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Open Position

Program Director for Child Well-being

Title: Program Director for Child Well-being 
Location: New York, NY 
Reports to: President and CEO 
To apply: Please send cover letter and résumé as one PDF to with file name format “Last Name First Name – Letter Resume.” 

The mission of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation (DDCF) is to improve the quality of people’s lives through grants supporting the performing arts, environmental conservation, medical research and child well-being, and through preservation of the cultural and environmental legacy of Doris Duke’s properties. The foundation’s mission, grantmaking programs, museums and centers operate through five related philanthropies: the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art, the Duke Farms Foundation, the Doris Duke Foundation and the Doris Duke Management Foundation. Together, the Doris Duke philanthropies support the well-being of people and the planet for a more creative, equitable and sustainable future. DDCF’s activities are guided by the Will of Doris Duke, who endowed the foundation with financial assets that currently total approximately $2.5 billion.


The Child Well-being Program aims to promote children’s healthy development and protect them from abuse and neglect. The program has undergone significant evolution and growth over the past decade, and today is one of the major national programs of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation.

Over time, the program has moved from direct support for child welfare services to a series of strategies aimed at addressing the root causes of child abuse and neglect. In recent years, the program has focused on three areas in particular: investing in visionary leaders in the public and private human services sectors; driving innovation in local, regional and national human services systems; and investing in collaborative efforts in specific communities to improve outcomes for children and families. (The grants to date can be seen here.)

At a time of seismic change in social policy and human services, DDCF is seeking a highly strategic and enterprising program director to determine the next stage for this growing and ambitious program. As the COVID-19 pandemic has made starkly clear, the well-being and safety of children and families are related to a host of social and economic conditions, many of which are undergoing profound change. The program’s next leader will have the critical task of navigating fields as diverse as child welfare, public and private human services, social policy, public health, child development and public administration to identify and pursue focused opportunities for DDCF to have outsized impact on child well-being in the United States.


Reporting to the president and CEO, the program director for child well-being is responsible for the planning, design and management of the Child Well-being Program, which directs a substantial portfolio in annual grantmaking. The program director manages a team of professionals and is a member of the foundation’s executive management committee. DDCF is seeking an open-minded, creative and enterprising professional who can identify opportunities for transformational impact distinct to the foundation. The foundation is also seeking a leader who can envision how the foundation can play a leadership role in the field beyond its grantmaking.

  • Drive grantmaking opportunities distinct to DDCF that have the potential to maximize the foundation’s impact on child well-being.
  • Identify and leverage key trends that can amplify the foundation’s impact and that of its grantees.
  • Use diverse tools, including communications, thought leadership and collaboration, to enable the foundation to directly participate in the field.
  • Build and nurture networks of leaders, policymakers, practitioners and others to extend the reach and relevance of the foundation’s programs.
  • Lead and mentor the Child Well-being Program staff and oversee the day-to-day operations and administration of the department.
  • Actively participate in the foundation’s executive management committee, helping to shape key enterprise decisions.
  • Work with the president and the Board of Trustees to advance and continually evolve the Child Well-being Program.


The ideal candidate will be a strategic, visionary leader with a passion for the mission and an investor’s discipline. DDCF is open to a range of professional backgrounds. More significant than any particular professional experience is evidence of the following:

  • Demonstrated interest, experience and accomplishment in the field of child welfare or another field related to child and family well-being. A perspective shaped by more than one vantage point is also welcome.
  • Discernment and discipline to identify and drive opportunities for DDCF to maximize its impact on behalf of children and families. A willingness to assess the benefits and trade-offs of pursuing different avenues, and then move forward with an informed opinion, tempered by ongoing curiosity.
  • Demonstrated initiative through strategizing, conceptualizing, planning and then driving ambitious projects.
  • Experience in public and stakeholder engagement and organization. A capacity to build alliances and partnerships across diverse interests.
  • A track record of successfully managing a high-performing team.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, including the ability to collaborate both internally and externally, inspire others, negotiate compromise and coordinate action.
  • Demonstrated verbal and written communication and presentation skills.


The succesful candidate should be:

  • Highly motivated by the opportunity to drive impact in a socially important field
  • Strategic
  • Disciplined
  • Open-minded and curious
  • Willing to take risks in the pursuit of reasonable rewards
  • Collaborative and a consensus builder
  • Ethical
  • Willing to travel

  • Starting range in mid-$200Ks
  • Industry-leading benefits


The following values underpin everything we do in pursuit of our mission across the Doris Duke philanthropies:

  • Integrity: We must be honest and ethical in all that we undertake. As a group of private foundations, we are accountable to the many stakeholders affected by our work.
  • Excellence: We will insist on the highest standards of performance in fulfilling our mission, will ground our work in best practices and will make decisions based on the best available information.
  • Openness and Imagination: We will be listening and learning organizations that are responsive to ideas and opinions from a variety of sources. We value imagination and creativity, the ability to think in new ways about the work we do and how we do it.
  • Collaboration: We value a collaborative and supportive environment in which to advance our mission and objectives. Creating a working environment that promotes trust, honesty and respect within our organizations is as important as earning the trust and respect of our colleagues and peers in the fields in which we work.
  • Diversity, Equity and Inclusion: We believe in the essential value that a diverse set of perspectives, experiences and abilities brings to the table. Our commitment to the values of diversity, equity, inclusion and social justice is an ongoing, active engagement reflected in our funding areas, grantees, museums, centers, board and staff. At the core of our work is a dedication to serving and learning from organizations and individuals addressing inequities and working toward a more just, healthy and inclusive society. (Learn more about our commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion and how we incorporate this value into our work.)

The Doris Duke Charitable Foundation is committed to inclusive hiring and dedicated to diversity in its work and workplace culture. We provide equal opportunity for employees and applicants in all aspects of the employment relationship, without regard to race, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status, military or veteran status, disability, age, religion or any other classification protected by law; and we strongly encourage candidates of all identities, experiences, orientations and communities to apply.