Program Officer, Crohn's Disease

The Helmsley Charitable Trust seeks a Program Officer (PO) to directly support the Crohn’s Disease Program Director within an evolving grant portfolio and to be responsible for designing, executing, and evaluating grants and programs focused on technology and therapeutic development in Crohn’s disease, as well as data management. 

The Crohn’s Disease Program, which made its first grant in 2009, is committed to finding a cure, and until then to improving quality of life and care and finding better treatments for Crohn’s disease. The program has made significant investments in research on the human genetics of Crohn's disease and understanding the human microbiome as it relates to IBD, as well as supporting numerous efforts to pursue transformative approaches to understanding and treating Crohn's. Seven consortia have been funded, significant intramural research programs are being supported at major scientific organizations, and the program is providing significant support for new ways to use technology and bioinformatics to study and treat Crohn's. To date, the program, which has rapidly become the largest private foundation funder in Crohn’s disease, has awarded over $183 million to scientists and clinicians across the globe.


The PO will assist the Program Director to develop, implement and manage a multi-million dollar annual grants program. Overnight travel will be required. Primary responsibilities include providing intellectual and organizational leadership in:

  • Designing and implementing new initiatives within the technology and therapeutic development focus areas;
  • Sourcing new projects and facilitating due diligence;
  • Evaluating proposals;
  • Monitoring a growing program and grants portfolio;
  • Creating impact through dissemination of knowledge;
  • Working with the Program Director to design, develop and implement the Crohn’s Disease Program’s strategic plan and funding agendas;
  • Managing the program’s grants through each grant life-cycle, including grant application, due diligence, implementation, evaluation, and providing technical support to applicants and grantees;
  • Working with grantees to track progress on grants and outcomes;
  • Preparing concise and analytical grant recommendations to Trustees;
  • Supervising program support staff as needed, and managing the administrative duties related to this responsibility;
  • Effectively communicating information about the Crohn’s Disease Program and Helmsley’s mission to target audiences;
  • Contributing to program development by organizing site visits, meetings, and symposia that further the development goals of the program;
  • Collaborating with colleagues in cooperative approaches to grantmaking; and
  • Performing other duties as assigned.
  • Completion of an advanced degree (Master’s or higher degree) in biomedical research, bioinformatics, or related field;
  • Three to five years of relevant experience in governmental, nonprofit, or foundation sectors preferred;
  • Experience in Crohn’s disease or immunology preferred;
  • Background in bioinformatics, data integration and management preferred;
  • Strong written and oral communication skills with the ability to translate concepts succinctly to diverse stakeholders and audiences;
  • Proficiency reviewing and managing budgets;
  • Must be detail-oriented and have strong interpersonal skills;
  • Excellent organizational and time management skills, including the ability to manage priorities on projects with multiple collaborators;
  • Demonstrated ability to exercise independent judgment and initiative, prioritize, and accurately complete multiple tasks, and work under deadlines and changing priorities;
  • Proven track-record of working effectively in a team-oriented environment; and
  • Ability to travel domestically and internationally.

The position is based at Helmsley’s main office in New York City. We have retained Sandler Search to assist with the search process for this role.  Please send a cover letter, resume (in Word or PDF format), and a brief writing sample to The writing sample must be an actual document you prepared in a professional context. Include “Program Officer – Crohn's Disease Program” in the subject line. Only those selected for an interview will be contacted.


The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust aspires to improve lives by supporting exceptional efforts in the U.S. and around the world in health and select place-based initiatives. Since beginning active grantmaking in 2008, Helmsley has committed more than $1.5 billion for a wide range of charitable purposes. Learn more about Helmsley at

The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by the incumbent(s) of this job.  They are not intended to be an exhaustive list of all responsibilities and activities required for the position.  Nothing in this job description restricts management’s right to assign or reassign duties and responsibilities to this job at any time.