Program Officer, Research Operations

The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research

About the organization

The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research (MJFF) was founded in 2000 with one clear objective: accelerating meaningful therapeutic advances and, ultimately, a cure for Parkinson’s disease (PD). The Foundation applies extraordinary scientific, business and media assets to this singular focus—thus creating a unique and dynamic organization. Since inception, MJFF has quickly grown into the largest nonprofit funder of Parkinson’s disease research, having funded over $1.5 billion in research projects in both academic and industry labs worldwide.


- Leverage project management experience to support successful development and ongoing management of complex, multi-stakeholder initiatives as they emerge and evolve.

- Design, develop, manage, and communicate funded project plans, schedules, and related budgets.

- Actively contribute to strategic planning discussions and processes around funding priorities and planning.

- Ensure MJFF best practices and rigorous project management methods are employed in developing and executing projects.

- Relationship management of external partners, which include other research funders, key opinion leaders, individual researchers and investigators, universities, and private-public partnerships.

- Coordinate and manage MJFF project committees, working groups, and multi-partner consortia by working closely with internal and external collaborators to develop agendas, coordinate logistics, prepare materials for discussion, circulate minutes, chair meetings as needed, and support execution of next steps.

- Troubleshoot and problem solve as issues arise; exercise excellent decision-making and propose solutions for tough issues related to project administration.

- Serve as the business lead between the MJFF science team and grantees to design and manage the operational lifecycle of a grant or funded project.

- Routinely review and recommend best practices to improve workflow and systems efficiencies.


- Demonstrated project management skills, with 3-5 years of experience supporting complex projects; knowledge of and experience in project management tools and methodologies strongly preferred.

- Ability to translate scientific concept and research goals into operational activities such as risk assessment, strategy setting, and tactical planning.

- Excellent time and meeting management skill required; demonstrated ability to prioritize work and information at hand and manage multiple projects simultaneously.

- Ability to maintain exceptional attention to detail while considering how those details impact the big picture.

- Strong interpersonal and people management skills; ability to work productively both independently and as part of a team, including reporting to cross-functional managers.

- Excellent written and verbal communication and presentation skills.

- Excellent Microsoft Office skills required, including proficiency with Microsoft Excel.

- Working knowledge of grant management systems such as Blackbaud or Smart Simple is preferred but not required.

- Comfortable and capable of managing multiple communication and collaboration tools and platforms such as Microsoft Teams, Share Point, and project management software applications.

- Willingness to adapt when necessary; comfortable with ambiguity and flexible to changing business dynamics and priorities.

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