Greater Lowell Community Foundation Seeking Executive Director

Executive Director, The Greater

Lowell Community Foundation

Posted 03/22/2011

The Organization

Founded in 1997, the mission of the Greater Lowell Community Foundation (GLCF) is to improve the quality of life for the people in the Greater Lowell/Merrimack Valley communities through philanthropic leadership and service. The guiding principles of the foundation include:

  • Improving the quality of life in the community through philanthropy
  • Advocating private giving for the public good
  • Providing philanthropic services to donors of all means
  • Convening and connecting resources with community needs and opportunities
  • Being a source of knowledge on issues affecting philanthropy and the community
  • Adhering to the highest ethical standards
  • Maximizing the impact of its grant and program initiatives
  • Participating in the national community foundation fields and philanthropy

Through a highly successful and prudent investment strategy, GLCF’s endowment has grown to $21 million in 2011. In 2010, the foundation gave $868,000 in grants, totaling 290 grants in education, human/social services, health, community development, arts and culture, and the environment. The foundation’s 2011 operating budget is $460,000 with a current staff of 2.5 FTE and a 19–member board, representing a cross-section of Greater Lowell’s community leaders.

The foundation board has aggressive goals to grow the foundation’s assets as well as its geographic impact and reach in the next 5 years.

Job Summary

Together with the board and the appropriate committee(s), the executive director (ED) will first lead the strategic thinking/planning process and develop a business/operations plan. Closely linked to the strategic planning process will be the development of a strategic communications plan.

Guided by this roadmap for growth, the ED will be instrumental in implementing, leading, building, expanding and managing GLCF’s:

  • day-to-day operational effectiveness
  • friend, donor and fundraising capacity
  • community, program and project development
  • multi-pronged collaborative efforts with other organizations

Under the direction of the board, the ED will provide the overall leadership in the continued growth and sustainability of the organization.


The ED reports directly to the board president and is accountable to the board of directors.

Initial Key Planning Responsibilities

  1. Multi-Year Strategic/Business Plan. Working in partnership with the board and appropriate committee(s), the ED will lead the strategic thinking and planning process, followed by the development of an operations/business plan. The operations assessment, an evaluation of office policies and procedures developed by the interim director, and the organizational assessment developed by the transition consultant may already constitute 60-70 percent of the strategic/business thinking and planning process.
  2. Multi-Year Strategic Communications Plan. In tandem with the strategic/business plan development and in partnership with the marketing committee, the ED will lead in the conceptualization, formulation and implementation of a comprehensive multiyear strategic communications plan including but not limited to rebranding and repositioning, upgrading marketing collateral material in print and electronic form, and developing a public relations strategy and plan.

Essential Job Functions/Responsibilities

  1. Day-to-Day Operations, 25%. The ED will be a detailed oriented, hands-on manager who ensures the efficient and effective functioning of the busy foundation office. Working with the board president and appropriate committee(s), the ED’s day-to-day administrative duties will include operations management and/or oversight (office management, information technology, procurement, insurance and legal issues, organization reporting and monitoring); financial management and/or oversight (grant distribution and financial management, budgeting, financial operations, analysis, reporting, income/expense tracking, investment reporting and performance metrics oversight); and human resource development and management (staffing structure, staff recruitment/ development/management, personnel policy development and budgeting).
  2. Friend and Fundraising/Donor and Community Development, 50%. Friend and fundraising/donor and community development is a core responsibility of the ED and will occupy at least half of his/her time. Working with the board president, the development committee and other committees and board members as appropriate, the ED is responsible to develop and oversee friend, donor and fundraising planning and implementation. This includes formulating and implementing a fundraising plan/campaign; researching, developing, overseeing and expanding the GLCF donor base; developing, managing and overseeing fundraising/donor events. Working with the board president, also as part of the annual ED work plan, the ED will develop and pursue collaboration and partnership opportunities that are critically important components to the foundation’s long-term growth strategy.
  3. Marketing and Public Relations, 20%. In coordination with the board president, the marketing committee and members of the board on an as needed basis, the ED will lead and oversee the implementation of the strategic communications plan including the rebranding and repositioning of the foundation and providing leadership and oversight in all matters related to the day-to-day marketing and public relations activities of the foundation.
  4. Board, 5%. Assist and support the board president and the nominating committee in board development, recruitment and orientation; support the president and board in developing and then leading in the implementation of GLCF’s strategic plan; work with and help engage the board and committee members in the work of the organization; be the staff liaison, strengthen and provide staff support to all committees on an as needed basis.

The Ideal Candidate


  • Minimum of a B.A. degree
  • 10 or more years’ experience in a management position with increasing responsibilities
  • Strong operations, finance, management, friend and fundraising and event planning experience with demonstrable and quantifiable results


  • Strong leadership skills, ability to work collaboratively with the board to carry out the board’s vision
  • Comfortable and effective in both nonprofit and donor worlds; strong in social entrepreneurial thinking and implementation skills
  • Proven sensitivity, ability to navigate in a multi-cultural and diverse environment
  • Personal credibility to win the professional respect and trust of the board, staff, donors, community leaders and partners and the general public; ability to sustain, train and motivate the GLCF staff
  • Attention to detail, ability to engage as a hands-on operations manager; demonstrate familiarity with and ability to oversee the full range of GLCF’s functions
  • History of success in all aspects of friend and fundraising, including success in researching and targeting corporate and individual donors with the ability to attract and grow the foundation’s endowment
  • Thorough understanding of GLCF’s grantmaking policies and processes, ability to provide direct program support as needed
  • Ability to manage and monitor GLCF’s fund distribution and financial management systems, ensuring and adapting GLCF’s resources to support operations and anticipate contingencies
  • Excellent collaboration and partnership skills with strong community team player instincts
  • Outstanding written and verbal communications skills, ability to articulate GLCF’s mission, vision and programs to stakeholders and to the public


  • Have a genuine passion for the mission and philosophy of GLCF
  • Be a multi-tasking team player with strong, hands-on work ethic; enthusiastic and flexible
  • Be a self-starter, solution and detail oriented, highly organized
  • Be an individual of unquestioned integrity

This is a full time position offering competitive salary and benefits commensurate with skill and experience.

Submission of Candidacy

This search is being conducted by Third Sector New England’s Executive Transitions Program with Transition Consultant Dorothy Chen-Courtin. To apply, please click here.

Due to the pace of this search, candidates are strongly encouraged to apply as soon as possible. Only online applications will be accepted. Please include curriculum vitae, three references, cover letter addressing qualifications for the position, compensation requirements, where you learned of the position and any other relevant information (such as published articles). All applications will be acknowledged. No phone calls please. Application materials will be accepted until final candidate is selected.

for direct link for application, click here


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