Program Officer, Women’s Empowerment, Washington DC

Location: San Francisco, Washington DC
Program area: Women's Empowerment and Gender Equality
Deadline: April 20, 2022

The Women’s Empowerment and Gender Equality Program team (WEP) provides technical support for The Asia Foundation’s efforts to transform the lives of women and girls in the Asia-Pacific region and advance gender equality and social inclusion across all Foundation programs. WEP has three overarching strategic objectives related to women’s empowerment: increasing women’s voice and leadership; advancing women’s economic empowerment; and promoting women’s rights and security. These approaches utilize core cross-cutting strategies, including addressing gender-based violence, engaging men and boys, advancing women’s climate leadership and gender-responsive climate action, strengthening women’s networks and movements, and promoting girls’ education. A key component of WEP’s strategy is advancing women’s economic empowerment and opportunities, including the intersection of gender with future-ready workforce development, entrepreneurship, technology, and other STEM disciplines.

The program officer will work closely with members of the WEP team, country offices, other program teams, and colleagues in San Francisco and Washington, DC, on a broad range of women’s and girls’ empowerment programs and gender integration, with a particular focus on women’s economic empowerment, climate leadership, and gender-inclusive approaches to climate change. The program officer will support research, event coordination, and proposal development for public and private donors, and support the reporting of girls’ scholarship programs undertaken by several country offices. The program officer will also support the planning and implementation of gender equality-related workshops, training, and conferences in the U.S. and the Asia Pacific region. The program officer will take the lead on drafting various communications, including a bimonthly Lotus Letter, quarterly update, and weekly WEP Wednesday internal newsletter. Given the nature of the position, the program officer position requires the ability and willingness to undertake travel to Asia (10-15%), as required and will be based in Washington, DC, or San Francisco, CA.

Pay Range: $51,940 – $78,016 a year


  • The program officer is supervised by the senior program officer and works closely with the entire team;
  • Frequent contact and close cooperation with country office staff in Asia and the Pacific;
  • Regular engagement with colleagues in WEP, Program Specialists Group, Public Sector Development Services, Resource Development, Project Management Support Unit, and other San Francisco-based teams
  • Contact with donors and grantees, partner organizations, and project consultants as needed
  • When in Asia, contact with bilateral and multilateral development assistance agencies, private sector and individual donors, diplomatic missions, national and international NGO directors, and staff


Fundraising: Support program development and proposal writing for public and private donors, such as conducting research on issues that could be developed into new programs and participating in brainstorming and WEP unit discussions about fundraising. Attend meetings with donors and potential donors as requested. Track and support the drafting of reports, coordinating meetings and presentations, and other correspondence to donors, as assigned. This may include program development and fundraising for women’s economic empowerment, women’s climate leadership, gender-inclusive approaches to climate change, and girls’ education.

External Representation: Represent the Foundation at meetings and other forums and speak knowledgeably about the Foundation’s program areas to a broad range of audiences.

Public Events: Assist with public and staff events, including assisting with event logistics and coordination, preparing PowerPoint slides, and supporting the development of discussion points for WEP and other staff for public events.

Administrative Support: Office administrative assistance, including maintaining program files.

Financial Support: Monitor program budgets and prepare grant documentation, as requested.

Program Support: Write, edit, and proofread program-related documents and correspondence, including WEP Wednesday newsletter; draft and send out correspondence; draft contracts, letters of agreement, and amendments; conduct internet research on selected topics; and update WEP publications and marketing materials. Provide technical support related to women’s economic empowerment, gender, and climate change programming and girls’ education, as needed.

Other: Perform other duties as may be assigned by the senior program officer or other unit staff.


  • Minimum 3-5 years of work experience in international development and gender equality; prefer gender training and/or capacity-building experience. Master’s degree in a relevant field, such as International Development, Women’s Rights, Gender Studies, Preventing Gender-Based Violence, Economics, Political Science, Sociology.
  • Demonstrate expertise in working to advance women’s empowerment and gender equality, including approaches to gender mainstreaming.
  • Strong knowledge of women’s economic empowerment and gender-inclusive approaches to climate change, preferably in Asia and Pacific contexts. Demonstrate commitment to women’s empowerment, gender equality, and social inclusion.
  • Strong knowledge of gender analysis and gender mainstreaming/integration. Prefer experience with conducting training and/or capacity building on gender issues. Experience in women’s economic empowerment, gender-inclusive climate change, and girls’ education an asset.
  • Event planning, including identifying and inviting speakers, organizing logistics, managing in-person and virtual events.
  • Excellent writing and communication skills to support a variety of internal and external communications. Program development and proposal writing/editing experience.
  • Ability to monitor program budgets and prepare grant documentation, as requested.
  • Must be flexible, honest, reliable, high level of integrity, cultural sensitivity, and be a team player. Ability to handle multiple priorities in a fast-paced, small-team environment.
  • Must pay close attention to detail while maintaining a broad perspective on program goals and approaches.
  • Based in Washington, DC or San Francisco, CA, with willingness and capacity to travel as required.
  • Proficient in the use of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Adobe Acrobat; prefer familiarity with SharePoint and Microsoft Teams

Why work at The Asia Foundation?

At a critical moment in history, you will have the opportunity to help solve some of the toughest challenges in the development sector. You will work with people who encourage learning and leadership, enhance civil society, promote constructive government engagement, advance equality, and diversity, support women’s empowerment, and address environmental problems in the Asia Pacific region. You will work in an innovative environment and build lasting relationships. The Asia Foundation and its partners are unmatched throughout the region. This is an opportunity to work with and learn from some of the most accomplished leaders, influencers, and social entrepreneurs working in and with Asia today.