Washington D.C.
Oct 14, 2020
Nov 13, 2020
Job Function
Accounting / Finance
Position Type
Full Time
Degree Level
Willingness to Travel
Not willing to travel
Experience Level

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities is one of the nation’s leading policy institutes working on issues affecting low-income families and individuals. With a national reputation for conducting rigorous research and analysis, developing policy ideas and strategies, and shaping a broad array of policy debates at the federal and state levels, the Center works to reduce poverty, promote equity, and build opportunity.   

With a budget exceeding $40 million and more than 160 staff, the Center seeks a Controller to join its nine-person Finance team. Reporting to the Chief Financial Officer (CFO), the Controller will lead accounting operations and supervise a staff of three professionals. The Controller oversees all accounting functions, including accounts payable, accounts receivable, payroll, audits, and regulatory compliance. The Controller works closely with program leaders and their staffs, not only to educate them regarding finance and accounting procedures, but also to explore how best to support program operations. As a senior member of the Finance team, the Controller will collaborate closely with staff responsible for budget and grant administration and support the CFO in overall management of the Finance operation and reporting and presentations to executive leadership and the Center’s Board. The Controller will work proactively and creatively to develop and improve systems and reports that are accurate, reliable, and aid decision-making by senior leaders across the organization.   


  • Oversees all accounts, ledgers, and reporting systems ensuring compliance with appropriate GAAP standards and regulatory requirements. Maintains internal controls and safeguards for receipt of revenue, costs, and expenditures. 
  • Develops, monitors, analyzes, presents, and interprets informative and useful financial reports in an accurate and timely manner to aid decision-making. Assesses information needs of senior leaders and develops reports and analyses responsive to those needs. 
  • Supports the CFO in engaging the Board’s finance and audit committee. 
  • Coordinates all audit activity and regulatory compliance. 
  • Drives continual improvement of accounting practices and procedures to increase efficiency both within the Finance team and across the organization.   
  • Collaborates with the budget and grants administration staff in the annual budgeting and planning process. Monitors budget plans and actual results to identify, explain, and correct variances as appropriate.   
  • Spearheads the implementation, operation, and continued improvement of accounting software packages and tools. 
  • Leads a team of three full-time accounting staff. Leverages the strengths of finance team members to clarify roles and responsibilities. Supports training to enhance staff skills and maximize staff potential.   
  • Provides leadership in strengthening internal communications with staff across the organization and promotes a positive and supportive work environment. 
  • Maintains and improves professional and technical knowledge by attending educational workshops, reviewing professional publications, establishing personal networks, and participating in professional societies. 



  •  Personal qualities of integrity, credibility, collaboration, collegiality, and a demonstrated commitment to the Center’s mission. The Controller will be a proactive, hands-on strategic thinker who will own, in partnership with the CFO, responsibility for the Center’s accounting function.   
  • Bachelor’s degree in Accounting, Finance or related field required with a minimum of ten years of related experience, preferably in a nonprofit organization with a budget of at least $25 million. 
  • CPA required. 
  • Significant experience in and advanced knowledge of nonprofit accounting, including sophisticated fund and grant accounting, compliance, and reporting.  
  • Proficiency in complex spreadsheet design. 
  • Deep knowledge of automated financial systems and system integration with non-financial applications. Proficiency with Intacct strongly preferred. 
  • Extensive experience coordinating audit activities and managing reporting, general ledger, accounts payable, accounts receivable, and payroll transactions and processes for a complex nonprofit organization with multiple funding sources to ensure flawless audits. 
  • Thorough knowledge of GAAP including the accounting cycle, monthly and year-end closing, financial reporting, and analysis.  
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills with an ability to interpret and explain complex financial concepts and information to non-experts at all levels of the organization. Keen analytic, organizational, and problem-solving skills to provide strategic data interpretation, rather than simple reporting.   
  • Outstanding skills as a manager and supervisor, with demonstrated experience leading others and a collaborative, supportive management style. Commitment to recruiting, mentoring, training, and retaining a diverse team and ability to delegate and monitor accordingly.  

This position reports to the Chief Financial Officer  
Terms of Employment: Full-time, exempt. 
Bargaining Unit Status: This is not a bargaining unit position. 

Compensation: Salary and title commensurate with experience; excellent benefits, including three health insurance options, dental and vision care, life and long-term disability insurance, retirement, and generous vacation leave, sick leave, and holiday schedules.    

Please upload a cover letter and resume. In your cover letter, please include a discussion of what draws you to the mission of the Center.  

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities is an Equal Opportunity Employer that values and welcomes diversity in the workplace and strongly encourages all qualified persons to apply regardless of race, color, age, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, credit information, pregnancy or parental status, family responsibilities, personal appearance, creed, military or veteran status, religion, ancestry or national origin, union activities, disability, or other status protected by applicable law.