Executive Director

Forward Through Ferguson (FTF) Executive Director
Location St. Louis, Missouri
Application deadline 31 August 2023
Contract type Permanent
Hours Full-time
Salary $130,000 - $135,000
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After the killing of Michael Brown, Jr. on Aug. 9, 2014, “Ferguson” became shorthand for racial strife and systemic racism in the United States. The Ferguson Commission, charged by Missouri Governor Jay Nixon to conduct a “thorough, wide-ranging and unflinching study of the social and economic conditions that impede progress, equality and safety in the St. Louis region,” delivered a report that asserted that the St. Louis region suffered from extreme racial inequity; that this inequity was at the root of many of the region’s troubles, including conflict between citizens and law enforcement; and called for change. The report, titled Forward Through Ferguson: A Path Toward Racial Equity, outlined 189 policy recommendations to address these disparities. In its final act, the Commission created Forward Through Ferguson to carry on its work.

Forward Through Ferguson (FTF) is a non-profit organization that is charting a path toward Racial Equity to ensure St. Louis has a more equitable future. At FTF, we work as a catalyst, connecting and challenging stakeholders across the region to shift policy and transform systems in alignment to the spirit of the Ferguson Commission report. We help organizations and institutions build the capacity they need to dismantle systemic racism. We serve people of color, who most experience inequity, through a systems approach that will strengthen the region for us all.

Our core principles:

  • We will apply (and model) a Racial Equity Lens
  • We are committed to Radical Collaboration
  • We are committed to Radical Listening
  • We are committed to Policy & Systems Change

Brief description of role

As the Executive Director of Forward Through Ferguson (FTF), you will lead the organization to its next phase of impact, moving from a growth phase to organizational sustainability. Your work will include strengthening internal infrastructure, cultivating strong regional and national partnerships, and advancing racial equity and strengthening policy momentum in the region. As the Executive Director, you will manage a growing staff team of 8. You will report to the Board Co-Chairs and be supported by a robust and growing Board of Directors who play active and hands-on roles in the organization’s development and growth.

Key roles and responsibilities

Centering and Advancing Racial Equity

  • Be a champion for FTF and racial equity thought leader in the St. Louis region and national networks, staying abreast of current racial equity issues across America.
  • Ensure continued focus, priroitise and bring attention to the Ferguson Commission Report, its calls to action, and FTF’s action strategies among local and state influencers.
  • Serve as a resource and trusted collaborator for government leaders, peer organizations, and the media around racial equity and codify a transparent organizational partnership structure for FTF.
  • Earn the trust of and support the communities most impacted by disparities, seeking opportunities to center and amplify their voice, leadership, and influence.
  • Foster radical collaboration between FTF and other organizations.
  • Strengthen FTF community governance structures and action strategies.
  • Building organizational sustainability.

Lead big-picture fundraising and campaign efforts and engage and cultivate key stakeholders

  • Grow and diversify a sustainable funding base that will include gifts from individuals, corporations, and foundations.
  • Oversee resource development team to drive community-driven development, individual donors and earned revenue.
  • Manage the current operating budget of $1.5M and drive the strategic relationships to grow to $2M+ annually, with support of the Resource Development team.
  • Support the development and sustainability of an endowment for the Racial Equity Fund (REF) seeking to raise approximately $10-15 million over the next 3-5 years Scale community-led granting process with a group of community and philanthropic stakeholder to continue REF granting resources to community partners to advance regional Racial Equity work.

Advancing Strategic Leadership of the Organization

  • In collaboration with the FTF Board of Directors, lead the completion and implementation of FTF’s strategic plan.
  • Support continued growth of FTF’s dynamic policy work, laying groundwork for key policy campaigns in alignment with Ferguson Report calls to action and FTF strategic goals.
  • Oversee development of key reports highlighting the calls to action – providing an analysis of challenges and success in implementation.
  • Communicate openly and regularly with the FTF board of directors and provide meaningful and relevant information about the effectiveness of FTF activities.
  • Cultivate strong organisational culture with high-performing team

Hire, and develop a diverse and talented team, including senior leaders as the organization and team continue to grow

  • Ensure strong systems and policies exist to enable a safe, inclusive workplace where resources are used effectively and people thrive.
  • Manage a high-performing team to reach ambitious goals that lead to advancement of our action strategies and align with our principles and values.