Senior Program Officer, Emergency Assistance Program

Senior Program Officer, Emergency Assistance Program

Freedom House

Washington, DC, United States

The Senior Program Officer (SPO) for the Dignity for All program develops and manages programmatic aspects of the relevant EAP thematic team portfolio and contributes to the strategic vision and plan for the portfolio over the longer term. This includes strategic planning, program design, oversight of program activities, monitoring and evaluation, financial management, fundraising, advocacy, outreach, staff supervision, and administration. This position is based in Washington, DC and reports to the Senior Program Manager for Dignity for All.


Project implementation

  • Manage/oversee donor awards, including developing work plans, identifying consultants and sub-grantees, organizing workshops, meetings, and events, drafting program reports, and maintaining productive working relationships with donor counterparts and partners.
  • Lead monitoring and evaluation process, track and document program activities and impact to ensure project objectives are met. 

Budget oversight

  • Support the SPM to manage Dignity’s program budget, including tracking and updating budget monitors, spending analysis and forecasting, to ensure effective, timely program implementation in full compliance with donor rules/regulations.
  • Ensure adequate support for consortium partners budgets and partner awareness of and compliance with USG and FH rules and regulations.
  • Analyze program spending and provide accurate forecasts and recommendations to Senior Program Manager.

Project and proposal development

  • Identify project opportunities and, working with Senior Program Manager, develop and pursue those opportunities by identifying potential partners and funding sources. This includes conducting outreach to donors to shape funding priorities.
  • Independently develop submission-ready project concepts and proposal packages, including budgets.
  • Manage the entire proposal preparation process, including coordinating contributions from others as appropriate, to ensure complete, accurate, and timely proposal submission.

Strategic planning

  • Contribute to development and implementation of the overall multi-year strategy for the relevant thematic program, including developing short-term, long-term, and annual plans for the program, to include activities addressing multiple partners, concerns, and issues.
  • Work with supervisor and provide guidance to junior staff in pursuit of thematic priorities and goals.

Support for emergency and rapid response assistance

  • Provide support for outreach, receipt, review, vetting, case development, and funding of emergency cases by regional specialists.
  • Directly process emergency cases as needed and as assigned.
  • Review and approve emergency cases for the relevant portfolio.
  • Work with other EAP team members, regional specialists, consortia partners and other to process other rapid response mechanisms, as relevant to the grant portfolio.

Representation of Freedom House

  • Develop and maintain relationships with external stakeholders, including donors and the diplomatic community, partners, grantees, and other implementing organizations.
  • Represent Freedom House to external audiences at meetings and events; speak knowledgeably about Freedom House's mission and programming in the relevant thematic area as necessary.
  • Contribute to Freedom House research, analysis and advocacy efforts, including drafting blogs or other analytical pieces with minimal oversight.

Other responsibilities as assigned

  • Act as backfill to SPM as needed in consortium leadership, donor engagement, external representation, and project reporting.
  • Other program specific and EAP wide assignments as needed; expectation that the SPO will contribute to creating a deeper and more integrated EAP team.



  • Bachelor’s degree in political science, international relations, international development, or related field; Master's degree preferred.


  • Minimum six years of related work experience; at least one year of work experience overseas is strongly preferred.
  • At least four years of involvement in the field of global LGBTQI+ human rights.
  • Experience in budget management, grantmaking, and subgrant management required.

Skills and Competencies

  • Mastery of human rights principles and mechanisms, knowledge of and experience in democracy promotion and specifically emergency/rapid assistance to frontline defenders.
  • Knowledge of international human rights principles and mechanisms and the political, social and rights dynamics in the LGBTQI+ movement.
  • Deep understanding of USG funding processes, budget forms, rules, and regulations; at least four years’ experience working on USG-funded programs including proven ability to create and manage USG budgets (including use of Excel) and implement monitoring and evaluation plans strongly preferred.
  • Experience developing and drafting USG funding proposals strongly preferred.
  • Astute political judgment and strategic thinking; excellent judgment in problem solving and decision making.
  • Proven ability to multitask and manage time effectively to meet competing deadlines and manage priorities.
  • Ability to conduct research and apply strong analytical skills.
  • Mastery of MS Office Suite.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, ability to persuade and facilitate cooperation between individuals with divergent views and to collaborate with others and successfully work as an effective team member.
  • Ability to maintain the highest degree of confidentiality regarding all aspects of work.
  • Ability to represent Freedom House professionally.
  • Excellent attention to detail and ability to consistently produce timely and error-free work under tight deadlines.
  • Excellent timekeeping, attendance, and time management, and ability to work flexible schedule and be available outside of normal business hours for emergency work purposes.
  • Ability to adhere to and work within strict guidelines and procedures.
  • Strong ability to communicate effectively in English, both verbally and in writing; ability to communicate effectively in a second relevant language strongly preferred.

Attributes and Characteristics

  • Eagerness to think creatively about complex challenges.
  • Willingness to reflect, learn, and adapt.
  • Exhibit strong and sustained commitment to the mission of Freedom House.
  • Show good stewardship in the use of Freedom House resources.
  • Exhibit ethical, professional conduct at all times.
  • Consistently use good judgment when dealing with all contacts and constituents.
  • Exhibit high work standards, adherence to procedures, and responsibility for assigned tasks.
  • Demonstrate the desire for excellence to inspire others to attain professional excellence.
  • Assess own strengths and weaknesses; pursue training and development opportunities; strive to continuously build knowledge and skills.
  • Work as an effective team member and successfully balance responsibilities.
  • Comply with all policies and procedures.

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