Program Officer, Disaster Relief and Recovery

Margaret A. Cargill PhilanthropiesEden Prairie, MN

About Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies (MACP)

Founded by the late Margaret A. Cargill, MACP actively partners with capable organizations to make a lasting difference for individuals and communities, with particular attention to overlooked causes. MACP’s combined assets (Margaret A. Cargill Foundation and Anne Ray Foundation) place the organization among the top ten foundations in the United States.

MACP develops and implements integrated grantmaking strategies across seven programmatic areas called domains: Arts & Cultures, Disaster Relief & Recovery, Environment, Animal Welfare, Quality of Life, Teachers, and Legacy & Opportunity.

To learn more about MACP, please visit their website.

Across all programs, MACP seeks to support work in and with communities toward developing solutions that deliver effective, sustainable programs that improve the quality of life for marginalized communities and populations. 

About the Disaster Relief and Recovery Program

The Disaster Relief and Recovery (DRR) domain works to relieve disaster-related suffering and reduce the impact of natural disasters in disaster-prone communities through a mixture of disaster response and preparedness efforts both domestically and internationally. 

Historically, the DRR domain’s international grantmaking focused primarily on large, U.S.-based international non-government organizations, in conjunction with their local partners, to implement disaster preparedness and response strategies with local communities. The DRR team has begun exploring strategies that ensure regional, national, and local non-government organizations play a clear and meaningful role in developing program priorities, managing projects, and controlling resources. 

In addition, recognizing the impact climate change is having on the priorities of the DRR domain, climate change adaptation and areas such as natural resource management as disaster risk reduction strategies are increasingly becoming priorities for DRR’s grantmaking strategies. The DRR domain also supports linkages between the work it supports and government systems and safety nets; works to reduce the impact of natural hazards and climate change on women, girls, and older persons; deepens the connections between response and preparedness work; and will explore a regional versus country-specific approach in the coming years.

The team aspires to utilize approaches that are equitable and aligned with the decolonization of global aid movements and MACP’s Diversity, Equality, Inclusion and Social Justice (DEIJ) vision, including greater emphasis on local humanitarian leadership. 

The Opportunity

The Program Officer is responsible for implementing and managing one or more strategically aligned grantmaking portfolios of MACP’s work in the DRR domain. This position reports to the Program Director and works in collaboration with the Managing Program Director, Program Officers, and Program Associates. The Program Officer will manage an effective grantmaking program to support the strategic content, interests, goals, and desired impact for the DRR domain. 

The focus of this role will be on disaster preparedness at a community level across DRR’s seven strategic geographies internationally that are highly prone to recurring, low-attention natural disasters, including Guatemala, El Salvador, Nepal, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Philippines, and Timor-Leste. In addition to overseeing the lifecycle of the grantmaking process, the DRR team is looking for a seasoned colleague who can help hone the domain’s vision and strategies for impact considering the dynamic nature of the sector and the interests of impacted communities. 

The Program Officer will also play an active role in implementing evaluation efforts and leveraging data to assess the impact and sustainability of DRR’s preparedness work. The DRR domain is increasingly applying equitable evaluation practices to monitoring, learning, and evaluation. The incoming Program Officer will continue to work with the team and grantees to develop and implement evaluation models that engage with communities.

Key Responsibilities

Strategic Program Implementation

  • Oversee a portfolio of strategically aligned grantees and grants, focusing on disaster preparedness and sustaining disaster-prone communities and their supporting organizations over a three-to-five-year period. 
  • Stay abreast of external issues and trends in the DRR program area, conducting research as directed by the Program Director, and maintaining knowledge of public policies, funding mechanisms, and private giving roles in disaster relief, recovery, and preparedness activities, especially in emerging markets.
  • Support MACP’s vision and commitment to DEIJ by contributing to domain and program-related DEIJ goals and efforts. 

Grantmaking and Grantee Support

  • Recommend new grant concepts that will advance the strategic impact of the preparedness portfolio(s), and manage related cost supplements and extensions, as well as support special one-time grants. Guide applicants through due diligence and proposal development within budget and policy parameters.
  • Maintain clear communication with grantees, applicants, and stakeholders, managing relationships diplomatically, in alignment with MACP values and grantmaking principles.
  • Organize and conduct site visits with grantee partners and team members, including senior leadership and Program Committee/Board of Directors members when necessary.
  • Support implementation of evaluation plans using qualitative and quantitative methods, including MACP-specific program indicators, to assess impact and sustainability of DRR preparedness efforts in strategic areas.

External Partnerships

  • Promote partnership and a culture of learning within MACP and among grantees, and with peer funders.
  • Attend meetings, conferences, and convenings related to the disaster and/or philanthropy sectors as they relate to MACP’s organizational and/or DRR’s program interests. 
  • Represent MACP to the public, including community leaders, social service, and community-based organizations, and colleagues in the field of philanthropy.

Internal Leadership and Collaboration

  • Prepare written materials for board and management review. Assist with board meeting preparations and participate and present information in board meetings, as necessary. 
  • Collaborate with MACP Legal, Finance, Grants Management, and Evaluation teams for due diligence, capacity assessment, and grant monitoring.
  • Facilitate relationships and partnerships across organizations and institutions working on shared issues, in coordination with the Managing Program Director, Program Director, and other Program Officers.

Ideal Candidate

The ideal candidate is an experienced, versatile professional with eight or more years of relevant experience in the humanitarian/disaster sector, including five years of grantmaking experience, preferably in the international humanitarian sector. Solid experience and understanding of issues, organizations, and philanthropy related to community-based disaster relief, specifically natural disaster recovery and preparedness is critical. International development, disaster, and/or grantmaking experience is strongly desired, and the ability to work effectively in a wide range of cultural settings is essential. 

MACP is seeking a Program Officer skilled at thinking both systemically and from a community-based perspective. The ideal candidate has a proven ability to identify and translate strategic vision into tangible actions and outcomes. 

Candidates should have an active curiosity and passion for MACP’s program interests and values, including making a difference in communities, forming deep partnerships with grantees, providing support to low-attention needs associated with natural disasters across the globe, and working with humility. Successful candidates will be collaborative, positive, and able to deal well with ambiguity and change. They will be adept at building collegial relationships and able to respond to issues with clarity and diplomacy. They will inspire and foster trust and confidence in staff, management, and their colleagues. Experience and/or demonstrated interest in putting a board’s interests into practice is also essential.

The Program Officer will actively support MACP’s vision and commitment to DEIJ and brings demonstrated knowledge and commitment to intercultural understanding and awareness of systemic racism and other forms of structural injustice. 


Compelling candidates will offer much of the following: 

  • Demonstrated interest in cross-cutting themes like climate change, gender, and community-based recovery programs.
  • Proficient in multicultural settings, with a passion for community-based programming.
  • Skilled in assessing relevance and impact of interventions, with emphasis on diversity, equity, and inclusion.
  • Experienced in evaluation design and creating measurement systems for program effectiveness.
  • Knowledgeable of key actors in disaster/humanitarian sectors and emerging trends, including institutional racism awareness.
  • Strong project management skills, including budget management and meeting multiple deadlines.
  • Capable of reading financial documents and managing complex budgets.
  • Proven track record in partner engagement and achieving programmatic outcomes.
  • Effective communication skills in verbal presentations and written documents.
  • Understanding of funder-grantee dynamics and relationship management.
  • Ability to work collaboratively in consultative relationships with a service-oriented approach.
  • Values integrity, discretion, and trustworthiness with a commitment to confidentiality.
  • Proficiency in grant-management software and tracking systems.


Travel up to 30%, including international travel will be required. During field visits, the Program Officer may occasionally be required to travel to and stay in rural or remote places in disaster prone countries in Latin American and Asia, sometimes experiencing difficult conditions, or travel by boat or small aircraft to access points or people of interest.          

Location and Salary

The work environment is an office setting with a designated office or workstation at the Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies office in Eden Prairie, Minnesota; located within the Twin Cities metropolitan area. Employees work in office 3 days per week with the option to work remote up to two days. Relocation support will be provided if the selected candidate currently resides outside of the Twin Cities metropolitan area.

 The salary range for this role is $149,000 – $177,000. 

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 Jailan Adly.

Applicants applying by April 19th will be given priority consideration, with the position open until filled.

Program Officer – International, Disaster Relief and RecoveryMargaret A. Cargill PhilanthropiesEden Prairie, MN

GoodCitizen has been exclusively retained by Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies’ to lead this search. For questions, please contact:

Jailan Adly
Managing Director
Direct: 202.993.7976

Mollie Smith
Engagement Manager
Direct: 206.462.6190

Tonisha Idowu
Senior Associate
Direct: 202.753.9075