The Chicago Community Trust is a community foundation dedicated to improving our region through strategic grant making, civic engagement and inspiring philanthropy. We are here to serve the nonprofit organizations, the generous donors and the thoughtful residents who strive to make a difference, helping their bold vision create lasting community change. We work with a number of partnerships and initiatives to accomplish this work.

We are privileged to serve our community and invite those who connect with our mission, vision, and values to explore employment opportunities with the Trust. To learn more, please visit the Trust online at

The Chicago Community Trust is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Program Manager, Together We Rise

  • Job Tracking ID: 512298-754363
  • Job Location: Chicago, IL
  • Level of Education: Any
  • Job Type: Full-Time/Regular
  • Date Updated: January 04, 2021
  • Starting Date: ASAP
  • Application Deadline: Until filled

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Job Description:

Position Summary:

Together We Rise was created to harness Chicagoland’s momentum, energy and generosity to tackle the disproportionate impacts of COVID-19 and the deep-seated inequities amplified by the pandemic. Hosted at The Chicago Community Trust, the Fund will unite a wide range of partners among philanthropic, corporate, public, non-profit and community actors to accelerate equitable recovery in the Chicago region.

The Program Manager will manage the Fund’s collaboration, grant making and fundraising operations as directed by the Associate Vice President and provides essential support to the Associate Vice President . The Program Manager will actively guide the initiative and build relationships and partnerships to execute on the overall strategic goal to accelerate equitable recovery. This position is a key contributor to implementing the initiative, including idea generation, connecting with community actors, and co-designing grantmaking strategies. The Program Manager works collaboratively and in close communication with Trust departments related to the initiative, particularly with the Community Impact and Philanthropic Services teams.

Position Responsibilities:

  • Planning agendas and coordinating steering committee meetings.
  • Facilitating collaboration with TWR partners on strategy development (BCG/CCA) and community engagement (New America, MPC, CUE).
  • Support the executive of the stakeholder engagement on strategy.
  • Support project management of various TWR deliverables.
  • Builds a plan to identify community, civic, and policy organizations and actors to influence change; connects these actors to resources to better align with the Trust’s strategic priorities.
  • Designs and drives the grant making strategy, identifies grant opportunities and facilitates the grant making process.
  • Works closely with fellow program managers to develop relationships with community leaders that enable community decision making.
  • Moves from ideation to implementation on regular convenings with partners across sectors to highlight issue areas and promising service models.
  • Engages key stakeholders including community leaders, civic leaders, corporations and donors to inform strategy and resulting in plans of action.
  • Provides thought leadership by both creating and presenting strong and clear written and verbal content internally and engaging external partners to develop content, make decisions, and set direction.
  • Organizes and facilitates meetings and events towards advancing initiatives and strategies.
  • Collects, synthesizes, presents, and leads research efforts towards contributing knowledge to the field and sharpening the Trust’s strategies and initiatives.
  • Designs and implements learning and impact evaluations in order to contribute to both the organization and the grantees’ development.
  • Supports engagement and education of donors and stakeholders.
  • Supports cross functional collaboration within the Trust.
  • Other duties as assigned by Associate Vice President.

Experience and Skills:

Position Competencies:

To perform the job successfully, an individual should demonstrate the following key competencies:

  • Strategic Thinking - Understands, synthesizes and articulates the "big picture", i.e., the underlying assumptions, including industry context, trends, and business drivers; goes beyond transactions details and provides broader context for recommendations, based on analysis that accounts for more than one perspective or approach or outcome.
  • Decision Making - Must engage in the process of selecting a logical choice from the available options, weighing positives and negatives, consider alternatives, then be able to forecast the outcome of each option as well, and based on all these items, determine which option is the best for that particular situation.
  • Community Leadership - Is recognized as a leader within the community and possesses the ability to engage and persuade others to inspire action in line with the Trust’s strategic priorities.
  • Thought Leadership Development - Is recognized as a thought leader and shares thought leadership as a subject matter expert through publication and other media; leads collaborative development of thought leadership to execute on identified goals.
  • Influence - Comfortably communicates with various stakeholders within the ecosystem to discuss issues, achieve consensus and influence decision making. Is recognized as a resource and strong voice in the community.

Position Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree required; Master’s degree desired.
  • Minimum of 7 years of related work experience, 10 years preferred.
  • Demonstrated experience in in community economic development, civic engagement, sectors, particularly in the network of local and national actors, agencies and organizations dedicated to mitigating challenges to equitable opportunity in large urban communities.
  • Demonstrated ability to work in partnership with residents and local leaders to strengthen and advance multiple aspects of community and economic development. Experience working with racially and ethnically diverse and low-income urban communities on social services and social justice programs.
  • Experience in the development, implementation, and evaluation of strategies to effect change and in promoting and contributing to a strong learning culture
  • Strong experience in project development and management.
  • Strong verbal and interpersonal communication skills, including the ability to listen well, convey thoughts clearly, speak in public and to a wide variety of audiences, and work effectively as a member of a team.
  • Demonstrated skills in facilitation, relationship building, and collaborative planning.
  • Technical skills in Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, Power Point, Outlook, Access).
  • Entrepreneurial propensity for self-starting and approaching the role in the spirit of creativity and growth.
  • Ability to manage complex problems and generate enthusiasm for proposed solutions; coordination skills are paramount to success in this role.
  • Strong quantitative skill set to apply to project feasibility analyses.
  • Experience in project management, with the ability to assess and resolve implementation issues and to establish best practices.
  • Strong interpersonal skills, written communication, and comfort with cross-cultural communication.
  • Cultural competency.

This position will work remotely until Trust leadership decides when to return to the workplace.

History of The Chicago Community Trust

The Chicago Community Trust is a community foundation dedicated to advancing metropolitan Chicago and improving the lives of the people who call it home. The Trust serves as a philanthropic partner, connecting the generosity of donors with community needs. Today, following the creation of a new strategic plan in 2018, the Trust stands committed to addressing Chicago’s legacy of systemic inequity and closing the racial wealth gap. With assets of approximately $3 billion, the Trust in partnership with its donors distributes more than $400 million in grants each year. Our unwavering mission is to mobilize resources, people, organizations and ideas in support of this vision for a truly equitable, connected and thriving community.

The Trust was founded in 1915 by Norman and Albert Harris, father and son duo of the Harris (now BMO Harris) bank family. The Chicago Community Trust was the fourth community foundation ever created. There are now 750 community foundations across Canada and the US.

Since 1915, the Trust has been part of nearly every major civic milestone of the Chicago region. From the creation of Millennium Park and Chicago’s Harris Theater to Leadership Greater Chicago and Chicago Urban League, the Trust has worked to support the people and organizations that have made Chicago a world class city.

The Trust Team seeks to match the passion and commitment of donors, grantees, residents and community leader that continue to work tirelessly to make this City one where all have the opportunity to realize their dreams.