Dedicated to Improving the Lives of Blind and Visually Impaired People

Executive Director

Organization Background

Reader’s Digest Partners for Sight Foundation (RDPFS) is dedicated to fostering the independence of people who are blind and visually impaired (BVI). Established in 1955 by DeWitt Wallace, the founder of The Reader’s Digest Association, RDPFS is a public charitable grant making foundation in New York State with approximately $14 million in endowment assets and annual giving between $600k to $1MM. Through its grantmaking, RDPFS works towards making a difference in the lives of blind and visually impaired individuals. RDPFS partners with local and national organizations that assist, support, and train blind and visually impaired people. Its portfolio of carefully directed grants seeks to enrich the lives of thousands of visually impaired individuals, and assists them with their goal to become integrated, productive, fully accepted and participating members of society. RDPFS believes success and improvement is driven by the close collaboration of the BVI community.

In addition to grantmaking, the Foundation runs a print publishing business featuring large print with approximately 31,000 subscribers and approximately $1MM in revenue.

 

Position

Reporting to the Board of Directors, the Executive Director is a full time-position that serves as the Chief Executive Officer of the Foundation, leading the Foundation’s business and operations and is the primary spokesperson and advocate for the Foundation’s work, including public representation. The Executive Director is responsible for planning, implementing, supervising, reporting on and measuring the success of all Foundation activities. The Executive Director is also responsible for identifying areas of unmet program needs for new grantmaking opportunities. The Executive Director works closely with a diverse group of stakeholders in the BVI and philanthropic communities to develop collaborations for programming, funding, awareness, and advocacy. The Executive Director will be the chief advocate for implementing the Foundation’s strategic plan and driving its desired outcomes for maximum impact.

 

Responsibilities

  • Grantmaking Management and Community Relations (60%)
    • Execute the Foundation’s grantmaking program for maximum impact, in partnership with the Board
    • Serve as the chief ambassador of the Foundation – actively manage, showcase and build the Foundation’s brand reputation throughout all we do, including grantmaking, marketing, website presence and contributions to the community
    • Maintain and grow the Foundation’s reputation of impact beyond the dollars granted, and as a thought leader in the BVI community
    • Ensure alignment of grantmaking activities with Board priorities and strategic goals
    • Cultivate relationships with current and potential grantees, key community groups and other funders to maximize grant impacts and outcomes
    • Identify areas of unmet BVI community program need for new grantmaking opportunities
    • Determine and implement metrics for measuring program success and effectiveness
    • Review expenses, target audience, and goals for the Foundation Bulletin to best support the Foundation mission and grantmaking and make recommendations to the Board
  • Foundation Management and Governance (30%)
    • Board Partnership
      • Ensure the Foundation has a long-term strategy which reflects its mission
      • Partner with Board to refine strategic goals, ensuring ongoing alignment with priorities and long-term plans
      • Develop and implement plans to achieve financial sustainability goals via revenue generation, development or other opportunities as appropriate
      • Implement mechanisms for operational continuity including succession planning
      • Foster a culture of engagement, with open and transparent collaboration
      • Keep the Board informed on RDPFS activities and relevant issues in the philanthropic field, specifically in the fields of vision impairment and blindness
      • Educate the board to increase overall effectiveness
    • Champion Nonprofit/Foundation Operational Excellence
      • Lead development of program, organizational, investment and financial plans
      • Seek and implement improvements in Foundation operations as appropriate
      • Recommend policy and process improvements to enhance board efficiency
      • Seek to create rewarding board member experiences and generate engagement
      • Maintain compliance with all regulatory requirements and Foundation policies
    • Organizational and Financial Leadership
      • Lead all Foundation operational, financial and personnel functions
      • Ensure compliance with all government and regulatory laws, regulations, and policies
      • Lead annual financial budgeting and forecasting process in collaboration with the Treasurer and investment advisors
      • Lead and execute annual audit compliance and reporting processes
  • Publishing Business Operations Management (10%)
    • Facilitate execution of Foundation’s publishing business to achieve maximum opportunity and impact
    • Oversee vendors managing the publishing operations including budgeting, new subscriber, renewal, and billing efforts, circulation, production, and customer service

 

Qualifications

  • Proven leadership experience in nonprofit management, with at least 7 years experience in nonprofit leadership and/or grant making
  • Demonstrated experience in defining, communicating and implementing strategic plans
  • Strong, demonstrated understanding of nonprofit governance practices and operations
  • Excellent financial management skills, including budgeting, reporting, analyzing and communicating financial results
  • Demonstrated experience with, or resourcefulness for learning, the introduction of development and fundraising programs to a nonprofit
  • Excellent project and program management skills
  • Ability to influence a diverse group of stakeholders and personalities
  • Demonstrated commitment to the mission and values of the Foundation
  • Experience in the BVI ecosystem or as a lived member of the BVI community desirable
  • Ability to use technology to increase depth and scale of nonprofit impact and advance the organization’s strategy, mission, and success
  • Demonstrated technology proficiency including current office productivity and collaboration tools

 

Location

We operate remotely. Candidates located in the Northeast US or adjacent time zones are preferred.

 

How to Apply

Please submit your resume and cover letter outlining your fit to the position to [email protected]. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until July 31, 2024.

RDPFS provides equal opportunity to all employees and applicants for employment in accordance with all applicable equal employment opportunity affirmative action laws, directives, and regulations of federal, state, and local governing bodies or agencies thereof. RDPFS does not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, physical disability, age, or marital status.