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Director of Programs
Pat Tillman Foundation in Chicago, Illinois
Date Posted 01/17/2022
Nonprofit-Program Management
Philanthropy-Program Management
Employment Type Fulltime
Application Deadline Open until filled

Director of Programs

Full Job Description

The Pat Tillman Foundation (PTF) unites and empowers remarkable military veterans and spouses as the next generation of public and private sector leaders committed to service beyond self. Inspired by Pat Tillman, who proudly put his NFL career with the Arizona Cardinals on hold to serve his country, family and friends established the Pat Tillman Foundation following Pat’s death in April 2004 while serving with the 75th Ranger Regiment in Afghanistan. Over the last 17 years, the Pat Tillman Foundation has supported over 750 Tillman Scholars as they’ve furthered their education and increased their professional impact in the world.

PTF seeks an experienced and dynamic Director of Programs to lead its national programs designed to unite and empower the Tillman Scholar community of over 750 remarkable military veterans and spouses dedicated to making an impact in the world. The Director of Programs will serve on the 5-person Programs Team of PTF to create, manage, and deliver a national program of in-person and on-line community building, a series of leadership development opportunities, and annual events. The Director of Programs serves as a critical member of Pat Tillman Foundation's senior team consisting of Marketing, Development, Operations, and Programs departments. A direct report to the Chief Executive Officer, the Director will be entrusted with a great deal of autonomy and must be comfortable operating in a highly-collaborative environment requiring routine engagement with key stakeholders to 750+ Tillman Scholars, the organization's Board of Directors, and strategic partners nationwide.

We understand that people gain skills through a variety of professional, personal, educational, and volunteer experiences. If you believe you have the skills to succeed in this role, regardless of industry, we encourage you to apply.

Who You Are

  • Driven and Adaptable. You want to leverage the skills you’ve built over your 9-10 years of experience, whether in the non-profit programming space, higher level education admissions or elsewhere, that demonstrate exceptional vision and effective management.

  • Inspired and Inspirational. You are moved by the selfless sacrifice of our country’s veterans and their families, even if you didn’t serve personally. You love working with people and know how to excite them about the opportunities available to the Tillman Scholar community as well as the broader work of the Pat Tillman Foundation. You love turning big, inspiring ideas into reality.

  • Highly Organized. You are a systems thinker who can lead multiple projects and prioritize appropriately to produce high-quality results quickly and on time. You create clear and logical systems and processes to support your work and that of your team.

  • Well-spoken (and written). You are a clear, efficient, and effective communicator with exceptional oral, written, and customer service communication skills. You are comfortable serving as the primary spokesperson and ambassador for the Tillman Scholar program and representing that program in media inquiries, development opportunities, and public facing events, to include working with strategic partners ranging from veteran service organizations, colleges and universities, and programmatic partners.

  • Passionate. You care about making a difference in the world, and want to support veterans and their families working at an impactful level across sectors including health, law, business, policy, academia, government, and defense. You want to come to work and feel inspired every day. You want to change the world.

What You’ll Do

Programs Team & Scholar Engagement

  • Lead a growing team of 5 people, including an associate director, managers, associates, and coordinators that contribute to the core of PTF’s mission to find and develop leaders, and amplify their impact

  • Evaluate performance of direct reports toward quarterly and annual goals and guide their development

  • As the senior liaison between PTF and Tillman Scholars, create an environment that facilitates a healthy, connected network, which requires consistent contact and relationship building within the community

  • Lead the planning and execution for all Tillman Scholar-focused events (Pat Tillman Leadership Summit, etc.) as well as Tillman Scholar engagement, professional development, and other opportunities

  • Increase Tillman Scholar engagement through various channels and programs, including Tillman Connect, Regional Captain program, and others

  • Represent the Tillman Scholar program publicly, and serve as the Master of Ceremonies at the Pat Tillman Leadership Summit, Regional Events, and other public-facing PTF events

  • Oversee all data tools and processes that support Programs team operations

Tillman Scholar Selection

  • Lead the Tillman Scholar outreach, application, and selection process to ensure applicants and selected scholars are representative of the veterans and military spouse community we serve

  • Serve as lead or co-lead facilitator for 6-8 selection committee meetings and ~100 interviews

  • Supervise the distribution of all scholarship funds for ~150 scholars enrolled at up to 100+ universities

  • Manage and expand PTF’s relationship with our designated and potential University Partners

Leadership Development Program

  • Deliver and execute a leadership development program for Tillman Scholars, that eventually includes an individual development plan for each scholar, that drives their growth and increases their impact

  • Buy, build, and partner to increase resources available for Tillman Scholars’ leadership growth


  • Collaborate with other departments on program-related web, marketing and media content to include drafting program-related updates (anecdotes, quotes and data) for various outlets such as Twitter, Facebook, the PTF Website, Tillman Connect, and the monthly TS Newsletter

  • Provide program-related content and metrics for grant proposals and reports

This position will report to the Chief Executive Officer of the Pat Tillman Foundation. Routine travel is required, particularly during our selection process throughout April and May.

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