Chicago Botanic Garden


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Director of Strategic Initiatives - Windy City Harvest, Chicago, IL

Job Title

Director of Strategic Initiatives - Windy City Harvest, Chicago, IL

Job Qualifications

In this role you will be responsible for the following:

Plan and execute complex programs including budget development, analysis of performance and financial data, organizing and leading a cross-functional team of varying programs.
Inform the creation of new programs, partnerships, and contracts and support the evolution of existing programs to meet the evolving needs of program participants and the communities we serve.
Cultivate and steward relationships with existing and emerging program, donor, and community partners.
Ensure clear, consistent communication and project management with internal Garden departments; particularly development and communications.
Represent the Chicago Botanic Garden in the media, at national and international conferences, and on local service boards.
Participate in Garden-wide strategic planning initiatives as requested.
Work collaboratively across program areas.
Lead directly and with influence.
Support and work cooperatively with senior director of operations.

Key Garden competencies/behaviors desired:

Demonstrates breadth and depth in communities served.
Works as part of a community-oriented culture.
Communicates in a manner that gains trust, support, and cooperation of others at all levels.
Works effectively with others despite differences of opinion and style; builds alliances.
Has a tolerance for opposing points of view.
Strives for collaboration. Works cooperatively, as a positive contributor to the team.
Demonstrates a positive attitude and shows kindness in all workplace interactions.
Makes decisions appropriate for level of responsibility.
Practices with cultural sensitivity to accept and respond to differing needs, opinions, and styles and support a respectful workplace environment for all.
Recognizes problems, constructively identifies and articulates solutions, as well as makes decisions appropriate for level of responsibility.
Manages crisis and unexpected events with steadiness and professionalism
Effectively supervises and oversees the responsibilities of others.
Functions well in a fast pace environment.
Can effectively adapt to change; can shift gears comfortably; is flexible, and embraces change with a “can-do” attitude.
Is self-aware to make accurate appraisal of personal strengths and weaknesses and open to feedback as an opportunity for improvement.
Is cool under pressure; can be counted on to hold things together during tough times; can handle stress; is not knocked off balance by the unexpected; is a settling influence during a crisis.
Recognizes problems, constructively identifies and articulates solutions.
Picks up garbage when it is seen regardless of position.
Follows safety guidelines to ensure a safe working environment and consistently demonstrates safe work behaviors.
Is welcoming of new hires.

Education and Experience

Our ideal candidate will have the following:

Minimum 10 years of supervisory and/or progressively responsible nonprofit management experience.
Demonstrated experience with budgeting, tracking, and reporting in a nonprofit setting.
Strong staff management skills and experience, especially with regard to staff motivation.
Demonstrated ability to commit to a collegial work environment including participatory decision-making and support of open feedback.
Demonstrated experience building and sustaining positive and collaborative partnerships with diverse constituents.
Prior experience with donor relationships and promoting an organization or program to a diverse audience.
Bachelor’s degree.
*The Chicago Botanic Garden requires all existing employees to be fully COVID-19 vaccinated by October 15, 2021; hires after this date must be fully vaccinated upon hire or may request a medical/religious exemption after an offer is extended.*

Physical Demands:
Frequent sitting at a desk, working in many different types of weather during site visits, listening, speaking, participating in conference calls.

Position Application


Why Apply?:
Come work in a setting that is like no other as you support our mission: We cultivate the power of plants to sustain and enrich life. Take the first step toward being one of the employees who make the Garden one of the treasures of the Forest Preserves of Cook County. Apply today. Please note that applicants who do not meet the required qualifications will not be considered.

Disclaimer: The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by people assigned to this classification. They are not intended to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities and qualifications required of personnel so classified.

The Chicago Botanic Garden is a M/F, Disabled, and Vet EEO/AA Employer.

We are an Equal Opportunity Employer and do not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, color, sex, age, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, status as a veteran, or basis of disability or any other federal, state, or local protected class.

In accordance with Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972, the Chicago Botanic Garden does not discriminate on the basis of sex in its programs or activities, including in employment or admissions.