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Lead, Early Learning

Philadelphia, PA

Relocation expenses: Not paid

Full time
5 - 10 years of experience
Bachelor's Degree

Published on 5 Nov 2021

Expires on 5 Nov 2021

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Lead, Early Learning

United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey’s (UWGPSNJ) mission is to end poverty and expand opportunity for all. As we near our 100th anniversary, we are focused on new approaches to harnessing the collective power of our region to help individuals and families break the cycle of poverty, and new ways of engaging and investing in the communities we serve. We deploy several tools to that end, including:

  • Motivating individual, corporate, and institutional philanthropy;
  • Investing in evidence-based programming to increase opportunity and employment, financial empowerment for families, and resource high quality early education;
  • Measuring progress and strengthening the nonprofit sector in the areas of data/evaluation, leadership, and organizational effectiveness; and
  • Convening local and national leaders to build and execute groundbreaking strategies for the region.


The Lead, Early Learning supports United Way’s mission by managing partnerships with organizations and institutions that advance child development, school readiness, K-3 literacy, tutoring and parent/caregiver programs for families with children, from infancy through age 8.

The Lead monitors and improves our Early Learning efforts using data-driven reporting, evaluation, academic research, peer funder experience and feedback from nonprofit practitioners and beneficiaries. They collect, manage, and share knowledge about the work in order to improve strategies and performance, and support organizational collaboration. The Lead works to ensure equitable distribution of resources through targeted outreach, data-informed decision-making and open reporting and communications practices. In partnership with the Managing Director, Early Learning, the Lead pursues new partnerships and secures funding to expand United Way’s impact on the lives of people experiencing poverty and works closely with United Way’s Giving team to secure investment in new initiatives. 

The Lead is an at-will employee of UWGPSNJ reporting directly to the Managing Director, Early Learning. They are a member of the Mission Delivery team, the department that leads UWGPSNJ’s investment strategy and nonprofit partnerships. Once remote work policies are lifted, the primary work location will be UWGPSNJ’s office in Center City, Philadelphia.  


The Lead is responsible for the development of processes and execution of UWGPSNJ’s organizational initiatives, which may include: 

  1. Project Management (40%)
  • Project manager and lead for UWGPSNJ’s Early Learning initiatives, including emerging and current partnerships, such as Vello. 
  • Participates in design, implementation, and improvement of new partnerships and investments, including development of project plans, scopes of work, requests for proposals, outreach, reporting, and assessments.

  ​​2. Grant Management (30%) 

  • Grant manager for UWGPSNJ’s Early Learning portfolio of funded partners, providing excellent customer service, connections to resources, and capacity building as needed.
  • Participates in the evaluation of applications and assessments of grant reports.
  • Maintains strong and collaborative relationships with UWGPSNJ’s nonprofit partners and seeks feedback to improve strategies and execution of projects.

  3. Knowledge Management (20%)

  • Maintains cross-departmental and multi-disciplinary relationships to inform and improve strategies for Early Learning and UWGPSNJ’s mission overall.  
  • Develops and manages systems for feedback and continuous improvement of all assigned projects.
  • Commits time for reflecting, distilling and communicating lessons from the work to internal and external stakeholders.
  • Prepares and delivers reports and presentations to audiences including UWGPSNJ staff, board of directors, funders, and peers. 
  • Cultivates new interest in and support for the strategic priorities of UWGPSNJ and the Early Learning focus area. 

  4. Administration (10%) 

  • Ensures that internal and external reporting, programmatic and financial, are executed on time and with excellence.
  • Other administrative functions and responsibilities or duties as assigned.  


  • Commitment to poverty alleviation and equality; experience - lived, professional, and/or academic - that advances United Way’s mission and improves its practices.
  • Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field or equivalent experience referred.  
  • A minimum of 5-10 years relevant experience in project or program management preferred. 
  • Strategic thinker, data-driven and analytical in approach to solving problems. 
  • Proven ability to work in a participative and collaborative manner, and to interact comfortably and respectfully with a diverse range of people. 
  • Excellent skills in project management, such as the ability to work under the pressure of tight deadlines and to effectively manage, organize and prioritize tasks with attention to detail and follow-through. 
  • Excellent customer service orientation. 
  • Able to provide clear and frequent communications to update partners on progress and challenges. 
  • Must be able to problem-solve and be proactive, goal-driven and focused on results. 
  • Cool under pressure, comfort with ambiguity, especially in early stages of project development. 
  • Demonstrated ability to be flexible and function in a fast-paced environment. 
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills, strong presentation skills. 
  • Knowledge of Microsoft Office and database skills and experience required. 

UWGPSNJ promotes a culture of inclusion and seeks talented staff from diverse backgrounds. UWGPSNJ does not discriminate based on race, color, sex, sexual orientation, religion, national or ethnic origin, age, disability, veteran status, or any other legally protected factor. 

●    Mission-Focused: Catalyze others’ commitment to mission to create real social change that leads to better lives and healthier communities.  This drives their performance and professional motivations.
●    Relationship-Oriented: Understands that people come before process and is astute in cultivating and managing relationships toward a common goal.
●    Collaborator: understands the roles and contributions of all sectors of the community and can mobilize resources (financial and human) through meaningful engagement.
●    Results-Driven: Dedicated to shared and measurable goals for the common good; creating, resourcing, scaling, and leveraging strategies and innovations for broad investment and impact.
●    Brand Steward: Steward of the brand and understands his/her role in growing and protecting the reputation and results of the greater network.