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Hilltown Families

PO Box 332

Company Description:
Hilltown Families is an online grassroots communication network for families living throughout the four counties of western Massachusetts. Our online network consist of an award winning website, eNewsletter, radio show/podcast, social networking platforms, and online bulletin boards.

Hilltown Families believes in creating resilient and sustainable communities by developing and strengthening a sense of place in our children and citizens through community-based education and engagement. We work to accomplish this by identifying the embedded learning that is found everywhere in our communities, interpreting through writing the educational and social value to be gained through engagement, and making the information accessible via online networks. The opportunities for community engagement include community events, local institutions, and community service.
Salary Range:Location:
$20+ Per Hour
Job Type:Category:
Part TimeExecutive
Education Level:Work Experience:
Some High School Coursework
Preference: Nice to have

Preference: Nice to have
Hilltown Families Executive Director Job Description

POSITION: Executive Director

REPORTS TO: Board of Directors

LOCATION: Western Massachusetts, work from home

HOURS & COMPENSATION: 20 hrs/week; $20/hr

Hilltown Families’ mission is to support the common good of our community through the development of a sense of place through community engagement. We do so through Community-Based Education. This process of learning unites community members through shared interests and experiences, establishes a shared history, and deepens a connection to the places they share. This development of a sense of place in our children and citizens through community-based education and engagement cultivates resilient and sustainable communities.

Hilltown Families’ model of learning reveals the embedded learning opportunities that are found everywhere in our communities. Through writing, we interpret and showcase the educational and social value to be gained through engagement, and make this information accessible via our online networks. The venues for community engagement include community events, local institutions, and community service.

Key to our model is Hilltown Families’ online grassroots communication network for families living throughout the four counties of western Massachusetts. It consists of an award winning website (www.HilltownFamilies.org), eNewsletter, radio show/podcast, social networking platforms, and online bulletin boards. On all of our platforms, throughout our network, we underscore placemaking opportunities that integrate learning and are non-commercial in nature. Events can be age-specific or intergenerational, involve sharing of knowledge and skills, support creative-free play, involve nature-based learning and art education, and promote a wide variety of learning curricula.

Over the last twelve years, Hilltown Families has grown from a local listserv serving neighbors in the hilltowns to a 501c3 serving all four counties of Western Massachusetts. As we look to the future, Hilltown Families is on a trajectory to lead the emergence of a new culture of learning that is based in the community, infused with local values, and supports authentic community connections. There is a growing national awareness in the fields self-directed learning, placemaking, and mindfulness - all of which are central to Hilltown Families’ current mission and our vision for the future.

Hilltown Families’ new Executive Director will be an integral part of executing this vision:

As a local mission-based network, Hilltown Families will integrate virtual communication with physical space. We will become a national flagship organization for the larger Community Based Education Network that our founder, SIenna Wildfield, has formed. As such, Hilltown Families will (a) showcase a Community Based Education (CBE) framework, (b) provide an online portal for a national affiliate network, and (c) offer the physical space to support self-directed learning on a local level and concepts of CBE on a national level.

The unfolding of this vision can be broken down into three segments of development within the local and national scope:

ONLINE NETWORK: Create a viable and robust online portal utilizing modern and up-to-date technologies (web & mobil app) that utilizes the CBE framework that our founder, Sienna Wildfield, has created and implemented in Western MA over the past 12 years. This online portal establishes Hilltown Families as the flagship of a national CBE network and serves both the local community, while linking affiliate networks and a national community of users.

PHYSICAL SPACE: On the local level, the pairing of an online network with a physical space can fill community-based educational gaps while offering learning enhancement opportunities. A physical space can present options for fiscal support while engaging new audiences and providing learning and social enrichment experiences. On a national level, a physical space can be a destination for (a) potential network affiliates wanting to learn about the CBE framework; (b) professionals and life-long learners wanting to learn more about the fields of self-directed learning, placemaking, and mindfulness as they relate to CBE; and (c) visitors to the region looking for authentic forms of community engagement.

NEW LEADERSHIP: After 12 years of development, the time has come for a new executive director, in collaboration with board leadership and staff support, to move Hilltown Families to the next level of growth. Hilltown Families founder, Sienna Wildfield, will move into the role of consultant for Hilltown Families’ board/senior staff and the national network of affiliates.

The Executive Director will have overall strategic and operational responsibility for Hilltown Families' staff, programs, evaluation, expansion, and execution of its mission. She or he will begin by developing a deep understanding of our core programs, operations, staff, communities, and business plan.

Hilltown Families’ ideal Executive Director will provide the following:

Leadership & Board Governance

-Participate with the Board of Directors in developing a vision and strategic plan to guide the organization
-See that the board is kept fully informed on the condition of the organization and all important factors influencing it.
-Act as a professional advisor to the Board of Directors on all aspects of the organization's activities
-Foster effective teamwork between the Board and the Executive Director and between the Executive Director and staff
-Attend all Board of Directors meetings
-Act as a spokesperson for the organization
-Conduct official correspondence on behalf of the Board, as appropriate, and jointly with the Board, when appropriate
-Represent the organization at community activities to enhance the organization's community profile

Operational planning and management

-Develop an operational plan which incorporates goals and objectives that work towards the strategic direction of the organization
-Ensure that the operation of the organization meets the expectations of its clients, community-members, Board, and Funders
-Oversee the efficient and effective day-to-day operation of the organization
-Draft policies for the approval of the Board and prepare procedures to implement the organizational policies; review existing policies on an annual basis and recommend changes to the Board as appropriate
-Ensure that personnel, client, donor and volunteer files are securely stored and privacy/confidentiality is maintained
-Provide support to the Board by preparing meeting agenda and supporting materials

Program planning and management

-Oversee the planning, implementation and evaluation of the organization's programs and services
-Ensure that the programs and services offered by the organization contribute to the organization's mission and reflect the priorities of the Board
-Monitor the day-to-day delivery of the programs and services of the organization to -Oversee the planning, implementation, execution and evaluation of special projects

Human resources planning and management
-Determine staffing requirements for organizational management and program delivery
-Oversee the implementation of the human resources policies, procedures and practices including the refinement of job description for all staff
-Recruit, interview and select staff that have the right technical and personal abilities to help further the organization's mission
-Maintain a climate that attracts, keeps, and motivates a diverse staff of top quality people
-Ensure that all staff receives an orientation to the organization and that appropriate training is provided
-Implement a performance management process for all staff which includes monitoring the performance of staff on an on-going basis and conducting an annual performance review
-Coach and mentor staff as appropriate to improve performance
-Discipline staff when necessary using appropriate techniques; release staff when necessary using appropriate and legally defensible procedures

Financial planning and management
-Work with staff and the Board (Finance Committee) to prepare a comprehensive budget
-Work with the Board to secure adequate funding for the operation of the organization
-Collaborate with the Board Treasurer on the creation of financial statements that accurately reflect the financial condition of the organization.
-Research funding sources, oversee the development of fund raising plans and write funding proposals to increase the funds of the organization
-Participate in fundraising activities as appropriate
-Approve expenditures within the authority delegated by the Board
-Ensure that sound bookkeeping and accounting procedures are followed
-Process and pay bills
-Administer the funds of the organization according to the approved budget and monitor the monthly cash flow of the organization
-Provide the Board with comprehensive, regular reports on the revenues and expenditure of the organization
-Ensure that the organization complies with all legislation covering taxation and withholding payments
-Use external presence and relationships to garner new opportunities.

Community relations/advocacy
-Deepen and refine all aspects of communications—from web presence to external relations with the goal of creating a stronger brand.
-Communicate with stakeholders to keep them informed of the work of the organization and to identify changes in the communities served by the organization
-Establish good working relationships and collaborative arrangements with community groups, funders, and other organizations to help achieve the goals of the organization
-Publicize the activities of the organization, its programs, and goals.

Risk management
-Identify and evaluate the risks to the organization's people (clients, staff, management, volunteers), property, finances, goodwill, and image. Implement measures to control risks
-Ensure that the Board of Directors and the organization carries appropriate and adequate insurance coverage
-Ensure that the Board and staff understand the terms, conditions and limitations of the insurance coverage
Experience & Education
-Significant experience as a paid or volunteer leader at a not-for-profit organization.
-Several years of experience working with and learning from diverse communities
-Proven track record of success in a leadership position overseeing operations of an organization or program with exposure to foundations, while maintaining solid relationships with staff, board, donors and community.
-Experience in leading the process of ongoing strategic planning.
-An entrepreneurial spirit.


-A minimum of three years of senior level nonprofit organization experience
-Experience in public speaking/public relations
-University degree in a related field
-Has existing relationships with local businesses and organizations within Western Mass
-Successful resource development, fundraising and philanthropy experience.

Knowledge, skills, and abilities

-Knowledge of leadership and management principles as they relate to non-profit/ voluntary organizations
-Knowledge of federal and state legislation applicable to voluntary sector organizations including: employment standards, human rights, occupational health and safety, charities, etc.
-Knowledge of current community challenges and opportunities relating to the mission of the organization
-Strong marketing, public relations, and fundraising experience with the ability to engage a wide range of stakeholders and cultures
-Knowledge of human resources management
-Knowledge of financial management
-Knowledge of project management

Technology Skills

-Word processing
-Google Drive
-Financial management
-HTML coding (preferred)
-Digital design (preferred)

Personal characteristics

-Behave Ethically: Understand ethical behavior and business practices, and ensure that own behavior and the behavior of others is consistent with these standards and aligns with the values of the organization.
-Embrace Diversity: Able and eager to collaborate with the full spectrum of diverse businesses, organizations, and communities in Western Mass
-Build Relationships: Establish and maintain positive working relationships with others, both internally and externally, to achieve the goals of the organization.
-Communicate Effectively: Speak, listen, and write in a clear, thorough, and timely manner using appropriate and effective communication tools and techniques.
-Creative/Innovative: Develop new and unique ways to improve operations of the organization and to create new opportunities that further Hilltown Families’ mission.
-Focus on Community: Anticipate, seek out, understand, and respond to the needs of communities within all four counties of Western Massachusetts, particularly those that have been marginalized and underserved in the area of access to quality education.
-Foster Teamwork: Work cooperatively and effectively with others to set goals, resolve problems, and make decisions that enhance organizational effectiveness.
-Lead: Positively influence others to achieve results that are in the best interest of the organization.
-Make Bold, Effective Decisions: Assess situations to determine importance, urgency, and risks. Make clear decisions which are timely and in the best interests of the organization.
-Organize: Set priorities, develop a work schedule, monitor progress towards goals, and track details, data, information, and activities
-Plan: Determine strategies to move the organization forward, set goals, create and implement action plans, and evaluate the process and results.
-Solve Problems: Assess problem situations to identify causes, gather and process relevant information, generate possible solutions, and make recommendations and/or resolve the problem.
-Strategize: Assesses options and actions based on trends and conditions in the environment, the vision and values of the organization, and the capacity of staff, board, and finances.
-Action-oriented: Plan and act with entrepreneurial spirit that is adaptable, innovative, and self-directed.
-Adaptable: Demonstrate a willingness to be flexible, versatile, and tolerant in a changing work environment while maintaining effectiveness and efficiency.
-Positive Attitude: Demonstrate passion, idealism, and integrity in service of achieving Hilltown Families’ mission. Enthusiastically promote Hilltown Families’ mission of engaging local residents in community-based education.

The Executive Director will work with the Board of Directors and the Program Manager to learn current duties, financial plans and projects, and projected needs for the organization. Staff will provide context and support during the initial leadership transition. The ED will work with the Board and Staff to address immediate organizational needs and develop short-term solutions for any major organizational barriers, while keeping an eye on, and planning for, long-term strategic goals. Hilltown Families currently employs a knowledgeable program staff and has an engaged and well-equipped Board of Directors that are eager to support our new Executive Director.

EVALUATION: A mutual assessment by both the Board of Directors and the Executive Director will occur at the close of twelve weeks to assess the progress made by the ED, staff, volunteers, and the organization. For the first twelve months, evaluation by the Board of Directors will occur quarterly. At the conclusion of the Executive Director’s first twelve months, evaluation will occur annually.


APPLICATION PROCEDURE: Work with the Program Manager, Courtney Supple, 510-504-8584 or csupple@hilltownfamilies.org, to schedule an initial digital interview with the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors.

You can access a .pdf version of this job description on our website: https://hilltownfamilies.files.wordpress.com/2018/01/hilltown-families-executive-director-job-description.pdf

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Boxcar Media, LLC  • North Adams, MA 01247 •  Tel: 413.663.3384 • Fax: 413.664.4251 • Email: info@jobsinthevalley.com