NEO Philanthropy — Chief Operating Officer

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NEO Philanthropy Published: April 18, 2016
Job Type


Launched in 1983 as Public Interest Projects, NEO Philanthropy’s mission is to increase funding for cutting-edge strategies that advance social change. NEO has helped align investor and non-profit resources to foster cooperation and increase impact across multiple social sectors. We provide support to funders by mobilizing resources, building partnerships and promoting leadership to achieve a vision of justice and dignity for all. We believe this is the most powerful impact philanthropy can have. To make it happen, NEO offers a unique and comprehensive combination of services that increases donors’ impact and gets the results they—and their grantees—want to see. In the past five years, NEO has provided more than $120 million to more than 300 innovative organizations on the front lines of social change.

NEO Philanthropy is seeking a talented and seasoned Chief Operating Officer (COO) with exceptional management, finance and operational experience, who is passionate about making sustainable social change. We are looking for a COO who can help “operationalize our values.” The COO will be responsible for overseeing a wide array of functions related to the organization’s infrastructure and operations, and will be a leader in ensuring effective staff management throughout the organization. The COO will report to the President of NEO Philanthropy and will be a key member of the senior management team.

The COO will be responsible for ensuring that internal administrative and financial systems and communications are effective and successful, providing for staff development and training, and establishing and maintaining a culture of collegiality and excellence. The COO directly oversees: Chief Financial Officer, Director of Operations and Human Resources, Grants Managers, fiscal sponsorship team, investment and IT and facilities consultants; and works closely with outside counsel. This position is based in New York City.

We are looking for a COO who embodies entrepreneurial leadership, has strong financial forecasting skills, and has a management approach that reflects the connection between a strong organizational infrastructure and the organization’s ability to achieve its mission. The position requires outstanding judgment, informed and thoughtful decision-making, strong interpersonal skills (including excellent listening skills), attention to detail and effective oversight of financial systems that support NEO’s work. It also requires a flexible approach to management that enables NEO and its staff to address opportunities and challenges nimbly as they arise.

Responsibilities include:

  • Overseeing finance, operations, human resources and administration functions of the organization.
  • Together with the Chief Financial Officer (CFO), working to ensure that NEO maintains financial systems that adhere to the highest standards for accuracy and integrity and produce financial information necessary to ensure an efficient and responsive organization.
  • Ensuring that all program budgets maximize the impact and efficiency of spending, monitor expenditures and revenue, including timely grant disbursement and reporting to NEO leadership, including our Board and our stakeholders, and clearly communicating the financial narrative to the Board, staff leadership, and our donors and grantees.
  • Planning, coordinating and executing the annual budget process for the organization as a whole and for each department, providing guidance to staff during the operating budget planning process by establishing guidelines and allocating resources according to NEO’s objectives.
  • Working closely with program teams to ensure effective and efficient program operations, including developing and utilizing data and other impact measurement tools to assess organizational effectiveness.
  • Working in partnership with the President and senior leadership, develop an inclusive strategic planning process to set short and long-term goals, and draft a plan to achieve, and track progress in reaching, the set goals.
  • Working closely with the President and senior leadership to build an adaptive, innovative and agile culture with a customer service orientation.
  • Together with the Director of Operations and Human Resources, improving the human resources functions to ensure that NEO has, and fairly applies, effective personnel policies, provides support for staff and makes available appropriate training and professional development opportunities to all employees.
  • Working with senior directors, leading efforts to strengthen integration of program work and operations, including internal communications and coordination of different aspects of the organization, ensuring availability of needed administrative support and infrastructure resources, and ensuring a healthy, fun and productive work environment.
  • Hiring, managing, motivating and building an experienced and talented staff and providing opportunities for them to develop and grow in the organization, including fostering an innovative and high-performing team culture.
  • Overseeing the review and approval of contracts and other sensitive documents to which NEO will be a party to, in consultation with our outside counsel.

Qualifications include:

The ideal candidate will have an outstanding record of managing operations, finances and staff with a high performing nonprofit organization or business.

Candidates must have:

  • A deep commitment to NEO’s mission to increase funding for cutting-edge strategies that advance social change.
  • A minimum of 10 years of experience in a senior operational/management/finance position working as part of a senior leadership team, in an organization that is at least comparable in size and complexity to NEO. (NEO has a staff of 32 and an annual operating budget of $42 million).
  • Exceptional experience in planning and resource analysis (both financial and human resources), and developing systems.
  • Significant experience in budgeting and budget planning.
  • Demonstrated success in staff management, including the ability to engage others in addressing complex and fast moving issues efficiently and effectively, and the ability to motivate and lead a team and develop talent.
  • Experience developing infrastructure, policies and systems that encourage and facilitate teamwork, collaboration and innovative thinking.
  • Excellent leadership skills, including the ability to motivate, inspire trust and confidence, set ambitious but achievable goals and ensure the accountability of organization personnel.
  • A track record of unwavering commitment to the highest standards of quality performance and organizational integrity.
  • Demonstrated success in strategic thinking, planning, implementation and problem solving together with a high degree of flexibility and the ability to manage successfully in a fast-paced, dynamic environment, is open to others ideas and has a “can do” attitude.
  • Ability to set priorities (weekly, monthly and yearly).
  • Superior organizational skills, including understanding organizational development and culture.
  • Understanding of the philanthropic sector and grant-making process and procedures. (Experience in fiscal sponsorship is a plus.)
  • Excellent communications skills and comfortable with an “open door” policy.
  • Ability to work gracefully under pressure.
  • A commitment to diversity.
  • A passion for social justice and improving the world.

Salary and benefits: Salary is commensurate with experience. NEO offers excellent benefits including: Oxford/US Healthcare Health Insurance, Metlife Dental & Life Insurance, Vision Access Discount Plan, 401K Plan (after one year of employment, NEO contributes 3% of employees’ salary), Flexible Spending Account (after 6 months of employment), 15 vacation days in first year of employment and 20 days after one year of employment, 12 sick days per year, and 3 personal days per year.

To apply: Send a cover letter, resume and salary requirements to, subject line, NEO COO.

NEO Philanthropy is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion/creed, color, age, national origin, alienage or citizenship status, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, pregnancy, military status, familial status, domestic violence victim status, marital status or partnership status.









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