Social Impact Associate, Lever for Change - #242773

MacAthur Foundation

Date: 05/04/2021 23:30 PM

City: University Park, Illinois

Contract type: Full Time

Work schedule: Full Day

Building off the success of 100&Change, the MacArthur Foundation’s breakthrough $100 million competition, Lever for Change (LFC) helps philanthropists source vetted, high-impact philanthropic opportunities and connects those opportunities to significant amounts of philanthropic capital. LFC does this through either managing customized competitions or by matching philanthropists with the top vetted proposals from such competitions in a searchable online database of solutions. LFC has approximately three years remaining in its pilot period, after which the LFC board will consider various possibilities for the continuation of the operation

The Social Impact Associate will provide a wide range of support to the Vice President, Social Impact and the LFC team. This is an exciting opportunity for a creative, hard-working professional to work in a fast-paced and dynamic environment and to directly support the organizational strengthening and programmatic activities of a philanthropic start-up

Job Description

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

  • Support the sourcing, due diligence and tracking of highly effective social changeorganizations through competition processes including critical analysis of proposals, budgets, work-plans, strengths/weaknesses etc
  • Undertake background research on core sectors and issues of work including research on learning opportunities, tools, workshops, conferences, and resources that can support nonprofit grantees and applicants
  • Thoughtfully develop, draft, and prepare program-related memos, reports, materials, and presentations
  • Assist in the design of new initiatives to provide support to grantees and top applicants focused on improving program/project effectiveness and strengthen organizational capabilities
  • Monitor the performance of grants and the implementation of grant strategies
  • Manage a caseload of active grants, review reports and maintain accurate records and constructive/supportive contact with grantees
  • Identify opportunities and support the organization of various meetings of top applicants, grantees, program advisors and others in relevant fields for a variety of strategic purposes


  • Support the documenting and promotion of learning opportunities and learning cycles including tabulation and analysis of data for learning objectives
  • Foster and promote cross-partner and sector learning, knowledge curation and continuous improvement
  • Support the design and implementation of learning priorities across top performing applicants

Other Duties and Responsibilities

  • Keep abreast of current events, developments and issues in the field of philanthropy in order to maintain a balanced and objective perspective to support grantees and top performing applicants
  • Write extensively for internal purposes
  • Perform other duties as assigned

This position is based in Chicago, Illinois. The Foundation’s Chicago-based staff is working remotely from home to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 at least through June 30, 2021


  • Two years of professional experience
  • Minimum of a BA/BS in Education, International Affairs/Development, Human Rights/Social Justice, Multicultural Communication, Anthropology, Social Work, Psychology, Law, Public Health or related field
  • Excellent written, verbal and interpersonal communication skills
  • Positive “can-do” attitude and a willingness to do what is necessary to get the job done
  • Well-developed organizational skills and attention to detail
  • Demonstrated ability to follow tasks through to completion in a timely manner
  • Able to manage multiple tasks and projects under tight deadlines
  • Able to take initiative and work proactively
  • Excellent and effective interpersonal skills in working with colleagues at all levels; able to use discretion and maintain confidentiality; cultural sensitivity and demonstrated ability to work diplomatically with diverse constituencies
  • Technologically savvy
  • Experience with Salesforce or other databases
  • English fluency (spoken and written) required
  • Demonstrated competency in public speaking

Preferred Qualifications

Prior experience supporting philanthropic programming; facilitating program design; working with diverse cultures and socio-economic conditions; and demonstrated understanding of grantmaking. Experience managing large scale grants and/or contracts a plus

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