Feb 12, 2024

Senior Associate

$85,000 - $105,000 yearly
  • Arbor Rising
  • New York, NY, USA
Full-Time Administration/Operations Evaluation Programs

Job Description

Arbor Rising is seeking an entrepreneurially-minded colleague to help us find, fund and deeply support high-potential nonprofits building pathways out of poverty, thereby making economic opportunity more accessible in our community. Working alongside seasoned leaders on our team, Senior Associates spearhead capacity-strengthening engagements with the exceptional innovators in our portfolio.

This is a dynamic, learning-intensive role with significant opportunities for exposure, initiative and specialization. In order to provide consistently top-tier consulting support, Senior Associates receive coaching from senior colleagues, study best practices, and hone their skills in program design, financial planning, data analysis, people management, board development, and more.

Starting in Summer 2024, you will work as a key member of Arbor Rising’s small but mighty team across all aspects of the organization. Your role will entail three main areas of responsibility:


Strengthening grantee capacity (~60%)

  As part of our team:

  • Consult to grantee leaders, co-creating solutions to both urgent and important challenges and building their operational capacity over time
  • Identify potential applicants for grants, evaluate grant applications, and interview management teams
  • Expand the frontier of Arbor Rising services and raise the bar for quality

  Under your leadership:

  • Build, refine and train grantee leaders to use operational tools (e.g. financial models, data dashboards, and performance management systems)
  • Craft meeting agendas, applicant and grantee communications, and impact tracking tools

Outreach and operations (~30%)

  As part of our team:

  • Prepare for and participate in pitch meetings with Arbor Rising donors
  • Plan site visits and donor cultivation events

  Under your leadership:

  • Refine marketing materials, oversee website updates, and drive communication efforts
  • Manage donor and nonprofit databases

Continuous improvement (~10%)

  As part of our team:

  • Glean best practices from the field (including via conferences and professional development opportunities)
  • Continue to shape Arbor Rising into a more diverse and inclusive organization

  Under your leadership:

  • Survey and digest popular and academic literature
  • Codify and share organizational best practices (both for AR and grantees)

Hybrid Work Policy

Our office is located in midtown Manhattan (39th Street and 8th Avenue). Team members are expected to live within commuting distance, but the role allows for a mix of remote and in-person work. New colleagues should expect to be in the office 3-5 days per week initially with additional remote flexibility over time.


About Us


Arbor Rising is on a mission to empower our low-income neighbors to secure a path out of poverty. We do this by providing crucial supports at critical moments to high-potential nonprofits, helping them to grow into more powerful and sustainable forces for social change.

We take an unusually engaged approach to philanthropy, providing financial support and in-depth consulting to leaders whose organizations have moved off the drawing board and onto the growth curve. To maximize the impact of our giving, we deploy our diverse and talented team to:

  • Screen, rigorously vet and select high-potential nonprofits from robust application pools
  • Fund grantees with unrestricted capital, targeting $375,000 of support over three years
  • Engage in deep partnership, rolling up our sleeves and working alongside grantee leaders to help solve their most pressing problems and build internal capacity. We invest hundreds of hours of staff time—more than any funder in the country—in each grantee to co-create the systems, team and culture necessary for impact and growth. This includes building strategic plans, financial forecasts, performance management systems, and more.

Propelled by our investment, our grantees go on to create extraordinary social impact. Since 2010, they have garnered support from the nation’s most prestigious funders while raising hundreds of millions of dollars to deeply serve over a hundred thousand marginalized young people and families. Our portfolio graduates include leading nonprofits like All Our Kin, COOP Careers, and Springboard Collaborative.


How We Work


We believe these traits are essential to achieving success in our efforts:

  • "Mission-first, ego-last" mindset regarding social change. We approach grantee engagements with the humility, flexibility and outcomes focus we believe is necessary to build trust and provide deep, lasting value. We also have an intentionally lean team with no purely administrative support, so we all pitch in on everything to get things done.
  • Extraordinary dependability in meeting high work-quality standards. AR's team is detail-oriented and obsessed with follow-through.
  • An analytical, forward-looking approach to problem-solving. We often create and employ structured, adaptable, and (where appropriate) quantitative tools and solutions. Helping grantees arrive at good answers is helpful; building a framework to help them consistently arrive at good answers in the future is even better.
  • A high-energy, learning-oriented approach to all aspects of our work. The quest for continuous improvement sometimes provokes challenging conversations, but these are welcome at AR.
  • Positive vibes! We tackle meaningful, thorny challenges every day—but if we’re doing it right, our work is both thoroughly satisfying and sustainable. We see our efforts as a marathon, and we view humor and work-life balance as core priorities.

Hiring Organization

Arbor Rising


To be eligible for consideration, you must have:

  • A bachelor’s degree
  • 5+ years of work experience (or 3 years + an MBA, MPA or other relevant graduate degree)
  • Meaningful experience living, working or volunteering in low-income communities
  • Launched and/or led a program, club, classroom or business
  • An instinct for constructive collaboration: active listening, clear communication, empathy, and an ability to work effectively across lines of difference
  • Detail orientation (seriously! We’re obsessed with follow-through)

The most competitive applicants will have:

  • Skills applicable to the engaged philanthropy model, including
    • Strong numeracy, including math, financial models, and/or accounting
    • Fluency in data manipulation and visualization using Excel or Google Sheets
    • Clear and polished written and verbal communication
    • A knack for creating frameworks to organize, break down, and solve complex problems
  • Meaningful experience in similar organizations or roles, potentially including
    • High-performing schools or nonprofits
    • Small teams or start-ups
    • Client-facing service (e.g. consulting, banking, or tutoring)

Industry/Service Area

Consulting/Advising, Foundation/Grantmaking, Youth Development




The position’s total compensation is competitive within the nonprofit sector: starting salaries are commensurate with experience and range from $85,000 – 105,000. Senior Associates also receive a 3% retirement match, four weeks of paid vacation, employer-covered insurance premiums, and other benefits.

Application Instructions

Please submit a 1-page cover letter and a 1-page resume to apply@arborrising.org, formatted as a single PDF file entitled “Lastname Firstname – Senior Associate Candidate”. In addition to connecting your skills and experience to the role, we encourage you to use your cover letter to convey your personality, passion for social change, and any connections you may have to the communities Arbor Rising serves. Please also note where you heard about the role. No phone calls, please.

Interested candidates should apply by 5pm Eastern on Monday, March 4, though applications may be accepted and evaluated on a rolling basis until 5pm Eastern on Thursday, April 11. The position may be filled ahead of the latter deadline.


Arbor Rising is committed to employing a diverse and multicultural staff. Our experience suggests those colleagues who share life experiences with those we serve can offer particularly valuable contributions to this work. We share more on our equity-driven values and actions on the Approach page of our website.

Apply Now