Posted on August 6, 2012
Cherokee Preservation Foundation
Cherokee Preservation Foundation - Executive Director
Cherokee Preservation Foundation seeks an experienced Executive Director (ED) with a demonstrated commitment to philanthropic excellence to lead the organization starting in January 2013.
Located in Cherokee, NC on the Qualla Boundary - the homeland of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians (EBCI), Cherokee Preservation Foundation works to improve the quality of life of members of the EBCI and strengthen the seven-county western North Carolina region near tribal land. The 56,000 acre Qualla Boundary is adjacent to the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. EBCI members are direct descendants of those who managed to avoid the Cherokees’ forced removal to Oklahoma. Today, there are more than 14,000 enrolled members of the Tribe, over 60% of whom live on the Boundary.
Established in 2000, the Foundation provides funding, convening and collaboration in the areas of cultural preservation, economic development and environmental preservation. The Foundation integrates Cherokee cultural values (http://www.cpfdn.org/about-cpfdn/cherokee-values) into all of its work and uses best practices of philanthropy, collaboration and community building.
Examples of work in which the Foundation is involved include Cherokee language revitalization, perpetuation of Cherokee artistic traditions, leadership development programs for tribal members, support of entrepreneurship to diversify the regional economy, enabling rural schools to use technology-based learning tools, and energy efficiency and natural resource conservation programs. The Foundation is particularly interested in supporting programs that foster collaborative partnerships between the EBCI and others in the region and encourage public involvement, and it helps connect the dots by bringing together partners whose interests intersect. Examples of collaborative efforts include WNC EdNet, Western North Carolina Nonprofit Pathways and the Appalachia Funders Network.
The Foundation was established as part of the Second Amendment to the Tribal-State Compact between the EBCI and the State of North Carolina. It is an independent nonprofit foundation funded by the EBCI from gaming revenues generated by the Tribe. Since its inception, it has made 731 grants totaling more than $58 million to EBCI and regional projects and programs — generally making grants in the $5 million to $6 million range each year. Every dollar of the Foundation’s support has been matched by $1.58 in secured grants, other funding or in-kind resources, making its total contribution to the region nearly $150 million in its first decade. For more information about the Foundation, visit http://www.cpfdn.org.
Cherokee Preservation Foundation has a twelve-member board and a talented ten-member staff. The organizational culture can be described as hardworking and close-knit, down-to-earth, passionate about the mission, and compassionate and respectful toward the community, its culture and its values.
The incoming Executive Director will succeed Dr. Susan Jenkins, who will be retiring at the end of 2012 after leading the organization since its inception in 2000. Dr. Jenkins’ dynamic stewardship has positioned the Foundation as a highly respected philanthropic organization in the region and nationally.
Cherokee Preservation Foundation seeks an individual who is well prepared to provide the inspired external and internal leadership required of this role. The new Executive Director must have proven, significant, and successful philanthropic leadership experience and the ability to oversee programmatic initiatives, operations, and staff development while working with the board to guide the organization. The successful candidate must also possess the talent to communicate effectively and to build relationships with multiple constituencies, including the board, staff, tribal, regional and state government officials, media, agency partners, grantees and other community leaders.
Cherokee Preservation Foundation has identified the following as the highest priorities for the first 12 – 18 months of the new executive director’s tenure:
- Continue to proactively develop and improve relationships, communication and trust with and among community, governmental and tribal officials – locally, statewide, and nationally.
- Grow existing and new connections with local, regional, and national partners to share expertise and to forge partnerships/collaborations that can leverage the impact of the Foundation’s work and resources.
- Maintain existing funding streams and relationships, and grow investments from existing or new funding partners.
- Continue to strengthen and promote the Foundation’s identity and vision. Continue to fulfill the Foundation’s programmatic goals for the year as identified in its current Strategic Plan, but just as importantly, teach and inspire the staff to seize on new possibilities when unanticipated opportunities arise.
- Improve the Foundation’s ability to evaluate and assess programmatic outcomes and impact. Build grantees’ appreciation of and assistance in creating and measuring program effectiveness.
- Grow the strength of the Foundation’s Board leadership through strong communication, active recruitment and integration of dedicated and passionate board members.
- Work with individual board members to maximize their involvement and maintain strong working relationships.
- Vision, Mission and Strategy -- Work closely with the Board and staff to communicate the Foundation’s mission and vision into clear strategic directions, goals, and initiatives.
- External Liaison and Public Image -- Serve as primary spokesperson and public face for the Foundation, representing it regionally and nationally. Develop dynamic working relationships with diverse constituencies, including tribal and government leaders, grantees, collaborative partners, regional stakeholders, and the broader nonprofit community.
- Accomplishment of Philanthropic Objectives -- Direct staff in the development and implementation of work plans aimed at achieving strategic goals and priorities, and maintain an efficient process for initiating, managing, reviewing and evaluating grant requests.
- Fiscal Mangement -- Ensure that solid planning and budgeting systems are in place so that income is managed wisely to serve the organization’s goals. Ensure that systems and staff are in place to accurately monitor, assess, and manage the financial health of the organization. Work closely with the investment committee of the Board to oversee the management of assets and resources
- Human Resources - Foster and develop a strong staff built on teamwork and collaborative decision-making in a positive and empowering environment. Oversee staff development activities that build leadership skills and motivate performance. Ensure adherence to the personnel policies in all hiring and employment practices.
Required Qualifications and Experience
The ideal candidate will also have:
- A history of visionary leadership based on strong strategic and collaborative thinking, as well as demonstrated ability to align and build trust among multiple constituencies around the big picture.
- A successful record of senior leadership and management experience with a history of accomplishment in the nonprofit, public, and/or business sector.
- Knowledge of Native American tribal culture and governance.
- An understanding of and sensitivity to rural life and culture.
- Collaborative leadership experience with an exceptional ability to build and maintain relationships and foster a spirit of cooperation with external partners and among board members and staff.
- Exceptional written and verbal communication skills, strong interpersonal and public speaking skills, and experience with diverse populations and multiple constituencies.
- Experience in developing and evaluating program initiatives.
- Ability to participate in and demonstrate leadership in work-related regional and national activities.
- A strongly held sense of integrity and professional ethics.
- A high degree of financial literacy and financial management experience.
- Demonstrated ability to work with and facilitate strong board leadership.
- Strongly committed to learning and personal professional development.
- Willing to travel regionally and nationally.
- Minimum of a bachelor’s degree; advanced degree preferred.
The Cherokee Preservation Foundation offers a competitive salary and comprehensive benefits package.
- Background in philanthropy and/or nonprofit organization leadership with a broad network of peers and relationships.
- Direct experience with Native American tribal culture and governance.
- The ability to assess and take risks in a prudent fashion, and to acknowledge and learn from failure.
- A record as a selfless, patient and inclusive leader who excels at developing accountability within the staff and community.
- A sense of grace, poise, and humor balanced with strength of character and conviction.
- An advanced or terminal degree.
To apply, please send a letter of interest, resume and salary history via email only to:
Cherokee Preservation Foundation Search Committee
Application deadline: September 14, 2012
Please, no phone calls or faxes.