About Grounded Solutions Network
Grounded Solutions Network is a national affordable housing focused nonprofit dedicated to shaping communities to be equitable, inclusive and filled with opportunity for all. Where we live matters. Housing determines what opportunities we have and how our kids grow up. Everyone should be able to live in a place that offers opportunity: access to jobs, parks, public transit, quality schools and stable homes. Strong and inclusive communities provide the foundation that people and families need to thrive, both in the present and for future generations.
As a national membership organization, we support nonprofit and government practitioners, community resident leaders, advocates, elected officials, and other housing professionals with the tools, resources and knowledge they need for success. We promote the creation and preservation of quality housing that remains affordable for generations. Our work specifically targets creating and expanding housing with lasting affordability, using a racial equity lens.
Our network defines “Lasting Affordability” as housing solutions that last for generations; including both for-sale and rental housing models and policies that extend affordability beyond the typical spans of five, ten or 30 years. Our mission aligned models, practices, and policies preserve affordability options for a minimum of 40 years and, whenever possible - in perpetuity.
Through our network members and partnerships, Grounded Solutions exponentially transforms the lasting affordability housing sector in the US. We do that by preserving, producing and sustaining affordable housing with a specific focus on BIPOC, under-invested and marginalized communities. Our key objectives include:
- Cultivating high-capacity housing program operators with strong partners and enabling policy environments that leverage market opportunities to exponentially scale lasting affordability.
- Reducing the national housing supply deficit, which is the major barrier to increasing the number of units with lasting affordability.
- Creating increased baseline understanding of existing lasting affordability field-wide unit portfolios (both homeownership and rental) and the systems required to track progress and demonstrate impact through clear impact metrics.
- Providing field-level leadership to increase housing with lasting affordability program capacity to develop, sustain, and scale.
For more information on Grounded Solutions Network, please visit https://groundedsolutions.org/.
Grounded Solutions Network is searching for our first Chief Program Officer, who will serve a critically important role in setting organization-wide vision, strategy, and implementation and be responsible for driving growth through program delivery and impact measurement. This role will be responsible for the next phase of the organization’s evolution focused on our mission of creating lasting affordability in housing for both an existing and emerging portfolio, and is designed to ensure that Grounded Solutions’ activities and programs result in the actual production and preservation, by our network members and partners, of 1 million homes with lasting affordability over the next 10 years in a racially equitable way. This is a unique opportunity for an entrepreneurial leader to join the organization at a pivotal moment of development as we lead exponential growth in the national shared equity sector and scale and evolve our internal operations to effectively fulfill our mission of ensuring stability and prosperity for Black and other communities of color. As a transformational leader, the Chief Program Officer will be part of the C-suite and will partner with the CEO and COO in leading the organization. They will provide clear, actionable thought leadership around the next phase of Grounded Solution’s programming and inspire program staff to achieve a complex agenda to broaden our organization's reach and impact.
Key responsibilities include:
Program Strategy and Leadership
- Lead the successful planning, development, and execution of Grounded Solutions’ key mission objectives and core program areas, including Technical Assistance, Training, Member Services, HomeKeeper Portfolio Data Management, and Impact Data and Research.
- Integrate and implement cross-organization work with other teams, including Innovative Finance, Public Policy, and other future strategic areas of focus.
- Ensure consistency and cross departmental alignment with Grounded Solution’s strategy, mission, and goals.
- Create and strengthen strategic partnerships with public, private, and nonprofit sector stakeholders to benefit Black and other communities of color.
- Embed principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion within all the organization’s programmatic offerings consistent with Grounded Solutions’ vision, mission, and values.
- Serve as a key member of the executive team for the organization, which requires both strategic thinking, hands-on implementation, and seamless partnership across the executive team and the organization.
Impact Measurement and Sector Research
- Lead, develop, and oversee an inaugural impact measurement function at Grounded Solutions (including initial hiring of a Director of Impact Measurement).
- Oversee the development of meaningful measurement and evaluation metrics, tools, frameworks, and processes to deepen Grounded Solutions’ impact.
- Connect data with strategy and impact that can be shared meaningfully and impactfully with internal and external stakeholders.
Programmatic Staff & Financial Management
- Give oversight, manage, and lead programmatic heads (3 – 6 direct reports)
- Identify gaps in staff capacity & skills, shape new positions when appropriate, and participate in hiring decisions for new program staff.
- Build, coach, lead, and empower diverse teams to accomplish Grounded Solutions’ mission and impact strategy.
- Lead and monitor programmatic operations to ensure sound fiscal management and viability.
- Oversee the budget development process for departments under the CPO’s supervision and maintain a high level of fiscal responsibility.
While no one candidate will have every experience outlined in the position description, ideal candidates will have the following professional and personal qualities, skills, and characteristics:
Strategic & Entrepreneurial Mindset
The Chief Program Officer will lead with an entrepreneurial mindset, along with the knowledge, foresight, and clarity to inform decision making around programming and strategy toward social change. A leader in this role will act nimbly in adjusting to shifting priorities and deftly building and supporting multiple teams with the ability to balance multiple tasks efficiently and effectively. Using keen analytical skills and excellent judgment, this individual will consistently take initiative to anticipate needs, address complex problems and translate complex, resourceful plans into concrete strategies, all while engaging fully alongside the CEO, Board, and staff. Within our senior staff team, this leader will be skilled at effectively driving collaborations toward the consensus needed to enact operational change and optimize organization-level impact. This individual will also serve as a coach and mentor to staff, creating and identifying opportunities for growth and development.
Affordable Housing Programs and Funder/Donor Engagement
A transformational leader, the Chief Program Officer will draw upon their own leadership experience to foster potential funder/donor/investor cultivation and contribute to developing relevant narrative “stories of impact” to grow the organization's existing program areas, while simultaneously identifying new opportunities to demonstrate our scale and impact. A strong candidate will have proven experience in developing shared and measurable goals and creating, resourcing, scaling, and leveraging programs and grantmaking strategies that lead to positive impact. A high-fit candidate will have demonstrated commitment to the principles of racial equity, diversity, and inclusion and experience in implementing these principles in program areas. The ideal candidate will bring knowledge of the national affordable housing landscape relating to communities of color, with a focus on Black communities, that allows them to recognize and understand the challenges and opportunities in better serving the unique housing needs of Black Americans through Grounded Solutions’ prioritized goals and objectives.
Exceptional Communicator & Manager
The Chief Program Officer will be an engaged, active listener, able to tailor communications to effectively reach a range of audiences- from internal stakeholders and staff to the general public and policymakers and high-value influencers. Recognized as a leader in their community, this role will embody a personal sense of passion, a willingness to listen, discretion, and a keen mind. Possessing exceptional verbal and written communications, this leader will be relied upon for good business judgment, an analytical mindset, and the capability to make sound, timely, fact-based, and influential decisions.
Candidates must have the ability to quickly establish credibility and rapport across a range of collaborators and build and sustain excellent relationships with board members, staff, community leaders, partner organizations, and other stakeholder groups. The candidate must be willing and able to harness their professional networks in support of Grounded Solutions. Expectations include acting as a key spokesperson, proactively messaging Grounded Solutions unique value and the impact of its work with eloquence. A natural consensus-builder, the Chief Program Officer will be comfortable with ambiguity and have the persistence to drive initiatives forward through ambiguity and change.
Passion for the Mission
The Chief Program Officer will have a true passion for the mission of Grounded Solutions - to cultivate communities which are equitable, inclusive and rich in opportunity, by advancing affordable housing solutions that last for generations. A leader in this role will embrace our collaborative culture and will thrive in a cross-functional, innovative environment with a diversity of viewpoints and experiences. This leader will work towards understanding the various roles and contributions of individual teams, mobilize resources effectively through meaningful engagement, and continue building our team of highly talented and effective contributors. Working strategically with transparency and accountability, the ideal candidate will embrace a culture of learning, work respectfully with compassion, kindness, and gratitude, and seek to be inclusive and collaborative in decision making while maintaining accountability.
GSN’s mandatory vaccine guidelines require all employees to be fully vaccinated by their start date. At this time, GSN defines “fully vaccinated” to mean that two weeks have passed since a second dose of the 2-dose series for the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or a single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. A current employee or applicant (i) who has a disability or qualifying medical condition that contraindicates a COVID-19 vaccination, (ii) whose sincerely held religious belief, observance or practice conflicts with the vaccination requirement, or (iii) who qualifies for an exemption under applicable state or local law may request an exemption from this vaccination policy.
Compensation & Benefits
The annual base salary for this role will be based on the successful candidate’s skills and experience. Base salary range will be $200,000 - $225,000.
Koya Partners, the executive search firm that specializes in mission-driven search, has been exclusively retained for this engagement. Alicia Salerno and Tatyana James of Koya Partners have been exclusively retained for this search. Please submit a compelling cover letter and resume by filling out our Talent Profile.
Koya Partners is committed to providing reasonable accommodation to individuals living with disabilities. If you are a qualified individual living with a disability and need assistance expressing interest online, please email NonprofitSearchOps@divsearch.com. If you are selected for an interview, you will receive additional information regarding how to request an accommodation for the interview process.
Grounded Solutions Network is committed to fostering an organizational culture rooted in critical thinking and consciousness about race and class. We seek candidates who are dedicated to achieving racial equity as both a process and outcome. We are committed to building a staff team that is as racially and culturally diverse as the communities that we serve. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, or veteran status.
About Koya Partners
Koya Partners, a part of Diversified Search Group, is a leading executive search and strategic advising firm dedicated to connecting exceptionally talented people with mission-driven clients. Our founding philosophy—The Right Person in the Right Place Can Change the World—guides our work as we partner with nonprofits & NGOs, institutions of higher education, responsible businesses, and social enterprises in local communities and around the world.
For more information about Koya Partners, visit https://diversifiedsearchgroup.com/koya-partners/.