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Opening: Knowledge Services Coordinator

Publication date: 
November, 2021

Position: Knowledge Services Coordinator
Organization: Forefront
Location: Chicago, IL

Organization Context

Forefront is one of few regional associations in the US whose membership includes grantmakers, operating nonprofits, and their advisors. Members are its primary customers. Within the context of the mission, Forefront programs and services are designed to provide opportunities for networking, education, policy engagement, leadership development, and collaboration among members. The Forefront Library offers unique services and resources to both the philanthropic and nonprofit sector throughout Illinois.

General Job Description

The Knowledge Services Coordinator will contribute as an active member of cross-organization teams and work collaboratively with other staff to advance internal and external research projects that advance Forefront’s mission and goals. They will provide efficient and useful services to Forefront Members and Forefront Library patrons, maximizing their ability to access and utilize current and relevant information. They are also responsible for promotion of library services to prospective users, collection development, and cataloging.

Essential Job Duties

Library Patron Services

  • Provide direct services to library patrons, assisting them to identify, locate, and utilize library materials via scheduled reference appointments. Provide research assistance and reference services to Grantmaker, Operating Nonprofit, and Advisor Members, Forefront staff, and others in response to inquiries and requests for assistance. Suggest additional and relevant sources to patrons to provide materials that meet their particular need for information.
  • Develop and make available signage, user guides, bibliographies, and other resources to facilitate effective and efficient use of the library by patrons. Schedule, promote, and conduct regularly scheduled orientations to the library and Forefront for new members and users.

Library Management

  • Help to ensure all Forefront Library programs, services, and activities demonstrate and uphold principles of racial and statewide equity.
  • In partnership with Research & Knowledge Services Manager:
  • Manage aspects of library acquisitions including ordering, receiving, and accounting. Responsible for cataloging, serials, archiving, and managing the reference desk.
  • Manage the library’s use of technology to maximize access to the library’s resources.
  • Manage the organization, maintenance, and updating of the library facility and collection to provide adequate facilities and equipment for users and to ensure convenient and ready access to materials and information.

Cultivation and Stewardship

  • Support strategic activity related to all member and donor retention and recruitment, including outreach and education.


  • Make effective use of Forefront systems to manage constituent records in Salesforce to ensure accuracy and support organizational reporting on accomplishments. Collect, compile, interpret, and report library usage data.
  • Recommend improvements in procedures and practices to maximize the efficient and effective use of the library. Partner cross-functionally with Forefront staff to create more efficient organizational processes and taxonomies, resulting in more effective workflows.


  • Demonstrate leadership in accordance with Forefront’s mission, vision, and values.

Position Qualifications

  • At least 2 years work experience in library services. Experience in special libraries and/or knowledge of operating nonprofits and grantmaking institutions is a plus.
  • Knowledge of and demonstrated ability to manage library cataloging systems.
  • Demonstrated ability to communicate effectively with diverse patrons. Strong teaching/presentation skills are a plus.
  • Demonstrated ability to manage multiple tasks and priorities, prioritize work, maintain deadlines, and ensure quality of work.


Must be based in Illinois. Once public health conditions permit, regular travel to Chicago may be required if candidate is based outside of the Chicago Metro area.

Special Conditions

Position is fully remote until public health conditions allow for safe return to in-office work; periodic evening work.

Position Classification 

Full-Time, Exempt




403(b) with employer match; generous paid time off policy; paid parental leave; professional development assistance; employer contributions to dental, health, and vision insurance; employer provided disability and life insurance; flexible spending account.

To Apply

Resumes with cover letters should be sent to Sarah Rice, Research and Knowledge Services Manager.

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