Program Officer, Leadership Development

The Opportunity

The Meyer Memorial Trust (MMT) – originally called the Fred G. Meyer Charitable Trust – was founded in 1982 by Fred Meyer, who started the chain of Pacific Northwest-based retail stores that bears his name. Having left instructions in his will to establish the charitable trust, he bequeathed it nearly two million shares of stock in Fred Meyer Inc., and gave the Trust no prescriptive constraints. Instead, he allowed the Trustees to establish broad frameworks that would be responsive to the region he so loved. Today, his values – to innovate, take risks, embrace diversity, adapt to changing circumstances, contribute to economic development/parity and to develop the power of the mind – continue to create and inform the culture of the Trust, influencing its activities and the role that it plays in the region. Currently, with assets of approximately $785 million, it is still among the largest private foundations in the nation. The Trust’s mission is to work with and invest in organizations, communities, ideas and efforts that contribute to a flourishing and equitable Oregon. 

With a staff of 29 and a board of five Trustees, the work of the Trust is focused on strengthening the region, using a mix of strategic, proactive and responsive investments, including grantmaking, loans and initiatives, commissioning research, supporting policy advocacy and championing a range of community and nonprofit engagement strategies. Since 1982, the Trust has awarded funds to more than 3,100 separate organizations that address a wide variety of needs in many different focus areas: arts and culture, conservation and environment, education, health care, human services, public affairs, and social benefit. In fiscal year 2014, the Trust awarded the largest number and total amount of awards in its history: 515 new grants and program related investments to local nonprofit organizations totaling $46.3 million. 

It is an exciting time at the Trust. After an intensive self-discovery process that has served to reinforce its commitment to equity and diversity, staff and Trustees have refined the role of the Trust and its future in the region. The Trust is shifting its programmatic approach and seeks to add new members to the team who can help shape its future work. These new people will add richness to this evolving, forward thinking organization that plays such a critical role in the social improvement sphere in Oregon and beyond.

Learn more about Meyer Memorial Trust at!

Position Responsibilities

The Program Officer, Leadership Development will be a dynamic, engaged contributor to the overall efforts of the Trust, working to develop and support new and existing community-based leadership development programs designed to train and place emerging community leaders, especially those from underrepresented populations, into public and nonprofit positions of influence, as well as programs that build skills and capacity to advocate for community needs and champion policy solutions. The Program Officer will contribute strong relationships, creativity, enthusiasm, and leadership development savvy to support the success of the Trust’s Resilient Social Sector portfolio.

The Program Officer will report to the Director of Programs, with a dotted-line relationship to the Resilient Social Sector Portfolio Director. This position’s core responsibilities are overseeing and managing on-the-ground execution of the Trust’s community-based leadership development work through a variety of programmatic approaches. This is an ambassadorial role, building and leveraging an extensive network and working across organizations to further collaboration among them. The Program Officer will also help build metrics and mechanisms for continuous improvement within the program, analyzing and evaluating information and situations to strengthen program strategy and increase impact.

In all facets of responsibility, the Program Officer ensures that the Trust’s key values of equity, collaboration, innovation, responsiveness, humbleness, and transparency are upheld. 

Specifically, the Program Officer, Leadership Development will:

• Oversee on-the-ground execution of program efforts, including leading and coordinating leadership development-related workshops and convenings, managing vendor and consultant contracts and deliverables, providing technical assistance to build grantee capacity, and supporting impact assessment in the pursuit of social change

• Engage and develop relationships with a broad range of nonprofit, intermediaries and other social sector stakeholders across Oregon’s diverse communities; collaborate with community partners to identify strategic approaches for leadership development

• Nurture the creation and expansion of an effective network of Oregon leadership development programs, developing strategies that support social sector leaders to remain networked over time

• Assist in building and being part of the team of external partners engaged in building and supporting community leaders

• Work with relevant Trust staff and external evaluators to build ongoing processes to assess how well programming is achieving its purpose, create mechanisms for continuous improvement, and measure and report on the impact of the program on making transformative, sustainable change for Oregon

• Establish and strengthen collaborative relationships with intermediary organizations which support Trust grantees

• Share findings about the impact of partner and Trust approaches with social sector peers, and working with the Communications team, share stories broadly

• Prepare written materials for senior Trust leadership and trustee review

• Work with the Director of Programs and other Trust leaders and staff to continue to develop, evaluate, and refine a leadership development program strategy that applies an equity lens

• Participate in relevant affinity groups, as appropriate and value-added to the Trust, grantee organizations, and Oregon’s social sector

Profile of the Successful Candidate

MMT seeks a Program Officer, Leadership Development who is curious in nature, analytical in approach, and committed to and knowledgeable about broad-based, community-level leadership development. The successful candidate will be creative and entrepreneurial, combining a collaborative sensibility and work style with the ability to deliver and execute on innovative ideas and solutions that serve the goals of the portfolio and the entire organization. 

The successful Program Officer, Leadership Development will demonstrate a broad interest in and knowledge of the many fields and types of organizations that comprise the social sector, and will be compelled by the nexus of leadership development, organizational effectiveness, capacity building, technology, the power of networks, and the evolving strengths, needs, and opportunities of Oregon’s increasingly diverse communities. As this role is focused on community-based leadership development, particularly in underrepresented communities, this professional will require excellent interpersonal, collaboration, and leadership skills. Fundamentally, the new Program Officer will have a set of experiences that helps her or him to understand the challenges of nonprofit leadership, and the resources one needs to address them. Additionally, the Program Officer, Leadership Development will have a strong work ethic with high personal and professional standards of transparency and accountability.

The successful candidate will offer a personal interest in and commitment to working in an inclusive environment that places a high value on equity. MMT promotes a positive workplace culture of collaboration, innovation and respect in a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic environment. By virtue of its commitment to equity and inclusion, MMT knows well that professional strength can be derived from many experiences, and accordingly encourages candidates from a variety of backgrounds. 

More specifically, MMT seeks a professional who reflects the following:

• Significant and distinguished work experience in the social sector, including significant experience specifically working in or with nonprofits

• Demonstrated knowledge and experience in implementing effective strategies for leadership development, particularly in the broader context of building organizational and sector capacities

• Understanding of the roles of nonprofits in social change, and of the relationship of equity and resilient organizations and communities; experience with developing and applying strategies to operationalize equity and inclusion is desired

• A genuine desire to partner with and support others, and a diplomatic style that is constructive, especially in providing feedback

• Demonstrated experience working effectively with a broad and diverse range of stakeholders, including marginalized/under-represented communities – especially those related to equity, community change, and vibrant, inclusive communities

• Outstanding relational, interpersonal, and collaboration skills, both internally and externally; a communication style that reflects clarity, authenticity, transparency, and approachability

• Excellent written and oral communication skills; effective, engaging facilitation and presentation skills

• Excellent organizational and project management skills

• A strong work ethic, with high standards of accountability and a bias toward getting things done

• Working knowledge of best, promising, and emerging practices and innovations in the philanthropic field regionally and nationally

• Demonstrated ability to handle sensitive information effectively and confidentially

• A demonstrated willingness to reiterate a strategy and approach, with the ability to course correct as necessary

• A willingness to challenge conventional thinking coupled with the ability to collaborate effectively and encourage dialogue

• Ability to travel on an as-needed basis; an appreciation of and enthusiasm for community presence as an integral part of this role

Additionally, the successful candidate may well have:

• Fluency in a language other than English

Start Timeframe

We seek to have the successful candidate in place by Fall 2015.


This position offers competitive compensation and excellent benefits.

To Apply

All applications are held in strict confidence. Please submit your credentials and a letter of interest via email to The 360 Group at: [email protected]

Applications should be directed to the attention of Vincent Robinson, Managing Partner. No calls, please. To be considered, The 360 Group must receive applications no later than 5:00pm Pacific time on Thursday, August 27th , 2015.

At The 360 Group, we know that a richly diverse mix of professionals makes organizations more effective. As such, we make demographic and experiential diversity a hallmark of all our work, including search engagements.

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