Now Hiring: Program Officer

December 19, 2019

It’s been a great year at Zephyr, and we now have funding secured to hire our Program Officer! We are seeking a motivated, ambitious leader to oversee and advance the Zephyr mission: to advance rigorous transportation and land use decision-making for the public good, by advocating for and supporting improved travel analysis and facilitating its implementation. A sample of current Zephyr work efforts include:

  • Workforce Development Program: Program to recruit, educate and retain a travel analysis workforce.
  • Network Data Standard and Management Tools: Specifications for standardized data structures to facilitate the testing and comparison of various algorithms, approaches, or parameters.
  • Fast-Trips: An open-source person-based dynamic transit assignment tool.
  • GTFS-ride: A data standard for publishing fixed-route transit ridership.
  • In addition, the Zephyr Board of Directors also considers incubating new projects which fit our mission.

The Program Officer must be able to jump in and follow the strategic direction set by the Board of Directors, manage the varied tasks of running a nonprofit foundation, lead fundraising efforts, and handle operational responsibility for the Zephyr programs and volunteers. We do not expect any one person to have a long pedigree in all of these areas: rather, it’s a position that has many facets which a candidate can grow into.

This position will be managing a staff of one - themselves - as well as coordinating a bunch of volunteers.



  • Work with the Board to develop and implement a strategic plan for addressing organizational structure, financial health, governance, priorities, and vision.
  • Oversee communications, including representing Zephyr nationally with media, partners, decision-makers, and members.
  • Work closely with project management groups, volunteers, members, and related organizations.
  • Focus on organizational and financial growth, in support of expanding project capacity.
  • Coordinate with legal counsel and accountant to manage all contracts.
  • Nurture a healthy organizational culture that is mission-focused, dynamic, and consistent with the Zephyr principles.


  • Manage monthly and annual budget.
  • Lead fundraising and develop other resources necessary to support the mission, including fostering relationships with other foundations, drafting and submitting grant applications, and developing contacts with high impact donors.


The ideal candidate will have experience in non-profit management, governance and fundraising. Familiarity with transportation and land-use planning is not essential. A willingness and enthusiasm for collaborating with experts and young professionals is critical to success in this role. Applicants should have a passion for diversity and inclusion in the organization, and be comfortable working both remotely and independently.

Additional Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s Degree.
  • Strong organizational skills including program development.
  • Budget management experience.
  • Experience in fundraising – grant writing a plus.
  • Management experience. Experience managing remote teams preferred.
  • Ability to both lead and work as a member of the team.
  • Facilitation skills and experience.
  • Ability to oversee and collaborate with a diverse group of volunteers, staff, and partners.
  • Technological savvy and grit.

Key Zephyr Principles:

  • Respectful, honest, technical-based interaction.
  • Acting in support of the public good, specifically inclusion, equitable outcomes, and shared prosperity.
  • Driven by useful innovation that leverages our unique position.
  • Collegial and collaborative.
  • Diversity of opinions and backgrounds are proactively sought out and welcomed.

Position Details

  • Salary Range: Dependent on experience
  • Time: 20-30 hours per week
  • Travel Requirements: 10%
  • Location: Flexible, within U.S.

How to Apply

If you have any questions about the Program Officer search before applying, please send them to [email protected].

Submit your application materials to [email protected] Applications must include:

  • Cover letter
  • Curriculum vitae / resume including employment history, educational background, etc.
  • Brief written answers to the following questions. We don’t need long essays at this stage; a paragraph or so will suffice:
    1. Given the Foundation’s established mission, goals, and principles, what would be on your near-term to-do list for Zephyr to achieve its mission and have a real and lasting positive impact on our field?
    2. What would you, as a Program Officer, need from the Board and volunteers?
    3. Tell us about your experience in raising money and managing back-office functions. What would you take on and what would you seek outside assistance with?
    4. The Zephyr constituency is diverse and wide-ranging in many dimensions. What are ways that Zephyr can embrace diversity of ideas while also making decisions and moving forward?
    5. What is your experience with and/or passion for the myriad, connected fields of transportation planning, urban planning, and transportation forecasting?


Applications will be considered on a rolling basis. Thank you for your interest!

Billy Charlton, Chair, and the Program Officer Search Committee:

Joan Walker, Mario Scott, Greg Erhardt, and Lisa Zorn