Program Associate, Climate Initiative (WPF)

About the Organization

Wellspring Climate Initiative (WCI) seeks to avoid the worst impacts of climate change by dramatically reducing global greenhouse gas emissions and accelerating the transition to a clean energy future. The Climate Initiative’s investments are aimed at decarbonizing the world economy as quickly as possible and are focused on the strategies and venues where philanthropy can have the highest impact. Wellspring Climate Initiative is active in multiple geographies based on opportunities for cost‐effective mitigation. WCI believes that solving climate change requires the adoption of ambitious, evidence-based policy solutions that transform markets, advance clean technology, and lead to large‐scale change. WCI is dedicated to building the political will and powerful coalitions needed to achieve these bold policy solutions. WCI was recently launched and is actively building its team. WCI is based in Irvine, California.

Wellspring Climate Initiative is part of the Wellspring Philanthropies and an initiative of Wellspring Philanthropic Fund (WPF), which opened its doors in 2001 with a mission to improve the realization of human rights and social and economic justice for all people. The organization is supported by donors who share a common belief in and respect for the inherent worth and dignity of every person. Further information can be found here:


The Role

Program development, delivery, and performance

  • Conduct research and analysis on specific programs and climate sector trends to support WCI in determining strategic priorities and setting operational plans.
  • Provide and communicate global and regional analysis verbally and in writing, including developing presentations, graphs, and charts to contribute to the strategy and planning process.
  • Assist the Executive Director, Program Director, and leadership team in preparing aspects of the program strategy and evidence base to support grant approval processes.
  • Support the oversight and lead administration of the grant management process to enable WCI to deliver and monitor its philanthropic activity efficiently and effectively and ensure impact.
  • Assist the program officers as needed with tracking grantee work and outcomes, including reviewing grants reports, and participating in meetings with grantees.
  • Support the preparation of strategy recommendations, background papers, summary reports and portfolio investment reports, to ensure these are produced to a high standard and in a timely fashion.
  • Assist program directors with drafting of summaries and analysis of grant proposals.
  • Participate in all aspects of grant making, including initial screening of potential grantees, analyzing background information; soliciting and developing funding proposals; preparing grant recommendations; serving as focal point on select grantee relationships; and conducting site visits.


  • Assist team with planning and coordinating meetings, travel, workshops and convenings; make logistical arrangements as needed; manage consultant contracts.
  • Maintain grants database, budget spreadsheets and grant calendars, and coordinate grant processes for the team.
  • Support strategic planning, reflection and learning processes, including through research, analysis, preparation of materials, and note taking.

Sector knowledge and profile-building

  • Proactively build and maintain external knowledge and networks to ensure decision-making is shaped by up-to-date insights and research.
  • Monitor developments in the field to identify emerging needs, gaps, and opportunities.
  • Support geographic or sector-relevant research and analysis to inform the effective development, delivery, and evaluation of programs and initiatives.

Financial stewardship, supervision, and management

  • Coordinate the development of grant agreements closely with the Wellspring Philanthropic Fund team including the forecasting of grant payments, to enable effective grant management and reporting.
  • Support the maintenance of annual administrative budgets for programmatic expenses.
  • Prepare and support relevant WCI presentations.
  • Serve as a compliance checkpoint to ensure grantmaking stays within yearly budgets.
  • Perform other duties and responsibilities as requested.

Position Requirements

  • Minimum of three years of experience working in climate change or a related field; philanthropic and/or advocacy experience is desired.
  • An advanced degree in a relevant field is preferred, or equivalent by experience.
  • Demonstrated ability to establish and maintain close, collegial, effective working relationships with colleagues and grantees of diverse backgrounds and perspectives.
  • Exceptional judgment and ability to handle confidential information with complete discretion.
  • Proven experience interacting with senior management.
  • Ability to multi-task, meet deadlines, and work both independently and collaboratively.
  • Understanding of grantmaking.
  • Excellent analytic abilities and organizational skills.
  • Comfort with quantitative information and data, including budgets and financial information.
  • Initiative, resourcefulness, flexibility, and a sense of humor.
  • Excellent English language writing, synthesizing, editing, and proofreading skills.
  • Ability to work in a cross-cultural, team environment.
  • Understanding and embodiment of Wellspring values (, including humility and teamwork
  • Understanding and valuing social justice, including racial and gender equity as an organizational operating principle - - and a commitment to continued learning on issues related to race, gender, equity, diversity, and inclusion.
  • Ability to handle confidential information with complete discretion.
  • Willingness to learn, be open to new ideas, and have fun.

Limitations and Disclaimer

The above job description is meant to describe the general nature and level of work being performed; it is not intended to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties and skills required for the position. The team member may be required to perform duties outside of their normal responsibilities from time to time, as needed.

Salary and Benefits

Salary range $65,000-$80,000 based on experience and skills.

Wellspring offers a very generous benefits package including payment of 100% of the health insurance premiums for employees (and 80% of the premiums for spouses, domestic partners, and qualified family members). Wellspring also offers other benefits including life insurance, long‐term disability protection, a group 401(k) retirement plan (with an employer match), support for continuing education, up to $5,250 in annual student loan repayment OR college savings assistance for qualified dependents, and is committed to providing transgender‐inclusive healthcare.

How to Apply

For employment consideration, please submit your application to [email protected]. Subject Line: “[Your name] — Climate Program Associate.”

All applications must include:

  • a resumé; and
  • A thoughtful cover letter, including salary requirements (specifying salary amount or range) and how you became aware of this opportunity

Wellspring’s Institutional Culture of Respect, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging

WCI and WPF believe we are strengthened by the diversity of our staff, and welcome such diversity including race, gender identity or expression, educational attainment, disability, veteran status, and personal experience with the criminal justice system. WCI welcomes applications from people of all cultures, backgrounds, and experiences, and we strongly encourage people of color and persons with disabilities to apply. We actively cultivate an institutional culture that reflects the values of respect, equity, and inclusion that they seek through their work to amplify in the larger world.

WCI and Wellspring hire, promote and retain employees based on their professional qualifications, demonstrated abilities and work performance, as well as on the degree to which these qualities are required in the employment positions made available by the Foundations’ service needs and business requirements. All personnel decisions, including but not limited to recruitment, hiring, compensation, assignment, training, promotion, discipline and discharge, are made without discrimination based on any protected characteristic as defined by law (e.g., race, color, religion, national origin, citizenship, ancestry, age, disability, gender identity or expression, sex, sexual orientation, marital or familial status, domestic partner status, veteran or military status, genetic predisposition or carrier status, and prior criminal convictions, as well as educational attainment.

NOTE: At this time, our preference is that applicants have work authorization to work in the United States.

The application deadline is 12/18/2020 (Candidates selected for interview will be contacted following the end of the application period.)

No Phone Calls Please


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  • Reed Young
    published this page in Job Board 2020-11-20 13:54:26 -0500