Associate Controller

Posted by
PEN America
New York, NY

PEN America, a nonprofit organization that stands at the intersection of literature and human rights to protect open expression in the United States and worldwide, seeks a skilled, analytical, and detail-oriented associate controller to support our finance operations. The ideal candidate will have a strong background in nonprofit finance, having reported directly to the chief financial officer or controller. This is a full-time position based in New York, reporting to the chief financial officer.

The associate controller will provide manager-level support for PEN America’s finance and administration department, participating in preparation of budgets, processing and review of revenues and expenses, preparation of periodic financial reports, and support for audits and analyses. The role requires oversight to ensure finance best practices are observed and support for program departments in the preparation and management of their budgets. The associate controller will be a key leader for ensuring fluid workflows for the finance and administration department, supervising a small team and contributing to the administrative responsibilities of the department as needed.

The successful candidate will be an experienced, highly motivated self-starter who can recognize and address department and organizational needs collaboratively and effectively. Experience in an operational capacity, including office management and IT, are a plus. The ability to work flexibly in a nonprofit arena affected by current economic, environmental, and social factors will be critical. PEN America seeks an ambitious nonprofit finance professional who aspires to gain the experience necessary for roles of increasing responsibility.


  • Prepare annual budget alongside CFO for approval by Board of Directors; monitor revenues and expenses; prepare financial statements and reports for Board, executive management, middle managers, and funders
  • Provide financial management of grants, including projections and planning, performance analysis, budgeting, and grants portfolio reporting
  • Monitor expenses and prepare budgets on existing and new programs. Set up systems and controls on financing and release of funds
  • Oversee accounting procedures, including A/R, A/P, bank deposits, month-end closing process, and cash management
  • Design and conduct internal audits and other internal control tests to assure compliance with procedures
  • Manage accounting software package (Fund EZ), including maximizing system functionality and ensuring data integrity
  • Assist in reviewing monthly financial statements and analysis of variances 
  • Support various projects with financial analysis and business decision recommendations
  • Update program directors on budget-to-actual departmental results on a monthly basis
  • Work cross-functionally with internal partners on key financial projects, ensuring timeliness and accuracy
  • Initiate reconciliation of development database and Fund EZ for special events
  • Work closely with the development department to prepare timely budget proposals
  • Prepare and work closely with external accountants to assure timely completion of all tax returns and other compliance documents, prepare relevant schedules for audit processes, and ensure timely completion of adjusting journal entries
  • Assist in establishing, documenting, and maintaining internal control policies and procedures
  • Manage finance and administration department staff
  • Other duties as assigned


  • Four to six years of experience in nonprofit financial management/accounting, including staff oversight, with at least three years in a key role in managing the finances of a nonprofit organization
  • Demonstrated expertise in and commitment to the specialized field of financial management and accounting at nonprofit organizations
  • Master’s degree in accounting, finance, business, or another field of study relevant to the position strongly preferred. Additional certification (CPA or CMA) is a plus
  • Excellent knowledge of accounting regulations and procedures, including the Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP)
  • Experience using Excel and Fund EZ accounting software is a plus
  • Extensive budget management experience
  • Exceptional problem-solving skills, and the ability to follow through from the identification of a challenge to its solution
  • Excellent interpersonal, presentational, and written/oral communications skills
  • Formidable work ethic and high energy level, with the ability to multitask effectively
  • Experience with office management and IT are a plus

Salary and Benefits: PEN offers competitive compensation and benefits, commensurate with experience.


Please submit a detailed cover letter that directly addresses your qualifications for the specified requirements as outlined above, your resume, and the contact information for three references. Please submit the entire application as one PDF to Please use “Associate Controller” with your name as the subject of your email (for example, Associate Controller – Jane Doe). Only complete applications will be reviewed, and only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

PEN America is an equal opportunity employer that does not discriminate in its hiring practices, and in order to build the strongest possible workforce, actively seeks a diverse applicant pool.

No phone calls, please.


PEN America stands at the intersection of literature and human rights to protect free expression in the United States and worldwide. We champion the freedom to write, recognizing the power of the word to transform the world. Our mission is to unite writers and their allies to celebrate creative expression and defend the liberties that make it possible.

PEN America, a nonprofit organization that stands at the intersection of literature and human rights to protect open expression in the United States and worldwide, seeks a skilled, analytical, and detail-oriented associate controller to…

Details at a glance

  • On-site Location
  • Full Time Schedule


588 Broadway, New York, NY 10012 - 3225

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