Monday, December 19, 2011

Hewlett Foundation Seeking Environment Program Officer

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December 19, 2011

Dear Colleague,

I hope you’ll forgive the somewhat impersonal mass email, but I wanted to reach out to you regarding an open Environment Program Officer position at the Hewlett Foundation. The job description is below and also posted to our website here. I’d appreciate any suggestions you have for talented candidates. Also, please feel free to forward this to any networks you think are appropriate.

Here are the highlights of the job:

  1. The position is focused on climate and energy grantmaking domestically and internationally.
  2. Candidates must have significant experience in climate and energy policy development and advocacy.
  3. The ideal candidate will have experience working in or deeply with nonprofit organizations.
  4. The Hewlett Foundation is a fantastic place to work and the Environment Team is an energetic, talented, and fun group that works well together.
  5. The position is based in Menlo Park, CA.
Interested candidates should send a cover letter and resume to Dan Sherman, President, Explore Company at

Thank you!

Tom Steinbach


Program Officer, Environment Program (Climate and Energy)

About the Foundation

The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation has been making grants since 1967 to help solve social and environmental problems at home and around the world. The Foundation focuses on education, environment, global development and population, performing arts, philanthropy, and issues that disproportionately affect disadvantaged communities in the San Francisco Bay Area. In 2011, the Foundation’s assets were approximately $7 billion, with annual grants totaling about $320 million. For more information about the Hewlett Foundation, please visit the website at

Program Officer – Climate and Energy

The Environment Program typically makes grants of $50 million per year focused on three issue areas:

  1. Climate change and energy policy;
  2. Western conservation policy; and
  3. Environmental issues affecting poor communities in the San Francisco Bay Area.
In addition to this grantmaking, the Hewlett Foundation helped launch and continues to fund the ClimateWorks Foundation, which is working to reduce the risk of climate change by advancing policies in nations with the highest greenhouse gas emissions. The Foundation’s annual grant to the ClimateWorks Foundation is approximately $100 million.

The Climate and Energy Program Officer will report to the Environment Program Director and be based in Menlo Park, California. The Program Officer must have experience in climate and energy policy development and advocacy and be able to apply his or her experience domestically and internationally. Moreover, the Program Officer must have a proven ability to think strategically and understand how policy advocacy creates policy change.

In addition to developing and implementing climate and energy grantmaking strategy, the Program Officer will serve as a catalyst and convener—bringing together environmental leaders and other public and private sector stakeholders. Consequently, the Program Officer must have a demonstrated record of success working with a diverse array of partners to achieve specific policy and programmatic outcomes.

The Program Officer must thrive in a work environment filled with the exploration of new ideas and approaches to addressing complex problems. Joining a team of ten professionals, the new Program Officer will be challenged to meet the following broad goals and responsibilities:

  • Developing, testing, refining, and implementing climate and energy grantmaking strategies.
  • Communicating strategies to grantees, staff, and partner funders and making other presentations as needed to a wide array of audiences.
  • Assessing the organizational development needs of grantee nonprofit organizations and helping to develop organizational development plans to strengthen the ability of grantees to achieve their goals.
  • Developing and tracking effective measures of progress toward achievement of the Foundation’s climate and energy goals and leading evaluations of climate and energy grants and initiatives.
  • Making site visits, attending conferences, and representing Foundation programs to the public and to climate and energy leaders.
  • Reviewing and assessing climate and energy grant proposals.
  • Contributing to the Foundation’s interest in and practice of strategic philanthropy including due diligence, goal-setting and review of business plans, knowledge building, and evaluation.
  • Maintaining knowledge of trends, practices, laws, and other related aspects of the field.
  • Developing and maintaining effective working relationships with diverse groups of professionals and professional organizations, foundations, and funding sources.
The Program Officer should possess the following professional qualifications and personal attributes:

Professional Qualifications:

  • Extensive experience and broad recognition as a climate and energy policy leader with a proven track record of success working on policy issues at state, federal, and/or international levels.
  • An understanding of the key climate and energy issues in the United States and ideally, other high greenhouse gas emitting nations such as China, the European Union, and India.
  • A sophisticated knowledge of policymaking and a demonstrated ability to navigate these issues diplomatically.
  • Knowledge and experience working with nonprofit policy advocacy organizations.
  • Experience with strategy development, implementation, and evaluation.
  • Strong ability to manage multiple high priority projects simultaneously and to consistently meet deadlines.
  • Graduate degree in the sciences, public policy, or related fields.
  • Proven talent in staff management and budgeting.
  • The ability and flexibility to travel extensively.
Personal Attributes:
  • Articulate, with proven ability to write effectively and speak persuasively.
  • Superlative interpersonal skills, including a willingness to listen to internal and external constituents and learn from their best ideas.
  • Highly motivated with intellectual curiosity, approachability, and openness to input from all levels of staff.
  • Personable, diplomatic, and possessing impeccable integrity.
  • Exceptional analytical, strategic, and tactical abilities.
  • Proven team player and leader able to motivate and inspire staff as well as colleagues to work well as a team.
  • Good sense of humor.
Compensation and Benefits

The Foundation offers an excellent benefits package and a salary that is commensurate with experience and education. This position is exempt and full-time.

To Apply

Please email your resume and cover letter to Daniel Sherman, President, Explore Company, at Refer to the Hewlett Foundation Climate and Energy Program Officer position. No phone inquiries please.

The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation is an equal opportunity employer and welcomes a diverse pool of candidates for this search. The Foundation uses an outside firm to check the accuracy of information supplied by applicants.

This email was sent by The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation

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