Organization: The Fidelity Foundations

Location: Salem, NH

Express Interest

About The Fidelity Foundations:

The Fidelity Foundations are a group of charitable organizations that fund a diverse set of philanthropies on a national and international scale.  Areas of interest include education, arts and culture, health care, science, land conservation and social services.  In addition, the Fidelity Foundations fund nonprofit organizations which strengthen the communities in which Fidelity Investments employees live and work.

Foundation grants are designed to encourage the highest standards of management and to create long-term self-reliance in nonprofit organizations.  Taking an investment approach to grantmaking, the Foundations fund organizations with a goal of adding lasting, measurable value.  The Foundations seek to support major initiatives that nonprofits undertake to reach new levels of achievement.

The Foundations were established with several operating principles in mind. These principles guide its decisions and grantmaking 50 years later:

Strengthening Nonprofit Organizations

The Fidelity Foundations’ grant program was designed to strengthen the long-term effectiveness of nonprofit institutions.  The types of projects the Fidelity Foundations fund, and the way in which they fund them, are specifically intended to help nonprofits build the organizational capabilities they need to better fulfill their missions and serve their constituencies.

Approaching Grants as Investments

The Fidelity Foundations view their philanthropy as an investment — not just of financial resources, but also of their business skills and experience.  In considering each proposal, the Fidelity Foundations apply the fundamentals of investing: they carefully examine each aspect of an organization’s project idea, management team and financial situation before committing resources to ensure a grant can achieve tangible results.

Leveraging Resources

The Fidelity Foundations seek to leverage resources wherever possible.  Often this is accomplished by offering challenge and matching grants that encourage nonprofits to seek and secure other funding partners.  The Fidelity Foundations draw on their own business experience by working with grantees to develop performance measures that help determine whether a grant accomplishes its intended purpose. As the Foundations gain information from funded projects, it informs work on future projects in similar fields.  The Foundations also utilize their contacts to put present grantees in touch with former grantees that have faced similar issues.

 Commitment to Excellence and Innovation

The Fidelity Foundations’ grant program seeks to reflect Fidelity Investments’ commitment to quality and continuous improvement.  The Foundations look for projects representing creative and innovative means of advancing an organization or focus area and strive to remain flexible and opportunistic through a competitive selection process.

Fidelity Investments’ Chairman Emeritus, Edward C. Johnson 3d, and his father, the founder of the company, established the Fidelity Foundation in 1965, launching decades of charitable investing and laying the groundwork for many future philanthropic endeavors.

The grantmaking program is conducted by professional staff under the leadership of the President. The approach has been through quiet giving, in which publicity is not sought, confidentiality is critical, and most grants are awarded anonymously.

The Fidelity Foundations have a strong presence in the greater Boston area.  The primary offices are in Salem, New Hampshire, 40 minutes north of Boston and immediately over the Massachusetts border.  The majority of Fidelity Foundations employees live in Boston or the surrounding suburbs.

For more information on the Fidelity Foundations, please visit

The Opportunity:

With the hiring of a new President earlier this year, the Foundations are at an important and exciting inflection point. The Vice President, Operations (VP) is a newly created position that will play an important role in helping to achieve the goals of the Foundations moving forward. The VP will have responsibility for core organizational functions including operations, evaluation and research, technology, legal and risk management and will be charged with ensuring that the organizational systems and operations can support best-in-class performance and achievement of the Foundation’s objectives. Working closely with, and reporting directly to, the President the VP will also contribute thought leadership around strategic direction setting, increase the rigor associated with research and evaluation and oversee general day-to-day management of the Foundation.

This position requires proven success in executive level management, strong analytical abilities, acute knowledge of systems and technology and the ability to develop and manage a strong team to achieve ambitious results.  Internally, the Vice President, Operations will work to promote team-building and will play a key role in the mentoring of staff.

Other responsibilities include:

  • Oversee and manage the organization’s operational functions and performance in the areas of information technology, facilities, and human resources.
  • Participate in the development of the Foundation’s plans and programs as a strategic and tactical partner to the President.
  • Develop and build out a rigorous research and evaluation function to support the Foundation’s grantmaking success.
  • Provide timely and accurate reporting to the President and Trustees in order to assist with planning and decision making.
  • Enhance and/or develop and implement systems for the organization that will improve the overall operation and effectiveness of the Foundations.
  • Work closely with the Controller on all financial matters associated with the operations of the Foundations.
  • Provide leadership and guidance to the operational team and provide staff with opportunities for professional and personal growth.

Candidate Profile:

The Vice President, Operations will possess the following professional and personal skills, attributes and competencies:

Business Acumen/Analytical Skills

The Vice President, Operations will be an intelligent self-starter who is resourceful and entrepreneurial, yet team oriented.  A tactical executor, s/he will have a strong data and analytical orientation and a proven ability to use metrics to drive decisions and achieve strategic objectives.  With exposure to various functions of nonprofit organizations, s/he will be highly organized, an experienced project manager and will maintain a focus on maximizing the impact of the Foundations.

Strategic Leadership/Team Management

The Vice President, Operations will serve as a trusted resource to the President, the Trustees and other staff at the Foundations and build and retain a talented team that embraces the mission of the Foundations.  Committed to organizational development and improved operational effectiveness, this individual will foster trust and collaboration among team members and empower colleagues to deliver results.  Fundamentally, s/he will respect the work that staff and others are doing in the field and will see his/her role as ensuring that all systems and processes are working in the best interest of the Foundation.

Critical Thinking and Intellectual Curiosity

The Vice President, Operations will exhibit intellectual curiosity and the ability to think creatively and collaboratively about the Fidelity Foundations’ broad goals while remaining focused on details and follow-through. S/he will have experience developing and implementing evaluation frameworks and an ability to help set strategic objectives and balance multiple priorities. S/he will have excellent communication skills, including the ability to write clearly and succinctly under time pressure and to make well-organized, strong verbal presentations.

Integrity and Trust

The Vice President, Operations will have a deep appreciation for the Foundations’ commitment to philanthropy. S/he will stay true to the values of the Foundations, inspiring and motivating others to embody these values. The ideal candidate is an individual of high integrity, ethical standards and one who can maintain confidentiality.


  • Bachelor’s degree required, advanced degree preferred;
  • 10+ years of high-level operations and/or relevant nonprofit experience preferred;
  • Experience with technology implementation and a deep belief in the power of systems to increase efficiency;
  • Solid strategic, tactical, and financial analytical skills;
  • General management and project management experience required;
  • High level of interpersonal skills, a team player who is diplomatic and able to negotiate and build consensus;
  • Effective communication skills, including the ability to deliver effective oral and written presentations; and
  • Sound judgment, integrity, and respect for confidentiality are absolute requirements.

Compensation & Benefits:

Salary is competitive and commensurate with experience.


Fidelity Foundations has engaged Koya Leadership Partners to help in this hire. Please submit a compelling cover letter and resume to Erin Reedy here.

About Koya Leadership Partners:

Koya Leadership Partners is a national retained executive search and human capital consulting firm that works exclusively with mission-driven organizations, institutions of higher education and social enterprises. We deliver measurable results, finding exceptionally talented people who truly fit the unique culture of our client organizations and ensuring that organizations have the resources and strategies to support them. For more information, visit