AERO (Alternative Energy Resources Organization) is a nonprofit
membership organization based in Helena, Montana, which serves the
Rocky Mountain and High Plains West of the northern U.S. and southern
Canada. AERO is a widespread community of people creating social,
economic and environmental health—one farm, one neighborhood, one
community at a time. Organized in 1974, we work toward a vision of a
sustainable, community-centered society. Sustainable agriculture and
local food systems, smart growth and transportation, resource
conservation, and community self-reliance are the areas in which we
focus our pro-active work.
AERO is searching for a full-time Executive Director with experience,
creative energy and commitment to leading, nurturing, developing and
managing this 24-year-old non-profit membership organization. The
Executive Director is directly responsible to a 12 to 15-member Board
of Directors. The Executive Director manages five staff and three to
Duties and Responsibilities:
I. Organizational management and administration: 40%
Staff the AERO Board of Directors and its committees and provide
board development opportunties as appropriate. Insure that the board
and the member task forces interface, especially in developing AERO's
program work. Working closely with AERO's Business Manager, oversee
all AERO financial matters. Work with AERO board and staff to develop
appropriate organizational policies and procedures. Oversee the
management of AERO resources including: allocation of human and
financial resources; development of organizational systems and
policies; personnel hiring, management and evaluation (both staff and
contractor). Provide opportunities for member leadership and
II. Organization and program development: 20%
Work with members, staff and consultants to continually assess and
develop AERO to ensure that its programs foster the organization’s
vision and meet the needs of its members. Provide leadership for
long and short-range organizational planning and development.
Provide avenues and opportunities for AERO members to initiate, plan,
participate in and benefit from AERO's programs. Oversee
implementation of the annual program plan developed by the member
task forces and approved by the AERO Board of Directors. Participate
in AERO programs as interested and appropriate.
III. Fundraising: 30%
Ensure that AERO's annual budget is raised. Oversee all fundraising
activities, ensure accountability to AERO funders, and implement
numerous fundraising efforts: identify potential funders—both public
and private; nurture relationships with funders; write grant
reports; oversee annual grassroots fundraising plan and activities,
and lead donor fundraising efforts.
IV. Publicity/Outreach and Member Service: 10%
Network with relevant individuals and organizations throughout AERO’s
region and the country, as needed. Working closely with AERO's
Membership Services and Outreach Coordinator, oversee AERO's
marketing and outreach plan. Communicate AERO’s program,
accomplishments, and opportunities for involvement through a variety
of venues to AERO members and the public. Create and maintain ways to
listen and be responsive to members, nurture AERO leaders and
emerging leaders; recruit new members; ensure that members’
information, networking and technical assistance needs are met.
I. Knowledge and experience
° Minimum of three years experience managing/directing
organizational or program work of a non-profit.
° Proven track record in raising a non-profit's annual budget from a
variety of sources including: foundations, government, individual
° At least two years experience in personnel management.
° Two to three years experience working on rural issues (Montana or
° Experience working with a non-profit board of directors, preferably
of a member-driven organization.
° Experience building inclusive, strong communities of people, and
translating their vision into action.
° Experience in planning strategically for an organization's long and
° Familiarity with sustainable agriculture and local food systems,
smart growth and transportation issues and rural community
II. Skills and abilities
° Program development and integration.
° Adult learning and group process.
° Financial oversight, management and budget development.
° Excellent writing and oral communication.
° Strong inter-personal skills.
° Board development.
° Good media and public education skills.
° Ability to handle and prioritize multiple tasks and keep people on
deadline in a small, cooperative office environment.
° Ability to work in the realm of ideas and possibilities while
keeping attention to detail.
° Computer skills (Macintosh preferred): word processing, electronic
communication, data base.
° Ability to develop and implement organizational systems and
procedure, member tracking systems, membership renewals, information
III. Personal attributes
° Passion for and vision of sustainable communities in the
° Commitment to continue to build and manage a member-driven
grassroots organization with deeply held values in grassroots action
and community-based leadership.
° Personal commitment to proactive social change and social justice.
° Commitment to solution-oriented (proactive) approach to social
° Commitment to fostering member involvement in all facets of AERO.
Commitment to inclusion and diversity.
° Management style that is team-oriented.
° Commitment to collaborative learning.
° Deeply and broadly inquisitive.
° Creative problem-solver.
° Systematic, well-organized, thorough.
$28,000 - $32,000, commensurate with experience. Generous tenure
increases; medical and disability insurance; excellent vacation,
holiday and sick benefits; pre-tax medical and childcare savings
account; and modest retirement.
Deadline and Application Process:
Please send a resume, written answers to the six questions below
(max. 4 pages), a list of three professional references, and a cover
letter highlighting your relevant strengths and experience.
Additional writing sample welcome. Send to: AERO Executive Director
Search, 25 S. Ewing, #214, Helena, MT 59601. The deadline for
receiving applications is open until a suitable person is found. For
more information contact Pam Mavrolas between the hours of 9 a.m. and
5 p.m. MST at (406) 443-7272 ; fax (406) 442-9120; or e-mail at
AERO@desktop.org or firstname.lastname@example.org. AERO is an affirmative
action employer, seeking gender and ethnic/racial diversity. AERO
members are encouraged to apply.
(keep answers to a maximum of four pages total)
1. Describe your passion or vision for this work, how it developed
and where it comes from.
2. As Executive Director, how would you strengthen and maintain a
vital, creative and effective grassroots organization?
3. In your management experience, what's been your guiding philosophy
and style? Specifically describe the roles and responsibilities
between the executive director and a) the board, b) the staff, c)
member task forces and committees, d) members at large.
4. Describe what, in your experience, constitutes a sound funding
base for a nonprofit membership organization. Please describe your
strategies and success in fundraising.
5. Briefly describe the salient themes and issues related to
sustainable agriculture and local food systems, smart growth and
transportation issues and rural community development.
6. Why should AERO hire you? Why do you want to work for AERO?
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