THE KLARMAN FAMILY FOUNDATION
The Klarman Family Foundation seeks to identify
areas of unmet need and to advance solutions to addressing them.
Their intention as a Foundation is to help make measurable progress
in improving the lives of others. Founded in 1990, The Klarman
Family Foundation granted approximately $86 million in 2022 to
advance its philanthropic interests.
The Foundation’s work is guided by the following principles and
- Approaching their work with a seriousness of purpose and
evaluative rigor, and with an openness to tackle issues in new
- Approaching their work with a sense of urgency and willingness
to invest based on the opportunities to make a difference, rather
than the limits of an annual grantmaking budget.
- A belief that the preservation of democratic norms lies at the
core of all of their work and that a healthy democracy is crucial
to all the Foundation seeks to achieve.
- A commitment to acting in partnership with other funders as
opportunities to learn and leverage greater impact.
- Applying what they learn to improve their philanthropic
practices and outcomes.
The Foundation’s grantmaking spans several areas of
- Ensuring a healthy democracy.
- Advancing health equity and community wellness.
- Strengthening vibrant communities.
- Supporting Jewish communities and Israel.
These issues are complicated, requiring new and creative
thinking and persistence over time. With a commitment to learning
and assessing impact, these categories and strategies may evolve,
but the dedication to applying best practices in philanthropy will
YOUR POTENTIAL IMPACT AS THE SENIOR PROGRAM
Reporting to the Program Team Director, the Senior
Program Officer (SPO) holds a generalist role with
significant responsibility for furthering the Foundation’s
grantmaking in Massachusetts. The Foundation takes a broad view of
what makes communities healthy and vibrant, and this role involves
grantmaking in areas including supporting children’s mental health,
improving access to high-quality care, and expanding access to
critical services and enrichment opportunities that help make
communities stronger. As part of a highly collaborative program
team made up of experienced generalists working across a range of
issue areas, the Senior Program Officer will serve as a utility
player to further grantmaking opportunities across the Foundation
and partner on an array of special projects.
The Senior Program Officer will join a team committed to
continuous learning, partnership building, and problem solving,
helping to realize the power of philanthropy as a critical lever
for change. This is a team of lifelong learners, exploring complex
issues and how best to translate learning into effective
grantmaking. Biased towards action, and eager to engage in
cross-portfolio initiatives, the SPO will bring humility, highly
developed facilitative skills, and a team-based approach to working
with internal and external stakeholders.
The SPO will help drive impact in the following areas:
- Independently research, review, and oversee a mix of
grantmaking responsibilities (with an emphasis within
Massachusetts). Note, grantmaking responsibilities will evolve over
time based on future Foundation needs/opportunities. Presently this
- Conduct thorough grant review, clear written analysis, and
ongoing monitoring of existing and new grants. This includes review
of large established institutions and early-stage and grassroots
organizations. Grantmaking requires the ability to thoroughly
analyze organizations’ strategies, financials, leadership and
governance, programs, and operations.
- Lead meetings with organizations and serve as grantees’ primary
point of contact with the Foundation.
- Ensure knowledge, interactions and data related to portfolios
are captured in the grantmaking system, and proactively determine
when to elevate as appropriate to senior staff and trustees.
- Consider and explore a full range of tools and approaches to
funding, including outside of traditional grantmaking (e.g.,
fellowships, commissioning research, convenings, sponsorships,
- Possess a sophisticated understanding of grantmaking and the
ability to contextualize grants within the Foundation’s big picture
goals. Monitor and learn from grantees and organizations on an
ongoing basis, assessing the overall effectiveness of grants as a
- Possess an adaptive approach, including an ability to respond
quickly and comprehensively to immediate needs and opportunities,
ranging from rapid response to important one-time opportunities
surfaced by Foundation leadership. Eagerly step-in to support
grantmaking and research across issue areas as needed.
Cross-Organizational and Program Team
- As an experienced generalist, provide senior-level capacity to
the program team, bringing the relational skills, depth of
knowledge and maturity, and versatility to step in on an interim
capacity across the program team (e.g., leave coverage, represent
the Foundation in external meetings).
- Partner as a strong utility player who can contribute as a
strategic thinker, researcher, grant maker, and external foundation
representative across a range of issue areas (e.g., Community
Capital Fund, Basic Needs, Democracy, Music Pathways) as
- Participate in other cross-program teamwork (e.g., all-staff
gatherings, onboarding of new staff, program team meeting
- Other projects and assignments to be determined by the Program
External Collaboration and Partnerships
- Serve as a bridge builder with Foundation partners and
stakeholders, surfacing shared values and pragmatic solutions.
Balance empathetic listening while remaining steadfast in holding
sound judgment and representing the Foundation’s values and
- Participate in conferences, affinity networks, and meetings
(e.g., Philanthropy MA, Grantmakers in Health) with thought
leaders, actively advancing the Foundation’s learning, networks,
and impact, while also confidently representing and bringing the
Foundation’s voice into these spaces.
- Build productive and authentic working relationships with a
range of key stakeholders holding diverse viewpoints and expertise
(close and new funding colleagues, field leaders, and scholars) to
advance the Foundation’s goals. At the same time, initiate ways to
extend those relationships beyond the individual connection to
strengthening the relationship with the Foundation as a whole.
- At times, serve as the Foundation’s representative in
partnerships and pooled funds that can advance the Foundation’s
drive toward large-scale impact. Proactively elevate questions and
learnings emerging from partnerships to manager and
Learning and Assessment
- Prepare written materials and presentations regularly for
staff, program team, and trustee meetings. Utilize writing,
presentations, and facilitated conversations to keep the team and
trustees informed of current work and help advance further learning
- Serve as a partner in advancing the overall development,
learning, and refinement of the Foundation’s work across a range of
areas, with a focus on work in Massachusetts.
- Possess a natural curiosity across a range of issues, serving
as a point person for ongoing learning in areas the Foundation is
driving toward or has an interest in. Share learning and
connection-making with fellow colleagues/program team. Communicate
key findings and provide clear analysis to KFF colleagues and
listen openly for other points of view to help inform shared
- Build and maintain the Foundation’s knowledge base about issues
and ecosystems; analyzing critical research, news, trends related
to the Foundation’s interests. Continually scan fields, follow key
developments and debates, attend conferences/meetings, and keep
abreast of academic and popular literature.
- Participate actively in program team, at times facilitating
team meetings and providing 1-1 peer support to team
THE SKILLS YOU’LL NEED
Strong candidates will be strategic thinkers and problem solvers
with the capacity to build and manage relationships toward
Foundation goals. As an external bridge between grantee partners
and stakeholders, and colleagues within the Foundation, the SPO
will have the presence and confidence to facilitate conversations
to gather points of view, welcoming differing perspectives and
making sound recommendations. A willingness to constructively
engage in organizational priorities beyond the immediate focus of
the program team, and experience and comfort with periods of
organizational ambiguity are highly desirable.
Core competencies include:
- Professional experience assessing organizational leadership,
strategy, and financial position (e.g., through grantmaking,
consulting, or program management); leadership experience working
with or within nonprofit organizations is helpful.
- Experience distilling complex information to form opinions and
make sound recommendations.
- Exceptional quantitative and qualitative analytic skills;
curiosity and commitment to continuous learning.
- Excellent analytical and communication skills: using sound
judgment, able to quickly gather, synthesize and summarize
information in a clear and jargon-free manner in written and oral
- Experienced bridge builder: ability to work productively across
lines of difference, demonstrating deep, active listening skills,
willingness to challenge own assumptions and openness to find and
forge common ground opportunities for collaboration, especially
when it seems elusive.
- Highly developed project management skills, including a proven
ability to keep organized, prioritize, manage time, handle pressure
and meet deadlines.
- Exceptional interpersonal skills and ability to develop
relationships with diverse communities and nonprofit and
- Sound professional judgment, objectivity, humility, and
appreciation for nuance.
- Discretion and sensitivity for working in the context of a
- Flexibility, sense of humor, creativity, and the ability to
adapt to shifting priorities in a changing landscape and in a
- Willingness to travel for site visits and other meetings
regionally and nationally.
We estimate the salary range for this exempt position is
$130,000 - $160,000 commensurate with prior experience and skills.
Comprehensive benefits for this position include paid leave, health
and dental insurance with a flexible spending account and dependent
benefits, a transit account, and a 403(b) retirement plan. The
Foundation is committed to professional growth and development for
all employees, and to the continued learning and practice required
as an organization to build and foster a diverse, equitable, and
All Foundation employees are required to be vaccinated for
COVID-19 as well as boosted, and the Foundation will require any
new employees to be fully vaccinated and boosted by their date of
hire as well, absent a medical or religious accommodation as
approved by the Foundation.
This position is based in The Klarman Family Foundation’s Boston
office and is eligible for a hybrid of in-office and working from
More information about The Klarman Family
Foundation may be found at: www.klarmanfoundation.org.
This search is being led by Allison
Kupfer Poteet and Robert Diggs of
NPAG. Interested candidates are
strongly encouraged to apply as soon as possible. Candidates may
submit their cover letter, outlining their interest and
qualifications, along with their resume via NPAG’s website.
The Klarman Family Foundation commitment to diversity
includes the recognition that our mission is best advanced by
contributions of people of diverse backgrounds, beliefs, and
culture. Recruiting and mentoring staff to create an inclusive
organization that reflects the diverse communities that we serve is
a priority, and we encourage applicants of all ages, cultures,
races, colors, religions, national or regional origins, disability
status, sexual orientation, gender identity, veteran status or
other status protected by law.