Grants Specialist (Temporary)

Tides | San Francisco, California

Job Summary

The Grants Specialist will partner with cross-functional teams, including client services, legal, and finance, to provide exceptional grant making expertise and service for Tides’ philanthropic partners and grantees. This is a dynamic role that works closely with clients to facilitate strategic grant making in a fast-paced environment. The primary responsibility of this role is grantmaking due diligence and supporting the strategic initiatives of the team. A successful candidate will be comfortable working in an operational role while applying a critical and strategic eye to improving the team’s operations.

The Grants Specialist is an exempt position. Exempt employees are expected to work the appropriate and necessary time in order to complete key assignments and related tasks on schedule, which depends on the workload that week. This position is expected to work through June 2021. Position extension is not guaranteed. 

This job is for you if:

  • You have experience working with clients and are stellar about follow through when responding to internal and external client inquiries
  • You have a strategic mind and would also enjoy supporting the organization’s social justice mission in an operational capacity as necessary
  • You have a strong work ethic; you are organized, detail-oriented, timely, and efficient; you are adaptable and open to change; you thrive in a fast-paced work environment where priorities shift quickly
  • You are technically savvy and able to learn new systems and processes quickly


The right candidate will be willing and able to:

Grants Administration

  • Communicate with domestic and international grantees to gather information, ensure compliance with IRS regulations and Tides grant making policies and procedures
  • Process approximately weekly 150 - 200 incoming grant recommendations weekly
  • Prioritize grant recommendations for due diligence based on risk, client need, and complexity. Due diligence includes researching grantees, ensuring that grantees are mission-aligned, and requesting additional information from grantees
  • Facilitate the grant making process from recommendation through post-award by communicating and building relationships with grantees, internal staff, and clients
  • Assist with review of grantee banking information and management of outstanding payment issues
  • Generate, edit, and review grant award letters to ensure accuracy of terms and conditions and to reflect client’s intent
  • Create and maintain electronic grant files to meet legal and Tides policy requirements
  • Follow up on reporting with grantees and inform client-facing staff
  • Gather and record grant data, ensure data integrity, and participate in administration of grant making database

Reporting and Compliance

  • Coordinate processes for post-award grant tracking, and reporting requirements
  • Apply IRS rules and grant making compliance procedures for Expenditure Responsibility reporting and tracking of lobbying expenses
  • Stay up to date with relevant policies, regulations, and trends in grants management based on internal updates and external sources
  • In collaboration with the Grants team, aggregate and report on grantmaking as requested by internal and external partners

Collaboration and Teamwork

  • Develop and maintain best practices for grant making by designing workflow processes to facilitate grants administration
  • Identify and recommend process and workflow improvements
  • Update grant making processes and training materials on a regular basis
  • Build and maintain strong partnerships with all team members; build and maintain working relationships with other departments and entities across Tides Network and Tides Advocacy
  • Contribute to team projects, including systems implementations and process improvements
  • Provide support to other members of the Grants Team as needed
  • Assist with new staff training


  • 3-5 years of professional experience in a foundation or public charity setting performing due diligence on complex domestic and international grants
  • Experience working within a DAF based context is highly preferred
  • Thorough knowledge of IRS regulatory compliance including that pertaining to lobbying and advocacy; practical understanding of 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations and how public charities are regulated
  • Comfort or desire to work in an operational, operational role while utilizing critical, strategic thinking to constantly improve internal processes and goals
  • Strong computer skills particularly with databases, word processing, and spreadsheets.
  • Experience with web-and electronic-based document management tools and practices including GMS Systems, or other relational databases 
  • Familiarity with MS Office Suite, Slack, Zoom, Box and other standard office technology 
  • Ability to learn new software systems quickly; previous experience with Salesforce is a plus; experience with system implementation is a plus
  • Demonstrated ability to hold information confidential with excellent judgment
  • High attention to detail with strong organizational skills
  • Demonstrated commitment to meeting the needs of internal and external clients; ability to strive for high level of satisfaction
  • Strong ability to cooperate and work collaboratively toward solutions that generally benefit all involved parties
  • Creative problem-solving skills and the ability to apply principles and critical thinking skills to complex situations
  • Ability to work well under high pressure with frequent interruptions, prioritize changing workloads in order to meet tight deadlines, and work both independently and as a member of a team
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills, including the ability to work well by telephone and email
  • Ability to demonstrate sensitivity to and appreciation for diverse viewpoints and different
  • communication styles in a multicultural environment
  • Ability to appreciate and contribute to a work environment that values integrity, adaptability, reliability, collaboration, a commitment to learning, and a sense of humor


Get to know the team:

Tides Grants Team is both a strategic and operational team that interacts directly with the client services department, finance, and strategic partnerships to provide consultative and collaborative support to facilitate grant making to promising social change organizations, ideas, and movements. This team helps drive Tides’ success as a high functioning compliance and relationship management group that thrives on coming up with innovative solutions to support our clients and their work. The team is based largely in San Francisco with a presence in Tides’ New York City office as well.

How to Apply

Please apply here:

Application Instructions:

Please submit a resume and a thoughtful cover letter online. Your cover letter should express your interest in working for Tides and your qualifications for the role. You may also share your detailed LinkedIn profile with us. Tides is an Equal Opportunity employer. We value diversity and inclusion and we look forward to reviewing applications from all who are qualified to apply.

Equal Employment Opportunity:

Tides is an equal opportunity employer. We strongly encourage applications from women, people of color, and bilingual and bicultural individuals, as well as members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender communities. Applicants shall not be discriminated against because of race, religion, sex, national origin, ethnicity, age, disability, political affiliation, sexual orientation, gender identity, color, marital status, or medical condition including acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) and AIDS-related conditions. Also pursuant to the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance, we encourage and will consider for employment qualified applicants with arrest and conviction records.

Applicants with Disabilities:

Reasonable accommodation will be made so that qualified disabled applicants may participate in the application process. If you seek an accommodation, please advise in writing at the time you apply.


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Organization: Nonprofit organizations