Senior Strategy, Learning, and Evaluation Officer (SLED)

Job Title

Senior Strategy and Learning Officer

Job Description

The Walton Family Foundation is seeking an experienced and skilled individual to join the foundation as a Senior Strategy and Learning Officer (Sr. S&L Officer) supporting strategy and learning efforts across the Foundation’s grantmaking programs and other departments. This is a new position, and it is being added to support the foundation’s growing strategic learning practice as well as its current 5-year strategic planning process.

About the Position

The Senior S&L Officer will play a pivotal role at WFF. Working in close partnership with SLED’s Director, Deputy Director, and other leaders across the Foundation, you will provide data analysis and strategic insights, generate draft strategy memos and PowerPoint presentations, and design and facilitate strategy and learning meetings. You will work across different programs, with a particular focus on the Environment Program. You will report to the Deputy Director for Strategy & Learning.

Specific duties include the following:

• Working with SLED’s Director and Deputy Director to support the Foundation’s internal strategic planning efforts, including:
- Serving as a thought partner to program leadership and staff (e.g., asking good strategic questions, identifying assumptions, testing theories of change)
- Generating and/or reviewing draft strategy documents (e.g., strategy memos, PowerPoint presentations)
- Co-designing and facilitating working sessions among program staff and/or other participants (e.g., external experts, Committee members)
- Conducting targeted research and analysis in support of program planning
- Co-managing third-party strategic planning consultants (with the Deputy Director and Director)
- Managing the annual planning process across WFF programs and departments, including collaborating with program and department directors to articulate goals and objectives that align with five-year strategic plans
• Working with SLED’s Director and Deputy Director to guide and support the Foundation’s strategic learning efforts, including:
- Reviewing research and evaluation products and collaborating with SLED staff to identify and communicate key insights to internal and external audiences
- Contributing to strategic reviews and programmatic deep dives with the Foundation’s program teams, Committees, and the WFF Board
- Supporting the design and management of strategic learning events with grantees, funders, and other Foundation partners as requested
- Increasing the adaptive learning capacity of Foundation program staff and supporting a culture of learning and reflection
• Collaborating with SLED leadership to continuously improve the Foundation’s approaches to strategy, learning, and evaluation

Whom we are looking for:

Characteristics needed to support your success
• Demonstrated capacity to build relationships and work effectively across a complex organizational structure
• Excellent written and oral communication skills
• Proven organizational skills, including exceptional time management and prioritization skills
• Sense of humility and willingness to pitch in as needed
• Demonstrated passion for social change and the mission of the Walton Family Foundation

Additional helpful experience includes
• Experience in philanthropy, including past experience working with senior leadership (including Board members)
• Content knowledge related to at least one of the Foundation’s program areas, particularly the Environment
• Experience or familiarity with strategic learning principles and practices
• Experience and comfort working both independently and under close supervision, as required by the task
• Diplomatic approach and an innate understanding of customer service
• A high level of discretion and confidentiality for both business and personal affairs
• Unquestionable ethics and personal integrity

About the Walton Family Foundation

The Walton Family Foundation is, at its core, a family-led foundation. The children and grandchildren of our founders, Sam and Helen Walton, lead the foundation and create access to opportunity for people and communities. We work in three areas: improving K-12 education, protecting rivers and oceans and the communities they support, and investing in our home region of Northwest Arkansas and the Arkansas-Mississippi Delta. In 2017, the foundation awarded more than $535 million in grants in support of these initiatives. To learn more, visit and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
Headquartered in Bentonville, Arkansas, with offices in Washington, D.C., Jersey City, New Jersey and Denver, Colorado, approximately 125 staff conduct the day-to-day operations of the foundation.

About SLED

The Strategy, Learning, and Evaluation Department at the Walton Family Foundation supports careful planning, rigorous research, and systematic assessment in service of organizational learning, strategic adaptation, and philanthropic impact. We seek to learn with our grantees and other partners and advance the fields in which we work.

The Walton Family Foundation is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to building and maintaining a culturally diverse workplace. We encourage women, minorities, individuals with disabilities and veterans to apply. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, status of protected veteran, among other things or status as a qualified individual with a disability.

Basic Qualifications

• Graduate degree in a relevant field (e.g., MBA, MPP)
• 10 years + of experience in a professional setting, including five years of experience in a strategy consulting role and two years in a project management role
• Intellectual agility, including the ability to quickly understand new issues, analyze qualitative and quantitative data, spot patterns, and make connections across topics/issues.
• Proven ability to design and facilitate productive, engaging meetings