Now hiring: Thriving Communities Program Manager

Smart Growth America seeks a dynamic and passionate individual to support the Thriving Communities Team. The new Program Manager will collaborate with a dynamic team to support the smart growth movement and contribute to advancing our strategic priorities: Racial Equity, Climate, and Public Health.

Organization overview

Smart Growth America (SGA) is a national non-profit organization, headquartered in Washington, DC, that envisions a country where no matter where you live, or who you are, you can enjoy living in a place that is healthy, prosperous, and resilient. We empower communities through technical assistance, advocacy, and thought leadership to realize our vision of livable places, healthy people, and shared prosperity.

Thriving Communities team overview

The Thriving Communities Team weaves together complementary disciplines to partner with diverse local leaders to create healthy places where people can prosper. Thriving Communities leverages SGA’s multidisciplinary skill sets and experiences to partner with communities of all sizes throughout the country through comprehensive, on-the-ground technical assistance. Our programming spans transportation, economic development, fiscal health, land use, racial equity, arts and culture, public health, resilience, community design, and Complete Streets. Through our work, we serve as a portal to connect communities to each other and to programs across Smart Growth America.

Job description

The Thriving Communities Program Manager will be a member of Smart Growth America’s (SGA) Transportation and Thriving Communities Team, reporting to the Director of Thriving Communities, and is expected to contribute to a fast-paced, collaborative team environment. This position works closely with staff to advance SGA’s role in thought leadership, advocacy, and technical assistance. Specifically, the Program Manager works to support SGA’s partnership with CDC’s Active People, Healthy NationSM Initiative to get 27 million more Americans more physically active by 2027, using active transportation and land use strategies to create healthier, more prosperous communities. The team is looking for a dynamic, organized, people person, who is a master multitasker with excellent communication skills and a “can-do” attitude.


  • Administration: Consistent and excellent grant management, including tracking tasks, deliverables, outcomes, and budgets, and reporting to senior staff and partners.
  • Project management: Manages projects, including developing plans, program documents, and timelines and running schedules, logistics, invoicing, presentations, and tracking.
  • Research and writing: Contribute research and content for program materials, proposals, and reports to partners, and for published Smart Growth America reports as needed.
  • Workshop management: Manages and facilitates technical assistance projects or workshops. This involves managing the schedule, coordinating with the technical assistance instructors, overseeing the invoicing, and collaborating with the client on setting the dates, venue, and other logistics for any workshops.
  • Technical assistance: Supports the development of tools to support technical assistance efforts such as building presentations, developing worksheets, creating informational documents, and other resources as needed on an interdisciplinary basis for activities across the Thriving Communities Team.
  • Event management: manages the implementation of the Thriving Community events and meetings.
  • Serves as an ambassador for the Thriving Communities Team and Smart Growth America.
  • Additional duties as assigned.


The ideal candidate will have a minimum of a four-year college degree and 4-6 years of related experience. Higher educational attainment is a plus. Experience working on or managing federal grants is desirable. Candidates will also have a strong commitment to our north star: a country where no matter where you live, or who you are, you can enjoy living in a place that is healthy, prosperous, and resilient. Prefer candidates who can demonstrate experience in or interest in promoting racial equity and closing racial disparities.

Compensation and location

Salary commensurate with experience and will range $60,000-72,000 a year. This is a full-time position with benefits, including health insurance, 401k, and paid vacation and sick leave.

This position reports to the Director for Thriving Communities. SGA staff are currently working remotely due to the COVID-19 pandemic and will do so until January 24, 2022; therefore, the employee filling this position can live anywhere in the United States during the remote working period but must plan to work in person once Smart Growth America staff returns to the office.

How to apply

Please send a cover letter and resume to [email protected] with “Thriving Communities Program Manager” in the subject line. Applications will be received on a rolling basis until October 22, 2021. In the cover letter, please indicate how you learned of this opportunity.

Commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion

Smart Growth America are committed to building a diverse staff and strongly encourages applications from candidates of color.

Employment and promotional opportunities are based upon individual capabilities and qualifications without regard to race, color, religion, gender, pregnancy, sexual orientation/preference, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, disability, veteran status or any other protected characteristic as established under law.