Bay Area

Program Director

Candidate Profile & Core Values

Spark seeks a Program Director in the Bay Area. To accelerate a career in the education and nonprofit sectors, and help Spark fulfill its mission, successful candidates will demonstrate exceptional team and project management skills, relationship building prowess, innovative thinking and a make-it-work mentality. Candidates will also embody Spark’s Core Values: be a student and a mentor, work with passion and compassion, commit to collaboration and diversity, aim high and true, and trust and respect in all relationships.


  • Bachelor’s degree required; relevant graduate degree preferred
  • Management-level experience in a fast-paced, growth-oriented organization; for-profit experience is welcomed
  • Experience working with school administrations and teachers, preferably at the middle school level
  • Sophisticated relationship building and networking skills
  • Demonstrated track record of applying innovative thinking and resourcefulness to create strategies that solve problems and produce growth
  • Demonstrated ability to design and manage complex projects involving many personnel, and deliver outcomes
  • Knowledge of local Bay Area education sector and dynamics preferred
  • Legally eligible to work in the United States; no sponsorship provided

In addition, to be successful as a member of the Spark team in this role, you will:

  • Have a strong desire to impact an up-and-coming nonprofit organization
  • Thrive in a fast-paced, entrepreneurial environment, operating with a results-orientation and exceptional attention to detail
  • Have a proactive personality; no work is ‘beneath’ you and you are eager to serve others, rolling up your sleeves when necessary
  • Demonstrate mature judgment, with a high level of personal and professional integrity and trustworthiness
  • Have a sense of humor, even under stress
  • Be comfortable giving and receiving honest, constructive feedback
  • Value relationships and accountability, empowering others to achieve superior results

Core Responsibilities

Reporting to the Executive Director (ED) of Spark Bay Area, the Program Director (PD) will lead Spark Bay Area’s programs, manage a talented team of staff to deliver on program goals, and develop and leverage resources to drive the continued growth of Spark Bay Area. Together with the Development and Account leaders, the PD will provide strategic counsel to the ED to ensure that Spark Bay Area maintains high visibility among key stakeholders while driving innovations in program operations and efficiency, staff development and performance, fundraising and exceptional outcomes for Spark students.

Lead the operation and growth of the Spark program in the Bay Area

  • Directly develop and manage an exceptional regional team to accomplish core program goals, successfully manage relationships with Spark’s current and future school partners, ensure high-quality programming for Spark students, and onboard and supports volunteer mentors
  • Set the agenda and strategy to scale local program operations, including refining the local staffing structure, expanding school partnerships, assisting in fundraising and leading strategic planning toward growth goals
  • Lead the partnership-building process with formal agreements with schools, school districts, and/or peer organizations
  • Oversee Spark’s evaluation methods by ensuring the collection and input of surveys, demographic data and school district data, and utilizing data for program assessment and team management

Enhance Spark Bay Area’s brand presence and positioning

  • Together with the ED and other regional managers, provide overall leadership to regional team, creating a high performance and positive work environment that values staff development and retention
  • Create and expand alliances in the for-profit, government, and non-profit sectors to establish a portfolio of sustainable partnerships for mentorship placements and for strategic program growth
  • Expand Spark Bay Area’s regional model and continue Spark Bay Area’s spirit of innovation along with regional and national excellence in program operations, volunteer experience, and student outcomes
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