Program Officer - African American Behavioral Health Program

Sierra Health Foundation and The Center at Sierra Health Foundation | Sacramento, California


Sierra Health Foundation is a private philanthropy with a mission to invest in and serve as a catalyst for ideas, partnerships and programs that improve health and quality of life in Northern California. The foundation is committed to improving health outcomes and reducing health disparities in the region through convening, educating and strategic grant making.

Sierra Health Foundation has a broad definition of health, believing there is much more to health than health care. It is influenced by factors that include socioeconomic conditions, environment, education, income and individual behavior choices. The foundation also believes in the need for health and racial equity and racial justice. Reducing health disparities is a key factor in striving toward better health for all and reflects the foundation’s dedication to ensuring that people throughout its funding region have the opportunity to lead healthy lives.

Sierra Health Foundation established The Center at Sierra Health Foundation to advance its commitment to strengthening community capacity to engage in policy development, planning and implementation efforts that seek to address the health needs of California’s underserved populations. The Center works to promote health, racial equity and racial justice in communities throughout California with local, state and national partners. With strategy, creativity and ongoing collaboration, The Center strives to eradicate health inequities across the state.

The Sacramento County African American Behavioral Health Program is a three-year partnership with the Sacramento County Behavioral Health Department. The program’s goal is to increase both accessibility and quality of trauma-informed community outreach and engagement strategies that support mental health and wellness for the African American/Black community. The program will serve all ages and genders across the life span and work closely with community-based organizations serving this population. An African American Behavioral Health Committee will oversee the implementation of partners’ grant activities, and the leveraging and strengthening of relationships with community-based organizations, nonprofit organizations, public sector institutions, agencies and other funders to advance health, well-being and equity in Sacramento County.

Job Summary

The Program Officer will be responsible for day-to-day implementation and management of the African American Behavioral Health Program by supporting its community  partners to build their capacity for policy and systems change, coordinating program hub activities, overseeing and monitoring program community partners’ grant activities, and leveraging and strengthening relationships with community-based organizations, nonprofit organizations, public sector institutions and agencies and other funders to advance health, well-being and equity in the region consistent with the goals of the program.

Reports To

Director of Health Programs



  • Act as the primary Sierra Health Foundation Program Officer responsible for managing the assigned program.
  • Actively engage in the community and region to advance grantmaking strategies through partnerships with nonprofit organizations, public sector institutions and other funders to further the efforts of the program grants.
  • Responsible for developing with community partners the program initiative strategies and engaging organizations within the funding region for strategic opportunities to implement the initiatives. In addition, the Program Officer will work with the program team and other departments to develop, strengthen and implement the program’s internal processes to better serve the community partners and the goals of the program.
  • Build and strengthen relationships with community partner grantees to better understand the challenges and opportunities they face in their respective areas of focus in advancing the goals of the program.
  • Provide coordination and direction with technical assistance providers and grantees to ensure maximum impact and value where program resources have been provided.
  • Maintain an understanding of project implementation challenges and develop comprehensive solutions to address them.
  • Coordinate the planning and management of all program virtual and in-person statewide, regional, and general meetings, informed by community partner input.
  • Enable ongoing communication with program partners by organizing and managing regular conference calls and coordinating regular electronic updates.
  • Act as a subject matter expert and resource internally and externally, especially as it relates to systems level changes that result in meeting desired program outcomes. This requires attending meetings and conferences, as well as reviewing articles and research.
  • Prepare briefings and background papers on selected topics. This includes coordinating external partnerships and consultants, research, preparing the content and overseeing final production.

Grants & Contracts

  • Participate in the grantmaking aspects of the Sierra Health Foundation program assigned grants program. This includes working with the Program and Administration/Finance Teams to review and assess proposals, monitor grant work, and conduct due diligence i.e. site visits of pending and active projects
  • Manage grants/contracts from funders and consultants under the direction of the supervisor. This includes, as assigned, acting as the liaison with the funders, monitoring and ensuring funder contract/award obligations are met, meeting funder reporting requirements and interfacing with other Foundation departments on related issues.
  • Work with the Senior Management Team to identify and cultivate grant funding for the program. Assist with securing additional funding opportunities for the grantmaking program with potential local and national funders for future growth opportunities. Serve as the lead and work with the Foundation and Center staff to prepare grant applications for additional funding.
  • Assist community applicants in improving proposal quality and providing constructive critical analysis of strengths and weaknesses of funding proposals, workplans and reports related to the program supported work.
  • Work with their Supervisor, Evaluation Director and other members of senior management to develop and implement an evaluation plan for program initiatives. 
  • Work with their Supervisor, Communication and Public Affairs Team and management to develop and implement a communication strategy for the program.
  • Provide and coordinate technical assistance to community partners and grantees that is responsive to demonstrated needs. This includes convening, coordinating and leading workshops and roundtable discussions informed by community partner input.

Foundation & The Center

  • Build strategic alliances with key public officials, Foundation stakeholders and community partners to advance the Foundation’s goals and initiatives.
  • Represent the Foundation and The Center at public forums, committees, and other venues.
  • Actively participate in the development, sharing, and effectively use of knowledge in areas related to programmatic and other Foundation and Center activities.
  • Initiate and oversee specific projects for the Foundation or The Center as assigned by their supervisor or executive management.
  • Work collaboratively with other Foundation and Center staff in quality assurance processes.
  • Perform other duties as required.

Supervisory Responsibilities    

This job will supervise staff and volunteers.


To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

Education and/or Experience

  • A Bachelor’s degree in health policy, public health, community development, public administration, or a related field, and five to seven years of experience in health-related program or policy arena.
  • Demonstrated significant experience coordinating multi-party collaboratives and/or collective impact models with a policy and systems change and/or community power building focus with documented impact
  • Demonstrated experience advancing equity, building organizational and community capacity and working with low income, immigrant and communities of color for sustainable change that advanced health and equity
  • At least three-five years’ experience in philanthropy as a grantmaker, grants administrator, and/or grantee preferred.
  • At least five years of experience specifically in state and/or local policy and or in the nonprofit sector – ideally with community health or equity as a focus.
  • Strong demonstrated, commitment to achieving racial and health equity.

Language Skills 

  • Excellent oral and written communication skills, including public speaking, presentation and group facilitation skills.
  • Ability to read, analyze and interpret common financial reports and legal documents.
  • Ability to respond to common inquiries, regulatory agencies or members of the business community and policy makers.
  • Ability to write speeches and articles for publication that conform to prescribed style and format.
  • Ability to effectively present information to top management, public groups and/or Board of Directors.
  • Ability to speak, read and write in another language is preferred.

Computer Skills

Must be proficient in Windows, Microsoft Office, Outlook, database software, and internet use.


Commensurate with experience.


Certificates, Licenses, Registrations

Must have a current valid driver’s license and be insurable under the Foundation’s insurance policy. Must have a reliable vehicle to perform various in-field tasks.

Other REQUIRED Skills and Abilities

  • Passion for the Foundation’s mission is essential.
  • Demonstrates ability to initiate and promote public policy initiatives, and expertise in dealing with policymakers, policy advocates, and the media.
  • Broad knowledge of public health, including federal, state and county policy issues.
  • Knowledge of social determinant approaches with diverse cultural populations.
  • Demonstrates an appreciation for the importance of partnership strategies to affect public policy to promote health equity in California.
  • Ability to work collaboratively with diverse constituencies and build consensus among a broad range of stakeholders.
  • Knowledge of program development, implementation and evaluation methods, health promotion and policy, and general management concepts.
  • Demonstrates effective leadership and relationship building skills.
  • Executes effective project management and budgeting.
  • Demonstrates the ability to define problems, collect data, establish facts, and draw valid conclusions.
  • Team orientation and skilled at working collaboratively with co-workers and organizational partners (i.e. effectively applying active listening, diplomacy, and consensus-building skills, negotiating roles and responsibilities with internal and external colleagues). 
  • Demonstrates and organized approach to effectively manage multiple projects involving a variety of internal and external collaborators.
  • Demonstrates flexibility and able to perform in a fast-paced organization.
  • Demonstrates entrepreneurial orientation to the work.
  • Ability and willingness to travel approximately 10% of the time.

How to Apply

Sierra Health Foundation and The Center at Sierra Health Foundation

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Organization: Nonprofit organizations