The Urban Design Forum seeks a full-time Program Associate to assist with planning and executing our Forefront Fellowship programs and publications. We’re searching for an early-career professional excited to join a small, fast-paced team.

About the Urban Design Forum
We are an independent membership organization that advances bold solutions to urban challenges. Our programs are guided by the following values:

  1. We believe the design and development communities must address enduring injustices in New York City, such as housing segregation, economic inequality, and environmental racism.
  2. We believe New York should convene with and learn from international cities for pioneering and inspiring solutions to urban challenges.
  3. We believe creating interdisciplinary cohorts of emerging urban leaders can empower more diverse leadership in the design and development professions.
  4. We believe government agencies should develop a long-term vision for the built environment, rather than achieve short-term wins.
  5. We believe decision-makers must build with, and not for, traditionally disenfranchised communities–such as women, people of color, LGBTQ people, people with disabilities, and people from low-wealth communities.
  6. We believe the public should be mobilized around the value of design in achieving equity, inclusion, and sustainability in the built environment.

About the Forefront Fellowship
Forefront is an annual initiative empowering emerging professionals to create meaningful change within our city. Each year, 20 individuals are selected as Forefront Fellows to study a challenge in partnership with a city agency or community-based organization. Fellows attend site visits, engage with stakeholders, conduct independent research and produce original projects.

The initiative reflects our commitment to empower diverse emerging leadership within the design and development professions. Our fellowship is strongest when we welcome a mix of backgrounds, perspectives and disciplines – especially from underrepresented groups such as women, people of color, LGBTQ people, people with disabilities, and people from low-wealth communities.

Previous areas of inquiry include climate justice (2019), homelessness (2018), immigration (2017) and civic technology (2016).


  • Program Research – Researches social and political challenges for Forefront programs, and develops project stakeholder maps.
  • Program Design – Helps plan and design the annual Forefront program, including planning site visits, stakeholder calls, retreats and more.
  • Program Management – Executes the Forefront program, including selecting venues, coordinating with speakers, and all day-of logistics.
  • Strategic Partnerships – Establishes and maintains relationships with program partners for existing and future Forefront projects.
  • Recruitment – Develops a recruitment plan to create Forefront cohorts representing a diversity of race, gender, and profession.
  • Publications – Edits contributions and assists with content development related to Forefront project publications.


  • Bachelor’s Degree in Urban Planning, Public Policy, Architecture, Real Estate, or a related field and 1-3 years of relevant work experience; or a Master’s Degree with 1+ years of relevant work experience.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills.
  • Strong organizational and time-management skills.
  • Experience managing and presenting in front of large groups of people.
  • Experience in event production and program management is a plus.
  • Experience in community and stakeholder engagement is a plus.
  • Familiarity in Adobe Creative Suite is a plus.
  • Deep interest in urban planning and policy, architecture, landscape architecture, real estate development, or related fields.

Salary and Benefits
We offer a competitive salary based on experience, competitive benefits package (health, dental and vision), and generous leave policies.

How to Apply
Please submit a resume, cover letter and salary requirements to Please include “Program Associate – Forefront” in the subject line. Applications are due by Monday, September 9 at 5:00pm.

The Forum is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to attracting and retaining a talented and diverse team of professionals committed to building a more equitable city. Women, people of color, LGBTQ people, and individuals with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply.