Racial Justice Initiative Director

William and Flora Hewlett Foundation | Menlo Park, California


The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation is a nonpartisan, private charitable foundation that advances ideas and supports institutions to promote a better world. For more than 50 years, the foundation has supported efforts to advance education for all, preserve the environment, improve lives and livelihoods in developing countries, promote the health and economic well-being of women, support vibrant performing arts, strengthen Bay Area communities and make the philanthropy sector more effective.

Job Summary

The Hewlett Foundation seeks a Racial Justice Initiative Director to lead the foundation’s Racial Justice Initiative. The successful candidate will be creative, yet grounded in the practical realities of the state of racial justice in the United States, and issues facing the field of advocates, activists, and scholars. 


Specifically, the Racial Justice Initiative Director will:

  • Collaborate with the Chief of Equity and Culture and other staff members on strategy development, grantmaking, and evaluation plans for the initiative
  • Identify and guide potential grantees through the foundation’s proposal process, including its compliance-related procedures
  • Manage grant activity, including track grantees’ progress, respond to financial and programmatic reports, and make decisions about grant renewals
  • Incorporate the full range of the foundation’s resources – grant funding, capacity building and technical assistance expertise, influence, communications, investments, and relationships to support the racial justice field
  • Establish and maintain existing grantee relationships
  • Partner with the Chief of Equity and Culture and external consultants to develop initiative success indicators and ensure related systems are in place to track and assess progress toward strategic initiative goals
  • Organize foundation-sponsored meetings of grantees and field experts
  • Frame, commission, and oversee evaluations
  • Help develop briefing papers and reports that contribute to the foundation’s understanding of new approaches, best practices, and program issues
  • Participate in relevant affinity groups, and represent the foundation at appropriate meetings, conferences, and site visits as well as in all interactions with prospective and current grantees
  • Manage a small team, as appropriate


The foundation seeks a leader who has strong interpersonal skills, values humility and collaboration, is open-minded and inquisitive in nature, and is committed to and knowledgeable about racial justice history and issues, with a deep understanding of policies that have caused disparities or those that could ultimately remedy them. The successful candidate will be creative, yet grounded in the practical realities of the state of racial justice in the United States, and issues facing the field of advocates, activists, and scholars. The Racial Justice Initiative Director will combine a flexible leadership style with the ability to deliver and execute on innovative ideas and solutions that serve the goals of the initiative. The foundation seeks a professional with superb leadership, strategy, and execution skills, demonstrating an appreciation for ambiguity combined with a problem-solving instinct and a willingness to explore new ideas. The successful candidate will have a strong work ethic and a collaborative approach, with high personal and professional standards of transparency and accountability.

More specifically, the foundation seeks a professional who reflects the following:

  • Significant and distinguished work experience (8+ years) in fields relevant to racial justice policy focused on equitable opportunity and outcomes
  • A demonstrated understanding of the racial justice landscape across the country, including racial justice-related policies and discriminatory systems, and an understanding of how racial justice interacts with other systems
  • Working knowledge of best, promising, and emerging practices and innovations in the field of racial justice nationally
  • Demonstrated ability to translate concept into action, with a proven record of success in developing and implementing innovative strategies and solutions with the engagement of others
  • Experience with technical assistance, facilitation, convening, and/or grantmaking
  • Demonstrated experience and creativity in operationalizing equity and inclusion at the systemic level
  • A demonstrated willingness to reiterate a strategy and approach, with the ability to course-correct as necessary
  • Demonstrated ability to integrate knowledge and learning, and the capacity to effectively use research and evaluation
  • Demonstrated experience working effectively with a broad range of stakeholders to address complex policy and systems change challenges A willingness to challenge conventional thinking coupled with the ability to collaborate effectively and encourage dialogue
  • Strong written and oral communication skills, interpersonal awareness, and excellent listening skills; a communication style that reflects clarity, authenticity, transparency, and approachability
  • Ability to travel on an as-needed basis (when safe and appropriate)


This position offers a competitive salary and includes a comprehensive benefits package. We actively welcome all candidates from a wide range of backgrounds who have the skills to fulfill this role – regardless of compensation history.

How to Apply

The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation has exclusively retained The 360 Group of San Francisco to assist with this search. Please visit https://the360group.us/WFHF_RJID_PD.pdf  to review the complete position description, which includes detailed application instructions. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis; earlier applicants may receive priority consideration. To be considered, The 360 Group encourages all interested candidates to submit their applications promptly.

William and Flora Hewlett Foundation