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Director, Partnerships

Rise Background

Rise, an initiative of Schmidt Futures and the Rhodes Trust, will build a lifelong community of students, teachers, and institutions across sectors who aim to serve others. The program, which will seek young people between the ages of 15 and 17 from around the world, will be designed to encourage a lifetime of service and learning by providing support that could include scholarships, career services, and funding opportunities to help these leaders serve others for decades to come.

The first annual competition for Rise in 2020 will begin to build a global community of students, teachers, and others—including a larger group of finalists worldwide and ultimately at least 100 extraordinary young people each year who show the potential to have a unique impact on their communities with more connection and support. Those young people who advance through the final stages of the competition will be invited to attend a residential fellowship before their final year of high school that will support them as they consider how to serve others, how to become leaders, and how to transition to higher education and careers. Other opportunities will include the potential to apply for scholarship funding for education, mentorship and other assistance tailored to their specific needs and interests, and a variety of career services as part of the Rise network.

To encourage service, Rise will invite its community members to make service commitments together and develop a platform to match network members with common interests. In addition, Rise plans to support non-profits or other social enterprises that Rise network members drive together to serve others. Finalists and others in the Rise network will have the opportunity to compete for as-needed funding to launch or scale their ventures; funds are intended to be designated for these purposes in a total pooled amount of at least $5 million per year of the program.

The Role

The Director of Partnerships will lead global partnerships on behalf of Rise, in conjunction with the Executive Director. The Director of Partnerships will be responsible for identifying, cultivating, and managing global partnerships in support of the Rise program in order to drive outreach, program implementation, and the broader mission of Rise. This person will also identify and lead creative efforts to expand the impact of the program through partners, including other funders, foundations, and corporate partners.

Key Responsibilities

Partnership Identification, Outreach, and Management

  • Manage all partnership development, engagement and cultivation
  • Create a systematic, process-driven approach to partner outreach and relationship management
  • Identify and source partnership opportunities
  • Research partners, identify key players and generate interest
  • Collaborate with senior management to align our internal goals with new and existing partner relationships
  • Manage ongoing relationships with current partners and offer new ways to grow the partnership
  • Manage relationships with external partners and vendors to build the brand and the Rise program
  • Champion and manage new projects to create stronger partnerships
  • Build the organizational network and global presence through targeted outreach
  • Liaise with partners to develop innovative projects, competitions, and new ways of supporting the Rise program
  • Analyze and report on partner initiatives to develop best practices for Rise

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

Some of the desired capabilities include:

  • Demonstrated excellence in partnership development, outreach, and management
  • Significant international experience with a track record of operating with global partners
  • Proven experience creating robust partnership strategies
  • Strong knowledge of network development and management
  • Outstanding written and verbal communication skills
  • Understanding of how to build relationships across global cultures
  • Demonstrated teamwork ability and record of impact in high-intensity, team-based environments
  • Values-based, collaborative working style with demonstrated commitment to the highest standards of ethics and confidentiality
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills


Director, Partnerships will:

  • Have at least 10+ years of work experience in government, business, philanthropy, academia, or the military
  • Have a bachelor’s degree or equivalent from an accredited institution
  • Be based in the Schmidt Futures offices in New York and be able to travel within the U.S. and internationally on a regular basis as needed following company policy and permitting circumstances.
Ready to apply?