Program Officer, Survival

Job Type

Full Time


Details: Salary is competitive and commensurate with experience.




826 Broadway
9th Floor
New York
United States


Robin Hood is New York's largest poverty-fighting organization, and since 1988 has focused on finding, funding, and creating programs and schools that generate meaningful and measurable results for families in New York's poorest neighborhoods. Since its founding, Robin Hood has raised more than $2.5 billion in dollars, goods and services to provide hundreds of the most effective soup kitchens, homeless shelters, schools, job-training programs and other vital services that give New York’s neediest citizens the tools they need to build better lives. Robin Hood's board of directors pays all administrative, fundraising and evaluation costs, so 100% of donations go directly to organizations helping New Yorkers in need. 

To build on Robin Hood’s success and reputation as one of the nation’s leading poverty-fighting organizations, we intend to take a deliberate and expanded approach to scaling our work. To do so effectively, developing meaningful, strategic partnerships will be necessary.

Robin Hood must be known as a thought leader, powerful voice, and catalyzing force for the poor. Given its long-standing reputation among influencers and support of over 200 New York City non-profit organizations, Robin Hood has the unique ability to both directly advocate to decision-makers and mobilize grassroots support on behalf of the causes it chooses to champion. 

Survival Portfolio

The Survival portfolio makes and manages grants to address a variety of issues affecting adults living in poverty. Current investment areas include immigration, workforce development, legal services and food security. In the next year, the portfolio is looking to build pilot programs in adult education, worker protections and immigrant detention. In general, the portfolio works with the city’s best performing nonprofits and government agencies and is equally open to testing new models or investing in programs with a track record of success. The ultimate goal is to bring replicable ideas into practice and then to scale.

Position Overview

Robin Hood is seeking a program officer to join the Survival portfolio. Program officers oversee Robin Hood’s current grants, serve as a resource and thought partner for our community partners, and operate as a catalyst for identifying potential new investment opportunities. Program officers also articulate a clear and persuasive rationale for funding new and ongoing programs. This is accomplished by thoroughly understanding the landscape, the need and the evidence on what works, while also conducting comprehensive reviews of performance data and nonprofit organizational health.


· Managing a portfolio of approximately 15 current grants (65 percent of time):

  • Monitoring grantee performance through analysis of outcomes data, site visits, and independent assessment of progress or setbacks in management and financial reports.
  • Identifying, establishing and refining methods for quantifying the impact of an organization’s services with reference to current research studies and findings.
  • Working with Robin Hood management assistance staff to ascertain community partners’ strengths and weaknesses, especially in governance, infrastructure and technical areas.
  • Building relationships of trust and mutual respect with nonprofit leaders to support them in delivering on their mission.

· Exploring, identifying and supporting new approaches to lifting New Yorkers out of poverty (20 percent of time):

  • Identifying the most pressing needs for the communities served by the Survival portfolio and exploring interconnections with partners and needs addressed in other portfolios at Robin Hood.
  • Identifying the most innovative or effective interventions and organizations in the field.
  • Rigorously evaluating potential investments based on Robin Hood’s disciplined methodology for judging potential performance and organizational strength
  • Developing a clear articulation of the strengths and weaknesses of a potential grant and capturing them in write-ups and presentations delivered to program staff and board committees.

· Representing Robin Hood at external forums and conferences and acting as liaison to other philanthropies and government agencies (5 percent of time).

· Supporting development and communications staff by providing program knowledge in support of Robin Hood organizational efforts (10 percent of time).


  • B.A and four years of experience required. Master’s degree preferred, but other experience considered.
  • Personal or professional experience with low-income communities and N.Y.C. strongly preferred.
  • Deep empathy for the immense challenges and setbacks in poverty-fighting and social services work.
  • Skilled at analyzing data, drawing nuanced findings and asking questions to refine conclusions.
  • Able to identify assumptions, make forecasts and make decisions, if required, with limited information.
  • Able to speak and write clearly, especially under time pressure.
  • Excellent organizational, planning and time-management skills. Capacity to multi-task and assume new or additional work quickly and graciously.
  • Welcomes feedback and is committed to learning and growing.
  • Able to work collaboratively across the organization and acknowledge achievements of others.


Robin Hood Values

Our core values ground the work that we do in all areas of our organization. If these principles appeal to you, we invite you to apply.

  • Robin Hood puts people first. Always.
  • Robin Hood is unafraid to take action and create solutions.
  • Robin Hood is data driven and heart led.
  • Robin Hood works the coat check.


Salary is competitive and commensurate with experience. Robin Hood has excellent benefits and encourages strong work-life balance.

Professional Level


Minimum Education Required

Master's degree

How To Apply

Please visit our website to complete our online application.