CED Become a Community Economic Development Application Reviewer

Publication Date: February 18, 2019

The Office of Community Services (OCS) is seeking reviewers to help select the grantees for the Community Economic Development (CED) program. To register to be a reviewer, please email: OCS@reviewops.org.

In order to make grant awards for the CED program each year, the Office of Community Services uses a competitive review process.  During the review process, experts in the fields of community economic development, job creation, vocational training, employment of vulnerable populations, social services, and finance are asked to read and evaluate applications based on program criteria.

This is an intense time!  Applications must be reviewed thoroughly and reviewers are responsible for submitting written comments on strengths and weaknesses for each application in a timely manner.

To learn more, please refer to the following information:

About the CED Grant Program

The CED program works with private non-profit organizations to create new jobs for low-income individuals.  Eligible applicants for the CED program are Community Development Corporations  that are governed by a Board of Directors consisting of residents of the community and business and civic leaders. The Office of Community Services provides competitive grants to support organizations to work within their communities by investing in existing businesses, starting new businesses, or working directly with low-income individuals to create employment opportunities.  All of these strategies are targeted to revitalize economically distressed communities and help low-income individuals gain self sufficiency through employment.

Reviewer Qualifications

Qualified Reviewers must:

  • Have demonstrated senior level professional experience in community economic development or financing, vocational training, and/or workforce development.
  • Be able to provide constructive  written and oral evaluative comments based on professional knowledge measured against published criteria.
  • As a team member working under the leadership of a Chairperson, be able to listen attentively to the input of other panelists, engage in respectful discussions, bridge differences, and work with the Chairperson to synthesize constructive evaluative comments.
  • Must have the highest personal standards of ethically reviewing proprietary information, maintaining confidentiality, and avoiding any conflict of interest.

Reviewer Responsibilities

As an OCS Reviewer, you will be expected to:

  • Read and score approximately 7-10 applications online over a 30-day period during the applicable review season;
  • Write narrative justifications for numerical scores in a well-timed manner;
  • Record scores and narrative comments using a web based tool in a timely manner; and
  • Be available to actively and productively participate in Review Team meetings through the conclusion of the grant review process.

Benefits of Serving as an OCS Grant Reviewer

OCS recognizes that your time is valuable and hopes that you will consider taking part in this important initiative.  Some of the benefits of participation include:

  • The opportunity to learn more about innovative approaches in the community economic development field as well as the grantsmanship process;
  • A forum to meet and network with peer leaders from across the country;
  • A chance to actively serve your community in a tangible positive way; and
  • A one-time honorarium payment as compensation for your time and energy.

How to Register

To register to be an OCS Grant Reviewer, please email OCS@reviewops.org.

When the grant review is scheduled, your information will be provided to OCS.  Considering the needs for each program area, OCS will select reviewers from the list of registered individuals based on areas of expertise and geographic distribution.  If selected, you will be contacted regarding your availability.

Reviewer Confidentiality Statement

The content of grant applications is highly confidential. It is required that no grant application reviewer participate in a review of any grant application where a conflict of interest exists or may exist. Therefore, before reviewing a grant application, each grant application reviewer will be given a Grant Application Reviewer Confidentiality Statement to read and affirm by signature.

Disabilities Statement

If you have a disability that you believe may affect your participation in a grant review, please inform us of any special accommodations that may be required. Please give us this information at the time you are contacted (generally, over the telephone) with an initial confirmation as an ACF grant application reviewer or panel chairperson. We will make reasonable efforts necessary to afford individuals with disabilities an equal opportunity to participate in a grant review.

Questions? Contact Us

Please email OCS@reviewops.org.

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