SVP Seattle Executive Director

Seattle, Washington, United States | Full-time

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Social Venture Partners Seattle is seeking an experienced and versatile Executive Director who can inspire and support people as they work together to co-create thriving, sustainable, and just communities.

SVP Seattle is interested in your talents and skills if you are . . .

  • A natural connector with a strong commitment to racial equity, who has experience convening diverse groups.
  • A team builder, mentor, and coach who is at your best when supporting others in their learning and growth.
  • A compelling storyteller and a confident “asker” who is unafraid to invite others to join you in this transformative work.
  • An experienced executive leader, who knows what it takes to run a healthy and sustainable nonprofit organization. 

Social Venture Partners Seattle's vision is a Puget Sound region where everyone can thrive, regardless of race or income. SVP connects people who want to amplify their impact with organizations that make social change possible. By connecting and engaging individuals who want to give time and money, funding and strengthening social impact organizations, and investing in collaborative solutions, we believe we can deliver greater impact, together. 

SVP Seattle’s next Executive Director will step into a resilient organization with a legacy of building strong relationships among its Partners and Investees. We focus on providing grants to organizations that work in the critical areas of early learning, high school graduation, and environmental sustainability and justice. As our new ED, you will lead a dynamic community of philanthropists, volunteers, nonprofit staff, and community members, all with a shared passion for our mission of investing in people and organizations to co-create thriving, sustainable, and just communities.

Consider applying today! 

About Social Venture Partners Seattle

Our Vision:  Our region flourishing, with everyone thriving regardless of race or income.

Our Mission: Connecting and investing in people and organizations to co-create thriving, sustainable, and just communities.

Our Values: At SVP, we strive to live up to the following values and behaviors:

  • Impact – We pursue sustained and transformative change.
  • Connect – We cultivate relationships and recognize we can accomplish more together.
  • Trusted Ally – We model humility, openness, and mutual respect.
  • Equity – We center our efforts on those historically marginalized to balance power and access to resources.
  • Stretch – We embrace challenging conversations and risk taking and seek opportunities to learn.

SVP connects people who want to engage meaningfully with their communities and the social impact organizations that make change possible. Our focus is on cultivating informed, effective volunteers and philanthropists and supporting capacity-building efforts of promising organizations. The connection of SVP volunteers and philanthropists with investee organizations allows us to deliver greater impact, together. SVP aims to foster a philanthropic and nonprofit sector that has the strength and resources to address systemic issues related to racial equity by:

  • Building a community of engaged and educated philanthropists who understand their role in creating an equitable community.
  • Building the capacity of the nonprofit leaders and organizations doing the hard work of addressing systemic issues.
  • Increasing collaboration and collective action - doing more together than we can do alone while leveraging best practices and sharing power. 

At its core, SVP is about building strong relationships among its Partners and the social impact organizations it invests in to drive impact in the community. Most of SVP’s funding comes from annual contributions from our 300+ Partners. SVP pools these funds to provide our investees with unrestricted, multiyear funding along with capacity building support, delivered mainly by SVP Partners as volunteers who are in turn developing their own skills and potential. Our current core issue areas for funding include early childhood development, support for K-12 students and high school graduation, and environmental justice. We also offer educational programs, events, and opportunities to come together and connect as part of the SVP community.

Over the last twenty-three years, SVP has supported more than 100 nonprofits, providing $16 million in funding and more than 35,000 skilled volunteer hours to strengthen these organizations and accelerate collective action. SVP has engaged with more than 1,000 volunteers and philanthropists (the organization’s Partners) – transforming how they give and creating ripple effects throughout the community. Moreover, SVP Seattle is part of the larger SVP International network, which includes SVP affiliates in more than 40 cities and 8 countries all over the globe, so that Partners can learn from each other and amplify their impact.

Organizational Leadership and Business Model

SVP Seattle is governed by a Board of Directors, currently comprising ten SVP Partners and members of the community. We have an annual budget of $1.7 million, which we use to make grants as well as to offer investee and partner programs, equity education and community events. There are eight full-time staff including the Executive Director. Involving SVP Partners in the work of the organization is a priority; staff engage several volunteer committees and working groups to implement much of the organization’s work. 

In the most recent budget over half (52%) of the organization’s funding comes from annual contributions from its Partners. The rest comes from major gifts from Partners or others (26%), private foundations (6%), special events and programs (11%), corporate support (2%), and earned income (4%).

The organization has undergone executive and staff transition over the past few years after the planned exit of the founding Executive Director. An Interim Executive Director was engaged by the Board in April 2019 to continue organizational change, systems and processes work while also reflecting on past transitions and needs for the future. To prepare for the new Executive Director, the Interim Executive Director and the Board refreshed the staff team and engaged with Partners and staff to bolster the organization’s near-term programmatic, strategic, resource development and financial priorities. SVP Seattle is ready for a new leader and is excited to move forward with our goals!

The Position

The Executive Director will:

  • Guide and support the Board of Directors in setting SVP’s strategic direction and ensuring financial sustainability, while having primary oversight over all operational aspects of the organization.
  • Recruit, engage and retain Partners who want to amplify their impact in our community as philanthropists and volunteers.
  • Lead, develop and support the teams (staff, board, and key volunteers) that are focused on building and managing our programs.

The ED reports to the Board of Directors and has 3 direct reports: the Director of Partner Engagement, the Director of Community Investment, and the Senior Manager of Finance & Operations. Specific responsibilities include:

Partner engagement and retention

  • Lead and inspire a network of more than 300 diverse Partners who invest their time, funds and social capital to support the organization’s mission.
  • Play a key role in identifying and recruiting new Partners and engaging them in SVP’s mission, as well as retaining current Partners.
  • Build relationships and spark connections among SVP Partners and Investees, supporting their growth and development.

Championing SVP’s racial equity work

  • Lead efforts to weave equity into the fabric of SVP. Nurture existing practices and support new ways to address racial equity throughout the organization and its programs.
  • Share the story of why racial equity is essential to our mission, and support the board, staff, and Partners in their ongoing learning and ability to integrate racial equity into policies and practice.

Fundraising strategy and practice

  • Refresh and strengthen SVP’s revenue model, including strategy for how the membership model, fee structure and revenue streams can best support programmatic goals; implement adjustments as needed.
  • Together with the Director of Partner Engagement, lead major gift fundraising efforts with Partners and the community at large, including personally asking for contributions from current and prospective Partners.
  • Promote SVP’s value proposition and effectively tell the story of SVP’s mission and impact in the community, in one-on-one, small group, and large group settings.
  • Provide support and coaching to increase Partner and board participation in recruiting, fundraising, and corporate sponsorship asks in order to engage more individuals and organizations in our work.

Staff and Board Team Building

  • Provide organizational leadership and management support to a team of talented staff members and engaged board members to ensure high-functioning and effective teams.
  • Nurture strong and mutually respectful working relationships across the SVP community – among board, staff, investees and Partners – in keeping with SVP’s mission and values and core belief that we are stronger together.

Community engagement

  • Foster authentic relationships built on reciprocity and trust across a diversity of professional, ethnic, and geographic communities and identities in the Pacific Northwest.
  • Promote SVP’s priorities and values in the philanthropic community and contribute thought leadership to the social impact sector.

The Ideal Candidate

SVP’s next Executive Director will be excited by the prospect of galvanizing others to co-create thriving, sustainable, and just communities in the Puget Sound region. They will share SVP’s core beliefs that we are stronger together, and that we must center our efforts on those historically marginalized to balance power and access to resources. They will be deeply committed to SVP’s racial equity focus: motivated to always keep learning, prepared to take action, and eager to support others in their growth, wherever they may be on their journeys. 

The ideal candidate is a natural connector with excellent listening, communication, and relationship-building skills, who can authentically build bridges between people from different communities, sectors, and backgrounds. They should have a strong understanding of racial equity at the individual, institutional and systemic levels.  Experience convening multi-racial, cross-class groups to work toward shared social impact goals will be very beneficial. Since our work involves activating people to engage with their communities to make meaningful impact, SVP needs a leader who is at their best when they are acting as a mentor and coach, encouraging others to step up and shine.

The new Executive Director will be able to tell the story of SVP and its mission in a compelling way that inspires others to want to join and invest. Significant experience and comfort with mission-driven fundraising and/or asking for contributions of time and money will be an important key to success. Experience leading and managing a membership organization or a group with a large and engaged constituency will also be a significant advantage.

As the leader of an organization that has been through a lot of transition, the new ED must be a skilled team builder with a proven ability to develop and manage high-performing board and staff teams. Their leadership style will include demonstrated skills in collaborating, modelling humility, and creating a positive work culture that welcomes, supports, and shares power with others from different backgrounds.

The next ED will be a results-oriented leader with a proven ability to drive impact through action. They will be excited by the strategic direction that SVP has chosen to take, and ready to address the challenge of operationalizing that vision. They will be grounded in the fundamentals of running a healthy nonprofit, including budgeting, financial oversight, and strategic revenue development. Knowledge of the nonprofit landscape and how it is evolving, including innovations, challenges and opportunities, is a significant plus, as is an understanding of the local and regional philanthropic sector and the dynamics of the nonprofit funding environment.

Compensation and Benefits

This is a full-time salaried position requiring a willingness to work some evenings and weekends. The expected salary range is between $140,000 and $160,000, depending on qualifications and experience. A stipend to cover some relocation costs may be available for candidates who would need to move.

SVP offers 15 days of paid vacation plus 2 personal days each year for the first four years of employment. There are 8 paid holidays, as well as the entire week between December 25 and January 1, for a total of up to 12 paid holidays. SVP offers a generous benefits package including 100% employer-paid medical, dental and vision insurance for full-time employees. Other benefits include life insurance, disability insurance, and a match of employee contributions to a 403(b) retirement account up to 5% of gross annual salary after 6 months of employment.

SVP’s office is in the “Impact Hall” building in Seattle’s Pioneer Square, with excellent access to transit. The building is home to a vibrant community of nonprofits, and provides opportunities and events for learning and connecting with community members on a daily basis. 

How to Apply

Online applications only, please no email or paper submissions. You will be asked to upload two documents, a resume and a cover letter. In your cover letter, please describe as specifically as you can how your experience and skills are a fit with SVP’s current goals and mission, including its focus on racial equity work.

Applications received by Thursday, March 19 at 5pm Pacific time will be given full consideration; early applications are strongly encouraged!  All applications will be acknowledged via an email receipt. Consideration will be given to applications as soon as they are received; in-person interviewing will begin in March, with an offer of hire expected in mid-May.

SVP Seattle is unable to acquire work visas for international candidates; candidates with work visas already in hand are welcome to apply.

As an equal opportunity employer, SVP is committed to a diverse, multi-cultural work environment. SVP does not discriminate in employment based on age, race, creed, gender, religion, marital status, veteran’s status, national origin, disability, or sexual orientation. People of color, people with disabilities, and people of diverse sexual orientations are encouraged to apply.

The search for this position is being facilitated by the team at Clover Search Works, a firm that provides a full range of search services to nonprofit organizations in the Pacific Northwest and beyond. Clover Search Works is honored to be  partnering with SVP in this search and shares their vision of Northwest communities where everyone can thrive regardless of race or income.  

Questions regarding this opportunity are welcomed and can be directed to Julie Edsforth of Clover Search Works.  Email: julie@cloversearchworks.com Phone: 206-979-0514