Vice President of Operations - Job Board - GIH Skip Navigation

Vice President of Operations

Category: Executive
Foundation/Organization: The California Wellness Foundation
Location: Downtown Los Angeles, CA
Date Posted: 02/28/2018
Closing Date: 04/30/2018

Downtown Los Angeles, CA – February 2018

The Opportunity

The California Wellness Foundation seeks an innovative senior leader with excellent leadership, operational and organizational development skills for its newly created vice president of operations role. This position reports to the president and CEO and serves as a member of the executive management committee. 

The vice president of operations will lead the Foundation’s Operations Department, which is responsible for grants management, information technology, facilities management and risk assessment. These functional areas are critical to the success of the Foundation’s grantmaking and its ultimate impact. The vice president of operations will partner closely with the Human Resources Department to help the Foundation successfully meet strategic goals and objectives.

The person in this position will play an important role in driving the organization’s innovation and operational excellence, identifying and implementing information technology systems and creating a best-in-class service team to support the Foundation’s work. As a statewide organization, Cal Wellness maintains offices in Los Angeles and the Bay Area, with staff traveling throughout California to connect with leaders and communities. The vice president of operations will provide organization-wide vision, leadership and management with regard to operational systems, and he or she will help integrate and embed the Foundation’s core values into all aspects of day-to-day operations.

The position is based at the Foundation’s new headquarters in downtown Los Angeles, California.

The Foundation

The California Wellness Foundation is a private, independent foundation established in 1992 with a mission to protect and improve the health and wellness of the people of California. One of the largest health-focused foundations in California, with nearly $1 billion in assets, Cal Wellness is a nationally recognized leader for its strategic core operating support for grantees, public policy grantmaking and focus on violence as a public health issue. It is Cal Wellness’ desire to promote equity and level the playing field so that everyone has access to good-paying jobs, healthy and safe neighborhoods, and quality health care services. The Foundation’s current Advancing Wellness grantmaking strategy includes three interrelated portfolios: Bridging the Gaps in Access and Quality Care, Promoting Healthy and Safe Neighborhoods and Expanding Education and Employment Pathways. Since its founding, Cal Wellness has awarded nearly 9,000 grants totaling more than $1 billion.

In 2017, Cal Wellness celebrated its 25th anniversary. As the Foundation looks to the future, it is pursuing new and innovative strategies beyond its core grantmaking work to advance its mission, including implementation of technology systems, development of its public affairs capacity and establishing mission- and program-related investment portfolios.

Cal Wellness has a diverse staff and Board and continues to enhance its deep commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion, both internally and externally. The Foundation’s work underscores a belief that wellness requires social justice, a deep commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion, and sustained efforts to eliminate systemic barriers that prevent access to health care, education, employment and safety.


  • Executive Management: Serve as a member of the executive management committee, which includes the president and CEO, the chief financial officer, the vice president of programs, the vice president of public affairs, and the director of human resources. Work in partnership with the president and CEO on a wide range of strategic, operational, information technology and organizational development issues within the Foundation. Partner with the other members of the executive management committee and staff to ensure the organization reaches its strategic goals.
  • Functional Leadership: Oversee operations in the areas of grants administration, information technology, facilities management, risk, productivity and innovation within the Foundation. Set goals for improvement and establish supporting policies and procedures in these functional areas. Engage in ongoing research and information gathering to ensure the Foundation is engaging operational strategies that are not only effective in the present but also position the Foundation for success in future. Understand and anticipate necessary changes to ensure that operations continue to exemplify best practices.
  • Employee Supervision: Manage, coach and mentor a high-performing team of professionals to achieve operational and strategic excellence. Lead by example and maintain a climate that attracts, retains and motivates top quality people. Direct reports include: director of information technology, director of grants management, office services coordinator and an executive assistant. The director of human resources reports to the CEO and will have a “dotted line” to the vice president of operations.

  • Values Integration: Model and embed the Foundation’s values throughout the organization and in all aspects of day-to-day operations and play a leadership role in driving the Foundation to be a highly functional, effective, efficient and healthy workplace. Inspire excellence at all levels of the organization.

  • Grants Management: Work with the director of grants management to leverage the Foundation’s investment in its new grants management system; review staffing needs and roll out a new vision and expanded role for grants management operations. Ensure that the Foundation’s grants management team is working as a valued, effective strategic partner across the organization.
  • Technology Operations: Oversee a lean information technology team. Enhance the role of the Information Technology Department by evaluating needs across the Foundation’s two offices and working closely with the director of information technology to develop process and implementation strategies, including staff training, to maximize technology systems and tools.
  • Facilities Management: Maintain and improve the Foundation’s offices as assets that engage the Cal Wellness community, ensuring innovative and creative places for Foundation staff and guests to work and collaborate. The Foundation’s Los Angeles headquarters moved into new office space in downtown Los Angeles in September 2017, and the Foundation’s Bay Area office will relocate to Oakland in spring 2018.
  • Risk Analysis and Innovation: Monitor and help minimize risk to the Foundation by establishing ongoing processes for short- and long-term risk analyses for the organization; present strategy and findings to the executive management committee and the Audit Committee of the Board of Directors. Enhance overall productivity and support the quest for innovation in operations across the organization. Serve as the custodian of the Foundation’s annual operating plan. Oversee risk management activities, including but not limited to: 1) key policies and procedures; 2) contract review and assessment of need for outside legal counsel; 3) insurance options and coverage; and 4) emergency preparedness.
  • Human Resources Support: Partner closely with the Human Resources Department to support the Foundation in successfully meeting strategic goals and objectives. Ensure Human Resources and overall operations are in alignment, with a focus on leveraging the Foundation’s Professional Employer Organization platform.
  • Continuous Improvement: Improve the quality of the Foundation’s internal systems, making the Foundation a model of excellence for philanthropic operations. Contribute to the realization of a best-in-class service organization by supporting the Foundation’s mission, programs, staff and grantees.

Compensation and Culture

Salary is competitive and commensurate with background and experience. The benefits package includes a variety of health plans, a generous 401(k) retirement savings plan, paid time off, professional development and educational opportunities, matching gifts, and the opportunity to work at a mission- and values-driven organization. The California Wellness Foundation is an equal opportunity employer.

To Apply

Martha Montag Brown & Associates, LLC has been retained for this search. Interested and qualified candidates are encouraged to apply by sending a cover letter, resume and salary requirements by email to:



Experience and Education

  • A minimum of ten years of experience in senior-level management in complex relevant organizations (e.g., a foundation, large nonprofit, university, consulting firm, law firm or think tank), preferably across multiple sectors.
  • Prior experience leading two or more of the following functions is desired: grants administration, information technology, risk management, human resources, finance or related functions.
  • Proven ability to work as a key business and administrative partner to the president and CEO and to execute activities across the organization and with various stakeholders.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of, or experience in, change management or organizational development is helpful.
  • Relevant advanced degree, or equivalent experience and skills, required.


  • Passion for, and experience in, driving change across organizations and creating excellent, high-functioning work environments. Ability to be a strong leader who inspires, encourages and unifies the organization and positively motivates others.
  • Superior management, planning and strategic thinking skills; ability to influence and engage staff at all levels throughout the organization.
  • Passion for the Foundation’s vision, mission and values; commitment to modeling the Foundation’s core values of respect, integrity, accountability, equity, stewardship, excellence, learning and trust.
  • Commitment to innovation through experimentation, critical thinking, problem solving and adaptability.
  • Forward-thinking mindset, always looking for ways to leverage efficient and creative solutions to help operations function optimally for highest impact.
  • Strong mentoring and coaching experience within a team with diverse levels of expertise; ability to lead the team using collaboration, dependability, empathy and humility.
  • Commitment to, and knowledge about, best practices in systems thinking and operations.
  • Exceptional written, oral, interpersonal and presentation skills and the ability to effectively partner with the executive team, Board of Directors, staff and other stakeholders.
  • Open-minded perspective and a collegial demeanor. Ability to develop relationships based on trust, confidence and respect. Openness to considering a diverse range of viewpoints. Willingness to build effective coalitions to move the agenda forward and proactively solicits others’ views before making key decisions.
  • Unquestionable ethics and integrity.

For more information, contact:

Martha Montag Brown
Tel: 818-790-8873


Print Print   Share Share   RSS RSS
GIH Connect

Connect with GIH to learn, collaborate, and grow through education, networking, and leadership opportunities.

Sign Up
Sign up for the GIH Bulletin to stay on top of news from the field.

Funding Partner Portal Login
Login to access exclusive Funding Partner resources from GIH.