Jan 29, 2019

Randi Aho

  • Program Officer
  • Sunland, Shadow Hills, Los Angeles, CA, USA
Programs Education (Higher) Education (K-12)

Personal Summary

I was excited to learn of the Program Officer, Education Policy & Advocacy position with United Way of Greater Los Angeles as I knew my background would meet the needs of the post. I have been looking for an opportunity that would allow me to continue to work in non-profit management with an organization whose mission resonates with me, and I am certain this position would meet those goals by combining my program management experience with my commitment to social justice and education equity.

I am also certain my skills and experience make me a great fit for the position. I attended graduate school at Columbia University where I received a Master of International Affairs, concentrating in policy and human rights. After graduating, I worked as the Program Coordinator for a program that recruited international fellows, and was responsible for supporting all aspects of the fellowship. In my recent role as Program Manager with the Columbia Law School Human Rights Institute, I was responsible for managing all event logistics; building partnerships with students, peer institutions, advocates, and social justice communities; liaising with speakers and partners; and, working directly with the Executive Director to ensure the Institute’s programing ran smoothly from conception to execution. In managing the Institute’s communications, I developed a communications strategy; drafted, edited, and produced press releases; ran the social media accounts; produced the Institute’s newsletter; collected information on program performance; and, networked to promote and facilitate the Institute’s programs. Overseeing the Institute’s finances, I also managed program grants; developed the operational budget and other project budgets; assisted in grant application and reporting processes; and, worked with vendors on services and contracts. Moreover, I recruited and supervised visiting scholars, interns, work-study students, and volunteers who assisted in our programing. Finally, having worked in non-profits for many years, I have fine-tuned my ability to juggle multiple tasks, find creative solutions, and take initiative in fast-paced and demanding environments.


Work Experience

Program Manager
Jan 2016 - Aug 2017 Columbia Law School Human Rights Institute
  • Led events organizing for over 50 lectures, expert panels, large symposia, and conferences held over the year, including arranging venue, catering, accommodations, registration, and other logistics; building partnerships with students, peer institutions, advocates, and social justice communities; liaising with speakers and participants; maintaining event budgets and all finances; developing publicity and outreach; and creating an events plan and affiliated financial strategy for the Institute, which had not been previously formalized.
  • Developed and monitored financial oversight for the Institute, including budget forecasting; managing project budgets and the operational budget, with a grant portfolio of approximately 10 active funding sources; and assisted in preparing grant proposals and reporting documents for core support and project-specific work.
  • Managed communications for the Institute to an audience of over 2,000+, including maintaining the website; regular posting of announcements, events, publications, and press coverage for a rapidly growing news feed; heading a new initiative to revamp the website; managing social media accounts; drafting, editing, and producing web content and publications; and, designing and formalizing a communications plan for the Institute.
  • Successfully spearheaded the design effort and launch of the Institute’s inaugural electronic newsletter.
  • Launched the inaugural student Human Rights Paper Symposium that brought together over 30 students, academics, and human rights practitioners to foster the development of student scholarship.
  • Coordinated a network of over 900 advocates working to incorporate human rights into domestic social justice advocacy.
  • Recruited and supervised interns, work-study students, and volunteers who assisted in our programing.
Program Coordinator
Jul 2014 - Jan 2016 Columbia University Institute for the Study of Human Rights
  • Managed communications and events programing for the Alliance for Historical Dialogue and Accountability program, including organizing panels, trainings, and meetings with practitioners in the fields of human rights, conflict resolution, and grant-making in New York and Washington, D.C.
  • Managed panelist applications and event logistics for a biennial conference with 200+ international participants, and a training seminar with over two dozen international indigenous leaders.
  • Redesigned the Institute’s weekly newsletter and event publicity; and maintained and updated listservs.
  • Assisted in grant and budget preparation and allocation, managed financial transaction workflow, prepared financial statement reconciliations, produced annual financial reports, and developed budgets.
  • Managed recruitment and supervision of visiting scholars, interns, and work-study students.
English Language Instructor
  • Taught English language courses and led an after school program for K-9 students.
  • Served as a cultural liaison, and led an adult ESL program.


Master of International Affairs
Aug 2011 - May 2013 Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs