Program Associate


The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), 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 where everyone has 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 strengthens our ability to address our nation’s most pressing health issues. With a career at RWJF you will make a difference.

The program associate in the Program unit is a professional staff member responsible for supporting, developing, implementing and managing programs and projects on the Leadership for Better Health (LBH) theme. The associate will work closely with the managing director and LBH team members to assist in program development and management, as well as theme strategy and functioning.

As with staff at all levels of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, program associates are expected to demonstrate a passionate commitment to the Foundation’s mission to improve the health and health care of everyone in America.


Program Development and Monitoring:

  • Gathers, synthesizes, and analyzes background information relevant to theme strategy and the development of programs and projects.
  • Reviews proposals and participates in site visits.
  • Assists theme members in program and project development and monitoring, as assigned by the theme director.

Learning and Dissemination:

  • Works with staff and consultants to assess, evaluate, and disseminate results of programs and projects. Works with staff to develop measures of impact for major programs and activities.
  • Monitors, tracks, learns from, and reports on theme initiatives and programs. Works with staff and consultants to harvest “learnings” from previous and current grantmaking, and to actively disseminate results and “learnings” to other staff, grantees and the field.
  • Assists theme members and other staff with development of web content as needed.

Theme Functioning:

  • Works closely with managing director and theme members to ensure effective coordination of theme projects and activities.
  • Assists theme members with related activities, as assigned by the theme director.
  • Prepares various types of memos and presentations.
  • Assists theme with administrative and facilitation tasks, as needed.
  • Responsible for actively participating in theme activities and improving theme functioning, including compliance with theme norms and providing support and back-up for theme members.

Grantmaking Processes:

  • Responsible for understanding, implementing, and following the grantmaking processes and policies of RWJF.
  • Represents the Foundation publicly regarding program and theme direction, program funding and grantmaking results. Responds to public inquiries about the theme and the application process.

Foundation and Field Contributions:

  • Develops general background information for theme on major literature, field direction and stakeholders.
  • Attends outside meetings and conferences, at the discretion of the theme director, and prepares trip reports.


  • Master's degree or equivalent education and experience in public health or a related health, behavioral or social science field; or Bachelor’s degree and two (2) years related experience and/or training.
  • Two (2) years of related work experience in health or health care related field, preferably in the non-profit or government sector; experience with or knowledge of philanthropy desirable.
  • Passion for health equity and/or social justice and interest in leadership development.
  • Demonstrated proficiency in the use of Microsoft Office Suite and general office equipment.
  • Experience with file sharing systems (Dropbox, Google Docs) and Human Resource systems (Workday, etc.) preferred. Proficiency with general systems and ability to learn new systems is required.
  • Ability to foster an inclusive environment working as part of a multidisciplinary team and working effectively with persons from diverse cultural, social and ethnic backgrounds.
  • Strong project and people management skills, including demonstrated ability to think independently, to be flexible and to balance multiple priorities for multiple managers, and to be tolerant of ambiguity and differences in approaches.
  • Excellent written and oral presentation skills. Ability to effectively present material to a variety of audiences (internal and external) in various settings and formats.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills; collegial, energetic, able to develop trusted and positive relationships with colleagues, grantees, consultants, external funders, and others who contribute to program development and management.
  • Intellectual curiosity and ability to apply learnings to work.
  • Good judgment, self-aware and mature. Ability to make decisions, justify recommendations, be responsive and clear.
  • Ability to work on a self-directed basis and as part of a team.
  • Personally motivated to support the Foundation’s mission and goals; creative, flexible; able to work independently and in teams to think imaginatively about opportunities, to create and respond to novel and innovative approaches to addressing an issue, and to inspire others to work toward achieving goals.
  • Ability to travel as required.


The incumbent performs job duties in a normal business office environment. Tasks are generally carried out with no specific or unusual physical or environmental demands. While performing the duties of this job the incumbent is regularly required to work at a desk and work with a computer for extended periods of time. Specific physical abilities required by this job include operating basic office equipment such as personal computers, duplicating machines, fax machines and standard office telephones. The incumbent may be required to attend meetings, both on-site and off-site, via phone or videoconference.

Putting Our Principles to Work

2018 Annual Message

RWJF President and CEO Richard Besser reflects on the guiding principles that drive our work to improve health and health care for everyone in America.

Read more

Learn More About Our Work

Areas of Focus

Post Date

Monday, June 4, 2018

Due Date

Sunday, July 15, 2018 (10 a.m. ET)

RWJF is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

How to Apply

CLICK HERE to submit your resume and letter of interest.