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5 Sep 2018

Principal or Vice Principal President & CEO

Nashville Public Education Foundation
 Nashville, Tennessee, United States

Job Description

Position Title:                       President & CEO

Reports To:                            Board of Directors

Location:                                 Nashville, TN


The Nashville Public Education Foundation (NPEF) is an independent 501c3 dedicated to strengthening and improving the city’s public schools. At the heart of its mission is a belief that every child should have access to a great public education – regardless of where they live or their circumstances.

Over the past several years, the Foundation has worked toward that goal by raising and investing private funds around four key priorities, developed through a year-long community goal setting and visioning process. The four priority areas are: (a) doubling the number of third graders reading on grade level, (b) increasing the college going and success rates above the national average, (c) better recruiting and retaining high quality teachers, and (d) supporting efforts to improve chronically under-performing schools.

Fundamental to the Foundation’s success is a deep commitment to three core “ethos”:

(a) Partnership – we believe this work cannot be successfully done by any one organization or individual. Instead, success will only be found by working collectively. That means working with a variety of different stakeholders who may have very different, sometimes conflicting perspectives. But as long as partners are kid-centered and willing to work together, they are welcome at our table.

(b) Systemic Improvement Centered – a significant change of the past several years is a belief that our work is aimed at systemic improvement. As a result, we do not take on work that benefits an individual school. Instead, we support efforts that can be scaled and grown across a wide array of schools and settings. Working in tandem with this idea, we also believe firmly that there is no one approach that will solve all the challenges an urban school system faces. Thus, we are passionate in our support of many different ideas and solutions.

(c) Kid-outcome Centered – last but not least, a litmus test for all our work is that it benefits children and is indeed, driven by the needs of children, not adults.


Position Overview:

The President & CEO manages and successfully executes the mission of the Foundation and reports to the Board of Directors.



  • Commitment to the mission of the NPEF and ability to communicate effectively the story, mission and vision of the NPEF.
  • An understanding of the nexus between policy, political and business worlds and the role the NPEF plays in bridging those worlds.
  • Exceptional leadership skills, in particular, strong vision casting capacity — the ability to chart a course that is ambitious and inspiring, yet achievable and effective moving the needle for children.
  • Exceptional relational skills, in particular, a demonstrated ability to relate to people in the education, business, political, and community at large. Must be a partnership creator and strong relationship developer.
  • Experience and willingness to think outside the box and envision non-traditional solutions when the circumstances call for it.
  • Ability to work well with diverse and stakeholders, partners and interest groups. Must be community solution focused (at scale).


KEY RESPONSIBILITY AREA: Organizational Vision, Mission & Direction

  • Work with the Board to develop and follow an organizational vision and investment strategy that furthers the organization’s core mission of strengthening and improving the public schools.
  • Recommend annual investment, programmatic or advocacy work needed to further the organization’s vision and mission.
  • Follow and report on policy, political and community developments that could impact the organization’s vision, mission, programming, fundraising or community relationships – including recommendations to the Board about important pivots or changes in the mission or direction of the organization and/or its work and investments.
  • Manage and oversee strategic planning processes and efforts.


KEY RESPONSIBILITY AREA: Fiscal Management & Operations

  • Exercise chief administrative responsibility for the Foundation, including general operations, fiscal management, contracts and compliance, audits, budgeting, and human resources functions.
  • Develop, secure Board approval for and manage annual budget for the organization.
  • Ensure timely, accurate and comprehensive financial reporting to the Board and compliance with non-profit accountancy standards, policies and best practices.
  • Review and authorize expenditures within the budget per the accounting policies of the Foundation.
  • Oversee the recruiting, screening, hiring, training, evaluation, and termination of the Foundation’s staff.
  • Provide leadership, direction, and guidance to staff.
  • Ensures that all NPEF policies and guidelines are followed and that the organization follows non-profit best practices in terms of policies, procedures and compliance.
  • Serve as primary liaison to outside accountant, HR/payroll contractor, and auditor.


KEY RESPONSIBILITY AREA: Fundraising & Development

  • Set annual fundraising goals and targets, managing staff and resources to successful execute against them.
  • Manage activities of development staff, ensuring there is an effective fundraising plan in place with clear targets and an effective team to deliver against them.
  • Develop local and national sources of funding for Foundation programs.
  • Help steward and serve as primary relationship manager for significant individual, corporate and foundation donor relationships (i.e. those over 100k).
  • Help to identify and cultivate possible funding and grant sources, including individuals, foundations, corporations, and in-kind contributors.
  • Ensure compliance framework is in place and followed around all grants contracts.
  • Ensure all Foundation fundraising events and campaigns are successful and are executed at the highest quality.
  • Maintain high levels of satisfaction from donors.



  • Determines the programmatic direction of the Foundation, including recommending an annual investment plan and allocating staff time and resources in accordance with Board-approved plans.
  • Researches and provides oversight of investment opportunities and funded initiatives.
  • Manages activities of the programming staff, ensuring there are effective programmatic goals, targets and means of evaluation and progress monitoring.
  • Ensures that Foundation grants and investments are achieving intended purposes and are aligned with the Foundation’s mission, goals, and outcomes.


KEY RESPONSIBILITY AREA: Public Visibility & Community Relations

  • Serves as primary spokesperson for the NPEF to the media, community and civic leaders, elected officials, MNPS officials, donors and others.
  • Develop and execute strategies for sustaining and growing a positive image and reputation for the Foundation in the community and among community leaders.
  • Maintain, develop and grow strong relationships with top government leadership of the city, including the Mayor, Metro Council, state lawmakers, School Board members, and others.
  • Maintain and grow relationships with professional and educational groups in the community and serve on appropriate community committees to enhance programmatic, political and fundraising interests.
  • Guide the overall messaging and positioning of the NPEF including the manner in which the NPEF is represented online, in social media, through printed materials, paid and earned media, etc.
  • Manage activities of the staff and outside PR agency as it relates to community outreach, public relations and organizational positioning.



  • Communicates regularly with the Board and more frequently with the Board’s Executive Committee and officers.
  • Keep the Board fully informed of the Foundation’s financial, programmatic and public position.
  • Work with Board leadership to recruit and onboard new Board members.
  • Ensure the organization maintains a strong, effective Board of Directors and adheres to best practices for nonprofit Board leadership and management.




  • Strong oral communications, written communications and presentation skills.
  • Proven track record in raising $3M+ in annual funding for an organization or initiative.
  • Strong manager of people.
  • Excellent work and business ethics.
  • A Bachelor’s Degree in Business, Communications, Development, Public Relations, or relevant field.

How to Apply

If you are interested in exploring this unique opportunity, please contact:
  • Tara Flickinger, Principal
  • Hayden Garrett, Associate

Bureaus: Tennessee. Job Categories: Full-Time. Job Types: Principal or Vice Principal.