Staff Accountant: Job Description

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation ("Foundation") is a not-for-profit, grant making organization that seeks to strengthen, promote, and, where necessary, defend the contributions of the humanities and the arts to human flourishing and to the well-being of diverse and democratic societies.  It makes grants in four core program areas (higher education and scholarship in the humanities; arts and cultural heritage; scholarly communications; and international higher education and strategic projects).  The Foundation seeks a Staff Accountant.


The position will be responsible for performing a variety of accounting, cash management, compliance, and disbursement activities associated with the Foundation's administrative expenses.  The candidate will be an integral member of the Finance Department and will work closely with other Foundation staff.  The successful candidate will be thoughtful, highly motivated, solutions-oriented, and collaborative, with well-developed, communication, and organizational skills.  The work is highly detail-oriented and requires consistent accuracy, the ability to anticipate outcomes, multi-tasking, flexibility, cool-headedness, precision, patience, efficiency, and discretion.  The position reports directly to the Accounting Manager.

Position Details

The Staff Accountant's responsibilities include, but will not be limited to the following:

Accounting and Cash Management Responsibilities

  • Accounting for fixed assets including calculating depreciation expense and net asset balances in accordance with GAAP, analyzing disbursements for potential capitalization, maintaining log of additions to fixed assets, preparing quarterly journal entries, and preparing support schedule for annual financial statements
  • Analyzing and reconciling general ledger account balances related to vendor disbursements
  • Monitoring online banking portal for returned payments, positive pay exceptions, and other communications and following up promptly with staff, vendors, and/or bankers, as needed, until resolved
  • Receiving, depositing, analyzing, and recording cash receipts

Vendor Compliance and Disbursement Responsibilities

  • Reviewing and processing new vendor requests in an accurate and timely manner including ensuring compliance and policy requirements are met, creating vendor records in Concur and Great Plains (GP), collecting W-9 forms, and issuing NYS tax-exempt certificates
  • Calculating and issuing 1099’s to over 100 vendors including preparing detailed year-to-year analysis
  • Investigating all outstanding invoice balances and communicating with staff and vendors until resolved
  • Performing semi-annual monitoring and maintenance of GP and Concur vendor records
  • Reviewing and assigning invoices in Concur and manually entering invoices in GP including determining proper general ledger and functional/departmental classifications for each invoice and ensuring accuracy of all data entered
  • Generating payment processing documents, recording payments in GP, and posting payment confirmations in Concur
  • Ensuring all check payments are uploaded to Foundation's banking portal

General Responsibilities

  • Reading and categorizing all e-mails in the Finance team's group inbox and proactively following up until resolved
  • Analyzing contracts with payment terms and communicating with the General Counsel’s office, as needed
  • Maintaining Foundation's matching gifts program including tracking gifts made per employee and confirming eligibility of matching gift recipients
  • Serving as a backup for grants accounting
  • Special projects as needed by the Accounting Manager, Director of Accounting, and CFO


  • Bachelor's degree in accounting and minimum 2 years of experience in accounting
  • Good working knowledge of Microsoft Excel required
  • Knowledge of Great Plains and Concur preferred
  • Ability to manage multiple projects simultaneously
  • Proactive, organized and detail-oriented
  • Strong communication, mathematical, and analytical skills
  • Maturity and integrity required to work with sensitive/confidential information

The Foundation is an equal opportunity employer that offers a competitive salary, outstanding benefits, and excellent working conditions. 

Contact Information

Candidates should apply by submitting a thoughtful cover letter describing fit for the position together with a resume to:  Staff Accountant.  We will consider each response carefully, but contact only those individuals we feel are most qualified for the position.