Director of Finance & Operations

Research to Prevent Blindness

Posted: 7/10/2020

Position Type: Full-Time (Paid)

Function: Finance/Accounting

Primary domain: Foundation/Grantmaking

City: New York

Postal code: 10017

State: New York

Country: United States

Organization Information:


$10M - $20M


Mission statement:

Research to Prevent Blindness (RPB) is the leading nonprofit organization supporting eye research directed at the prevention, treatment or eradication of all diseases that damage and destroy sight. As part of this purview, RPB also supports efforts to grow and sustain a robust and diverse vision research community. Since it was founded in 1960 by Dr. Jules Stein, RPB has awarded more than $377 million in research grants to the most talented vision scientists at the nation’s leading medical schools. As a result, RPB has been associated with nearly every major breakthrough in the understanding and treatment of vision loss in the past 60 years. Learn more at


Position Details:

Job Description:

Reporting directly to the President, the Director of Finance & Operations will provide leadership and financial stewardship, and be part of an 8-person, highly interactive, high-performance team.  Such leadership will require close collaborations with other members of the Senior Leadership Team, including the Director of Grants Administration, the Director of Strategic Partnerships, and the Director of External Affairs & Communication.  He or she will provide high level, proactive financial expertise; and lead both short-term and long-term financial planning.  The Director of Finance & Operations must interact effectively with Board Committees, the outside audit firm, and the Outsourced Chief Investment Officer (OCIO) team.  Part of a small team and supported by high-level accounting consultants, the individual will provide direction, be hands-on, and continually improve day-to-day financial operations and systems including accounting, auditing, budgeting, and grants management.  The position will be based in New York, New York. 


Manage, and execute a range of related functions in, the following areas:

Financial Management and Planning:

       Guide the annual budget process.  Prepare budget options.  Enhance capacity of RPB staff to manage budgets efficiently.  

       Engage and support the Board’s audit and finance committees around issues and trends in financial operating models and delivery.

       Ensure timely, accurate, and useful financial reporting for all internal colleagues and external funders.

       Collaborate on financial matters with any consultants retained by RPB.

       Liaise with RPB’s Director of Grants Administration and the Director of Strategic Partnerships regarding financial aspects of organization’s grant programs, and development funding, including application, award and monitoring processes.

       Work closely with the Foundation’s OCIO, President, and Board Committees in monitoring the performance and asset allocation of the investment portfolio.

       Benchmark against peers on key financial indicators.


Accounting and Taxes: 

       Oversee all accounts, ledgers, and reporting systems ensuring compliance with appropriate GAAP standards and regulatory requirements.

       Maintain internal control and safeguards for receipt of revenue, costs, and program budgets and actual expenditures.

       Coordinate with RPB’s staff regarding state filings, 990’s, etc., and oversee all audit activity; partner with RPB’s accountants on a frequent basis

       Consistently analyze financial data and present financial reports in an accurate and timely manner; clearly communicate monthly, quarterly, and annual financial statements; monitor progress and changes and keep senior leadership abreast of RPB’s financial status.

       Work with RPB’s leadership in the annual budgeting and planning process; administer and review all financial plans and compare to actual results with a view to identify, explain, and correct variances as appropriate.


Facilities and Personnel:

       Ensure cost-effective maintenance and upkeep of headquarters office.

       Supervise office lease management.

       Oversee, negotiate, and manage multiple vendors, including insurance (health, HR-related, organizational and cyber liability, and D & O).

       Develop and maintain accounting and reporting systems for employee compensation and benefits, and employee work attendance and leave.

       Develop and maintain disaster-readiness and -response plans for the organization.


Other projects and duties that may be assigned as the organization evolves.  


Education:  Undergraduate degree required; advanced degree (MBA; CPA) preferred.


       Minimum of 8-10 years related work experience in relevant positions of increasing scope and responsibility, with at least 5 years at supervisory level.  

       Experience in nonprofit organizations and public accounting a plus.

       Experience with investment accounting desirable.

       Solid experience coordinating audit activities and managing reporting, budget development and analysis, accounts payable and receivable, general ledger, payroll, and accounting for investments.

       A track record in grants management as it relates to compliance and reporting of government, corporate and foundation grants is essential.

       Extensive hands-on experience with common spreadsheet, accounting and financial software.    

       Experience in a senior financial role of an institution-as an accounting manager, controller, Finance Director or similar.


       Evidence of the ability to consistently make good decisions through a combination of analysis, wisdom, experience and judgment.

       Excellent written and oral communications skills.

       Meticulous attention to both the big picture and to detail. 

       Ability to demonstrate a high level of discretion, confidentiality and diplomacy.

       Results-oriented, deadline-driven, accountable, proactive leadership skills. 


       Personal qualities of integrity, credibility, and unwavering commitment to RPB’s mission; a proactive, hands-on strategic thinker who will own, in partnership with the President and Board officers, the responsibility for finance.

       Seeking a dynamic, flexible, confident and self-motivated professional.

       Strong team building and collaboration skills


 RPB offers a competitive compensation package that includes unusually rich benefits. RPB presently pays for all health care premiums for the employee and 70% of the health care premiums for qualified dependents; contributes the equivalent of 25% of an employees salary into a 401(k), funded by the employer; and provides 5% for out-of-pocket medical expenses. Additional pre-tax savings is available through employee contributions to the 401(k) up to federal limits.  There is a waiting period before non-health benefits begin and some benefit provisions may change over time.


Commensurate with Experience

Posting Expiration Date:


How to Apply:

Research to Prevent Blindness is an Equal Opportunity Employer and encourages candidates of all backgrounds to apply for this position.

Research to Prevent Blindness has retained the services of BSBSearch. Please email a cover letter and resume in confidence to:

Barbara Brown

Managing Director


[email protected]


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