Officer, Grants and Philanthropic Services

Hillspire, LLCMenlo Park, CA

About Hillspire, LLC

Hillspire is an integrated family office management company serving all the investments, foundations and activities of Eric and Wendy Schmidt and family, including The Schmidt Family Foundation, the Schmidt Ocean Institute, and Schmidt Futures, and employing across all entities 400+ employees worldwide.


  • Work as a team: Successful organizations are built from successful teams. They approach their philanthropy and other activities in the same way.
  • Take ownership: They take ownership and pride in what they do. Being motivated by doing the right thing and by pursuing the best ideas, to help them achieve the greatest philanthropic outcomes.
  • Value the whole person: They value their teammates and colleagues as whole people, not just for their role or function.

The Opportunity

With substantial growth at Hillspire and across all of the Schmidt entities, Hillspire’s Grants and Philanthropic Services team is poised to play an increasingly pivotal role in supporting the philanthropic ambitions of the Schmidt family. Reporting to the Senior Director of the Grants and Philanthropic Services team, the incoming Officer will serve as a resident expert in grantmaking and philanthropic practices, leading with a collaborative and client service approach.

Building and maintaining relationships with Program leads and business partners across the Schmidt charitable organizations, the Officer will operate as a resource and thought partner throughout the entirety of the grant life cycle and grantmaking practice. This person will encourage and inspire best-in-class grantmaking strategies and approaches, advise on how to leverage best practices in the sector, as well as help to leverage collective knowledge and skills to benefit the Schmidt philanthropic ecosystem.

Given the expansion of the Schmidt family’s charitable endeavors and ambitions, the new Officer will join Hillspire at a time of innovation, increased impact, and elevated leadership in the sector. This role provides an exciting opportunity to influence, support, and implement the philanthropic systems and practices that will foster greater impact in the years ahead.

Key Priorities

Consulting and Collaboration

  • Build trust, rapport, and respect with program staff working within Schmidt entities on specific and broad charitable approaches.  Act as an operational and advisory partner to support activities and goals for grantmaking.
  • Collaborate with and support shared goals and activities with other business partners including Legal, Accounting, Communications, and associated vendors.
  • Advise, lead, and support grantmaking efforts with presence and confidence to facilitate conversations, advocate a point of view, and incorporate multiple perspectives.
  • Cultivate relationships and touchpoints with colleagues from across the enterprise to ensure grantmaking activities, operational goals and overall strategic priorities are integrated, aligned, and on track. 

Grants Management and Grantmaking Practice

  • Support the ongoing establishment of a sophisticated culture of grants management and effective philanthropic practices across the Schmidt entities.
  • Provide expert advice for individual grants and to grantees on matters such as effective due diligence, assessing grantee organizational capacity/health, grant and portfolio structuring, as well as monitoring and measuring impact.
  • Serve as a grantee advocate by designing processes that consider equity and partnership as well as streamlined and purpose-driven processes.
  • Take a holistic big-picture view to advisement on grantmaking strategies, portfolios, and goals, while also working on individual grants from inception through the complete lifecycle. Ensure alignment between the set-up of individual grants and overall operational and charitable goals, as well as overall alignment with Hillspire values and priorities.
  • Proactively identify and propose workflow improvements, leading the iteration and refinement of critical operating structures and processes for grantmaking.
  • Serve as a key contributor to the ongoing development and implementation of the Salesforce system to support the grantmaking process.
  • Manage the compliance and regulatory aspects of grantmaking with 501(c)4 social welfare organizations and 501(c)3 private foundations and public charities.


  • Working in close collaboration with the Senior Officer, Learning and Impact, design and deliver curricula to inform, advise and teach grantmaking practices.
  • Develop and socialize frameworks for data collection and to share data-driven insights.  Consider uses of data for knowledge sharing, monitoring, forecasting and planning, and other learning and operational needs.
  • Share knowledge and create resources/tools. This includes taking an analytical and problem-solving approach to improve how the Schmidt entities collect, curate and use knowledge and information about grants and grantees.
  • Create and deliver staff onboarding sessions and trainings on Salesforce, philanthropic best practices, and grants and contracts management
  • Collect and encourage feedback across Schmidt entities to be able to identify and respond to training needs and opportunities

Ideal Candidate

The successful candidate knows first-hand the nuances and complexities of grantmaking operations from their work across a breadth of charitable vehicles and with a diverse array of grantees and partners.While previous experience in grants management is not required, candidates must be well read, interested and knowledgable regarding current debate, practices and perspectives within the philanthropic sector.   

As a primary contributor to the development and management of Hillspire’s grants infrastructure and process workstreams, the Officer will be a systems thinker and data-driven. Experience working in Salesforce is a distinct advantage.

The Officer will work with a wide range of internal and external stakeholders in this position which requires they possess an innate ability to tailor their approach and communication style for diverse audiences. Seeking to learn and understand others’ perspectives, the ideal candidate will bring diplomacy and professionalism to every interaction. Self-driven motivation is key, as is the comfort and confidence to express one’s expertise and manage through influence. Demonstrated discretion and unimpeachable ethics and honesty are required.

Success in this position requires an Officer who leads with strong emotional intelligence, a client-service orientation, and a drive towards continuous process improvements. This individual has the ability to move seamlessly across teams and contexts. They effortlessly maintain a holistic view of the work and simultaneously track the details to execute.  Demonstrating superb project management skills, the Officer will thrive in an environment that requires navigating competing and shifting priorities, timelines, and deadlines. Comfort with ambiguity and change is essential as the Officer will be joining an organization experiencing significant growth and development.

While all staff are currently working remotely, the selected candidate will be based in Hillspire’s Menlo Park, CA office when it is deemed safe to return to work—currently scheduled for October 2021. Candidates should anticipate travel approximately 25% of the time (about one week per month).


Candidates should have five to ten years of nonprofit or philanthropic experience. Those who have worked as either a philanthropy advisor or grants management professional in a private philanthropic institution would be well suited for this role. Demonstrated experience in operations/data and systems work is required. Depending on level of experience, Hillspire may bring the selected candidate on as a Senior Officer.

Hillspire, LCC EEO Statement

Hillspire is an Equal Employment Opportunity employer that proudly pursues and hires a diverse workforce. Hillspire does not make hiring or employment decisions on the basis of race, color, religion or religious belief, ethnic or national origin, nationality, sex, gender, gender-identity, sexual orientation, disability, age, military or veteran status, or any other basis protected by applicable local, state, or federal laws or prohibited by Company policy. Hillspire also strives for a healthy and safe workplace and strictly prohibits harassment of any kind.

To Be Considered

Please submit your resume and cover letter expressing your interest in the position and fit for the role via the Become a Candidate button. Letters may be addressed to Sarah Meyer.

Officer, Grants and Philanthropic ServicesHillspire, LLCMenlo Park, CA

The search for an Officer, Grants and Philanthropic Services is being assisted by a team from GoodCitizen: 

Sarah Meyer
Vice President
Direct: 206.792.4221

Mollie Smith
Direct: 206.462.6190