Director, Budget and Financial Planning: Job Description

The Mellon Foundation ("Foundation") is an $8.0 billion private, national foundation that believes that the arts and humanities are where we express our complex humanity, and we believe that everyone deserves the beauty, transcendence, and freedom to be found there.  Through our grants, we seek to build just communities enriched by meaning and empowered by critical thinking, where ideas and imagination can thrive. It makes grants in four core program areas (Higher Learning, Arts and Culture, Public Knowledge, and Humanities in Place).  The Foundation seeks a Director, Budget and Financial Planning.


Reporting to the CFO, the Director, Budget and Financial Planning provides strategic financial planning in support of the Foundation's mission, goals and objectives.  The position is responsible for creating and implementing a robust budget and financial planning function across the Foundation, including operations, grants, and capital.  The role will lead efforts to leverage technology to enhance the budget and planning process, with strong focus on enhancing reporting and data analysis.

The role will work closely across the Foundation, cultivating positive working relationships, open communication and creating deeper alignment on the financial planning across programs and departments at the Foundation.  The position requires the ability to be proactive and self-directed and must possess the sound judgment and the initiative to work through complex efforts.

This is an individual contributor role.


The Director, Budget and Financial Planning's responsibilities may include, but will not be limited to:

  • Responsible for developing a comprehensive financial planning and budget process across the Foundation, including annual reporting and forecasting, as well as multi-year planning and projection across the organization encompassing operations, grants and capital planning.  This effort will be led with the CFO, along with engagement from Foundation leadership.
  • Leads monthly, quarterly and annual financial reporting process to track the budget(s).
  • Works with the CFO to strategically plan the Foundation's multi-year payout by factoring tax implications; maintain longer-term endowment spending rate and minimum distributions forecasting capabilities. 
  • Proactively monitors the Foundation's authorized spending level and compliance with annual payout requirements, including forecasting any impact from changes in the endowment values, operating expense assumptions, and grant-making assumptions.
  • Creates and maintains reporting tools (reports and dashboards) to make data accessible in an accurate and useful format.
  • Prepares for and conducts regular meetings with departments to review the status of operational budgets, review of grants budgets in collaboration with the Grants Accounting team (as appropriate).
  • Assists in summarizing and presenting a large amount of data to management in a clear and concise manner; ability to analyze current and past trends in key performance indicators.
  • Leads process and system enhancements to enable automation of manual processes, enhancement of reporting and data analytics across the budget and planning process.
  • Prepares and interprets financial models and scenario analyses to advise foundation leadership on key decision points.
  • Prepares presentations and supporting documentation for board and Foundation leadership, as required.
  • Special projects and other duties as assigned.


The ideal candidate would have at least 8–10 years of leadership and management experience in a complex organization, with a focus on financial planning & analysis and strategy.  A bachelor's degree in related field required, ideally an MBA and/or advanced degree in finance, business, or other related field highly desirable.  Applicants should also possess:

  • Knowledge of, passion for, and commitment to the Foundation's mission
  • Analytically oriented with a track record of developing and using sophisticated, data-driven financial models and analytics to support developing financial planning tools, including operating and capital plans
  • Acumen in translating financial analyses into meaningful, actionable products
  • Ability to effectively facilitate and collaborate with others and influence without a direct supervisory relationship
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills
  • Excellent proficiency with Excel for analysis and modeling. Strong PowerPoint skills required
  • Advanced practical experience with enterprise level budget and planning tools, as well as data management and data visualization tools (PowerBI)
  • Ability to work independently, handling and prioritizing multiple time-sensitive projects; possess a firm commitment to meeting deadlines
  • Strong detail orientation
  • Proven ability to maintain confidentiality and practice discretion

Mellon Foundation is committed to providing compensation that is competitive and equitable within the philanthropic sector.  The estimated salary range for this role is $225,000–$265,000.  The amount of pay offered will be determined by a number of factors, including but not limited to qualifications, unique skills, credentials or experience that is expected to impact the candidate's contribution to the role.  We will also consider market data as well as the Foundation's internal pay equity framework.  Mellon offers a generous total reward package that provides base salary as well as a comprehensive benefits program.

Contact Information

Candidates should apply by submitting a thoughtful cover letter describing fit for the position together with a resume and cover letter here.  

The Foundation will consider each response carefully, but only contact those individuals it believes are most qualified for the position.