Program Administrative Specialist - Justice Initiative

Open Society Foundations
  • Location
    New York, New York
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Early Career / Mid Career
  • Posted
    Apr 06

Position description

Program Administrative Specialist - Justice Initiative. New York. Posting Date: 04/05/2019. Deadline: 04/28/2019

The Open Society Foundations promotes vibrant and tolerant democracies whose governments are accountable to all rights holders. The Justice Initiative, part of the Open Society Foundations, uses strategic litigation and other kinds of legal advocacy to defend and promote the rule of law, and to advance human rights. We employ litigation, advocacy, research, and technical assistance across a range of issues. We pursue accountability for international crimes, support criminal justice reforms, strengthen human rights institutions, combat discrimination and statelessness, challenge abuses related to national security and counterterrorism, defend civic space, foster freedom of information and expression, confront corruption and promote economic justice. In this work, we collaborate with a community of dedicated and skillful human rights advocates across the globe, and form part of a dynamic and progressive justice movement that reflects the diversity of the world. More information on the Justice Initiative and its activities is available at www.justiceinitiative.org .

Job Profile

The Open Society Justice Initiative is looking for a New York-based Program Administrative Specialist to provide advanced administrative and operational support to its core operational department.

Our ideal candidate will have a keen interest in developing specialized knowledge and technical expertise in the aspects of program administrative and operational support, event planning and logistics, and contracting. The candidate will serve as an important resource in helping the operations teams' goals and strategies, contributing to the institutional, programmatic, and financial integrity of the program, and identifying and resolving problems independently. They will have a high level of responsibility for establishing and maintaining effective and constructive working relationships both internally and externally and will be responsible for managing projects of some complexity. The successful candidate will enjoy maintaining order in the face of changing deadlines and requirements, with an ability to prioritize and balance multiple assignments. They will be rigorous and detail-oriented; collegial and collaborative; proactive and resourceful; punctual, responsible, and dependable, with a superior sense of discretion and judgment.

Working under the supervision of the Director of Administration, the Program Administrative Specialist will join a close-knit, collaborative team spanning our offices in Abuja, Berlin, London, and New York. The Program Administrative Specialist role may include any or all of the following and/or similar activities:
  • Provides heavy administrative support, including scheduling, travel logistics, notetaking, and expense reports; helps to manage team calendars, handles intake and appropriate routing of calls/emails, and deals with public inquiries
  • Serves as a key point of contact with OSF departments across the network; this includes acting as a team resource and liaison on operational matters, project coordination with internal and external partners, helping to pre-empt and troubleshoot on administrative and operational issues as they arise, and supporting the program's operational needs as relates to grant making, contracting, and other relevant issues.
  • Provides advanced operational and administrative support for the Justice Initiative operations team; this includes managing issues independently, identifying new operational needs, and helping to develop and implement solutions to achieve program goals and strategies.
  • Stays abreast of relevant policies and compliance requirements and assists staff with understanding, operationalizing, and adhering to policies and guidelines. May include guiding staff on processes/workflows, as well as providing relevant staff training.
  • Assists in complex event planning and managing related travel, logistics, and budgets. Liaises with vendors and negotiates contract terms and conditions. Includes managing administrative issues related to the work of retained consultants (and their logistical support), as well as tracking and related variance monitoring and reporting.
  • Helps to manage the Justice Initiative's robust internship program, and coordinates the on-boarding of new Justice Initiative staff.
  • Other general operational support will include tasks such as: reviewing reports and other documents for compliance, accuracy, and readability; scheduling calls and meetings; taking minutes; arranging staff and consultant travel; submitting travel authorizations; processing expense reports; handling invoice and reimbursement processes; helping to manage the intake and appropriate routing of internal and/or public inquiries; and helping to keep the Justice Initiative website and KARL portal up-to-date with Justice Initiative program information.
  • Possible ad hoc responsibilities may include conducting basic research; document editing; drafting correspondence, summaries, and background materials; outreach tracking; reviewing grantee updates; collecting, compiling, and analyzing data in support of eligibility assessments, docket write-ups, and peer and portfolio reviews; reviewing financial reports; and communications related projects.


Candidate Profile

  • Solid administrative/operational experience at a large and complex organization.
  • Excellent organizational, analytical, interpersonal, and proactive problem solving skills.
  • Demonstrated experience and desire to make operations run smoothly and efficiently.
  • Poised, works well under pressure and attentive to detail.
  • High proficiency in Excel, as well as Microsoft Office and other office technologies and IT solutions; must be comfortable learning new proprietary software systems.
  • Proficiency in data management and visualization platforms and databases (e.g. Salesforce, NetSuite, Foundation Maps, etc.).
  • Experience with record keeping, budgeting management, and finance administration.
  • Experience with multi-tasking and working independently on complex administrative tasks. Able to prioritize appropriately.
  • Ability to build and maintain relationships with a wide range of people from diverse backgrounds within a complex organization.
  • Experience making administrative and procedural decisions and judgments on sensitive and confidential issues.
  • Not afraid to ask the right questions to ensure that something is completed correctly.
  • Mature, creative, and a quick learner.


Application instructions: Please submit a cover letter and CV (both required)

We are strengthened by the diversity of our colleagues across the Open Society Foundations. We welcome applications from people of all cultures, backgrounds, and experiences, and are committed to providing reasonable adjustments so that colleagues with disabilities are able to fulfill the essential functions of the job.

Competitive rates of pay apply.

We are strengthened by the diversity of our colleagues across the Open Society Foundations. We welcome applications from people of all cultures, backgrounds, and experiences, and are committed to providing reasonable adjustments so that colleagues with disabilities are able to fulfill the essential functions of the job.
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