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Program Officer, Anchoring Communities


The San Francisco Foundation (TSFF) is the community foundation serving the Bay Area since 1948, granting more than $800 million over the past ten years. Through the generosity and vision of our family of donors, TSFF has over $1 billion in assets and awarded grants totaling more than $90 million in FY 2015. TSFF brings together donors and builds on community assets through grant making, lending, leveraging, public policy, advocacy, civic engagement and leadership development. The San Francisco Foundation serves San Francisco, Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, and San Mateo Counties.  The overall goal of the Foundation’s equity agenda is to advance racial and economic equity in the Bay Area.


REPORTS TO:  Senior Director, Anchoring Communities


The Program Officer, Anchoring Communities, under the direction of the Senior Director has primary responsibility for grant making and strategy implementation for the Anchoring Communities pathway.

The Anchoring Communities pathway, also known as the PLACE pathway, focuses on retaining the diverse vibrant cultural and ethnic character of communities across the Bay Area.  Accomplishing this goal requires a focus on preventing the displacement of thousands of low-income families and people of color, and supporting the organizations that help make their communities welcoming places. 

Anchoring Communities’ strategies support local affordable housing, tenant anti-displacement, equitable development, and living wage jobs, as well as the retention of community anchor organizations from the arts to education to organizing.  The Anchoring Communities strategies seek out and exploit windows of opportunities to advance equity –places where economic changes and planned investments are bringing residents and leaders together to determine how they can revitalize and improve their communities, and retain diversity for the benefit of all.  In other places, Anchoring Communities seeks to spark new community investments, and supports public policies to create a brighter future for current and new residents.

Under the Direction of the Pathway Director, the Program Officer for Anchoring Communities key responsibilities include:

  • Development and implementation of strategy.  Participate in the development of pathway community stabilization and anti-displacement strategies, and the identification of population-level outcomes, as well as leading components of strategy development.  The Program Officer will work as part of the team and be responsible for helping the team to build and implement bold and innovative community development strategies that integrate arts and culture into community anchoring programs and practices.  The Foundation’s support for arts and cultural anchors stems from its deep understanding of the role they play in lifting up the voice of community and rallying residents for positive social change, acknowledging that art and culture institutions in their many forms strengthen community and have tremendous impacts on the lives of its residents, and that the art they support helps to shape the physical and cultural environments.  The development of equitable community development strategies involves research, outreach to community partners, and the identification of needed partnerships, collaborations, and the other elements required to reach population level impacts and outcomes.
  • Expand understanding, support, and collaboration.  Identify and facilitate opportunities to bring various constituencies together to further the goals of TSFF’s Equity Agenda.  For instance, convenings may be used to position TSFF as a resource for those interested in addressing critical issues affecting individuals and communities, to gather input on a specific strategy or body of work, to garner support for a particular cause or activity, to educate and learn, or for other similar purposes. 
  • Review, research, and recommend grants. Determine the solicitation of grants and the response to nonprofit, government, and private agency requests for Foundation funding. This could include the development of RFPs and/or plans for grants distribution, including shaping local community development and anti-displacement grant making and investment strategies that increase the local supply of affordable housing, retain the current stock of affordable housing, protect vulnerable tenants from arbitrary and unjust eviction, link local development to local jobs and economic opportunities, and  integrate arts and cultural practices within the Pathways comprehensive community development solutions. In addition, the Program Officer will evaluate the merits of written proposals, conduct due diligence, participate in site visits, review research, and present grant recommendations to the Board of Trustees, as appropriate.
  • Collaborate with the Director of Strategic Learning and Evaluation to determine the benchmarks, indicators of success, and methodology to track and assess the progress toward outcomes associated with the pathway strategy, as well as the effectiveness of grants and progress reports.
  • Coordinate outcomes within a pathway and across pathways. As appropriate, jointly review grants from other pathways and in collaboration with other funding entities.  Provide resource and referral advice and technical assistance to agencies or collaboratives.
  • Budget oversight.  Manage grant making budget(s) that may include both restricted and unrestricted funds.
  • Partnership design, development, and implementation. Lead proactive efforts for change, including partnership development efforts with other funders, private and public sector leaders, and grantees. This could include raising additional funds from other foundations and donors to meet identified needs connected to specific outcomes. Collaborate with Marketing and Communications for media, marketing and public relations activities.
  • Development support. Meet with donors and prospective donors as assigned, providing them with information about pathway efforts or other specific issues, and best practices and grant making opportunities in the Bay Area. Provide background information for direct funding requests to donors. Organize and present at donor forums.
  • Thought leadership and information dissemination. Conduct research and provide thought leadership and information dissemination through key speaking engagements, articles, media interviews, and other social media opportunities.  Plan and organize convenings and other briefings.


Education: Bachelor’s degree, in one or more of the Foundation’s programmatic areas of focus or a related discipline required. Master’s degree strongly preferred. 

Experience: Minimum of ten years of increasingly responsible experience in a leadership role in the public, non-profit, or philanthropic sector.  In-depth knowledge of grant making and successfully managing projects to achieve specified goals and outcomes.  Ideally, the Program Officer will have broad, multi-sector community development knowledge and experience coupled with a good understanding of Bay Area nonprofit and philanthropic communities. Supervisory experience a plus.    


  • Strong active listening, oral, and written communication skills; Strong abilities to build successful relationships with local leaders and organizations; demonstrated ability to engage people from diverse backgrounds and in a variety of settings; ability to facilitate and synthesize ideas, observations, research, and interpersonal dynamics of groups; ability to provide sensitive feedback and technical assistance. Ability to work collaboratively in and across teams.
  • Knowledge of organizational development, management systems, and operations of small and large nonprofits; budget development and management.   Knowledge and understanding of community development and how arts and culture are used as essential tools to strengthen communities challenged by multiple issues including residential and nonprofit displacement, lack of access to employment and social supports. 
  • Ability to lead collaboratives of multiple funders and leaders, provide cross-sector learning opportunities for funders and grantees, and serve as staff lead for special projects or committees.
  • Demonstrable computer literacy in word processing, email, spreadsheets, contact management, and knowledge management applications.

COMPENSATION: Commensurate with background and experience in addition to a very competitive benefits package.

The San Francisco Foundation is an equal opportunity employer and encourages people of diverse backgrounds to apply.

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