About Democracy House
Democracy House inspires rising generations to defend, strengthen, and improve democracy. We drive innovation in civic education and leadership, community infrastructure, public policy, and youth voter participation.
Rising generations hold the keys to securing the future of democracy and American freedom. To have the greatest impact, young people need greater access to civic education and related resources.
Under its fiscal sponsor, the Foundation for Civic Leadership, Democracy House has already had remarkable impact through its student voting initiatives and public policy work. The project initiated:
- NSLVE, the breakthrough research program now used by over 1300 campuses to measure student registration and voting rates;
- ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge, that partners with over 900 campuses;
- Student Learn Students Vote Coalition, a national network of organizations that work to remove barriers to student voting;
- Has led successful work with partners to unlock more access to educational community service via the Federal Work Study program.
It is now poised to expand its impact through additional campus and community-based programs as well as advancing its student voting, leadership development and public policy initiatives.
Our programs include:
- ADVANCING LEADERS
We believe that investing in young leadership is crucial in the effort to safeguard democracy. That’s why we prioritize leadership development fellowships that equip participants with skills, mentorship, and networks to become long-term contributors to civic life.
- INCREASING YOUTH VOTERS
Despite increasing turnout, young people continue to be underrepresented among registered voters. Our programs have systematically improved student voter participation in America, and we won’t stop until all who are able can make their voices heard at the polls.
- ENGAGING CAMPUS AND COMMUNITY
College communities foster important growth for many young adults, but many of them lack a center for gathering to learn and discuss civic engagement. Our place-based programs will foster learning and leading for democracy among students and community members.
- IMPROVING PUBLIC POLICY
Democracy House increases youth civic engagement across America through improvements in public policy. Democracy House identifies and develops policy innovations, working with organizational partners to improve and implement public policy.
Learn more by visiting the Democracy House website.
The inaugural Executive Director of Democracy House will lead a small team and work in close collaboration with the founder, key strategic partners, and a growing board to develop and implement a strategic plan for institutional growth and impact. The Executive Director (ED) will be responsible for bringing current programs to scale while developing additional programmatic and policy offerings that advance the Democracy House mission, envisioning the effective use of physical buildings at colleges (Harvard, University of New Hampshire and others to come), helping to build and strengthen a national Board of Directors and Advisory Board, and securing new funding and support. This is a unique opportunity for a skilled strategist, fundraiser, partnership-builder, and leader to help shape the future of civic engagement and democracy.
The Executive Director will report to the Board of Directors and work closely with the Board President. Specific responsibilities include, but are not limited to the following:
Strategy Development and Implementation
- Provide strategic vision for expansion and scale at the national level while also going deeper on campuses.
- Implement an action plan for achieving this vision that reflects key milestones and measurable goals.
- In collaboration with key internal team members and others, ensure that existing Democracy House programs are high-quality and delivering intended results whole building out new programs.
- Develop and implement a strategic plan for wide-scale programmatic expansion that ensures Democracy House programs reach more students across the country.
- Work with the Board to build out a multiyear budget and fundraising plan that expands current funding and secures significant new commitments.
- Ensure that the fundraising program leads toward long-term, diverse funding streams.
Organizational and Team Management
- Provide day-to-day management of team of 5: Campaigns Director, YLSI Program Director; National Director of Advancement; Communications Manager; Democracy Center Manager.
- Identify and recruit additional leadership team members.
- Direct and manage consultants as needed.
- Regularly evaluate the organization’s operational needs, adjust, and add to internal systems as needed.
- Develop plan for future hiring and team structure.
- Oversee all operations and finance for Democracy House, ensuring effective processes and rigorous financial controls.
- Support Democracy House site development, creating and implementing a vision for these sites.
Communications and External Relations
- Serve as a spokesperson for the organization to donors, partners, young leaders, students, faculty, public officials, and others in the space, building awareness and enthusiasm for Democracy House and its work.
- Build strong partnerships with campus leaders and administrators.
- Ensure strong communication and collaboration with the Founder, Board of Directors, and Advisory Board (the latter two are still in development), planning meetings, providing ongoing updates and reports, and helping to build out boards.
- Represent Democracy House in the broader civic engagement space, building partnerships and forging connections that advance the mission.
We recognize that there is a spectrum of lived and professional experience that will set candidates up for success in this role. While no one candidate will have every experience outlined in the position description, ideal candidates bring a commitment to and demonstrated experience in the broader field of civic engagement and will display the following professional and personal qualities, skills, and characteristics:
Organizational Management and Team Leadership
- Track record of leading and coaching high-performing teams toward measurable success; preferably a minimum of 8 years of leading significant teams and initiatives.
- The operational and financial management experience required to provide day-to-day management of a complex organization with a growing number of team members, a growing board, external partners and consultants, an engaged founder, and a current budget of $2.5M.
- A demonstrated track record of building and growing a project or initiative toward measurable growth and impact.
- Experience managing, coaching, leading, and collaborating with Millennial and Gen Z leaders helpful.
- Previous experience working with and reporting to a Board of Directors, with a nuanced approach to building board engagement.
Fundraising and Development Expertise
- A significant track record of fundraising, including experience developing and implementing high-impact fundraising strategies that resulted in significant wins, particularly from foundations and high net worth individuals.
- Experience securing six- and seven-figure donations and raising millions annually.
- Ability to persuasively convey Democracy House’s strategic vision and impact to donors and prospects.
- Experience leading and growing development functions and teams.
Communication and Relationship Building Skills
- Exceptional communications skills, including the ability to represent an organization and mission with a wide range of audiences and develop compelling and effective messaging and written materials.
- Ability to maintain and advance current relationships with key partners while simultaneously developing new partnerships.
- Exhibits a relationship-building approach that generates trust and promotes collaboration across a range of partners and stakeholders, from founders to campus leaders to donors to external partners.
Strategic Vision and Implementation Skills
- Demonstrated experience developing a clear vision and plan for the continued growth and impact of an organization or initiative.
- Experience working with Boards to develop, update, and evaluate strategic plans and create aligned work-plans.
- Track record of leading the growth of a high-impact organization or program.
In addition to the competencies outlined above, strong candidates will offer:
- An entrepreneurial spirit, with the ability to build rigor and organizational sustainability while simultaneously driving toward scale.
- Emotional intelligence necessary to know when to push and innovate, with an unwavering commitment to maximizing impact.
- Demonstrated ability to engage in strategic, analytical, and critical thinking as it relates to overall problem-solving.
- The desire to create lasting impact, and a deep belief that rising generations have a key role to play in securing American freedom and the future of democracy.
Compensation & Benefits
Salary is competitive and commensurate with experience. The salary range for this role is $200,000-250,000 with a generous benefits package.
Koya Partners has been exclusively retained for this engagement, which is being led by Molly Brennan, Turner Delano and Gina Wrolstad. Express interest in this role by filling out our Talent Profile or emailing the search team directly at email@example.com. All inquiries and discussions are strictly confidential.
Koya Partners l Diversified Search Group 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.
Democracy House is an equal opportunity employer and strongly encourages applications from people of color, persons with disabilities, women, and LGBTQ+ applicants.