Posted on December 7, 2012
Northwest Executive Director
Canine Companions for Independence
Canine Companions for Independence - Northwest Executive Director
Canine Companions for Independence (CCI) seeks nominations and applications for the position of Executive Director, Northwest Region. Since its founding in 1975, Canine Companions has been the nation’s premier leader in enhancing the lives of people with disabilities by providing highly trained assistance dogs and ongoing support to ensure excellence in the quality of partnerships. Canine Companions is recognized worldwide for the excellence of its dogs, for the quality and longevity of the matches made between dogs and people, and for its profound impact in supporting a life full of increased independence and loving companionship for those it serves.
Reporting to the National Director of Development and working closely with regional leadership, the Executive Director, Northwest Region will oversee the region’s strategic, service, and financial operations. S/he will develop and implement regional fundraising and development programs aligned with national strategies; lead accomplished, diverse and talented staff; and serve as a key liaison to regional staff providing leadership and management as well as support program and service delivery to enhance Canine Companions reach and impact. The Executive Director will play a prominent and critical role in expanding philanthropic support to the Northwest region. S/he will work to identify and source grant opportunities; oversee planning and coordination of successful fundraising events; cultivate, solicit and stewarding new donors; enhance relationships with current and prospective corporations, foundations and individual donors. In addition, the Executive Director will co llaborate with the National Development Director and regional board, leaders and staff to align regional funding goals with national strategies for long-term benefit. The successful candidate will also manage regional office finances to ensure fiscal responsibility and planning for continued growth of sustainable revenue streams and asset building including developing appropriate budgets, financial controls, reporting systems and compliance measures.
The new Executive Director will possess a minimum of eight to ten years of professional leadership and management expertise, and at least five years of professional fundraising and development experience in a mission-driven environment. S/he will have proven expertise in tactical planning, service delivery, program management and evaluation, relationship and coalition building, and revenue growth. Ultimately, this role requires an accomplished professional who will take the lead in garnering corporate, foundation, community, grant and individual resources and who will serve as a passionate and articulate ambassador of Canine Companions and its strategic priorities.
HISTORY & MISSION
Help is a Four-Legged WordTM
Imagine not being able to do basic tasks like picking up a set of keys, opening a door, pulling down a window shade, carrying a bag of groceries. Imagine being unable to do those things without constant help from family or paid caregivers. Now, imagine overcoming these physical barriers and gaining independence with a very special four-legged Canine Companion.
Canine Companions does just that: provides highly trained assistance dogs to children and adults with disabilities. Headquartered in Santa Rosa, Canine Companions operates nationwide with offices and training centers located across five U.S.regions that together provide programs in breeding, puppy raising, training and placement, and wounded veteran assistance. Since placing its first Canine Companions team in 1976, CCI has put over 3,600 graduate assistant dog teams in place and currently has 1,687 active graduate teams nationwide functioning in human services roles as therapy and guide dogs to children and adults with disabilities as well as placements in bomb searching, border patrol and customs.CCI’s national and regional development team is responsible for raising significant support from donors in support of its extraordinary programs and is galvanizing efforts to expand giving programs and portfolios with existing and new corporate, foundation and individual do nors. CCI has shown its capacity to grow rapidly and be nimble in response to its constituent needs. Sustaining this pace requires a critical push in fund development.
As the largest and most respected non-profit provider of assistance dogs in the nation, CCI is dedicated to creating life changing independence for people with disabilities by breeding, raising and training highly skilled assistance dogs to serve as helpful partners, goodwill ambassadors and trusted companions to those in need. Operating at local, regional and national levels, CCI provides a variety of valuable programs and services to children and adults with physical or developmental disabilities and professionals working for organizations that provide physical or mental health care to clients who will benefit from interaction with a facility dog. CCI unites people with dogs to foster greater independence and self esteem in those with disabilities.
CCI provides extensive training through a combination of dedicated volunteers and highly skilled professionals who work together to breed and train skillful assistance dogs. Volunteer breeder caretakers care for CCI breeder dogs and nurture newborn puppies for eight weeks before dogs are brought to CCI and enter formal training. From ages eight weeks to 18 months volunteer puppy raisers care for, provide basic obedience training and socialize puppies. CCI’s professional instructors then take over training at one of CCI’s five regional training centers. Over the course of six to nine months, these instructors teach dogs to master over 40 commands before qualifying a dog through to Team Training and match by specialized service need to a person with a disability or a professional assisting the disabled.
CCI places four types of assistance dogs:
Service Dogs: are partnered with adults with disabilities to assist with tasks and increase independence by reducing reliance on other people. They specifically assist adults with physical disabilities such as spinal cord injury, multiple sclerosis, spina bifida, arthritis and cerebral palsy by performing daily physical tasks and providing social support.
Skilled Companions: are trained to perform tasks for an adult or child with a disability under the guidance of a facilitator. They enhance independence for children and adults with physical, cognitive and developmental disabilities, and are trained to work with people under the guidance of a facilitator. They also serve as a social bridge to people unaccustomed to relating to a person with disabilities, providing greater physical ease and boosting confidence and feelings of self-sufficiency.
Hearing Dogs: are trained to recognize and respond to environmental sounds by alerting their deaf or hard of hearing partner by making physical contact such as nudging the leg or arm. Among the many sounds Hearing Dogs are trained to recognize and respond to are doorbells, alarm clocks, someone calling a name or a smoke alarm as well as customized alert patterns.
Facility Dogs: are highly trained and trustworthy dogs partnered with a facilitator who directly serves clients with special needs. They work with a professional facilitator in a visitation, education or healthcare setting helping to engage people with disabilities in school and special education classes, or with activities such as grooming, feeding and playing fetch which can aid patients in medical rehabilitation and psychiatric programs.
It is important to remember that CCI serves people with disabilities across the country through regional training centers. Each center holds team trainings, graduations, coordinates volunteers, provides graduate follow-up services, supports puppy raisers and builds relationships with partners and donors to help ensure CCI’s success.The Northwest Region has been making a difference in the lives of people with disabilities since 1989, serving graduates, puppy raiser, applicants and candidates, breeder caretakers, volunteers, donors, and supporters in Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Northern Nevada, Northern California, Oregon, Washington and Wyoming. The Jean and Charles Schulz campus, named in recognition of the American cartoonist, who created the comic strip, Peanuts, is a state-of-the-art facility where training, education and caring come together.
CCI does not charge constituents for assistance dogs. Participants in CCI’s program are not responsible for any of the substantial costs involved in the lengthy process of breeding, raising, and training each dog. As a result, philanthropic support and strong operations leadership is critical to the organization’s continued success and growth. CCI is currently funded by private contributions from individuals; gifts from businesses, civic groups, and service clubs; grants from corporations and foundations; and ongoing fundraising activities such as special events and mailings.
OPPORTUNITIES AND CHALLENGES OF THE POSITION
The Executive Director will champion identification, solicitation, cultivation and stewardship of grants as well as corporate, foundation, community and individual donors to grow relationships at regional and local levels in support of ambitious fundraising goals. S/he will be responsible for the strategy and execution of all aspects of national development at the regional level. To that end, s/he will develop and implement a comprehensive regional fundraising plan, research new funding ideas and present proposals to the National Development Team that promote and expand an informed and loyal institutional constituency supportive of CCI and its mission.
The Executive Director will also be responsible for ensuring fiscal stability, expanding funding support, fostering strategic partnerships, effectively managing business operations for the Northwest Region, aligning with National strategies, policies, and procedures, and recruiting and retaining talented staff and volunteers.
Together with national leaders, the new Executive Director will assess and ensure that CCI continues to meet its core mission while strategically growing, diversifying revenue and strengthening its reputation and support to its constituents.
Canine Companions for Independence is an equal-opportunity employer
Candidates are encouraged to apply as soon as possible – please submit your application, including a cover letter describing your interest and qualifications, your resume, salary history, and where you learned of the position online.
For full job description and to apply please visit http://www.cci.org/careers