Chief Impact Officer

The Conrad Prebys FoundationSan Diego, CA
McCarthy Prebys Exteriors

The Foundation’s Mission

The Conrad Prebys Foundation is committed to improving lives and providing opportunities for all San Diegans. The Foundation seeks to address community need in San Diego through high-impact, place-based grantmaking and strategic initiatives in the visual and performing arts, higher education and youth development, healthcare, medical research, and other charitable purposes consistent with Conrad Prebys’ history of philanthropy in San Diego.

Over many decades, Conrad Prebys built a real estate empire and became one of the largest private owners of residential multi-family properties in San Diego County. During his later years, he generously dedicated his resources to the community through charities, donating over $350 million before his passing in 2016. To ensure his vision extended beyond his life, The Conrad Prebys Foundation was created to perpetuate his commitment to philanthropic endeavors in San Diego.

The Position

This is a rare and exceptional opportunity to join a growing foundation and help shape over $60M in annual grantmaking for the San Diego community by building impactful, place-based philanthropic strategies in partnership with stakeholders across the region. The Conrad Prebys Foundation has embarked on a building phase – similar to a start-up in many ways – and the Chief Impact Officer (CIO) will be instrumental in defining the Foundation’s vision and strategy for bold and varied approaches to deploying place-based philanthropic capital as well as operationalizing the organization’s ambitious programmatic objectives. The CIO is a newly created role and will be joining a lean senior leadership team alongside the CEO and CFO, working collaboratively in the planning, development, and implementation of the Foundation’s values, culture, and grantmaking philosophy and strategies.

The CIO will be the chief designer and synthesizer of impact objectives and learning strategies across program areas at the Foundation. Serving as a thought partner to and collaborator with the CEO, this position will act as a strategic generalist across the Foundation’s portfolios of work – providing program leadership, direction, design, and implementation rooted in creativity and innovation. The role brings together elements of extensive community engagement, program strategy and insight, research, impact measurement, and learning for both internal and external audiences.

This is a unique moment and unparalleled opportunity for the Foundation’s first CIO to collaborate with the CEO, CFO, and Foundation team to set strategy, vision, values, culture, and impact for a young and growing philanthropy with immense capacity. Operating as a true and authentic leader who thrives on working in service of others, the CIO will build and foster an environment based on trust and co-creation and bring exceptional planning and implementation capabilities to Foundation objectives. In partnership with the CEO, CFO, program staff, and the community, the CIO will help to lead the establishment of a best-in-class and forward-thinking Foundation that will be seen as a trusted partner and catalyst for positive change in the San Diego community.

Key Responsibilities

Community & Partner Engagement

The CIO will maintain an ever-present focus on centering community needs, voices, ideas, and perspectives in the Foundation’s strategies. This will require a CIO with a collaborative and partnership-oriented disposition, ensuring the organization is drawing on diverse sources and forms of knowledge from across the region, and who is deeply respectful of the individuals and communities that the Foundation supports. Effectively engaging stakeholders in program vision, strategies, and impact is paramount. The CIO is expected to represent the Foundation’s interests to a broad array of external audiences and constituencies, including extensive community networking to source emerging opportunities relevant to the Foundation’s mission and priorities. These efforts will also require the CIO to identify and leverage the best resources and expertise to advance programmatic goals and stay attuned to the realities and learnings from the San Diego community, as well as clarifying and holding the Foundation’s long-term vision for impact.

Strategy Design & Implementation

Partnering closely with the CEO and CFO, the CIO will help create a unified vision and direction that will establish the Foundation as a trusted partner and catalyst for positive impact in San Diego. Working collaboratively as part of the senior leadership team, the CIO will lead the development, implementation, and evaluation of impact-oriented strategies across all program areas. While the Foundation has developed initial, emergent frameworks for some programs, these will need to be deepened and refined over time, capitalizing where possible on opportunities for scale in San Diego. Additionally, the CIO will build the operating environment, team capacity, and systems infrastructure to support effective implementation of the work.

Portfolio Management & Impact Assessment

The CIO will oversee – and in some cases manage – portfolios of active grantees as well as establish the means for impact assessment and learning. Fostering an agile culture within the Foundation, the CIO will play a pivotal role in creating an integrated process of planning, learning, and adaptation. A veritable thought partner, the CIO will work collaboratively with organizational leadership to help guide strategy coupled with deploying a system of learning and measurement so that the Foundation can continue to evolve into a leading philanthropy.

The CIO will build a team capable of developing and maintaining strategic relationships with grantees and partners to proactively identify and elevate ideas and opportunities from the community. Additionally, the CIO will play a critical role in exploring alternative tactics for grantmaking and impact investing structures, as well as convene key stakeholders, content experts, and outside consultants where appropriate.

Management & Organizational Leadership

The CIO will cultivate clarity, shared purpose, nimbleness, pragmatism, and effectiveness in the Foundation’s operating environment. An enabler of cross-team and cross-functional learning, the CIO will engender trust and trustworthiness, and most importantly help create a culture that continually aspires to the best of the Foundation’s values. This individual will build upon ongoing efforts to establish a high performing team that will unlock potential, increase collaboration, and accelerate feedback loops around learning, innovation, and action. As the Foundation continues to grow and evolve in the coming years, the CIO will be a driving force in ensuring that a culture of excellence, agility, learning, impact, humility, and compassion thrives.

The CIO will also be responsible for managing staff and contract resources, facilitating work across the entire Foundation. This includes developing, implementing, and assessing team structures, systems, and processes in order to ensure effective and efficient use of both internal and external resources across programmatic streams. Developing and managing both operating and program budgets, and the competency to assess and analyze resource allocation matters is key to the success of this position. The CIO must also be attentive to legal compliance and the alignment of the Foundation’s activities to its mission and impact goals.

Ideal Candidate

The Conrad Prebys Foundation seeks a Chief Impact Officer who will bring proven expertise in designing philanthropic strategy and assessing impact — and will approach these areas with deep listening, humility, and high integrity. While bringing a perspective on programmatic strategies and the role of philanthropy in driving positive social change, the ideal candidate will not be wedded to one approach. Rather, they will leverage their expertise and partner closely with staff and community to iterate and tailor strategy to the unique needs of the San Diego community. The CIO will be a lifelong learner who has the intellectual curiosity and agility to become knowledgeable across a broad range of priority issues and see connections at the systems level across sectors. A collaborative, entrepreneurial approach and the ability to readily identify opportunities for innovation and change from the evidence that this work provides will serve candidates well.

With a management lens focused first on people and relationships, the CIO will lead high-performing program teams and consultants with a high degree of emotional intelligence and support. Successful candidates will understand the value and power of facilitating an enabling team environment, encouraging colleagues to learn, engage with partners and communities, act with integrity, co-create together, and remain curious and compassionate in the face of challenge and setback. The CIO must also be attuned to the multiple capitals available in the Foundation’s work (financial, social, relational, human, intellectual, and others).

Direct experience working in any of the Foundation’s program areas is not necessary; however, a genuine passion and interest in the Foundation’s mission is essential, as is experience setting strategy and direction for effectively grappling with complex, multifaceted issue areas. This includes conducting systems and landscape analyses to identify opportunities, challenges, and the potential programmatic strategies to capitalize on those endeavors. In turn, this position requires an individual who knows how to identify key stakeholders and build relationships, trust, and credibility in new settings.

Comfort with ambiguity, a high tolerance for risk-taking, and an ability to question underlying models / beliefs are all essential to the success of this role. Since the Foundation expects to maintain a small, nimble team of senior leaders and program staff, the CIO must bring the appropriate balance as a strategic thinker with being a hands-on, individual contributor, and effective team collaborator. Knowing how to optimize a high functioning team to capitalize on everyone’s diverse strengths and skillsets is essential.

Candidates must have a minimum of ten years operating in senior programmatic leadership roles. Experience in philanthropy is required, while additional experience in the following operating contexts will also be considered: nonprofit, government, and/or social enterprise.

Minimum Qualifications

Candidates must have a minimum of ten years operating in senior programmatic leadership roles. Experience in philanthropy is required, while additional experience in the following operating contexts will also be considered: nonprofit, government, and/or social enterprise.

Location & Compensation

The CIO position must be based in San Diego, California. The Foundation offers a competitive and comprehensive compensation and benefits package, along with relocation support if needed.

Conrad Prebys Foundation EEO Statement

The Conrad Prebys Foundation is an equal opportunity employer committed to diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice in the workplace and in the communities with which they partner. The Foundation welcomes applications from people of all backgrounds, cultures, and experiences. Candidates shall not be discriminated against because of race, religion, sex, national origin, ethnicity, age, disability, political affiliation, sexual orientation, gender identity, color, marital status, or medical conditions.

To Be Considered

The Conrad Prebys Foundation values, celebrates, and supports a diverse and inclusive environment. All qualified candidates who contribute to the Foundation’s broad commitment to diversity are strongly encouraged to submit their cover letters and resumes for consideration.

Please submit your resume and cover letter expressing your interest in the position and fit for the role via the Become a Candidate button.

Chief Impact OfficerThe Conrad Prebys FoundationSan Diego, CA

The search for a Chief Impact Officer is being assisted by a team from GoodCitizen: 

Jeff Waldron
Senior Advisor

Alison Kaneko
Vice President