Program Manager

Manager, Programs

Forward Arkansas is a nonprofit organization co-founded in 2015 by the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation and the Walton Family Foundation. We drive bold, equitable change in Arkansas education to transform learning and improve outcomes for every student.

Forward works statewide to establish a shared innovative vision for education in Arkansas. We partner with state and district leaders, educators and communities to lead our state toward a future education system that is equitable, student-centered and prepares all students for success in life and career.

We are currently seeking a Manager to support the development, management and execution of Forward’s program efforts across Arkansas. At Forward we are focused on ensuring that every student has access to great educators and receives a transformative learning experience that prepares them for career and life in today’s world. We create opportunities for school districts, schools and other program partners to develop innovative visions to better serve students and teachers. We provide support, guidance and solutions that align with their local needs and priorities.

The Program Manager will report to the Senior Director of Programs and will collaborate on overall program strategy and play a central role in managing existing programs as well as developing and executing new programs.

The Manager, Programs will demonstrate a hypothesis-driven and outcome-oriented mindset, a high-level of creativity and a bias toward action, especially in ambiguity.

Responsibilities include:

  • Engage school district leaders, educators and program partners throughout the state to expand Forward’s network, build awareness of program offerings and identify potential partners.
  • Research and engage with leading organizations and providers in Arkansas to identify innovative strategies that can inform Forward’s work
  • Manage all aspects of program execution including marketing, recruitment and selection of participants, logistics, and ongoing coordination of programs.
  • Manage relationships with leadership of schools, districts, and institutions that participate in Forward programs.
  • Engage with program participants and partners to evaluate program effectiveness and capture lessons learned for continuous improvement and to inform our future initiatives.
  • Identify opportunities to capture and elevate innovative practices and stories through social media and other communication channels.
  • Support grant reporting, board meeting preparation and program operations.


  • Bachelor's degree or equivalent practical experience.
  • 2 years of experience in a nonprofit, education or a client-facing role.
  • Experience in K12 public education preferred
  • A strong work ethic and a detail-oriented approach
  • Comfort in new or unprecedented contexts
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Must be able to think analytically and strategically
  • Excellent organizational and project management skills
  • Capability to simultaneously managing multiple projects with different deadlines

To Apply:

Please submit your resume and responses to the below questions to Courtney Lincoln at

  1. What do you find gives you the most energy on a daily basis in your current role?
  2. What do you find drains the most energy?
  3. What characteristics about you give you the confidence to thrive on a small team tackling big problems?