JOB OPENINGS: ZSR is Hiring Two Program Officers to Join Our Team Deadline Extended to April 11, 2022

LOCATED IN: Winston-Salem, North Carolina


Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation is a statewide, private, family foundation dedicated to improving the quality of life for all North Carolinians. The Foundation was established in 1936 as a memorial to Z. Smith Reynolds, the youngest son of R.J. Reynolds. For more than 85 years, the Foundation has been engaged in forward-thinking philanthropy with contributions of $647 million in North Carolina.

The Foundation’s current All For NC Framework for Grantmaking and Learning includes the following strategies: 

  •  A State-Level Systemic Change Strategy, to improve state-level systems and structures to remove barriers and create opportunities;
  • Community-Based Strategy, to leverage the unique assets, knowledge, experience and connections in communities to create meaningful change; and
  • An Exploratory, Visionary Ideas Strategy, to invest in the bold ideas of North Carolinians. 

Alongside these three main strategies, the Foundation has also expressed its commitment to:

  • Augment its participation in its hometown of Winston-Salem/Forsyth County,
  • Use a racial equity lens to underpin all its work, and
  • Continue to be a learning organization.

The intent of the Foundation’s Framework for Grantmaking and Learning is to provide different strategies that meet people and communities where they are, as well as to break down silos, allow more flexibility in our grantmaking, and provide multiple entry points for potential applicants. The Foundation recognizes that not all the work that is funded will fit neatly into these three strategies; rather, there is work that lives in between them. Therefore, the Foundation wants to remain flexible to foster those areas of intersection.


The Foundation is hiring two Program Officers to support the strategies set forward in this grantmaking framework. An understanding of and experience in addressing the structural barriers that prevent North Carolinians from creating better lives for themselves, their families, and their communities, particularly the issues outlined in the Foundation’s Social and Economic Justice priority area of its State-Level Systemic Change Strategy (which is outlined below), is preferred. The Program Officer role includes developing effective strategies for the Foundation to facilitate positive systemic change, analyzing grant applications, supporting applicants and grantee partners, helping develop organizational capacity and evaluating the effectiveness of the Foundation’s strategies. The Program Officers' work will help inform final grant decisions made by the Foundation’s Trustees.

Social and Economic Justice Priority Area

Consistent with the Foundation’s mission and core values, the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation believes it is critical to help change systems and structures that continue to harm populations who have been historically marginalized, subjected to discrimination, or excluded from full participation in society. Structural oppression is pervasive across all kinds of systems, sometimes in ways that are explicit and overt, but more often in ways that are implicit and less conscious. The Foundation also recognizes that North Carolinians are impacted by multiple intersecting systems simultaneously, not just one system or issue at a time. 

Consequently, the Foundation anticipates supporting efforts that aim to remove structural barriers to North Carolinians being able to create a better life for themselves, their families and their communities. While this work can take many forms, the Foundation is especially interested in work that seeks to: address the economic impacts and racial disparities of the criminal justice system; embrace and expand the contributions of and opportunities for immigrants; advance reproductive justice* and economic justice; and ensure that all North Carolinians can thrive. The Foundation will consider applications for other social and economic justice work, as well, but special emphasis will be placed on the above-mentioned areas and their intersections. 

Through this grantmaking strategy, the Foundation funds work that is focused on state-level systemic change. 

*Reproductive justice: All people having the social, political, and economic power and resources to make healthy decisions about their gender, bodies, sexuality, and families for themselves (Forward Together). Reproductive justice places reproductive health and rights within a social justice framework.


Successful candidates will be visionary, value-driven, strategic, analytical, intellectually curious, resilient, detail- and team-oriented. Successful candidates will have a robust understanding of systems-change strategies and experience with the issue areas connected to the Social and Economic Justice priority area mentioned above, particularly around criminal justice and its connection to other justice issues. Experience working in philanthropy is not required but beneficial. They must be adept at building relationships and understanding power dynamics and how they influence and advance change. Individuals selected will possess facilitation, collaboration, convening and project management skills and will be able to bring together various stakeholders with diverse backgrounds, opinions and experiences. Individuals will share the Foundation’s core values and commitment to racial equity.

A bachelor’s degree from an accredited college is required, and an advanced degree or equivalent experience is preferred. Five years of related work experience is desired.

Exceptional writing and communication skills are required, along with the ability to assimilate information quickly, think strategically, work under pressure and meet deadlines. A fundamental knowledge of the State of North Carolina, humility, self-confidence and a sense of humor are helpful and preferred.

Positions are based in Winston-Salem, North Carolina and require extensive statewide travel. Program Officers are not required to live in Winston-Salem, but should be available to be present in the Winston-Salem office as needed or required.


Armstrong McGuire & Associates, based in Raleigh, NC, is conducting this search in partnership with ZSR’s leadership team. To apply, click on the link to the Program Officer position profile at You will see instructions for uploading your cover letter, resume, and three professional references. Please provide all requested information to be considered. In case of any technical problems, contact

The salary range for this position is $85,000-$90,000, based upon the candidate’s level of knowledge, education, skill and experience. The Foundation provides an exemplary benefits package.

The deadline for applications is April 11, 2022.

Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation is an equal opportunity employer and welcomes applications from people of all races, genders, religions, ethnicities, nationalities and sexual orientation.