadership; and growth and impact-focused accountability.
  • You possess excellent interpersonal and communications skills, including proven writing and editing ability, organizational skills, and exceptional attention to detail.
  • You capably manage multiple projects simultaneously, keeping track of both details and the bigger picture for complex projects with multiple components and timelines.
  • You are able to identify, collect, organize and synthesize information from various sources.
  • You demonstrate the ability to take initiative and work well independently when required, as well as a collaborative approach to operating in a small, mission-driven team.
  • You are comfortable and effective in working across highly diverse stakeholder groups, including internal and external constituents.
  • You are proficient with Microsoft Office Suite, various social media platforms, and other technology; and have experience with database systems (CRMs); Salesforce experience is a plus.
  • You are able to travel to visit grantees in communities across New England and have a valid driver's license. This role may require some evening and weekend coverage.
  • You hold an Associate degree or equivalent professional experience.


Compensation & Benefits

The salary range for this position is $50,000 - $70,000, commensurate with experience, and NMEF provides a comprehensive benefits package.

To Apply

Koya Leadership Partners, the executive search firm that specializes in mission-driven search, has been exclusively retained for this engagement. Cassie Scarano and Kirstin Griffiths are leading this search. To express your interest in this role please visit All nominations, inquiries, and discussions will be considered strictly confidential.

Nellie Mae Education Foundation is an equal opportunity employer and strongly encourages applications from people of color, persons with disabilities, women, and LGBTQ+, and other underrepresented applicants.


About Koya Leadership Partners

Koya Leadership Partners, a member of the Diversified Search Group, is a leading executive search and strategic advising firm dedicated to connecting exceptionally talented people with mission-driven clients. Our founding philosophy—The Right Person in the Right Place Can Change the World—guides our work as we partner with nonprofits & NGOs, institutions of higher education, responsible businesses, and social enterprises in local communities and around the world.

For more information about Koya Leadership Partners, visit

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