Program Officer, Rural Healthcare

The Program Officer, Rural Healthcare will work closely with Trustee and the Program Director to design, execute, and evaluate grants and programs to increase the quality of care and quality of life for rural America, as well as provide program support for smaller grant initiatives.  

Helmsley’s Rural Healthcare Program funds innovative projects that use telemedicine and other information technologies to connect rural populations to specialty medical care, bring the latest medical therapies and equipment to patients in remote areas, provide state-of-the-art training for rural hospitals and EMS personnel, and foster incentives for healthcare personnel to train and serve in rural areas. The program awards grants in the upper Midwest states of North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Wyoming, Minnesota, Iowa, and Montana.


The Program Officer will assist the Program Director manage a grants program of $35 million annually. Primary responsibilities include providing intellectual and organizational leadership in:

  • Designing and implementing new initiatives;
  • Evaluating proposals;
  • Monitoring a growing grants portfolio; and
  • Creating impact through dissemination of knowledge. 

In addition, he/she will be responsible for managing an existing portfolio of grants. Overnight travel will be required. Essential duties include: 

  • Managing the Program’s grants process including conducting outreach and participating in meetings; assessing prospective project proposals; providing technical assistance to applicants to refine plans and project budgets; analyzing project proposals for review by the Program Director and the Board of Trustees; and monitoring and evaluating grantee performance.
  • Preparing concise, analytical board docket grant recommendations.
  • Working with the Program Director to develop strategic funding agendas.
  • Reviewing protocols periodically with the Program Director.
  • Managing the administrative duties related to the above responsibilities
  • Researching selected areas of program interest.
  • Collaborating with colleagues in cooperative approaches to grantmaking.
  • Performing other projects as assigned.
  • Experience in grants administration including foundation management that includes creating protocols and reviewing financial budgets.
  • Experience in managing multiple priorities effectively; outstanding time management.
  • Ability to think outside the box to achieve desired outcomes.
  • Must be organized and have strong interpersonal and communication skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to exercise independent judgment and initiative; and to work under deadlines and changing priorities.
  • Background in health or experience at a health organization preferred.
  • Able to maintain confidentiality of information.
  • Bachelor’s degrees (master’s degree or higher preferred) required.
  • Minimum five years’ relevant experience required.

The position is based at Helmsley’s office in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Send resume (in Word or PDF format), salary history, and cover letter to Include “RH Program Officer” 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 effective organizations in health, place-based initiatives, and education and human services.  Since beginning active grantmaking in 2008, Helmsley has committed more than $1.5 billion to a wide range of charitable purposes.  For more information on Helmsley, visit

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.