The SPEC Association for Children and Families (SPEC) is looking for a dynamic individual who is passionate about supporting children and families and strengthening the community as a whole to become their next Executive Director (ED). SPEC is a registered charity that has been an integral part of Brooks, Alberta and the surrounding community for over 35 years. As the community has grown, SPEC has also grown, responding to community needs and seeking to strengthen children and families in a variety of ways.
SPEC’s new ED will be a dynamic, friendly, outgoing professional who is passionate about supporting children and families. An energetic leader who “walks the talk”, she or he will be comfortable taking a leading role in the community, positively influencing others through honesty, integrity and sensitivity at all levels of interaction to achieve results that are in the best interests of the organization and community. He or she will be a motivator and team-builder, able to support development of staff in an approachable way that is balanced with authority and respect for all roles in the organization. She or he will be committed to servant based leadership, and comfortable with delegating responsibility and promoting teamwork with a skilled and developing team.
This person will be innovative and creative, willing to embrace new approaches and collaborations to support and enhance the outcomes and impact of the organization while respecting the history and values that have made SPEC successful to date. He or she will have the skills to solicit significant support to fund SPEC’s mission and is politically astute and influential in the community to ensure SPEC is not just sustainable, but thrives into the future. Comfortable working with technology, the successful candidate will have a good understanding of finances, including project based funding and its implications, as well as experience with accreditation, standards and policy development, fund development and an interest in social enterprise.
The candidate will demonstrate and nurture the compassion, caring and sense of family that is key to the success of SPEC. The successful candidate will have experience supporting a nonprofit Board of directors in its governance duties and working with an engaged, passionate workforce.
Key competencies the successful candidate must demonstrate are:
· Networking and Relationship Building
· Strategic Thinking
· Service Orientation
· Organizational and Environmental Awareness
· Resource and Fiscal Management
SPEC is focused on the positive development of kids. In order to achieve this outcome, SPEC provides a continuum of services from early intervention (prevention) to high intervention during crisis, so kids have access to the right kind of support at the right time, no matter what their situation. SPEC recognizes that kids are part of families. In order for them to thrive, the family also needs support. SPEC therefore provides family support services that support the direct needs of kids. Kids programs are focused on building resiliency, and family intervention is focused on building family capacity to raise/parent their children.
Under the leadership of SPEC’s recently retired Executive Director of 35 years, SPEC grew to have annual budget of more than two million dollars, and is supported by the work of 32 staff, 5-9 Volunteer Board members, and over 2000 additional volunteer hours. In 2014/2015, SPEC served 4664 unique clients, up 8.5% from the previous year. Well respected in the community, SPEC provides service in four program areas:
- Family Support, accredited by the Canadian Accreditation Council, provides planned interventions and services that aim to strengthen and support children, youth and their families through delivery of a range of contracted home-based, family centered, education and skill building support services.
- The SPEC parentLINKcentre provides parent and family resources, and supports to families in Brooks and the County of Newell as well as extending past County borders to service families in the Cessford and Pollockville communities.
- From 2010 to 2013, SPEC developed and piloted its highly successful Connections Leadership and Resiliency Program for youth. Changes in funding led to closure of the program, but SPEC continues to explore how it can provide needed programming for youth.
- The LINKS program provides a first point of entry for services for children and families in Brooks. It acts as a connector to needed services, whether provided by SPEC or other community agencies. As Newcomers are a large population in Brooks, the LINKS program also provides specialized services and support to this group of citizens.
In order to build on its strong history of involvement in community, and to continue to respond to future community needs, SPEC seeks to build a vibrant community engagement program supporting its work, a diversified financial base with a fund development culture throughout the agency, and the facility, program and administrative infrastructure supports required for desired outcomes.
The ED is responsible for the successful leadership and management of SPEC. The ED’s major mandate is to ensure that SPEC has a long-range strategy which achieves its mission and vision, and toward which it makes consistent and timely progress on its goals. As the senior representative of SPEC, the ED clearly understands, demonstrates and practices the values and philosophy of the organization while building a strong, capable, engaged team who deliver quality programs and services.
- Providing dynamic leadership to the organization and the community, in partnership with the Board, to guide the organization with inspired long range planning while fostering effective team work and representing SPEC at community activities to enhance the organization’s profile.
- Identifying and assessing the needs of the community to ensure the operation of the organization effectively meets the evolving need and expectations of its clients, Board, and Funders.
- Overseeing the planning, implementation and evaluation of the organization's programs and services to ensure that SPEC operates effectively in the community to achieve its vision and mission in ways consistent with its values and commitment to children and families.
- Overseeing the implementation of the human resources policies, procedures and practices including the development of job description for all staff to establish a positive, healthy and safe work environment in accordance with all appropriate legislation and regulations.
- Supporting strong fiscal accountability by working with staff and the Board’s Finance Committee to prepare and monitor budgets that optimize the use of SPEC’s finances, staff and resources; and working with the Board to secure adequate funding through sustainable service contracts and by promoting a fund development culture within the organization.
- Representing SPEC and its values and mission in the community-at-large by establishing good working relationships and collaborations with community groups, funders, politicians and other organizations.
- Identify and evaluate the risks to SPEC’s people (clients, staff, management, volunteers), property, finances, goodwill, and image and implement measures to control risks.
- Supporting the Board in fulfilling its governance responsibilities.
- Providing the leadership and long-term vision necessary to significantly increase SPEC’s capacity and fiscal sustainability.
- At least five years of experience in a senior leadership/Executive Director position, working collaboratively with a volunteer Board of Directors.
- A clear understanding of the non-profit sector and government systems is needed.
- Passion for and connection with the child and family serving sector, ability to positively influence key stakeholders and partners locally, provincially and nationally to enhance the experience of kids and families in our communities.
- Excellent communication skills: demonstrated ability to tailor communication to different audiences, particularly staff, donors, community leaders, partner agencies and politicians.
- Strong business skills: Strategic planning, people and organizational leadership, sound financial knowledge, innovative program development and human resources management.
- Proficient fund development/donor stewardship skills: a strategic approach to developing sustainable funding and a strong financial foundation through establishing strong relationships and support with funders and partners.
Graduate degree in a social sciences, human service, management and/or a combination of relevant education and experience is expected.
impact8 Inc. is recruiting on behalf of The SPEC Association for Children and Families. Please send your resume and covering letter to:
Please send your information on or before November 4, 2016
impact8 Inc. thanks all candidates for their interest. Only those selected for an interview will be contacted. SPEC will not respond to inquiries concerning this posting. Please direct questions to .