Home Program Associate, Innovative Finance

Program Associate, Innovative Finance

The Rockefeller Foundation seeks an experienced Program Associate, Innovative Finance.

As Program Associate for Innovative Finance, you will play a critical role in executing the Innovative Finance’s Zero Gap grant program while also supporting other innovative finance initiatives for the Foundation’s program teams. Reporting to the Senior Associate Director for Innovative Finance, and working closely with the Managing Director and Senior Program Associate for Innovative Finance, you will help the team to identify, fund and support a portfolio of grantees working on developing the next generation of investment products and mechanisms with the potential to mobilize large-scale private capital for addressing the world’s most critical challenges impacting the poor and vulnerable.

This position offers a rare opportunity to work on cutting-edge ideas in innovative finance to drive impact and offers strong opportunities for professional growth. The role will generate functional experience in innovative finance, as well as experience in venture philanthropy, strategy-setting and execution. The work will be fast-paced, diverse, and spread across multiple and diverse projects simultaneously. The role requires travel both domestic and international. The successful candidate will need to blend flexibility with disciplined execution in their work approach in order to manage competing demands and deliver high quality work.

You are the right fit for this role if you have a passion for the intersection between finance and social impact, an entrepreneurial spirit, strategic mindset, and ability to work efficiently in a fast-moving environment. The ideal candidate will also bring excellent interpersonal abilities complemented with strong analytic skills, judgment, and practical sense to make things happen.

Principal Duties and Responsibilities

  • Grant Sourcing and Due Diligence
    • Identify new trends and developments across the field of innovative finance and impact investing
    • Build relationships with potential grantees through conferences and targeted outreach
    • Identify and consult with technical experts to evaluate grant proposals and/or areas of potential intervention
    • Conduct quantitative and qualitative industry/sector analyses to inform learning and decision-making. This could include (but is not limited to) landscaping, market-sizing analyses, and impact modeling
    • Generate grant overview reports to support internal decision making on new opportunities
    • Draft documents and manage internal RF approval process
    • Assess and develop new systems and processes for grant diligence
  • Grant management
    • Support grantees with request for input from the Foundation and any amendments needed to their grant agreements
    • Review grantee reports, commenting on grantee reports and other deliverables/products of Rockefeller Foundation supported work
  • Organizational Support
    • Event coordination – logistics, content, and partner management including coordination of meetings led by grantees or other outside partners and hosted by the Foundation
    • Other duties including: helping to develop budgets, contributing to written narratives and analyses of RF work, and serving on various internal Foundation committees and / or task forces
    • Produce blogs and other thought leadership to be published on RF’s website or externally

Education, Experience and Skills

  • Bachelor’s Degree in Finance, Economics, Applied Math or a related analytical discipline
  • Graduate degree in relevant discipline preferred
  • 5 years relevant work experience, private sector experience is preferred (finance, consulting, impact investing, venture capital, private equity, etc.)
  • Proven track-record of top performance and value-added contribution to project teams
  • Computer proficiency in: MS Word, Excel, Outlook, Internet search skills, PowerPoint, and ability to learn new applications quickly.
  • Experience with hypothesis-driven problem solving; comfort pushing through ambiguity
  • Ability to research, synthesize, and integrate disparate pieces of data, analysis, and information
  • Comfort working with, deriving insights from, and communicating about both qualitative and quantitative data
  • Entrepreneurial mindset to spot opportunities and initiate action, and strategic mindset to spot critical issues, leverage points, and required choices
  • Ability to multi-task and experience setting work priorities among competing needs; comfort with a changing work environment
  • Ability to build informal working relationships, quickly establish credibility in new areas of work, and mobilize people at all levels towards collaborative goals (including more senior colleagues)
  • Excellent communication skills to convey complex information appropriately to stakeholders with different backgrounds and needs, both oral and written
  • Exceptional commitment to accuracy and attention to detail
  • High level of self-confidence with a direct, honest, respectful, and empathetic approach and ability to effectively provide and receive feedback
  • An interest in and sensitivity to working with and in diverse cultures

Qualifications and Competencies

  • Communication: Excellent interpersonal abilities; good listening skills; excellent writing and verbal skills; assertiveness in presenting ideas
  • Decision-Making: Ability to work independently while evaluating risks and opportunities; uses analytical and problem-solving skills; takes initiative and drives for results; able to prioritize
  • Execution: Strong project management skills; meets deadlines; sense of urgency and responsibility; ability to multi-task and work under pressure; detail oriented
  • Integration: Accesses functional and substantive expertise organizationally; demonstrates inclusiveness, collaboration
  • Creative Thinking: Develop original ways of working; identify value in early stage projects; draw connections on where path is unclear
  • Partnership and Relationship Building: Strong professional representation of the Foundation, interpersonal abilities, intercultural knowledge and appreciation, strategic partnership building
  • Analytic Ability: Breaks down complex problems and concepts into manageable segments; understand and articulate key drivers; demonstrated ability to deliver insights
  • Flexibility: Can operate within a collaborative working culture, comfortable with uncertainty, as well as quick acceleration of project development when needed
  • Expertise: Solid background in finance and/or impact investing


Apply for this job


The Rockefeller Foundation is committed to the principles of equal employment opportunity and to compliance with all federal, state, and local laws concerning employment discrimination, including the Americans with Disabilities Act. To this end, the Foundation ensures equal opportunity to all employees and applicants regardless of race, color, age, gender, sexual orientation, religion, marital status, national origin or ancestry, citizenship, lawful alien status, physical, mental, and medical disability, veteran status or liability for service in the United States Armed Forces.

The Rockefeller Foundation is an Equal Opportunity Employer