School Network Staff Executive Director, 82nd Street Academics
Who we are
82nd Street Academics is a long serving, community organization, based in Jackson Heights, that serves to complement public education in the Western Queens area of New York. We opened our doors as a summer school program in 1974 before adding an after school achievement program in 1997 and eventually becoming incorporated as a nonprofit in 2003. 82nd Street has built a strong community presence and now has multiple sites throughout Queens serving over 1,000 students.
We pride ourselves on being a complement to public education and are committed to ensuring that our students, regardless of home language or other societal barriers, have access to quality higher education.
We believe that our organization’s growth has provided both opportunities and challenges and as we move into this next phase of leadership, we are looking to create a balance between our strong academic programs with equally strong non-profit management, creating a clear roadmap for the organization’s growth and leadership in the community.
About the Executive Director role
The 82nd Street Academics board is seeking a leader who can build on our strengths in advancing public education while also collaborating with the staff and the Board to set our future direction. The Executive Director (ED) will lead our organization ensuring sustainability and continued superior academic results, retaining talented staff, and growing and strengthening partnerships with our community of students and families. The ED will report to the Board of Directors of 82nd Street Academics and will be charged with leading and working with our program leadership and all of our stakeholders to advance our commitment to getting students in our community prepared early for next steps beyond high school.
Key Responsibilities – The “What”
- Ensure that the 82nd Street’s mission and vision are clearly articulated and understood fully by staff, partners and stakeholders.
- Ensure our students’ academic success and social/emotional health; keep students at the center of all decision-making.
- Work with the board to move the organization forward and lead the development and implementation of 82nd academics strategy, using research, data and analytics, and metrics of success.
Creating and Managing Effective Systems & Operational Structures
- Assess and develop strategies to strengthen each aspect of the organization’s model, structures, and policies.
- Create effective systems to hold self and others accountable for high standards of performance.
- Ensure maximum resource utilization, budget management, and maintenance of the organization.
- Lead and oversee budget and contract management as well as fundraising and grant writing.
- Ensure compliance with fiscal management, funding sources and reporting.
- Develop and implement creative and effective marketing strategies to promote the program, maintain its competitiveness in the community and meet enrollment targets.
Build and Sustain Supportive Conditions for Strong Staff Culture
- Foster and support a collaborative learning culture based on trust, compassion and mutual respect.
- Institute equitable practices that support staff and create the conditions where staff are supported and able to do their best work, focused on academic rigor and high standards, on behalf of the students they serve.
- Create an environment that develops and supports staff in measuring student academic success and preparing students to succeed.
- Launch effective talent management strategies to attract, retain and develop high performing staff and foster conditions for professional growth and a path to advancement through continuous feedback, coaching and development.
Maintaining a Strong Community Presence and Partnerships
- Maintain open, transparent and ongoing systems of communication with various stakeholder groups to ensure that priorities and expectations are clear.
- Ensure effective and efficient decision-making processes that include the expertise and perspectives of stakeholders and build buy-in throughout the organization.
- Maintain visibility and foster an environment of increased trust with the Board, staff and community.
- Manage a collaborative relationship with the Board, maintaining open, timely and ongoing communication, and providing support and guidance as needed. Lead and organize board meetings and drive agenda.
Managing & Developing the Leadership Team
- Actively mentor, coach and develop the existing senior leadership team, ensuring that functional areas are led by strong, mission-aligned colleagues.
- Ensure team members have the resources and independence to execute their role and programs effectively.
- Implement strategies to recruit, develop and retain highly effective leaders, with a particular emphasis on diversity, fair and equitable practices, and opportunity for growth and succession planning.
Competencies for Success – The “How”
Systems Level Leadership and Effective Execution
- Create, implement, and institutionalize effective policies, systems, and organizational structures to optimize school and student success and ensure operational excellence and strong compliance of a mature non for profit organization.
- Continuously identify opportunities for cross-functional, cross-school collaboration to ensure that a thoughtful and coherent strategy is propelling 82nd Street forward.
- Build an organizational culture that accelerates learning and raises expectations for every student, and fosters collaboration with parents to support student development.
- Lead team in leveraging outcome data in decision-making, and adopting research based, culturally responsive, and proven programmatic models.
- Lead with student-centered decision-making, ensuring holistic student support.
- Demonstrate cultural fluency, sensitivity, and a strong equity lens to meet the needs of our diverse students and staff.
Strategic Change Leadership
- Learn and assess the 82nd Street community, culture, structures and systems to inform forward planning.
- Build on the program’s successes and strengths, and commit to continuous improvement through analysis, inquiry, and assessment of results and strategic priorities.
- Lead innovative practice, entrepreneurial thinking, and organizational design efforts, and secure buy-in for a clear and compelling vision and priorities to execute.
Strong Team Leadership
- Effectively balance the tension between individual program leaders’ needs and vision with the need for coherence across programs.
- Direct, develop and support our team to advance the vision for academic programming, operational excellence and financial sustainability.
- Assess team and individuals’ skills, identify individual professional learning needs, and provide feedback and support to improve practice, build capacity, and maximize talent.
- Lead with a strong focus on goals, accountability and results; set clear metrics for success.
- Lead teams to collaborate with each other and with stakeholders, including parents and families.
Extraordinary Influencer and Connector
- Communicate effectively, tailoring messages for the audience, context, and mode of communication.
- Listen with an open mind, seeking understanding of stakeholders’ perspectives before establishing a direction forward.
- Build positive relationships and coalitions primarily with staff, students, parents and families, community partners, Board, authorizers, and funding partners.
- Navigate politically complex structures, relationships and dynamics to enable thoughtful decisions and positive outcomes for students.
Experience we’re looking for
- Experience delivering high-energy and inspirational leadership with a clear track record of effective nonprofit management and a focus on equity, excellence and access for all students.
- 5+ years of senior leadership; experience in change/turnaround leadership is helpful.
- Experience working in conjunction with a Board of Directors to identify priorities, establish goals, monitor progress, and produce outcomes in service to stakeholders.
- Proven skills and experience in strategic planning, communicating a vision and goals to others, and effectively implementing action plans throughout an organization.
- Track record of building and managing highly competent and functional teams.
- Demonstrated experience building consensus and trust within an organization.
- Knowledge and familiarity of schools or education preferred, but not required.
- Experience in DYDC and DOE funded after school and preschool programs preferred, but not required.
Salary is competitive, and commensurate with prior experience within the range of $170,000 – $220,000. In addition, a comprehensive benefits package is included. We look forward to discussing details with you as the interview process progresses.