The Program Director is responsible for ensuring we achieve our Giving Project and grantmaking goals; supervising program staff; and providing input for organizational initiatives. In this role, you will directly impact social change efforts — developing new leaders to resource social justice movements and moving hundreds of thousands of dollars to grassroots groups across Colorado.
Reports to: Executive Director
Location: Denver, CO, in office weekly on Wednesdays, remote other days
Salary range: $85,000 - $100,000 depending on experience
Start date: April/May 2024
Chinook Fund & Giving Project Overview
Chinook Fund seeds community-led, systemic change by mobilizing resources for and trusting in grassroots social justice organizations across Colorado. Since our founding in 1987, Chinook Fund has awarded over $4.5 million in grants to more than 550 grassroots groups in Colorado.
Chinook Fund is both a fundraising and grantmaking organization. Funds for grants are primarily raised through the Giving Project, an innovative model for funding social change and fostering leadership. The Giving Project brings together a diverse group of people from various income levels who are passionate about social change and committed to building their skills in fundraising, grantmaking, and community building. It offers participants the opportunity to have transformational conversations about race and class, to experience the impact of collective giving, and the tensions and joys of grantmaking.
We use a "donor organizing" approach to fundraising, rooted in the belief that everyone has the ability to give and the ability to ask for money. Donor organizing is a key strategy of the Giving Project and includes organizing people around their giving through values-based conversations, political education, and supporting donors to see their giving as a vehicle for systemic change. By developing the fundraising leadership of Giving Project members, Chinook Fund reaches many donors new to social justice. Chinook Fund hosts two Giving Projects a year. Since 2016, we have completed 14 Giving Projects and 2 alumni Grantmaking Committees supporting 252 members to collectively raise $1.5M+ from 4,000+ donors.
To learn about the Giving Project model, please read the following:
In response to COVID-19, we partnered with Transformative Leadership for Change to launch the Another World is Possible Fund, a vehicle to invest in social justice organizations who are fighting for both a just pandemic response AND a visionary future. From 2020-2022, we raised and redistributed $1M to 95 groups, accounting for 22 percent of Chinook Fund’s lifetime grantmaking dollars. We are currently assessing the capacity and resources to continue this collaboration.
Attentive, empathetic leadership: As a primary point of contact for many of Chinook Fund’s Giving Project volunteers, you ensure each person feels welcome and has a sense of purpose for their role within the cohort. You empathize with the communities we serve and put people at ease, especially when there are lines of difference or power. You listen to understand people’s needs and take steps based on that input.
Ownership and resilience: You care deeply about getting results. You gather information, seek input, and drive work forward to the finish line. You think 3 (or 30) steps ahead to develop solutions, anticipate problems, and course-correct when needed. You hold a high bar even when things are hectic and bounce back from setbacks by turning each hurdle into a learning opportunity.
Effective and equitable people manager: Demonstrated experience leading multiracial, cross-class teams to accomplish results. Ability to cultivate staff development through growth oriented, direct feedback and strong inclusive and equitable management practices. Able to work through conflict directly and in ways that build trust and relationships. Contributes to building and sustaining our organizational culture.
Facilitation skills: Can facilitate racially diverse, cross-class adult learners through political education workshops and consensus building processes that move people to action. Ability to support people through emotional experiences across race and class and effectively manage conflicts and disagreements, especially as part of the decision-making.
Commitment to social justice & racial justice: Recognizes the role of race, class, and other identities intersecting in the work, especially with communities we serve. Ability to position oneself in relationship to our mission and can name one’s personal stake in the work. Demonstrated leadership as an advocate for justice.
Self-awareness and emotional intelligence: Able to reflect on and describe the impact of one’s own identities—and those of others—in a given situation, decision, or process. Demonstrates awareness of areas for growth and development Able to hear, reflect, act on, and learn from feedback, including feedback re: identity and equity.
Committed to Chinook Fund’s core values and aspirations to cultivate a healthy work culture: Core values of Liberation, Community, Integrity and Leadership. Programming environment is fast paced and complex, requiring ability to facilitate high stakes decisions with volunteer grantmakers, willing to work evenings (mostly Tuesdays) and weekends (mostly Saturdays), and adapts quickly to address tensions or challenges amongst Program Team and Giving Project cohorts.
In addition to qualifications and qualities outlined in the “Approach” section above:
Full-time, exempt position with a 32-hour standard work week. This position is based at Chinook Fund’s office at the Posner Center in Denver, CO. Staff work in the office weekly on Wednesdays and work remotely other days. Chinook Fund encourages a healthy work-life balance for its entire team. The 32-hour work week was instituted in 2021. Hours vary depending on organizational or program needs.
Compensation and Benefits
Salary $85,000 to $100,000 depending on experience. Chinook Fund offers a competitive benefits package including 100% employer paid health, dental, vision, short- and long-term disability insurance; paid parental leave; SEP IRA tax-deferred individual retirement account with a 5% employer contribution; professional development, leadership coaching, and wellness funds; home office reimbursement; annual paid vacation (3 weeks); unlimited sick leave; and 2-month paid sabbatical leave after 5 years.
How to Apply
Please submit your cover letter and resume combined into one PDF with the subject “Program Director” to [email protected]. Instead of a traditional cover letter, please respond to the following prompts in no more than 3 pages:
Priority will be given to applications received by March 3, 2024; however, applications will be accepted until the position is filled. Interviews will be scheduled in mid-March with the aim of making a hiring decision in mid-April 2024. The target start date is April/May 2024. Flexibility will be given to the right candidate. References and writing samples will be requested from finalists.
Chinook Fund is committed to equity and diversity and to the recruitment and retention of people from backgrounds traditionally excluded from philanthropy, including Black, Indigenous and people of color, LGBTQ+ individuals, and people with disabilities.
Chinook Fund is committed to providing a safer environment for our staff and community. This policy is based on guidance and recommendations issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Accordingly, and to protect and support the health and safety of those working in the Posner Center office, traveling on behalf of Chinook Fund, or engaging in in person programming or meetings, Chinook Fund requires staff to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. This policy is mandatory except for staff with a documented medical and/or religious reason for not receiving the vaccine. Chinook Fund will regularly monitor and modify our guidelines and protocols as needed.