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Senior Program Director, Safety Net

Code for America

Code for America

San Francisco, CA, USA · Remote · United States
Posted on Saturday, May 13, 2023

Code for America reached a voluntary recognition agreement with Code for America Workers United, affiliated with OPEIU (Office Professional Employees International Union, Local 1010), effective on October 22, 2021. We are currently engaged in negotiations towards our first collective bargaining agreement.

Code for America believes government can work for the people, by the people, in the digital age, and that government at all levels can and should work well for all people. For more than a decade, we’ve worked to show that with the mindful use of technology, we can break down barriers, meet community needs, and find real solutions.

Our employees and active community of volunteers build and transform government and community tools and services, making them so good they inspire change. We merge the best parts of technology, nonprofit, and government to help support the people who need it most. With a focus on diversity, equity, inclusion, and deep empathy for partners in government and community organizations and the people that our partners serve, we’re building a movement of motivated change agents driven by meaningful results and lasting impact. At Code for America, you contribute to exciting work while learning and developing in a supportive and flexible environment. Our compensation and benefits are holistic and thoughtfully curated to represent our employees and our mission. Help us drive real generational change that lasts.

Code for America is looking for a talented Senior Program Director who will be responsible for leading Code for America’s Safety Net Innovation Lab, as this multi-year initiative enters a maturity phase of nationally scaled impact. The Safety Net Innovation Lab launched in 2022 as the focal initiative of Code for America’s safety net portfolio, which has expanded and grown nationwide by building on lessons and successes from the last 10 years. The Lab builds upon our track record of products, services, and partnerships with states like Louisiana, Minnesota, and California, to bring impact to scale.

About the Role:

The Lab is working with 15 states over 7 years on multiyear partnerships that will implement meaningful changes to the experience of applying for, using, and renewing benefits like Medicaid, SNAP, WIC, and childcare assistance. Each of these partnerships work to accomplish tangible improvements and measurably better outcomes, like a redesigned SNAP application, or standing up a new texting system to support renewal reminders and reduce churn. When states are partners in the Innovation Lab, they also join a learning community of their peers in cohort states. Our state partners collaborate to exchange ideas, share lessons learned, practice skills and tools, and troubleshoot challenges as their projects and goals advance.

As the Senior Program Director, you will lead and drive the Innovation Lab’s impact strategy and goals, including leading the cross-functional leadership team, developing strong strategic partnerships with government agencies and non-profit organizations, ensuring consistent financial management, and securing mission-aligned revenue opportunities, in collaboration with the portfolio’s cross-functional leadership team and Code for America’s leadership team. The Senior Program Director is expected to provide clear and engaged leadership to support outstanding execution across the portfolio, including leadership of the cross-functional Safety Net Leadership team and direct supervision of program directors within the portfolio.

As a Senior Program Director, you should be highly skilled at working across disciplines, including program, policy, product, research, design, engineering, development, revenue, finance, and communications, to provide strategy and structure to opportunities as they evolve. You should be comfortable taking calculated risks and navigating ambiguity - while engaging and supporting our government partners to do the same - while staying laser focused on delivering tangible results and measurable impact that matters to real people. You should know how to evaluate and iterate upon organizational processes and team structures as the Innovation Lab reaches a phase of sustainability and maturity following rapid growth.

The Senior Program Director should be savvy with government relations and working within government agencies and systems, while also working shoulder-to-shoulder within Code for America’s digital teams, with an ability to fluidly move between different organizational cultures. The ideal candidate will bring significant experience with U.S. human services and nutrition program operations, administration or policy, such as SNAP, Medicaid, WIC, or TANF. The Senior Program Director will bring a bold vision for Code for America’s digital service delivery and partnerships as leverage for systems change in the nation’s safety net. The ideal candidate will have perseverance, creativity, humility, and eagerness to provide leadership to cross-functional, digital teams aimed at bold and transformational impact goals

This role reports to the Chief Program Officer and may be Remote or based in San Francisco. This role can include travel up to 25% of time.

In this position you will:

  • Lead the strategy and execution of the safety net portfolio’s Safety Net Innovation Lab, a multiyear initiative to maximize impact nationally through a program of high-impact services developed with Code for America principles, practices and values.
  • Provide leadership, strategic guidance, and collaboration to the Safety Net Portfolio Leadership team, which oversees thes strategy, operations, partnerships, and product and tech leadership to support the future direction of product development, iterative planning cycles, and program and policy impact.
  • Develop and grow a sustainable financial model for the program, including a mix of philanthropic and government revenue sources, by developing relationships, proposals, and contract agreements for mission-aligned funding, in collaboration with the Chief Program Officer, Chief Revenue Officer, and Development team.
  • Provide expertise and strategic guidance related to federal and state policy and administration of SNAP, Medicaid, and other human services programs.
  • Develop, maintain, and grow trusted relationships with government leaders, including state agency leadership, federal administrators, and policymakers.
  • Strengthen partnerships with policy, research, and community organizations that can scale the impact of the Social Safety Net Portfolio and drive larger systems change.
  • Drive superb execution, anticipating staffing needs, risks, and the need for frequent and clear communication internally and with stakeholders.
  • Manage, coach and grow a team of program management staff, including direct supervision of 2-5 program directors.
  • In collaboration with Marketing and Communications, refine a strong program narrative, and amplify it through writing, disseminating, and speaking at conferences, events, and in the field with partners.
  • Participate in Code for America’s Leadership Team to tightly coordinate feedback, strategic alignment, and communication across the organization.

About you:

  • Servant leader that puts those closest to the issue first, seeks to serve instead of command, shows humility instead of brandishing authority, and looks to enhance teamwork to unlock potential, creativity and sense of purpose.
  • Ability to work collaboratively across disciplines with program, product, engineering, service and product design, research, marketing, and development staff.
  • Natural collaborator who values honesty and openness, builds relationships, seeks input, does not shy away from conflict, and facilitates decision-making.
  • Able to prioritize a direction, follow through, and make corrections to stay on track.
  • Cares about end users and real people, and goes the extra mile to “get it right” for them rather than simply hitting performance goals.
  • Comfortable working in an environment that requires team building and mentoring.

What you’ll get:


Code for America’s salary bands are transparent internally as a part of our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. We are happy to extend this transparency during the recruitment process. As a part of our equitable hiring practices, we aim to target the midpoint of the 2nd quartile of the range for all new hires.

The targets for this role are dependent on the market/geographic location. The targets for this role range from $139,953 to $171,325.

Benefits and perks:

  • Values:
    • Leadership and teammates who value Equity, Inclusion, and Diversity (DE&I)
    • A collaborative, cross-functional, hardworking and fun environment
  • Medical & Retirement:
    • Full benefits package with 100% coverage towards select medical, dental and vision plans and contributes 80% of the cost towards dependent and family coverage
    • 401k plan with matching funds up to 3%
  • Professional development:
    • Bi annual 360 review process alongside compensation reviews
    • $1000 annual (per calendar year) stipend towards professional development
    • A manager and org-wide structure that supports and enables professional development
  • Flexible Time:
    • Unlimited Paid Time Off policy
    • Flexible working hours- we aim to hold all internal meetings between 10 AM - 3 PM PT
    • CfA employees may work remotely across the US
      • CfA employees may not work remotely outside of the US at anytime during their employment
  • Employee enablement support:
    • $200 stipend in first paycheck for remote environment setup
    • Additional equipment reimbursement of up to $500 for remote enablement
    • Cell phone and/or internet reimbursement of up to $50 per month

Equal Employment Opportunity:

Code for America values a diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplace and strongly encourages women, people of color, LGBTQ+ folks, people with disabilities, members of ethnic minorities, foreign-born residents, and veterans to apply. Code for America is an equal opportunity employer. Applicants will not be discriminated against because of race, color, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, religion, national origin, citizenship status, disability, ancestry, marital status, veteran status, medical condition or any protected category prohibited by local, state or federal laws.