Crankstart is a private foundation based in the Bay Area. The
Crankstart mission is to support leaders and organizations with the
know-how and tenacity to take on tough problems which have no quick
or easy answers. Crankstart currently supports efforts in
democracy, education, economic mobility, housing security, climate,
Crankstart is primarily focused on helping build a stronger and
more just San Francisco and Bay Area for all. We focus our giving
primarily in San Francisco, Oakland and Chicago. In 2022,
Crankstart made over $200m in grants with about 60% going to
nonprofits in the San Francisco Bay Area, 44% of whom are based in
Crankstart is currently a small, lean team of nine with plans to
grow efficiently over the next few years. As a funder, Crankstart
aims to build trust, be responsive and enable leaders and
communities to identify problems and solutions that matter most to
them. We have an equity-oriented team that prioritizes
collaboration and inclusion, as well as healthy disagreements in
Crankstart was founded by Michael Moritz and Harriet Heyman who
are actively engaged as Board members. As early signatories to the
Giving Pledge, they have committed to giving away the majority of
their wealth in their lifetimes.
Crankstart envisions a vibrant, thriving Bay Area, where our
region’s prosperity is shared, strengthened, and realized by all
who live here. We are a family foundation, based in San Francisco,
working with others to address social issues and their underlying
causes. Our main interests are education; a thriving democracy;
economic mobility; housing security; the environment; and the basic
sciences. In 2021, we made over $250m in grants, with about 60%
going to nonprofits in the San Francisco Bay Area. Crankstart is
very much a startup and consists of 10 core team members of diverse
backgrounds. We value: authenticity, collaboration, learning,
commitment, and hope.
For more information about Crankstart, please visit https://crankstart.org/.
Crankstart is seeking an equity-centered strategic leader to
serve as a Senior Program Officer (SPO) leading Crankstart’s work
focused on democracy (voting engagement, voting rights, criminal
justice and immigration) and climate (greenhouse gas emissions and
environment-related problems disproportionately affecting local
low-income communities). The SPO will function as a high-level
individual contributor and people manager. The role oversees two
bodies of work:
- Democracy. The SPO will lead Crankstart’s
democracy funding strategies and grantmaking focused on voting
engagement and voting rights, criminal justice and immigration.
Crankstart’s historic voting work has been national in nature while
much of our immigration work is focused within the Bay Area and
California. Our work intends to generate the conditions and support
the leaders needed to help democracy become a system for the people
and by the people. This means building a strong and engaged
multiracial electorate that expands the rights and secures justice
for those who have been sidelined.
- Climate. The SPO will lead Crankstart’s
climate funding strategy and oversee related grants. In this newer
portfolio, the SPO will look to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and
address environment-related problems disproportionately affecting
local low-income communities. Current areas of interest include
enabling a faster transition to good, green jobs, enabling
innovation for sustainable production and distribution of food and
protecting nature to mitigate climate change.
The SPO will spend about 80% of their time, effort and resources
on democracy and 20% on climate work.
The Senior Program Officer shapes and oversees multiple grant
portfolios within the democracy and climate strategy. You lead
ongoing development, prioritization, and implementation of discrete
funding activities to further the impact of our grantee partners.
You collaborate with other senior leaders to maintain strategic and
organizational alignment across issue areas and oversee and
delegate projects to program officers to ensure our grantmaking
processes are running smoothly for everyone involved. You identify
and meet with organizations, conduct due diligence, and make
funding recommendations to your team and the Board. You ensure
Crankstart is always listening to and learning from our grantee
partners and other community leaders.
We are looking for an individual with: 1) substantive leadership
experience in one of the following areas: voting, criminal justice,
and/or immigration, along with a strong interest in climate; 2) a
track record of improving the outcomes of historically marginalized
communities; and 3) a strong ability to break down system-level
problems to a set of levers that can be addressed through
The SPO will report to Crankstart’s Managing Director of
Programs. The role is based in the San Francisco Bay Area; this is
not a remote position.
Strategy Development & Leadership (45%)
- In collaboration with the CEO and Managing Director of
Programs, lead a comprehensive philanthropic strategy for democracy
and climate that supports Crankstart’s overall mission and
intersectional work across funding portfolios.
- Create and execute on annual and long-term operational plans,
including budget forecasting and goal setting, to prioritize and
resource high impact funding activities.
- Regularly evaluate philanthropic impact and effectiveness of
funding activities, leveraging storytelling, data analysis, and
research from the broader field.
- Educate and advise on democracy and climate topics to further
the learning and strategic alignment of work streams across the
Crankstart organization, including presentations to the Board.
- Scope and drive special projects and opportunities to innovate
and accelerate progress toward community-level outcomes based on
the unique needs and input of our target populations.
- Work with other senior leaders to advance their work via a
collective spirit and one aimed at improving the lives of residents
in San Francisco and Oakland.
Grantmaking and Relationship Management (35%)
- Appropriately task and support other program officers in the
execution of funding activities, grants management, and impact
- Identify and research nonprofit and community organizations
that would be strong grantees for our funding priorities.
- Write and present funding recommendations to the team and to
the Board, answering key questions about why we should support a
local nonprofit or community organization.
- Communicate funding decisions to prospective, current, and past
grantees with authenticity and diplomacy.
- Regularly check in with grantees through email, video calls,
site visits and phone calls to understand their needs and identify
patterns across portfolios.
- Cultivate relationships with stakeholders and leaders across
the democracy and climate ecosystem, including peer funders,
elected and non-elected public officials, business leaders,
academics, etc. to strengthen Crankstart’s work and drive towards
change at scale.
Team Development (15%)
- Provide mentorship and guidance to direct and indirect reports,
including recommending professional development opportunities,
making connections and introductions, advocating to other senior
leaders on their behalf, etc.
- Manage the performance of direct reports and/or team within the
expectations and structures of Crankstart’s talent development
- You are hungry to make a difference and recognize that big and
small tasks alike add value.
- You are passionate about supporting and uplifting the work of
nonprofit and community leaders in San Francisco and Oakland.
- You have 10+ years of professional experience in various roles
across the voting, criminal justice, immigration and/or climate
ecosystem and across sectors (e.g., nonprofit, public, private,
- You have 2+ years of experience in a senior leadership role,
including managing teams.
- You have a track record of improving outcomes for historically
marginalized communities— from setting clear goals to monitoring
progress to attaining ambitious targets.
- You show up authentically, with an orientation toward
collaboration, learning and deep commitment to our work.
- You have experience with end-to-end organizational strategic
and operational planning processes, including goal setting and
- You are a strategic thinker and do not shy away from
- You have demonstrated the ability to influence and advise
senior leaders at an organization, including founders and Board
- You have excellent verbal and written communication skills with
a focus on being able to synthesize complex concepts, information,
and your point of view to make decisions.
- You have experience working on complex, long-term projects that
involve a diverse range of stakeholders and types of people, both
internal and external to an organization.
- You thrive in a dynamic, startup environment–you can shift
gears quickly to adapt to changing priorities, and you enjoy doing
a little bit of everything.
- You have the demonstrated ability to build genuine, productive,
trusting relationships with a diverse array of stakeholders and
partners. Lived experience as a person who carries a marginalized
identity or identities is highly desirable.
- You have experience working on campaigns and/or within and
across political systems working to improve immigration, criminal
justice and/or climate outcomes.
Compensation and Benefits
The target starting salary for this position is $200,000 -
$220,000. Crankstart offers a competitive salary based on
experience and a benefits package including medical, dental, a 15%
401k match, generous vacation and paid holidays, and a generous
Employee Giving Alignment Program.
The SPO is located in the San Francisco Bay Area and a remote
option is not available. The Crankstart team currently works from a
co-working space in San Francisco on Mondays and offers use of a
coworking space 5 days a week from 9am-7pm. The SPO must have the
ability to travel to our San Francisco office at least 3x a week,
and occasionally travel throughout the San Francisco Bay Area to
build relationships with partners and grantees. We will eventually
move into a permanent office location in San Francisco while
continuing to have a hybrid work model.
We continue to prioritize the health and safety of our employees
and partners. Crankstart requires that all employees be fully
vaccinated against COVID-19, except as required by law. Any
employment offer will be contingent upon satisfactory proof that
you are fully vaccinated from COVID-19, subject to reasonable
accommodations for medical or religious reasons, and/or as
otherwise required by applicable law.
Martha Montag Brown
& Associates, LLC, in strategic partnership with Gumbs + Partners, has
been retained to conduct this search. Interested and qualified
candidates should apply by sending a cover letter, resume and
salary requirements by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
All correspondence will remain confidential.
Crankstart is an equal opportunity employer and does not
discriminate on the basis of race, religion, national origin,
gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital
status, mental or physical disability, veteran status, age, or any
other legally protected status. Crankstart also prohibits
harassment of applicants or employees in any of these protected