Program Associate

Heising-Simons Foundation | Los Altos, California


The Heising-Simons Foundation is a family foundation that works to advance sustainable solutions in climate and clean energy, enable groundbreaking research in science, enhance the education of our youngest learners, and support human rights for all people.

Job Summary

The Program Associate (PA) provides high-level administrative and program-related support to the Foundation's President, Board members, and members of the Grants Management team. This portfolio currently includes firearm violence prevention and the 2020 Census. The PA is involved in preparing docket and Board meeting materials, the initial screening of potential grantees, arranging and attending meetings with potential and actual grantees, and monitoring ongoing grants.

This full-time, nonexempt position reports to the Board Liaison & Grants Officer and is based in our Los Altos, CA office.

Reports To

Grants Officer & Board Liasion


  • Provide grants administration support for the maintenance of all active grants in the President's and Grants Manager's portfolios, as well as Board-initiated grants. Responsibilities include regular communications with grantees, report receipt and follow-up on overdue reports, authorizations for no-cost extensions or changes in the grant budget and report or payment schedules; entry of all related information and attachment of documents such as reports and summaries in the grants management database; ensuring grant files are complete, updated as needed, and maintained in accordance with grantmaking policies and procedures; and responding to all requests, deadlines, and any special assignments.
  • Provide clerical and administrative support related to the President's, Board, and Grants Manager's grant portfolios, including managing meeting requests, travel and other logistical arrangements, logistical details for internal and external meetings, keeping contacts database updated, formatting presentation and other electronic documents, maintaining grant files, and draft or edit correspondence and reports.
  • In coordination with the President and the Grants Officer, support the production, writing, editing, and proofreading of documents in advance of deadlines for grants, docket, Board meetings, including grant summaries, budgets, overview memos and narratives, budgets, surveys, and/or presentations.
  • Maintain the Foundation's memberships and subscriptions.
  • Participate in meetings and training sessions organized by Grants Management, Human Resources, and/or Finance.
  • Assume a lead role and serve as first point of contact in compiling, reviewing, and responding to unsolicited grant requests, request additional information from organizations, if necessary to complete a review, and communicate declinations and the rationale of the declination to the grantseekers orally and/or in writing.
  • Maintain a thorough knowledge of the priorities and grantee selection criteria across the Foundation.
  • Conduct research and maintain information in the database on potential grantees and partner institutions, including intermediary organizations. Assist colleagues in gathering background information, history, and organizational data on prospective grantees to inform the review process and ensure the eligibility of prospective grantees in the early phase of consideration.
  • Prepare consultant contracts and assist in coordinating activity with the consultants as needed.
  • Conduct research and data analysis and prepare reports, as assigned. Remain abreast of current research, activities, and trends in philanthropy by reviewing professional publications and attending related conferences, meetings, and other events.


  • 3+ years of relevant administrative experience, preferably providing executive-level support
  • Excellent written, verbal, and interpersonal communication skills
  • Strong copyediting and proofreading skills
  • Proficient in all Microsoft Office applications
  • Knowledge of the grantmaking process, funder collaboratives, and how nonprofits function is preferred
  • Able to plan and prioritize workflow and meet deadlines
  • Able to work independently and reliably, take initiative, and be solution-oriented
  • Excellent attention to detail, accuracy, and follow-through
  • Flexible, collaborative, and willing to assist others
  • Able to explain Foundation's history, values, and current funding initiatives
  • Experience with grants management databases, preferable Salesforce, is a plus
  • A sense of teamwork, community, humor, and integrity is highly desired


The Foundation offers an excellent benefits package and salaries that are commensurate with education and experience.


The Foundation is an equal opportunity employer. We welcome a diverse pool of applicants and make employment decisions based on merit. Foundation policy prohibits the unlawful discrimination based on race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, pregnancy, national origin, ancestry, citizenship, age, marital or caregiver status, physical disability, mental disability, military service, legally protected medical condition, prior record of arrest or conviction, or any other consideration made unlawful by federal, state, or local laws. Reasonable accommodation will be made so that qualified applicants with disabilities may participate in the application process. Please advise, in writing, any special needs at the time of application.


Organization: Foundations