Director of Financial Strategy and Compliance (.60 FTE Exempt)

Berkeley, CA
This is a part-time exempt position with a competitive benefits package. Salary $75,000 - $96,600
Apr 10, 2019
May 10, 2019
Job Function
Accounting / Finance
Focus Areas
Science / Technology
Position Type
Part Time
Degree Level
Willingness to Travel
Not willing to travel
Experience Level


The Director of Financial Strategy and Compliance serves as internal partner to the Controller, Directorate, Board, and other key stakeholders on financial matters by making recommendations, suggesting pro-active strategies, and creating long and short-term goals and budgets. The position ensures that MSRI has the procedures in place to support effective financial reporting and operation. The incumbent will possess a mix of leadership skills and hands-on involvement to work as part of the finance team to enhance the financial reporting related to scientific, education and outreach programs.



  • Lead the annual budget effort in close collaboration with the Controller and senior management
  • Working with the Directorate, suggest and create long-term goals and budgets
  • Advise on fulfillment of the Strategic Vision


  • Review grant proposal budgets prior to submission and participate in revisions with Controller
  • Be one of two designated persons to submit completed grant proposals (reviewed and approved by the Controller) using various online portals
  • Monitor compliance with federal and private grant terms
  • Prepare the annual re-application for the Indirect Cost Rate for all government contracts, as reviewed by the Controller, and submitted and implemented within guidelines
  • Be the secondary designee to perform the NSF cash-draw process


  • Drive best financial practices by maintaining standard financial policies and procedures, and monitor adherence
  • Train staff in the administration of accounting policies and procedures
  • Maintain and improve internal controls and process improvements to strengthen the organizations compliance with GAAP, implementing Title 2 CFR Part 200 standards
  • Ensure that systems are in place to guarantee timeliness and accuracy
  • Attend monthly close meetings
  • Set strategy for staff adherence to the finance department filing structure, including digital files
  • Advise the Controller in preparing financial reports as needed


  • Ensure that record keeping meets the requirements of auditors and government agencies
  • Periodically perform internal audits of transactions
  • Stay abreast of new developments and lead staff in emerging accounting standards, government guidelines, and relevant tax laws and trends, and communicate and implement changes proactively and strategically, as appropriate
  • Monitor the reliability of control systems
  • Identify key elements of the financial risk profile


  • Other  duties as assigned


  • Minimum B.S. or B.A. in Accounting or Finance, MBA preferred
  • Minimum 10 years nonprofit financial management experience with some relevant time having served in a high-level position
  • Government grant accounting and compliance experience with the National Science Foundation, National Security Agency and/or an equivalent federal agency required
  • Extensive experience in grants management including corporate, foundations and government grants.
  • Experience with indirect cost rate development and application to appropriate grant costs
  • Ability to develop a clearly defined and focused business vision; skilled at both thinking with a strategic purpose as well as creating a vision
  • Expert computer skills including but not limited to MS Office suite, database software, accounting software, Internet usage.  Good knowledge of Financial Edge Accounting software (Blackbaud)


  • CPA a plus
  • Track record of success in process improvements and/or system implementations or conversions, including rollout of complex accounting initiatives throughout an organization
  • Exceptional communication skills and effective at communicating to all levels of management and staff
  • Ability to work independently and efficiently, establish priorities, multi-task, and establish and meet deadlines with changing assignments and priorities
  • Exceptional analytical skills and strong attention to detail
  • Knowledge of principles of taxation, domestic and foreign
  • Ability to be flexible and function well in a dynamic, fast-paced environment, including ability to be proactive to growth and change


The Mathematical Sciences Research Institute (MSRI) is one of the world’s preeminent centers for collaborative research. A Board of Trustees, composed of accomplished business and academic leaders, currently including both a Nobel Prize winner and a Breakthrough Prize winner, oversees the Institute’s strategy, and assures its operational and financial welfare. A committee of ten renowned mathematical scientists governs the Institute’s scientific program providing a vision of the field that is perpetually renewed.

MSRI has been advancing knowledge through advanced mathematical research since 1982, and has enjoyed the continuous core support from the National Science Foundation (NSF) throughout that time. The Institute hosts some 1700 mathematicians each year, for stays of up to one academic year. The intense research-level activity serves researchers from the postdoctoral stage through the most renowned and senior professors. In addition, the Institute has programs for graduate students, programs in mathematics education, and an array of programs to help the general public experience the pleasures, as well as the importance, of mathematics.

Though MSRI is an independent 501(c)3 corporation, MSRI's Director is also a Professor at the University of California, Berkeley, which donates 100% of his time to the running of the Institute. MSRI takes advantage of its close proximity to the University and to Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and also collaborates nationally with organizations such as the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.  The Institute’s prize-winning, purpose-designed forty-eight-thousand-foot building enjoys spectacular views of the San Francisco Bay.

MSRI has become a model for institutes around the world, and its reputation is such that mathematicians from far and wide make it a professional priority to participate in the Institute’s programs. A sense of the activity and physical plant of MSRI can be had through the short video at .

Nearly half of the Institute’s $11.5M annual budget now comes from individual donors, foundations, corporations and academic institutions. MSRI successfully completed a $12M capital campaign in 2006 to add a new wing to the building, and a $15M Endowment campaign in 2013.  The endowment is currently $25M.



Please submit, in MS Word or Adobe Acrobat file format, the following four items of information addressed to Personnel. Only complete applications will be considered.

  • Cover letter
  • Resume
  • Date Available
  • Three business references