Executive Director

National Ataxia Foundation

| Minneapolis, MN | December 3, 2018

Organization Overview

The National Ataxia Foundation is dedicated to improving the lives of persons affected by Ataxia through support, education, and research.

NAF Origins – Supporting Promising Ataxia Research Since 1957

NAF began with a doctor’s quest to find the cause and cure for Ataxia. John W. Schut, MD founded the National Ataxia Foundation in 1957 to relentlessly pursue answers after he lost family members to the disease. Eventually inheriting the disease and succumbing himself, his dream lived on as NAF’s efforts to fund research increased – leading to some of the most important Ataxia discoveries. Today, NAF is guided by the world’s most renowned Ataxia scientists.

The Foundation’s primary purpose is to support Ataxia research, provide vital programs and services for Ataxia families, and help in the search for treatments and a cure. NAF is the only organization in the United States dedicated to the disease that serves all types of Ataxia. NAF works closely with the world’s leading Ataxia researchers, promoting exchanges of ideas and innovation in Ataxia discovery. NAF offers many educational resources for Ataxia, including a comprehensive library of brochures, fact sheets, and books. NAF also provides several ways for the Ataxia community to connect, such as: Support Groups, a Facebook Ataxia Support Group, various Ataxia events, medical expos, and most importantly, the Annual Ataxia Conference – a two-day conference designed for Ataxia experts and Ataxia families to come together. Every other year the Foundation sponsors the Ataxia Investigators Meeting – which brings together Ataxia researchers from throughout the world to share cutting-edge research. NAF is a national organization with the Executive Director and all staff working at our office in Minneapolis, Minnesota. NAF has an annual budget of $3 million, a staff of 7FTE and is governed by a national board of directors.

Ataxia researchers are on the cusp of amazing advances in treatments and in the search for a cure. The National Ataxia Foundation is looking for our next Executive Director to build on this energy and lead the organization’s efforts to improve the lives of individuals and families affected by Ataxia.

Position Overview

The next Executive Director for NAF will provide effective and engaging leadership and management of the organization to help it continue growth in revenue, funded research projects, and the number of individuals and families finding support. The Executive Director is responsible for oversight of all work in support of the mission and advancing the vision for NAF’s future. The Executive Director reports to the Board of Directors. This position is full-time, exempt, and salary is commensurate with experience.

Major Duties and Responsibilities

Mission and Vision – Work with Board of Directors, staff, members, and other stakeholders to promote and fulfill the mission of NAF. Work with the Board on setting strategic direction for NAF and provide leadership to Board and staff to implement that direction. Effectively engage stakeholders and the public to further the mission.

Operations and Programming – Oversee all organizational operations and management of the NAF’s administration, fundraising, research activities, programming and support. Executive Director sets programmatic goals with staff and monitors and supports staff to accomplish goals.

Financial – Manage budget and budgeting process, contract management, and day-to-day financial operations of the organization. Communicate clear and accurate financial standing to the Board of Directors. Ensure short- and long-term financial stability of the organization.

Fundraising – Oversee and support fundraising activities, including individual giving, corporate sponsorship, government contracts, and grant-writing. Develop annual fundraising goals and strategies to meet those goals. Expand fundraising capabilities of NAF to grow existing programs and identify new revenue sources to support the growth of the organization.

Staff Supervision – Provide leadership and clear direction to staff and nurture a healthy work environment that encourages and supports professional development and builds strengths and skills to advance NAF’s mission and programming.

Board Support – Provide support to the effective engagement of the Board of Directors and all Committees/Work Groups of the Board. Work in partnership with Board members to leverage their energy and contacts to further the mission of the organization.

Key Skills and Qualifications
• Bachelor’s degree required, Masters preferred
• Ability to connect and work comfortably with differently abled individuals
• Minimum 5 years progressive experience as a mission-driven leader, non-profit leadership experience preferred
• Collaborative leadership style with proven ability to effectively engage board, staff and/or stakeholders around achieving a common goal
• Ability to work at a national scale, including comfort working with virtual teams and able to travel 6-10 times per year
• Proven fundraising/revenue-generating experience
• Demonstrated ability to work and build respectful relationships with people from diverse backgrounds and industries
• Strong operational skills with the ability to move a strategic vision forward
• Experience in financial management, budgeting and reporting processes
• Excellent written and verbal communication skills, including compelling public speaking abilities
• Strong interpersonal skills and proven ability to successfully supervise staff and support staff development
• Comfortable working with current technology necessary for effective operations of a national organization

To Apply

Position will remain open until filled. Submit information by 5PM on December 21st to be considered in the first screening. Send cover letter, resume, three references, and salary requirements as one .pdf document to shelly@meyerconsulting.org. A confirmation email will be sent upon receipt. Questions about the search can be directed to Roger Meyer at Meyer Consulting: roger@meyerconsulting.org.

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