The Women’s Lunch Place Board of Directors is seeking a passionate, innovative and collaborative leader to serve as Executive Director. The mission of Women’s Lunch Place (WLP) is to provide a safe, comfortable daytime shelter, nutritious food and services for women who are homeless or poor. The Executive Director will lead the organization in providing these services while treating women with dignity and fostering a community committed to meeting each woman’s needs. Please see www.womenslunchplace.org.
Founded in 1982 and open six days a week, the WLP is committed to meeting each woman where she is, providing her with the opportunity to fulfill her basic needs and allowing her to be heard. This trauma-informed service model is essential for individuals who have been misunderstood, abused, or abandoned. Those who are homeless or poor find few people to hear or validate their experiences. From this foundation of respect and trust, women begin to recover their self-worth and find the courage to look ahead. The WLP provides:
Food and Basic Needs: With a focus on high quality, nutritious foods, the WLP serves breakfast and lunch Monday through Saturday to an average of 200 women each day (about 62,000 meals a year). WLP also provides showers, laundry facilities and a quiet space for napping, personal care items and emergency clothing.
- Individual Advocacy: Our Advocacy staff assists women in accessing shelters, emergency medical and mental health care; offers support to women who have experienced violence or sexual abuse; and facilitates detoxification and longer-term substance abuse treatment.
- The Resource Center focuses on employment and searches for housing, medical care and other forms of assistance. It also provides training and e-mail access.
- Wellness Program: Doctors and nurses from Women of Means and Boston Health Care for the Homeless are on-site five days a week for urgent care. Medical case managers assist guests in accessing Mass. Health and other benefits and make appointments with specialists.
- The Creative Expressions Program provides opportunities for expression through art, music, drama and dance. Volunteers lead weekly art, writing, and reading groups as well as sewing and knitting classes. These activities provide vital connections and improve self-image and self-esteem.
- Outings and Special Events: At least twice a month, small group activities give women a chance to escape, if only briefly, loneliness and poverty and to participate in the social and cultural environment of Boston.
The annual budget of approximately $2 million comes entirely from individual donors, foundations, and corporations. There is a dynamic staff of 18 and a large corps of volunteers. A capital campaign of $3.1 million was successfully completed in 2011. The 20-member Board of Directors offers strong leadership toward realizing the full potential of WLP. The Strategic Plan has recently been updated for the next 3 years to include a focus on development, good governance and staff development.
The new Executive Director (ED) will articulate a compelling vision and establish the corresponding goals and strategies to support its achievement. S/he will align and oversee the planning, implementation, administration and management of all of the programs and services and will raise the profile of the WLP in the local community as the face of the WLP. Working collaboratively with and reporting to the Board of Directors, the ED will be expected to meet annual development goals and will manage a professional, high-performing and collaborative staff.
Organizational Vision, Leadership and Management:
- Work in partnership with the Board to set the strategic direction and oversee implementation of organizational goals.
- Develop and oversee the annual budget.
- Manage, coach and develop staff.
- Strengthen a network of mission-similar partners and collaborators to maximize alignment of vision and services.
- Develop an annual fundraising plan and achieve specific ambitious goals.
- Identify new donors and cultivate strong relationships with foundations, individuals and corporate sponsors and actively solicit support.
- Manage stewardship of donors.
- Lead and support special WLP events.
- Develop long-term funding strategy which may include planned giving and building an endowment fund.
Community and Public Relations:
- Develop/continue strong working relationships with stakeholders, funders, community leaders and collaborators.
- Serve as an articulate spokesperson for the WLP.
- Increase public awareness of the organization and its mission.
Programs and Direct Service:
- Regularly spend time with the guests in a spirit of friendship.
- Be responsible for overall operations and delivery of high quality services.
- Evaluate existing programs and services for outcomes, making adjustments as needed; develop and implement new offerings based on current and anticipated needs and eliminate services if appropriate.
- Align agency programs with the mission.
- Develop annual and incremental program goals in accordance with the mission.
Board of Directors and Advisory Committee:
- Serve as Ex-Officio non-voting member of the Board and participate actively in its Committees.
- Work with the President and Executive Committee to support effective Board functioning.
- Work with the Governance Committee and President to ensure on-going Board development.
- Engage members of the Advisory Committee as appropriate in the WLP operations.
- Commitment to and passion for working with poor and homeless women.
- Understanding of the issues facing poor and homeless women and ability to articulate this understanding to diverse audiences.
- Minimum of ten years of significant senior management and leadership experience including planning, staff development, fundraising, board relations and financial management.
- Demonstrated ability to establish diverse and stable funding from individuals, foundations and corporations.
- Ability to drive continuous improvement and to build a high performance culture while balancing the needs of diverse constituencies.
- Demonstrated ability to develop and sustain collaborative relationships with external organizations and stakeholders
- Ability to organize and speak at large events and to serve as the ‘face’ of the WLP.
- Advanced degree preferred.
To apply, send cover letter, résumé, and salary history to:
Susan Egmont, Egmont Associates, segmont [at] egmontassociates [dot] com.