William C. Richardson Philanthropy, Public Policy Fellowship, Council of Michigan Foundations

The Council of Michigan Foundations is a community of philanthropists committed to improving outcomes for Michigan and beyond. We are the nation’s foremost philanthropy serving organization, highly respected for our leadership role in advancing the sector’s public policy engagement. We maintain a reputation for excellence because our staff and the organizations we partner with are invested in growing the impact of Michigan philanthropy. We do this by investing in the state’s charitable organizations, convening business government and nonprofit leaders, collaborating on critical issues, seeking innovative solutions, sharing knowledge and advocating. Collectively, CMF members comprise nearly 85 percent of the state’s organized philanthropic assets. CMF trustees and members have developed endowment funds to support the organization’s advocacy efforts.

Read more about us at: www.michiganfoundations.org 
Follow us at: @michfoundations

This prestigious fellowship, named for the former president and CEO of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation is a two-year fellowship opportunity. The goal of the fellowship is to engage future policymakers, like you, in the philanthropic sector to learn about our role in influencing state and federal policy, how to partner with state government and to gain a deeper understanding of philanthropy. Reporting directly to the director of government relations and public policy, the fellow will work closely with the Governor’s Office of Foundation Liaison and the Learning Services team and will support, as needed, the president and CEO of CMF.

CMF’s public policy goals are developed and supported through our members. CMF’s members lead and support collaborative philanthropic responses to critical needs such as P-20 education, early childhood development and economic development. This work is led by our Public Policy Committee and is achieved through issue-based affinity groups. CMF has a robust suite of innovative supports for the organization’s advocacy efforts which include partnerships with the Michigan Nonprofit Association, Michigan Nonprofit Council for Charitable Trust, the Michigan Nonprofit Caucus, United Philanthropy Forum and the Council on Foundations, as well as other regional philanthropy serving organizations. 

Previous fellows have gone on to serve as communication officers and senior program officers with leading private and community foundations and as directors for advocacy at professional associations.

  • Provide support on program content for CMF affinity groups working on public policy issues and proactively identify potential policy ideas for affinity group co-chairs to consider.
  • With direction from the director will develop, design and connect affinity group strategy with the Public Policy Committee.
  • Job shadow the director of government relations and public policy.
  • Research and prepare materials for and participate in the annual lobbying visits to the Michigan Congressional delegation in Washington D.C. and for meetings with legislators in Lansing. This requires an understanding of the legislative process and bill tracking.
  • Research and write briefings for CMF committees, the Board of Trustees and members on legislative and policy issues and on foundation initiatives in select policy areas.
  • Stay abreast of policy-related news and implications for philanthropy, and work with Communications Team to write policy-related content, identify resources for the CMF website and publicize/convey public policy activities and work.
  • Assist in staffing the CMF Public Policy and Government Relations Committees (includes meeting planning and coordination, periodic communication to the committee, writing position statements, etc.).
  • Engage in program development and activities in support of philanthropy’s role in the public policy process. This may include helping to design and coordinate legislative visits with CMF members.
  • Contribute ideas for how CMF’s highest value knowledge and learning can be packaged and disseminated to benefit CMF members, business leaders and government officials.
  • Manage special projects consistent with the goals of the fellowship.
  • Represent CMF at local, state and national conferences and meetings including the annual conference of the Council on Foundations, the national association representing over 2,000 foundations.
  • Prepare the annual budget for the public policy fellow and related work.
  • Master’s Degree in a related graduate field of study
  • Relevant work experience and interest in government relations and public policy.
  • Understanding of legislative process at the state and federal levels and experience in tracking legislation.
  • Ability to represent CMF to a variety of stakeholders in a credible and influential way with a selfless manner, focusing on the mission and values of the organization.
  • High tolerance for ambiguity and ability to adapt quickly to change.
  • Highly developed emotional intelligence skills.
  • Team effectiveness skills and the ability to use interpersonal skills in cooperative and collaborative ways.
  • Strong program management skills including budgeting.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Strong research skills.
  • Ability to work independently and in teams, take initiative, problem solve, meet deadlines, be creative, be flexible and juggle multiple priorities.
  • Good sense of humor.
  • Willingness to travel within and outside of the state.
  • Commitment to CMF values: ethical leadership, relationships, servant leadership, knowledge, excellence, diversity and inclusion. Ability to work effectively with persons from diverse cultural, social and ethnic backgrounds.
How To Apply: 

Interested candidates should e-mail a cover letter and resume to Tammie TenBroeke at [email protected]. Items must be received no later than Monday, February 3, 2020.

Hiring Organization: 
Council of Michigan Foundations
William C. Richardson Philanthropy, Public Policy Fellowship
City and State: 
Detroit, MI
Hiring Deadline: 
February 3, 2020

The Council of Michigan Foundations is an Equal Opportunity Employer.
All correspondence will remain confidential.

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