January 24th, 2024


  • Full Time
  • Mid-Level
Job Category: Administrative, Data & Analytics, Development, Finance
Location: Manhattan
Job Sectors: Other
Salary Range: 135k - 145k

PEN America, a nonprofit organization working at the intersection of literature and human rights, seeks a skilled, analytical, and process-driven controller for our finance department. The ideal candidate will have a strong background in nonprofit finance and the expertise to both support and advance the accounting operations at our growing organization. This is a full-time position based at PEN America’s New York City headquarters and will report to the Chief Financial and Administrative Officer.


The controller will be responsible for oversight of all finance, accounting, and reporting activities. The candidate will provide management and hands-on capacity for the planning and preparation of organizational, departmental, and programmatic budgets, conduct financial tracking and assessment for use internally and for funder reporting, and support audits and analyses. The role will provide oversight to ensure the best finance department practices are observed and to coach and assist programmatic staff in preparing and managing their budgets. The controller will be the key support for the CFAO to ensure the finance department runs efficiently and develops and implements processes and workflows that support PEN America’s growth.


The successful candidate will be a highly motivated self-starter who can recognize and address departmental and organizational needs collaboratively and effectively. The position will have supervisory responsibility for finance department staff and be a key leader ensuring fluid workflows for the department by actively contributing to its administration.


PEN America welcomes applications from veteran nonprofit finance professionals who seek to share their expertise with our organization, as well as those with the requisite credentials who are at an earlier stage of their career and looking to gain the experience necessary for future roles of increasing responsibility. We are looking for resourceful problem solvers who derive satisfaction from taking on challenges, developing solutions, and persevering through the inevitable stresses and crunch times.

PEN America’s current policy is that all applicants must be available to work on-site in the office at least three days per week. Most organizational leaders are on-site four to five days per week to effectively supervise staff and fulfill leadership responsibilities. This policy is subject to change.



      • Prepare annual budget alongside CFAO for approval by Board of Directors; monitor revenues and expenses; and prepare financial statements and reports for Board, executive management, middle managers, and funders  

      • Provide financial management of grants, including projections and planning, performance analysis, budgeting, and grants portfolio reporting  

      • Oversee pre-award grant activities, including assessing financial proposal guidelines and/or preparing administrative components for proposal submissions; and supporting the preparation of financial applications, including developing budgets  

      • Review drafted awards and sub-agreements to ensure terms and conditions are in line with donor requirements 

      • Oversee financial reports to foundation and government funders, working in collaboration with program implementation teams to ensure timely submissions

      • Provide support to the development team regarding compliance and budgeting with private and corporate foundation grants 

      • Oversee accounting procedures, including A/R, A/P, bank deposits, month-end closing process, and cash management 

      • Design and conduct internal audits and other internal control tests to ensure compliance with procedures is met

      • Maintain internal control and safeguards for receipt of revenue, costs, program budgets, and actual expenditures

      • Set up systems and controls on financing and release of funds 

      • Manage accounting software package (Fund EZ), including maximizing system functionality and ensuring data integrity 

      • Assist in reviewing monthly financial statements and analysis of variances  

      • Support various projects with financial analysis and business decision recommendations 

      • Update program directors on budget-to-actual departmental results on a monthly basis  

      • Work cross-functionally with internal partners on key financial projects, ensuring timeliness and accuracy 

      • Initiate reconciliation of development database and Fund EZ for special events 

      • Work closely with the development department to prepare timely budget proposals 

      • Prepare and work closely with external accountants to ensure timely completion of all tax returns and other compliance documents, prepare relevant schedules for audit processes, and ensure timely completion of adjusting journal entries 

      • Assist in establishing, documenting, and maintaining internal control policies and procedures  

      • Supervise finance and administration department staff

      • Additional duties as assigned 


All PEN America staff are considered to be stakeholders in the development of our shared organization. As such, staff play a role in varied activities within the workplace as part of their job responsibilities. These may include committees or task forces to work on office issues, diversity, and inclusion, strategy projects, training or other initiatives.



      • A master’s degree in accounting, finance, business, or another field of study relevant to the position is strongly preferred. Additional certification (CPA or CMA) is a plus.

      • A minimum of six to eight years of experience in nonprofit financial management/accounting 

      • Must have at least three years in a key role in managing the finances of a nonprofit organization 

      • Demonstrated ability to successfully manage two or more reportees as well as managing upwards 

      • Demonstrated expertise in and commitment to the specialized field of financial management and accounting at nonprofit organizations  

      • Excellent knowledge of accounting regulations and procedures, including the Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP)

      • Extensive budget management experience  

      • Experience using Excel and Fund EZ accounting software is a plus 

      • Exceptional problem-solving skills, and the ability to follow through from the identification of a challenge to its solution 

      • Excellent interpersonal, presentational, and written/oral communications skills

      • Formidable work ethic and high energy level, with the ability to multitask effectively 

Salary and Benefits: PEN America offers competitive compensation and full benefits. The salary range for this position is $135k-$145k, commensurate with experience. Candidates whose expectations are outside this range are welcome to apply, as PEN America is open to considering talented individuals at varying stages of their careers. PEN America’s benefits package includes medical, dental, and vision health insurance, paid time off, 10 paid holidays, pre-tax commuter benefits and a 403b retirement plan. 




Please submit a cover letter and resume  to [email protected]. Use “Controller” with your name as the subject of your email (for example, “Controller – Jane Doe”). Please also share where you heard about this position in the body of your email. Only complete applications will be reviewed, and only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.


PEN America is an equal-opportunity employer that does not discriminate in its hiring practices, and in order to build the strongest possible workforce, actively seeks a diverse applicant pool.


No phone calls, please.  




PEN America stands at the intersection of literature and human rights to protect free expression in the United States and worldwide. We champion the freedom to write, recognizing the power of the word to transform the world. Our mission is to unite writers and their allies to celebrate creative expression and defend the liberties that make it possible.

PEN America

Freedom to Write

  • 588 Broadway #303, New York, NY 10012
  • New York, New York 10012
  • United States
  • Phone:

To apply for this job please visit

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