CDS Seeking Executive Director

CDS is a membership-based nonprofit corporation established in 1969 to strengthen and advance community development policy, practice, learning, and research through educational and scientific means. We host an annual conference; offer occasional webinars; publish two peer-reviewed journals, two book series, and a monthly newsletter. CDS also offers a wide variety of scholarships and awards for both research and practice.

CDS is comprised of Members who share an interest in building and developing communities—socially, economically, and environmentally. Members represent a wide array of specializations, including education, health care, social services, government, utilities, economic development, civic groups, and more. Over eighty percent of CDS Members are in the United States, with the remaining Members coming from nearly 32 different countries around the world. While we strive for a broad and diverse membership of scholars, educators, practitioners, activists, and policymakers, our membership has slowly dwindled both in number and diversity. Our membership is now largely White, rural, and academic. A central goal for CDS in the coming years is to grow and diversify our membership to better represent the full scope of community development. This will require both vision and follow-through in building relationships with inter/transdisciplinary scholars, practitioners, activists, and policymakers as well as enhancing our programming to appeal to a more diverse membership.

CDS is led by an eleven-member volunteer Board comprised of five Officers and six Directors. CDS Members volunteer their time on various committees and working groups to enhance Member recruitment, retention, and engagement; delivery of programs; stewardship of our endowments, and financial management. Currently, we hold part-time contracts with an administrator and a bookkeeper. Our goal in the next year is to transfer these roles to a single contract with a highly qualified individual who can both operate our virtual office as well as take on larger strategic initiatives.

The Executive Director will be responsible for carrying out most activities required to operate a nonprofit membership organization with endowment accounts as it pursues significant growth. The specific responsibilities of the Executive Director, outlined in detail below, are listed by several major functional areas:

  • Organizational Leadership & Management
  • Fund Development & Financial Management
  • Membership Management
  • Communications, Marketing, & Public Relations
  • Events Management
  • Journal Administration
  • General Operations (Virtual Office)

The Executive Director is an operational role that demands a wide skillset, self-direction, flexibility, adaptability, and ongoing skill building. High level management, finance, communications, technical computer, general administrative, and basic clerical skills are required for this position, along with the willingness to utilize all of them.

The Executive Director will work in close concert with the Board of Directors and various volunteer committees and working groups to share responsibility of the organization’s mission and programmatic areas. The position will report directly to the Treasurer for all fund development and financial management and the Vice Chair of Operations for all other responsibilities but is ultimately accountable to the entire Board of Directors.

Please download the full job description to see a breakdown of roles and responsibilities, qualifications, and instructions to apply.