At the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation we believe that by creating an environment for our employees to personally and professionally thrive, we will have maximum impact toward our missions to achieve our vision.
The mission of the Global Policy & Advocacy (GPA) division is to understand and shape the public policy debates affecting the foundation's work, build support for its major program and policy objectives, and develop partnerships and alliances that can advance the foundation's objectives nationally and globally. Because the foundation's resources alone are not enough to solve the challenges ahead, GPA also supports advocacy efforts to engage diverse stakeholders and promote innovative solutions that advance our program goals. We work in close partnership with grantees, our colleagues in the Global Health, Global Development, Global Growth & Opportunity, U.S. and Gender Equality programs and Foundation Communications to build the environment in which all people have the opportunity to lead healthy and productive lives.
The Program Advocacy and Communications team works in partnership with program teams and other teams in Global Policy and Advocacy (GPA) to achieve their policy and finance goals by:
Developing and coordinating the execution of advocacy and communications strategies.
Leveraging leadership and foundation voice to implement advocacy strategies.
Developing and managing a grant portfolio dedicated to achieving advocacy outcomes.
Directly advocating with sector leaders, influencers, media and government officials in order to achieve advocacy outcomes.
Leading issue-specific communications in service of advocacy goals.
Developing policy recommendations or proposals in partnership with programmatic and regional offices.
Leadership & Culture
Our culture shapes our choices about what we do and how we do it. We believe that energized people, working well together, fueled by great leadership in an inclusive environment can do extraordinary things. We expect foundation employees to intentionally and consistently embody our four agreements; show respect, offer trust, be transparent, and create energy.
The Thematic Advocacy Program Officer (PO) will support two important initiatives on the PAC team: the new PAC Pooled Budget and associated investment portfolio, and the foundation’s Goalkeepers Accelerator Program.
PAC Pooled Budget (~50% of the role):
The Thematic Advocacy Program Officer will assist in defining and advancing the PAC team’s new cross-cutting investment portfolio and in the success of our new cross-team Pooled Budget. This work will enable PAC to invest across the foundation’s many program strategy areas in an advocacy environment where donors and country governments increasingly want connections across our issues – for example, across health verticals for effective health budget advocacy, and across foundation strategies to address global economic recovery in 2021 and beyond. There are emerging external challenges and opportunities that affect multiple Program Strategy Team issue areas that our current operating model precludes us from addressing. Augmenting our existing advocacy approaches with cross-cutting advocacy will yield stronger policy and financing outcomes with donors and countries in service of foundation strategies.
Goalkeepers Accelerator Program (~50% of the role):
The PO will be a core member of the Goalkeepers team, an effort encompassing multiple teams, managed out of the Communications division. Goalkeepers is intended to accelerate progress on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) using powerful stories, data, and partnerships to highlight progress achieved, hold governments accountable and bring together a new generation of leaders to address the world’s major challenges. Through the Goalkeepers Accelerators program, we are committed to promoting innovative solutions for the SDGs. The PO will lead the Accelerators program and serve as an internal broker across GPA and the Communications division to elevate champions and issues in support of the foundation’s advocacy objectives. The PO will manage a grant portfolio and providing research and analysis work in support of grant-making, strategy development, coordination, and advocacy communications for the Goalkeepers Accelerators and champion elevation.
This role will also work closely with the PAC Senior Program Officer, Thematic Advocacy role.
Support leadership of at least one body of work and investment portfolio for the PAC Pooled Budget, including strategy development and the development and management of investments. Specifically for:
The Global Economic Recovery body of work
Other shorter-term bodies of work, to be developed at a future date
Provide additional support to the other Pooled Budget portfolios in support to the SPO, Thematic Advocacy.
Lead internal program management and support communications efforts on the Pooled Budget.
Support development and implementation of a new Goalkeepers Accelerators program including: working with stakeholders across the foundation to select an annual accelerators theme, coordinating an equitable outreach and selection process in close partnership with the Goalkeepers Community Lead, overseeing a cohesive digital outreach and engagement plan for the program.
Build positive relationships internally across teams and externally with partners, consultants, vendors and grantees
Work in coordination with Program Strategy Teams, functional teams and PAC colleagues to translate programmatic goals into effective communications plans; as well as actively find opportunities to elevate Goalkeepers champions in the foundation’s advocacy work and campaigns in partnership with the Goalkeepers Community lead
Review inquiries and grant proposals; provide clear, concise and insightful written analyses and recommendations for funding, including drafting and editing proposal summaries and progress reports for existing grants for review by foundation leadership.
Collaborate with grantees to achieve desired impact of grants; conduct site visits when appropriate, provide technical guidance, convene meetings and apply and evaluate milestone-based performance objectives.
Run internal processes and portfolio progress while ensuring appropriate documentation, grant budgeting and reporting. Improve operational efficiency and effectiveness.
Prepare and write briefs and synthesize literature. Provide written analysis of key topics for foundation management. Fulfill data requests from leadership.
Core Knowledge and Skills
Proven understanding of global health and development sectors and familiarity with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals
Leadership abilities to work with multiple diverse partners, including partner organizations, local champions, individuals, and other donors to build a common vision and visualize simple and effective but implementable solutions to complex problems.
Experience with funding processes and grant management.
Strong analytical, writing and verbal skills for communicating with a broad and diverse audience.
Excellent strategic communications skills with strong ability to efficiently synthesize information, market ideas internally across teams and externally with partners.
Experience with partner management/grantee management and a passion for working with activists/champions + building community.
Excellent interpersonal skills and a consistent track record to build and sustain collaborative relationships, particularly across cultures. Proven commitment to diversity equity and inclusion. Comfortable in a wide range of cultural, geographic and operational situations, demonstrating culturally sensitive behavior with a diverse range of people.
Demonstrated ability to work with flexibility, entrepreneurship, and diplomacy, both individually and as part of a complex team effort.
Education and Experience
Bachelor’s or other advanced degree with 5+ years of experience, or equivalent experience.
*Must be able to legally work in the country where this position is located without visa sponsorship.
As part of our standard hiring process for new employees, employment with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will be contingent upon successful completion of a background check.
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is dedicated to the belief that all lives have equal value. We’re committed to creating a workplace where employees thrive both personally and professionally. We also believe our employees should reflect the rich diversity of the global populations we aim to serve—in race, gender, age, cultures and beliefs—and we support this diversity through all of our employment practices.
All applicants and employees who are drawn to serve the mission of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will enjoy equality of opportunity and fair treatment without regard to: