Assistant Vice President, Program



The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF; the Foundation), located in Princeton, N.J., is the largest philanthropy in America dedicated solely to health. Since 1972, we have been providing funding, assistance, and research for projects and programs to help people, their families, and their communities be as healthy as possible. RWJF is committed to working alongside others to build a Culture of Health that provides everyone in America a fair and just opportunity for health and well-being.

We take seriously our responsibilities, and we pledge to work in ways that reflect our Guiding Principles. These are rooted in equity and influence everything we do at RWJF. Diversity, inclusion, and collaboration allow our staff’s wide range of experiences, passions, and perspectives to enrich our work and strengthen our ability to address our nation’s most pressing health issues. With a career at RWJF, you will make a difference.


Reporting to the senior vice president (SVP), Program, the assistant vice president (AVP) is a key partner with program leadership in the Foundation’s efforts to promote fair and just opportunities for health and well-being in the United States. The AVP will provide leadership to identify and advance strategic objectives and manage and guide operations.

As with staff at all levels of the Foundation, AVPs are expected to demonstrate a passionate commitment to equity and to the Foundation’s mission and Guiding Principles.

Job Responsibilities

  • Integrate an emergent approach to learning and strategy evolution for optimum outcomes, centered on advancing health equity.
  • Work with program leadership and senior management in developing departmental policies and approaches.
  • Represent the Foundation on program theme strategies.
  • Represent the SVP and the program department, by networking, coordinating, and promoting RWJF activities with external organizations and partners
  • Approve grants up to $2,000,000 in collaboration with the SVP, following Foundation program policies.
  • Identify barriers and work closely with various units (Grants Management, Finance, Law, etc.) to implement process change and improve operations.
  • Participate in various decision-making and information-sharing committees and groups, representing Program.
  • Provide input, guidance, and counsel on management issues.
  • Manage theme-staffing activities.
  • Mentor and coach staff.
  • Help with production and editing of written program communications to the Board of Trustees.
  • Plan and manage the program and administrative budget.
  • Work with Research-Evaluation-Learning to oversee and coordinate learning experiences for staff.
  • Coordinate learning site visits.
  • Serve as interim director as needed and assigned.
  • Work on selected programming, as applicable.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Minimum Requirements

  • Commitment to the Foundation’s mission and vision, and alignment with our values.
  • Facilitate emergent approaches to learning and strategy evolution for optimum outcomes, centered on advancing health equity.
  • Demonstrated personal and professional commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion with successful experience fostering an inclusive environment; working as part of a multidisciplinary team; and working effectively with persons from diverse cultural, social, and ethnic backgrounds.
  • Completion of an advanced degree (e.g., MA, MPH, MBA, MPA) and minimum seven to ten (7–10) years of relevant experience, including in a complex managerial and leadership role. A terminal degree in health or public health, or health care related field or equivalent experience preferred.
  • Understanding of strategic communications tactics; strong written and verbal skills; demonstrated persuasive and respectful presentation skills—for communications with internal leadership, external high-level stakeholders, and people from communities with whom we are working—to reach on a range of complex issues. This also includes a sense of how and when to employ communications tactics strategically. Ablility to thoughtfully manage upward communication.
  • Experience handling multiple priorities; can organize time, responsibilities and policies for team members; ability to understand and work with team members in the Foundation's organizational structure. Must understand and work within set decision-making roles.
  • Manage and react to confidential information with discretion and sound judgment with capability to maintain professional conduct and demeanor at all times, exhibiting high levels of emotional intelligence.
  • Experience and skill in complex project management.
  • Experience creating and managing complex budgets.
  • Must be creative and flexible and have the ablility to work independently and in teams; to think imaginatively about opportunities; to create and respond to new approaches to addressing an issue; and to inspire others to work toward achieving collective, shared goals.
  • Interpersonal skills; collegial, ablility to develop productive relationships with colleagues, grantees, consultants, external funders, and others who contribute to program development and management.
  • Exhibits maturity and sound judgment. Ability to make decisions, justify recommendations, and be responsive and clear.
  • Advanced proficiency in the use of Microsoft Office Suite, Google Suite and other office or project management efficiency software or systems.
  • Comfortable using social networking tools to further RWJF’s work.
  • Ability to travel; including applicant and grantee site visits and representing the Foundation at outside meetings

Physical Requirements/Working Conditions

The AVP, Program will perform job duties in a typical business office environment. Specific physical abilities required by this job include operating basic office equipment. Will be required to attend meetings, potentially both on-site and off-site, via phone or videoconference.

How to Apply

Submit your resume and letter of interest.

Application deadline date: April 25, 2021

This position is located in Princeton, N.J. If hired, you will be required to work from our Princeton office when our facilities re-open.


The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is an equal opportunity employer and strongly encourages applications from people of color, persons with disabilities, women, and LGBTQ+ and other underrepresented applicants.

How to Apply

Submit your resume and
letter of interest.

Application Deadline Date: April 25, 2021

(Post Date: March 22, 2021)

This position is located in Princeton, N.J. If hired, you will be required to work from our Princeton office when our facilities re-open.

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