Lead, Programs Strategy


Grade: 4

Salary Range: $76,860 – 88,685

*Senior Lead salary range: $94,597 – 100,509


About Delta

Delta Institute is a Midwest-focused, environmental nonprofit whose mission is to collaborate with communities to solve complex environmental challenges. Our work is organized into distinct initiatives that move our mission forward, clearly define our work, and articulate impact. The programs functional hive strives to successfully address the challenges and creatively assist in sustainable solutions. The program hive staff focuses on the implementation of projects in Delta’s three initiative areas: Resilient Agriculture, Nature-Based Climate Solutions, and Sustainability & Support Services.

To achieve our vision of a thriving region, we partner with communities, governmental organizations and agencies, businesses, nonprofits, and universities throughout the Great Lakes and Midwest. We are multi-disciplinary systems thinkers. We understand that the issues around food, water, air, energy, and waste are all connected. Further, we have multiple leadership-level projects that will be incepted in the year ahead. Now is an exciting time to join us, so that together we positively advance key outcomes in the Midwest.

Our broad and deep expertise, and partner networks developed over nearly 25 years, have been integral in Delta’s success in implementing environmental change at scale. Our initiatives are designed for ecological impact rooted in positive economic and social change. All three are essential for the work not only to sustain over time, but also to deepen and expand.

Delta serves as a trusted advisor, technical assistance provider, and project implementation expert. Funding comes from both philanthropic and earned revenue: private and government grants, charitable contributions, and fee-for-service contracts.

Our people and our culture are what makes us great! Click here to learn more about our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. 

At Delta we consider the follow seven characteristics core competencies. They define who we are as individuals and also our work as an organization:

  • Adaptive
  • Cooperative
  • Equitable
  • Passionate
  • Pragmatic
  • Transparent
  • Tenacious

Functional Hive – Programs

All Midwest communities and landscapes thrive through an integrated approach to environmental, economic, and social challenges. Our work is organized into distinct initiatives that move our mission forward, clearly define our work, and articulate impact. The programs functional hive strives to successfully address the challenges and creatively assist in sustainable solutions. More information about our programmatic initiatives is included as an appendix. Please refer to our website for a list of current and previously completed projects: https://delta-institute.org/projects-roster/.

Core Skillset

A Lead manages and provides leadership to a team delivering projects in one initiative, multiple projects, multiple administrative or organizational development functions or manages the day-to-day implementation of multiple programs for an affiliate of the Delta Institute. Leads are capable of key leadership roles representing the organization, developing new programs, and obtaining funding and other resources for the work within their assigned responsibilities.

Other core skillset attributes are:

  • Work in a timely and collaborative manner on multiple deliverables with internal and external stakeholders
  • Lead specific organizational initiatives
  • Developing new initiative concepts that advance Delta and its mission
  • Manage multiple aspects of Delta’s work portfolio
  • Have strong analytical and problem-solving skills
  • Have strong written and verbal communication skills with deep experience in selling concepts and proposals
  • Have an established network of partners, collaborators, and funding relationships
  • Have advanced knowledge of environmental and economic issues not only in the Midwest, but nationally and globally

Lead, Programs – Strategy

Position Specifics

A Lead provides leadership and vison to Delta’s strategic initiatives with a focus on developing concepts and funding strategies to meet our impact objectives. Leads provide deep technical, analytical and project development leadership across Delta’s strategic priority areas. A Lead manages ideation, concepting, proposal development along with coordinated related research and relationship management in partnership with other Programs hive staff and leadership. In this role, a Lead also collaborates with project teams to implement tasks as assigned. They raise funds for implementing project work that creates impact on Delta’s strategic priority areas.

A Lead will bring strong technical skills, and real world topic experience, to the team including an aptitude for communication, networking and collaboration. A Lead will continue to build expertise in the team’s focus areas. A Lead should be adept at tackling difficult environmental and social problems with often unclear paths to success, or take iterative approaches with a long-term goal of seeking solutions to larger social and environmental issues. A Lead will also need to be comfortable working by themselves, among multiple types of personalities, on tight deadlines, in ambiguous and circuitous circumstances, and have an overall positive outlook on the change that happens in the world.

As part of a truly multidisciplinary organization, a Lead will also interface with and provide support for other projects that require unique skills and knowledge; and will have the ability to translate complex ideas to a variety of audiences both internally and externally.

What you’ll be doing:

  • Work across Delta’s three strategic programmatic initiatives to create concepts that move strategic impact forward.
  • Own and monitor the evaluation and assessment of Delta’s strategic metrics and processes.
  • Collaborate with other Program Leads to further develop initiatives by engaging with external partners and funders in coordination with the Chief Development Officer and CEO.
  • Identify and cultivate key partners, collaborators and funders including municipal and governmental agency, non-governmental and community, and private sector partners to identify development, implementation, and impact opportunities.
  • Lead program ideation, concepting, pre-development, funding identification, and proposal development to support all program staff providing consistent and expanding project work, while meeting program metrics as identified in the Delta Institute strategic plan.
  • Collaborate with staff to develop budgets and work plans for project and program proposals, and identify funding sources and scenarios for leverage.
  • Collaborate with Specialists and other programmatic staff on multiple projects to ensure high-quality, on-time, and on-budget deliverables
  • Assist with tasks as assigned on projects as well as coordinate with staff, interns, and partners to plan and execute Program strategy.
  • Collaborate with other Leads and project captains in problem-solving
  • Assist in the creation of decision support tools for a variety of stakeholders.
  • Collaborate on team planning and implementation meetings
  • Where project structures require it, take a hands-on approach by developing work plans with tasks, timeframes, milestones, resources, and dependencies; or, when required, a hands-off approach by providing project teams with the resources they need to execute high-quality project deliverables
  • Develop and maintain key professional affiliations in support of organizational and professional development goals
  • Build networks and maintain relationships with academic, scientific, business, governmental and other partners; identify program partners and collaborate across boundaries to meet common objectives
  • Identify and understand the primary users of products, services, and deliverables
  • Maintain effective communication with clients and stakeholders managing and meeting project expectations
  • Be adaptable in occasional ambiguity; and be willing to go the extra mile to get the job done

What you’ll have:

  • Minimum of a Bachelor’s degree in planning, program administration, engineering, sustainability, environmental science, or related field with Master’s degree desirable or equivalent life and work experience (7-10 years of relevant experience);
  • Proven track record of engaging foundations, government agencies and businesses
  • Strategic and excellent organizational skills, be a self-starter and motivated and enjoy working in a team environment
  • Ability to apply systems thinking to complex environmental issues
  • Demonstrated success developing and evaluating program models, and selecting and successfully operationalizing innovative programs
  • Proficient in using technology as a management reporting tool and experience working with information technology staff to develop and implement program evaluation systems
  • Ability to organize, analyze and visualize data
  • Proficient in analyzing data and technical documents to produce deliverables
  • Strong project management skills managing complex, multi-faceted projects resulting in measurable successes and program growth
  • Experience in managing and motivating people to meet high performance standards
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills with exceptional attention to detail
  • Be able to work in a fast-paced environment, manage multiple tasks and deadlines, and manage work in sometimes ambiguous situations

Physical Demands and Work Environment

  • Continually required to sit
  • Continually required to utilize hand and finger dexterity
  • Continually required to climb, balance, bend, stoop, kneel or crawl
  • Continually required to talk or hear
  • While performing the duties of this job, the noise level in the work environment is usually moderate
  • The employee must occasionally lift and /or move up to 10 pounds

Delta offers its employees a competitive salary with a robust benefits package that includes generous paid time off, 401k, and medical, dental & vision insurance. Delta is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Please email application packet (one PDF) that includes the following:

  • cover letter 
  • resume  

All as one PDF to: careers@delta-institute.org  

Subject line: Lead, Programs – Strategy

Application submission due date: 6/10/24

No phone calls, please.

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