Programs Manager—Los Angeles Office

PEN America—a nonprofit organization at the intersection of literature and human rights—seeks a creative, dynamic, and detail-oriented programs manager to develop and produce significant mission-focused public events and manage programs.

Working from PEN America’s Los Angeles office, the programs manager will have wide-ranging opportunity to develop PEN America activities, partnerships, communications and outreach, member engagement, and audience development. The position operates in consultation and collaboration with PEN America’s New York headquarters and Washington, D.C., office.

The successful candidate will have experience designing and managing high-impact programs, producing memorable public events, and contributing to organizational growth. A deep understanding of Los Angeles’s literary community and the broader national literary landscape as well as a commitment to PEN America’s defense of free expression are key requirements. The position reports to the Los Angeles executive director and is part of a dedicated and mission-driven staff at a fast-paced organization with an ambitious growth agenda.


  • Execute all logistics for L.A.-area public programs including, but not limited to, panel discussions, author talks, performances, and special events
  • Activate new and expanded programming series and membership engagement opportunities
  • Create communications and marketing materials and strategies for Los Angeles programming, including online presence, social media, and press outreach, in collaboration with the communications department. Build and maintain strong relationships with new and established partners and sponsors, locally and nationally, to support and expand PEN America’s presence, engage with Members and supporters, and cultivate new audiences
  • Support programmatic development and fundraising opportunities in collaboration with the deputy director of development and executive director
  • Create, input, and update all necessary program data, including budgets, event materials and reporting, programmatic archives, evaluations, etc.
  • Represent PEN America at literary and free expression events in Los Angeles and potentially other areas of PEN America activity nationwide  
  • Recruit, train, and supervise future staff and volunteers


  • Bachelor’s degree, preferably with a focus on literary arts or human rights
  • Demonstrated success in managing programs and producing memorable public events
  • Excellent communication, writing, and research skills
  • Exemplary attention to detail and superior organizational and problem-solving skills
  • Demonstrated interest in acquiring new capabilities, and the ability to do so quickly
  • Exemplary team player with professional demeanor and ability to work independently and collaboratively
  • Willing to manage a range of administrative tasks
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office, Google Drive, and all social media platforms; experience with WordPress, MailChimp, Canva, Adobe Creative Suite, and CRM programs strongly preferred

Salary and Benefits: PEN America offers competitive compensation and benefits, commensurate with experience.   

To Apply: Please submit a cover letter, resume, and the contact information for three references. Please submit the entire application to [email protected]. Please use “Programs Manager—Los Angeles” and your name as the subject of your email (for example, “Programs Manager—Los Angeles – Jane Doe”). 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.