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Manager, Innovation Fellows Program

The Innovation Fellows program supports extraordinary mid-career individuals and teams with potentially transformative ideas to leverage science, technology, and data to solve important societal challenges. The program provides financial support to fellows and serves as a force multiplier for their efforts. Fellows benefit from the expertise and support of their peers, receiving help with recruiting and building world-class teams, and gaining access to potential partners in government, industry, the social sector, and philanthropy.


The Manager, Innovation Fellows will be responsible for driving the day-to-day execution of the program, including:

  • Accelerating the progress of Innovation Fellows to execute and scale their ideas
  • Developing the community of Innovation Fellows and serving as a liaison between Fellows and Schmidt Futures
  • Defining and administering Innovation Fellows’ community commitments consistent with participation in the program and connect the Fellows with additional opportunities for service
  • Identifying, sourcing, and selecting Fellows to join the program


Key Responsibilities 


Support Innovation Fellows in scaling and implementing their ideas

  • Develop processes, platforms, and tools to surface the needs of Innovation Fellows
  • Identify opportunities to scale the work of Innovation Fellows through partnerships with philanthropy, corporations, or government agencies
  • Serve as a liaison with other Schmidt Futures programs and employees, and look for opportunities for additional collaborations
  • Scale awareness about the work of Innovation Fellows by developing and leading a communication strategy with relevant stakeholders


Develop the community of Innovation Fellows to enable greater collaboration and mutual support among Fellows and other members of the Schmidt Futures network

  • Define and administer community commitments that are expected for all participants in the program
  • Identify intersections and areas for collaboration among Innovation Fellows’ work streams
  • Host events and retreats for the Innovation Fellow community
  • Set up processes, platforms, and tools that enable Innovation Fellows to work with each other and the Schmidt Futures’ network


Connect Innovation Fellows to opportunities for service

  • Identify opportunities for Fellows to mentor talent from other Schmidt Futures’ programs, as well as support Schmidt Futures’ talent programming and priorities
  • Seek connections between Innovation Fellows’ work and Schmidt Futures’ strategic priorities, and create opportunities for the Innovation Fellows to support the development and execution of those priorities


Grow the talent pipeline for the Innovation Fellows program   

  • Develop talent identification strategy to find candidates for the program
  • Test and implement new sourcing mechanisms to identify new Innovation Fellows
  • Expand the geographic footprint of the program
  • Develop ideas for potential new Fellows


Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities 

Some of the desired capabilities include:

  • Entrepreneurial mindset with an orientation towards action, learning by doing, and iterative approaches
  • Strong operational skills and ability to execute multiple projects at a time
  • Experience building and managing communities
  • Deep and current knowledge of new technologies and excitement about applying those technologies for public benefit
  • Outstanding interpersonal skills and ability to work well as part of a team
  • Strong written communication and oral presentation skills with the ability to articulate a vision and strategy



  • Have 7+ years of experience in an operational or leadership function
  • Demonstrated ability to develop new ideas and bring them into existence
  • Have a bachelor’s degree or equivalent from an accredited institution
  • Be based at a Schmidt Futures office in New York or Washington, D.C. and be able to travel within the U.S. and internationally on a regular basis as needed following company policy and permitting circumstances.


About Schmidt Futures

Schmidt Futures is a philanthropic initiative, founded by Eric and Wendy Schmidt, that finds exceptional people and helps them do more for others together.  We knit talent into networks, bet on the most promising ideas through diverse forms of competition and support, and equip people to scale through partners and modern tools. To realize this vision, Schmidt Futures uses a broad set of tools — including gifts, grants, investments, and startup activity — for charitable, educational, and commercial efforts with a public purpose. Our initiative brings together the efforts of various charitable and non-charitable entities to improve our potential impact by making diverse types of capital available to the efforts we support.


Futures Action Network, LLC, which operates Schmidt Futures, is an Equal Employment Opportunity employer that proudly pursues and hires a diverse workforce. We do not make hiring or employment decisions on the basis of race, color, religion or religious belief, ethnic or national origin, nationality, sex, gender, gender-identity, sexual orientation, disability, age, military or veteran status, or any other basis protected by applicable local, state, or federal laws or prohibited by Company policy. We strive for a healthy and safe workplace and strictly prohibit harassment of any kind.

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