Research and Learning Officer



Research and Learning Officer

Employment Type:

Full time


Seattle, WA

Application Contact:

Job Description:

Who Are We?

The heart and science of philanthropy

Greater Seattle is changing and growing, and so is Seattle Foundation. “The heart and science of philanthropy” is the intersection of passion and discipline to create lasting change. As the community’s foundation, our mission is to ignite powerful and rewarding philanthropy to make Greater Seattle a stronger, more vibrant community for all. We work with more than 1,200 individuals, families, and corporations to strategically invest their philanthropic resources in ways that inspire continued giving. We also partner with philanthropic institutions, government agencies, community organizations and businesses to catalyze positive change in our community across a range of issues.


Our organizational culture is one of engaged teamwork, where we support one another in reaching our collective and individual goals while constantly learning along the way. Our office is located in the downtown core of Seattle, however our reach is much broader than that – we focus on Greater Seattle and the Eastside and also support donor interests across the country and around the globe. We seek individuals to join our 40+ (and growing!) team who are committed to our vision of a stronger, more vibrant community for all; collaboratively finding solutions; continually improving; and going the extra mile in service of our philanthropic partners and the broader community. We’re in the midst of an exciting evolution in our work.

What’s the Opportunity?

Seattle Foundation seeks a passionate, entrepreneurial, and creative leader who can help us continue to build a robust research and learning program that supports our civic leadership work and on-going commitment to equity and opportunity. The officer will work closely with our community-based partners, grantees, and research partners to design and implement research and learning strategies that support our goals of continuous learning and improvement.

Research and Strategy: 
Lead Seattle Foundation's research program including:
-- Efforts to analyze and articulate issues and trends within King County; proactively identify themes aligned with Seattle Foundation strategies that should be explored further and shared with various audiences.
-- Translate data and research findings into formats relevant to multiple audiences to support the advancement of Seattle Foundation’s thought leadership.
-- Lead the development of research products, in collaboration with contractors and grantees.
• Cultivate strong research relationships with community-based organizations and research institutions.
• Work with the Community Program’s strategy team to integrate research throughout our approaches and ground new efforts in research.
• Support system thinking throughout Community Programs strategies.
• Serve as a resource to ensure all investments have well designed hypotheses and strategy to guide learning.

Impact Measurement
• Develop and apply an impact framework and metrics to help us ask the right questions and collect the right data in collaboration with contractors and the community programs team.
• Ensure program level impact measurements and evaluations are integrated across community programs activities to support learning and continuous improvement.
• Manage efforts to properly code grants data and report on key grant making trends, learnings and impact of the Community Programs team.

Other duties may include:
Knowledge Management 
• Support Seattle Foundation’s knowledge efforts overall. Including participating in the effective tracking and sharing of research and insights internally and externally to support learning, systems coordination and documentation.

What Are We Looking For?

Preference will be given to candidates with knowledge and demonstrated experience in:


• Minimum of five years’ experience performing and reporting research and managing information is required.
• B.A. degree with emphasis on research is required; master's degree is preferred.
• High-degree of knowledge of structural equity issues and their relevance within research and policy.
• Experience in a nonprofit agency or community-based organization preferred.
• Ability to interact respectfully and cultivate relationships with people of diverse backgrounds, perspectives, styles and cultures. 
• Experience with research and evaluation design and methodology, including community-based participatory research methods. 
• Experience with analyzing public policy and identifying policy opportunities preferred. 
• Keen conceptual, analytical, and critical thinker with ability to understand root causes of problems and envision systemic changes; an inquisitive nature 
• Outstanding writing, speaking and analysis skills 
• Excellent and demonstrated understanding of impact measurement and evaluation and how to adapt approaches to diverse needs. Willingness to be flexible on impact approach, and to adapt conventional evaluation methodologies in service of Seattle Foundation’s focus on systems analysis and equity and opportunity.
• Firsthand experience facilitating, training and coaching others to reflect, and learn new processes or information.

What Can You Expect?

A collegial work environment; a competitive salary and excellent benefits, including health insurances (medical, dental, vision and long-term disability); a generous retirement plan match; and vacation/sick leave.

What are the Physical Demands and Working Conditions?

The physical demands and characteristics of the work environment described here are representative of those occurring in the performance of the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

While performing the essential functions of this job, the employee is frequently required to stand; walk; sit; use hands to finger, handle, or feel objects, tools, or controls; and talk or hear. The employee is occasionally required to reach with hands and arms and stoop, kneel, crouch, or crawl. The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 20 pounds. Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, peripheral vision, depth perception, and the ability to adjust focus.

This position works in an office, and the noise level in the work environment is usually low to moderate. While performing the duties of this job, the employee is occasionally exposed to toxic or caustic chemicals, i.e. copier toner.

How Do I Apply?

As an equal opportunity employer, Seattle Foundation is committed to a diverse, multi-cultural work environment. Seattle Foundation does not discriminate in employment on the basis of age, race, creed, gender, religion, marital status, veteran’s status, national origin, disability, or sexual orientation. People of color, people with disabilities, and people of diverse sexual orientations are encouraged to apply. 

Please send cover letter and resume to:

Seattle Foundation
1601 Fifth Avenue Suite 1900
Seattle, WA, United States
Phone: 206-522-2294

Organization Profile