Job Title
Executive Director
Chicago Debate Commission
Chicago, IL
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Position Summary
Alford Executive Search has been exclusively retained by the Chicago Debate Commission (CDC) in its search for a new Executive Director. The Executive Director is responsible for providing strategic oversight to and overall executive leadership for the Chicago Debate Commission. Reporting to the Board of Directors, the selected candidate will provide direction for all organizational affairs in accordance with its mission as defined by its by-laws, mission statement, guiding principles and policies established and approved by the Board. In addition to general oversight, the Executive Director will be charged with achieving progress toward the priorities of the new and carefully developed expansion plan, staying abreast of current trends related to education, mentorship and youth achievement, and implementing best practices in realizing mission priorities. A key component of the expansion relies on the new Executive Director developing a master plan to secure diversified funding for the next phase of CDC’s growth. The dynamic leader will continue to strengthen relationships with the CDC’s primary partner, the Chicago Public Schools, as well as other thought leaders, funders and stakeholders. The Chicago Debate Commission is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, gender, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability, marital status, veteran status, or any other occupationally irrelevant criteria. Specific Requirements Include: • Passion for CDC’s mission and the community it serves, augmented by demonstrated experience in similar programmatic and nonprofit service areas. • At least 7 years of experience at a Director or Executive level, particularly in a nonprofit organization or related field; at least 3 years managing a team of professionals. • Proven ability to develop and build a highly productive, effective team by enhancing professionalism within the organization and training, mentoring, and retaining staff. • Ability and willingness to work closely with a proactive Board to achieve organizational goals. • Sensitive to the culturally diverse experiences and viewpoints of staff and CPS youth served. • Track record in developing and executing strategies to successfully increase revenue and diversify funding sources. Demonstrated ability to identify, solicit and steward corporate, foundation and individual gifts. • Successful track record in financial management, stewardship, and developing strategies to successfully increase revenue and control costs. • Accomplished background in building strong external relationships with a variety of constituencies, including partner organizations, staff, volunteers, elected officials, business representatives and other stakeholders. • Excellent interpersonal, oral and written communication and presentation skills, with the ability to serve as an advocate and spokesperson for the organization. • Creative problem-solving skills. • Experience preferred in the areas of youth achievement, youth development, or education. • A Bachelor’s degree is required, with relevant advanced training or degree preferred. • Experience with middle school, high school or college debate is beneficial. TO APPLY, PLEASE CLICK HERE: To assure confidential tracking of all applicants, no applications will be accepted via email. ALL INQUIRIES WILL BE HELD IN STRICT CONFIDENCE. This search is being managed by Laura Weinman, Assistant Vice President and Alison Lewin, Project Manager of Alford Executive Search. Questions may be addressed to Alford Executive Search, a division of KEES, is a retained search firm that builds transformative teams and leaders in the nonprofit and public sectors. For more information, please visit Founded in 1995, the Chicago Debate Commission (CDC) envisions a world in which Chicago youth are empowered to find their voice, succeed in college and career, and become community leaders. The Commission brings its vision to life through the transformative power of debate.
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