About National Harm Reduction Coalition
It started in 1993. More than a decade of government neglect and abandonment had left people who use drugs vulnerable to the AIDS epidemic.
A handful of individual activists, educators, and people who used drugs began launching grassroots efforts to support members of their communities who were dying from this brutal disease. Brought together by their love and compassion for people who use drugs, these individuals formed a small working group that became the start of the Harm Reduction movement.
The last 25 years have been a long, hard, wild ride — filled with triumphs and challenges. Collectively, we’ve lost countless friends and loved ones along the way and touched the lives of so many more. The heartache and hope for a brighter tomorrow drives us on.
Two and a half decades later, National Harm Reduction Coalition (“NHRC”) is a nationwide advocate and ally for people who use drugs. We are a catalyst and incubator, repository and hub, storyteller and disseminator for the collective wisdom of the harm reduction community.
NHRC’s team of conveners, trainers, advocates, and spokespeople is located from coast to coast. These leaders work alongside individuals, communities, advocates, and outreach organizations to ensure the health and dignity of all people.
While the Harm Reduction movement has made great strides, there is still a lot of work to be done. National Harm Reduction Coalition’s mission is to promote the health and dignity of individuals and communities affected by drug use. As a national advocacy and capacity building organization, NHRC aims to shift power and resources to people most vulnerable to structural violence and racialized drug policies.
Operating nationally, with a budget of $6.4 million and a national staff of 30+, NHRC is well poised for its next leader who can continue its growth trajectory and help continue the fight.
For more information on National Harm Reduction Coalition, please visit the organization’s website.
This is a remarkable opportunity for an outstanding leader to join a groundbreaking organization and lead a group of passionate and talented staff, partners, and advocates in transforming the landscape for harm reduction nationwide.
The Executive Director (“ED”) will provide visionary leadership and strategic oversight of the organization. The role leads and oversees the organization’s operations, culture, values, talent, and financial performance, with a clear focus on the mission.
Reporting to and partnering with the Board of Directors, the ED will lead the development and implementation of strategies to ensure the operational and financial health of the organization as it evolves to a scale enabling even greater impact.
Inspired by a genuine passion to be responsive to and supportive of people who use drugs, the ED will have a clear vision for NHRC.
The new ED will lead NHRC’s efforts by:
- Expanding NHRC’s role and reputation as an advocacy leader in harm reduction;
- Driving the conversation on effective harm reduction efforts in the United States;
- Enhancing knowledge of NHRC among social justice and movement organizations; and
- Increasing public awareness of challenges for people who use drugs.
The ED will embody NHRC’s strong commitment to people who use drugs and will promote the organization, accelerating its impact, resource development and brand recognition. This leader will be a highly visible member of the community, representing NHRC nationally, with partners and key stakeholders.
The ED will work proactively with the Board and development team to fundraise for NHRC and strategically lead the organization into its next chapter. Moreover, the ED will ensure financial policies and internal controls are aligned with NHRC’s strategy and long-term planning.
Key responsibilities include:
- Enhancing organizational vision; developing and implementing plans and goals in partnership with the Board and the team;
- Ensuring programs and initiatives are conceived and delivered at the highest level of quality and are rigorously monitored and evaluated, meeting all financial goals and achieving optimal levels of operational and programmatic performance;
- Enhancing and galvanizing NHRC’s base of support by communicating its vision and mission with passion and authenticity to a wide audience;
- Collaborating with existing partners while cultivating new relationships; and
- Instilling a culture of high performance by serving as a coach and mentor with an inspirational and transparent approach.
While no candidate will bring every qualification desired, the details provided below are representative of the attributes, knowledge, and experience NHRC is seeking for this important hire.
Passion For the Mission
The ED will bring a deep commitment to NHRC’s values and mission of advancing the harm reduction movement. In addition, the ED will share a belief in and commitment to creating social change through solutions that center impacted communities and individuals. With a personal connection to the mission, the ED will possess a deep drive and passion for engaging a wide range of stakeholders, from community members and grassroots organizers to funders and organizational partners, in achieving NHRC’s vision. This leader will be driven by a deeply rooted passion for equity and fully cultivating a sense of belonging for NHRC’s staff and stakeholders, regardless of geography. Moreover, the ideal candidate will be an individual of unquestioned integrity, ethics, and values — someone who can be trusted without reservation.
Visionary and Strategic Leader
Motivated by NHRC’s mission and values for community, vision, equity, learning, grit, and truth, the ED will be a strategic and results-oriented leader with a strong track record of social justice leadership. An effective ‘big picture’ strategist, the ED will understand and implement best practices for organizational management, ensuring that overall day-to-day operations are aligned with strategic goals. Moreover, the ED will bring a demonstrated understanding of sound financial management practices and experience developing a robust partnership with a Board. Deeply invested in staff voice, the ED will be committed to developing a strong working relationship with and across all levels, teams, and work locations. Engaging and supportive, this individual will be experienced in leading a dynamic and expert staff to meet organizational goals through teamwork and by effectively leveraging individual strengths. Fundamentally, the successful candidate will believe in empowering the staff and maximizing the resources of the Board to drive NHRC with the right focus in the right areas.
A proactive leader with the mindset to change the status quo and reinvigorate the equity landscape nationally, the ED will have the ability to diagnose critical areas for attention, build shared understanding and implement clear strategies. The ED will be a bold leader and catalyst for cultural transformation, with experience creating systems and internal policy change. The ED’s eye will be consistently focused on the future and how to best adapt NHRC in a changing political and mission-driven landscape. The ED will have experience adapting to external change by building and leveraging new approaches to address emerging challenges. The ED must have the ability to think, plan, and act in a cross-functional, collaborative, and integrative way. A trailblazer, the ED will have the drive and passion to remain at the forefront of the sector by continuing to refine opportunities to serve the mission collaboratively with the staff and Board. This leader will have the ability to actualize a new reality for NHRC and the harm reduction movement together with the staff and Board, building on NHRC’s mission and vision for the future. Most importantly, the ED will collaborate with and be guided by those within the movement, particularly people who use drugs (PWUD). Fundamentally, the successful candidate will be an ‘agent for change’ with the ability to assure NHRC’s reputation as a leading social justice organization working for the movement.
The ED will have the character and confidence to work comfortably in a highly visible role and to interact effectively with a broad range of constituents. A charismatic leader, the ED will serve as the chief ambassador and fundraiser for NHRC. The ED will be able to convey NHRC’s mission, priorities, and impact to a range of constituents, including donors, partners, and community leaders. A successful fundraiser, the ED will bring an appetite for establishing partnerships and connections with the funding community. This leader will have the ability to work closely with the Board and staff to nurture longstanding donor relationships and cultivate new, diverse funding sources, including forging ties with individuals as well as local and national foundations. With an intrinsic belief in the importance of community engagement, the ED will strengthen awareness of NHRC in communities across the county. This leader will bring an understanding of the changing face of our country as well as existing and emerging power structures. Most importantly, the successful candidate will be an exceptional communicator who engages with and builds community by uplifting the voices of others.
Engaged, Equity-Driven Manager
The ED will be skilled at listening to and learning from others, with a deep belief in fostering a transparent, empowering, and productive organizational culture by amplifying community, collaboration, and partnership with the staff. The ED will have the ability to continually strengthen NHRC’s powerful sense of shared purpose by empowering and engaging others in facing the opportunities and challenges ahead. The ED will be skilled at building effective relationships and fostering collaboration across NHRC, guiding staff as they work in concert toward a broader vision and set of goals. An empathic, proactive, and values-driven leader, the ED will be able to achieve consensus among differing opinions. The ED will have a deep understanding of effective nonprofit management, with an instinctively inclusive leadership philosophy that assures the personal and professional development and growth of all employees. The ED will lead by example, demonstrating transparency, humility, empathy, respect, and sense of humor.
Compensation & Benefits
The salary range for this position is $150,000 – $175,000 and it is offered along with a competitive benefits package.
Koya Partners, the executive search firm that specializes in mission-driven search, has been exclusively retained for this engagement. Chartise Clark and Tabatha Skelton of Koya Partners are leading this search. To express interest in this role please submit your materials here or email Chartise Clark and Tabatha Skelton directly at NHRC@koyapartners.com. All inquiries and discussions will be considered strictly confidential.
National Harm Reduction Coalition is an equal opportunity employer committed to inclusive hiring and dedicated to diversity in our work and staff. We do not discriminate in employment opportunities or practices based on actual or perceived race, color, religion, national origin, gender or sex (including pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions), age, marital status, sexual orientations, gender identity or expression, veteran status, uniform service member status, disability, or any other characteristic protected by law. Women, people of color (including bilingual and bicultural individuals), LGBTQ+ persons, and people with disabilities are encouraged to apply.
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 www.koyapartners.com.