Program Officer, Innovative Schools

RCG Talent Solutions - New York, New York - Full time

The Program Officer, Innovative Schools Position

The Innovative Schools portfolio within the Foundation focuses on expanding access to tech-enabled, student-centered K-9 learning environments, intentionally designed for any student to thrive.

The Foundation is seeking a full-time Program Officer to lead the Innovative Schools portfolio. Reporting to the Associate Program Director (Melanie Dukes), and managing one Program Analyst (Paula Longoria), the Program Officer will refine and clarify the investment strategy for the portfolio, build and nurture relationships across the innovative schools (specifically K-9 edtech) ecosystem, and use a scientific method approach to hypothesize and sharpen an approach to support early stage and growth stage ventures to help them succeed.

Visit for more information. To learn more about our Innovative Schools portfolio, visit the websites of some of our partner organizations: Saga Education, Zearn, and ST Math.

What You’ll Help Us Do:

  • Design, monitor, and evolve a portfolio strategy:
    • Lead the development of a coherent strategy centered on ambitious impact and ecosystem targets and grounded in analysis of the education and philanthropic landscape as well as evolving market opportunities, trends, and gaps
    • Define a clear and differentiated position for Overdeck Family Foundation within the innovative schools space that is grounded in evidence, research, and efficiency of investment
    • Over time, evaluate and capture lessons from investments to inform strategy iteration and to build strong pattern recognition for how to best provide strategic support to portfolio investments to achieve stated goals
  • Propose investments in early and growth stage organizations:
    • Identify organizations aligned to the portfolio strategy and conduct rigorous diligence on prospective investments that are grounded in the foundation’s investment criteria
    • Build a balanced portfolio of investments grounded in the potential of each organization to spur innovation, to build evidence, and grow to deliver impact while also ensuring that the overall portfolio realizes ecosystem-level impact with minimized risk
  • Provide strategic support to grantees:
    • Establish yourself as a credible and valuable partner for grantee organizations, and strategically connect them with supports in four key focus areas: 1) revenue models, 2) cost analysis, 3) impact evaluation, and 4) growth channels
    • Manage and prioritize allocation of strategic supports to grantees in service of grantee and portfolio goals, grounded in an understanding of the holistic needs of individual grantees and the portfolio, including direct supports, third-party supports, and portfolio-wide learning experiences
  • Influence the field:
    • Build momentum for positive change related to the portfolio strategy by proactively developing relationships with influential stakeholders
    • Develop and maintain an extensive and diverse network of partnerships across non-profit, philanthropic, public, and private sectors to advance the mission and goals of the portfolio grantees
    • Partner effectively with peer funders to build awareness of OFF’s strategy, identify ways to support each other, and elevate promising grantees to attract additional funding
    • Develop and implement a plan for public engagement and thought leadership that builds awareness of the portfolio strategy and learnings while elevating and amplifying high-performing grantees, including speaking at conferences, hosting and participating in key meetings, and engaging in thought leadership writing
  • Manage and Coach Program Analyst:
    • Support Program Analyst to identify a pipeline of prospective investment opportunities and conduct due diligence of those opportunities against Foundation investment criteria
    • Set and regularly revisit progress on OKRs and grantmaking targets to ensure Program Analyst has a clear path to recognize and expand their strengths, while also addressing opportunities to improve
    • Support Program Analyst to navigate obstacles using effective problem solving, as well as discussing and identifying connections, networks and / or opportunities to advance portfolio or grantee goals
    • Engage in joint decision-making around grantmaking, including measurement, reporting, and monitoring targets

Who You Are:

A strategist who is able to pursue the right research to arrive at an evidence-based approach to making investments and supporting grantees. You are analytically natured, curious and learning oriented. You leverage the scientific method to produce data and evidence that drives strategic decisions around investments and portfolio support. You are also comfortable with ambiguity—confidently exploring your hypotheses without knowing the answer while seeing failure with learning as a path to success.

A strong operator who is able to efficiently make grants and deliver non monetary support to ventures. You have experience with early stage and growth stage organizations and understand the challenges they face as they clarify and scale their models. You can build deep relationships across grantees, surface their challenges, observe patterns of need, and build and nurture meaningful and efficient supports to help them succeed.

An authentic professional who builds deep and candid relationships with ease. You possess a strong presence and gravitas, knowing how to build a strong narrative when communicating a concept or approach with the right level of specificity to meet the audience. You build trusting relationships internally and externally because you are authentically you and you value candor and kindness in your interactions.

Someone who understands innovative school practices. You understand the edtech sector ecosystem and have developed relationships within that ecosystem. You are familiar with best in class edtech products and understand product market fit, business/revenue models, and scale and distribution channels. You are able to evaluate solutions to understand how cost effective, scalable, impactful, and sustainable they are. You believe in personalized, competency-based learning driven by advanced AI and you value products grounded in teacher and student needs and experience.

A team leader who enjoys managing, coaching, and developing direct reports. A colleague who seeks reciprocal learning and growth from colleagues at every level. You deeply believe in the potential of all professionals to learn and grow. You look forward to building and sustaining an effective, growth-oriented, and inclusive team. You are able to set a clear vision for the Innovative Schools investment portfolio and you can map individual roles and responsibilities in service of this vision across your team.

A values-driven and empathetic leader who will find success in our context. You operate with a high level of self-awareness, humility, and emotional intelligence and you value the same in your colleagues. You engage in conflict confidently and with kindness. You are excited about working in an environment where complex problems are being considered. You are able to articulate and navigate tensions with an orientation towards understanding and valuing multiple perspectives. You don’t shy away from holding two opposing ideas at once and you are comfortable with not knowing or not agreeing and committing.

What You’ve Done:

Required experience:

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Minimum of 10 years of work experience including time spent leading teams in or adjacent to early and/or growth stage organizations
  • Direct experience and content expertise in innovation, school design, education, nonprofit, edtech, personalized learning, and/or socioemotional learning
  • Demonstrated experience formulating and executing strategy, identifying challenges, and implementing solutions
  • Demonstrated management experience, focused on staff development and growth

Preferred experience:

  • Master’s degree in relevant field of education, policy, business, law, statistics, math, science, nonprofit management, or engineering
  • Venture philanthropy experience supporting organizational growth and development through informal and formal support (i.e. grants, board experience, consulting, providing non-monetary support)
  • Experience conducting cost benefit analysis and/or cost effectiveness analysis

How to Apply:

Overdeck Family Foundation is partnering with RCG Talent Solutions to find our next Program Officer, Innovation Schools. Please follow the link to submit your application and direct all questions to direct all questions to

Benefits of Working at Overdeck Family Foundation:

Overdeck Family Foundation offers competitive core benefits, including fully paid medical and dental insurance premiums for employees and dependents, competitive 401(k) match, generous vacation time, unlimited sick days, and employer-paid life and disability insurance. Overdeck Family Foundation requires all employees to live within a commutable distance from the office in the SoHo neighborhood of New York City. Each week, employees must work in the office on Tuesdays and additional “team days” for collaboration, with the option to work remotely on all other days. Perks of being in the office include on-site gyms with laundry service, wellness classes, snacks, and a casual dress code in our beautiful office in SoHo.

Equal Opportunity Employer:

Overdeck Family Foundation is dedicated to the work of unlocking every child’s potential. We are committed to creating a workplace where employees thrive both personally and professionally. We also believe our employees should reflect the rich diversity of the children in the education system we aim to support—in race, gender, age, culture and beliefs—and we support this diversity through all of our employment practices.

All applicants and employees who are drawn to serve our mission will enjoy equality of opportunity and fair treatment without regard to race, color, age, religion, pregnancy, sex, sexual orientation, disability, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, genetic information, veteran status, marital status, and prior protected activity.

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Project Management

Experience Level

Senior Level

RCG Talent Solutions

Overdeck Family Foundation (“the Foundation”) focuses exclusively on enhancing education, funding efforts both inside and outside of school in the areas of early childhood, informal STEM education, and K-9 programs that include supporting educators and student-centered learning environments.
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