Our ideal Finance Manager is someone with around 5 years of experience supporting nonprofit grants administration and finance functions, and a working understanding of GAAP. The ability to track budgetary compliance and spending of restricted grants is essential (primarily foundation grants). As a part of our operations team, you’ll wear a lot of hats. The primary responsibilities are to monitor project and grant budgets and to manage our accounts payable and receivable functions. You’ll also help analyze our financial information so that we can use it more effectively in making decisions. This position reports to our Finance & Operations Director.

A typical week might include reviewing a project budget with development staff, recording and depositing checks, processing bill payments, drafting financial reports for a funder, and collaborating with the operations team to test out potential software. At the end of our fiscal year, you’ll be a big help in working with our auditing firm by providing accurate, organized information. Throughout the year you’ll also work on various other projects. Some examples could include evaluating and overhauling internal workflows and participating in the annual budget process.

The Alliance for the Great Lakes sets a protection agenda for the Great Lakes, a resource of global significance and the world’s largest source of surface freshwater. The Alliance seeks to protect the Great Lakes from their greatest threats, build a resilient future for communities and instill the value of clean water throughout the region. Learn more about the Alliance at


Accounting Administration

  • Process deposits of checks and cash, communicate all receipts to the development staff.
  • Receive and enter all payables and expenses, ensuring accurate coding and timely payments.
  • Coordinate with relevant staff to ensure high quality internal coordination of financial processes
  • Create reimbursement requests for funders and track receivables
  • Assist Finance & Operations Director in forecasting expenses and revenue based on program budgets and work plans
  • Resolve accounting and reporting issues as necessary; prepare monthly budget-versus-actual status reports for use by program officers, directors and staff.

Grants & Contracts

  • Monitor finance-specific grant requirements and ensure compliance
  • Coordinate the budgeting process and detail for grant proposals
  • Communicate with development and program management to resolve issues in a timely and professional manner.
  • Develop and implement strategies to optimize the grants and contracts administration process
  • Prepare and reconcile required financial reports for all assigned grants before the required due dates.
  • Conduct quarterly check-ins with program and development managers for governmental grants and private grants to ensure appropriate spend-down and monitoring of grant.
  • Take accountability for ongoing learning and development; maintaining current knowledge of funder processes and compliance requirements.


  • 5 years of experience in accounting support and/or grants administration.
  • Proven commitment to timely and accurate performance.
  • Approach work with optimism and candor.
  • Knowledge and ability to proactively anticipate, identify, and define problems; seek root causes; and develop timely and practical solutions.
  • Demonstrated initiative and motivation while working independently and in teams
  • Well-developed communications skills to serve all staff members as both a primary source of information and aid in keeping internal processes on schedule
  • Experienced in utilizing financial, reporting, and fundraising software for both extracting and analyzing data on a regular basis
  • Familiarity with the institutional giving landscape as it relates to grants management
  • Prior use of QuickBooks and Salesforce, or similar accounting and CRM software
  • Experience with Projector or other project management software a big plus

Job Parameters

  • This position is full-time exempt and consistent with Alliance employment policy. Salary to be commensurate with experience.
  • Excellent benefits, including health, dental, and paid leave. Employees are eligible for participation in our retirement plan after 1 year of employment.
  • The strong preference is for this position to be located in the Chicago area for office-based tasks as needed, including weekly check deposits.

Application Process

Please e-mail a cover letter, resume and references to: Include job title in the subject line.

Applications will be accepted until the position is filled, with a desired start date of June 1, 2021. Materials should be compatible with Microsoft Word or Adobe Acrobat. Applicants will receive confirmation of receipt of their materials and further guidance and updates about the hiring process by e-mail, with interviews provided for finalists. No phone inquiries please.

About the Alliance for the Great Lakes

The Alliance for the Great Lakes is an Equal Opportunity Employer. The search process will reinforce the Alliance’s belief that achieving diversity requires an enduring commitment to inclusion that must find full expression in our organizational culture, values, norms, and behaviors.

The Alliance’s vision is a healthy Great Lakes for people and wildlife, forever. Its mission is to conserve and restore the world’s largest freshwater resource using policy, education and local efforts, ensuring a healthy Great Lakes and clean water for generations of people and wildlife. For more information about the Alliance’s programs and work, please visit us online at