The US has the highest rate of incarcerated people in the world and for decades NYS was one of only two states to prosecute 16 year olds as adults. Upon release, these young people face barriers to employment, and aren’t prepared to succeed or grow professionally. Imprisonment has lifelong consequences, and youth that have been incarcerated have a 70% chance of being rearrested within 5 years.
At Drive Change our mission is to support formerly incarcerated young people, and create quality employment pathways to ensure their economic and emotional wellbeing. We work to create systemic change and sustainable impact through unapologetically reimagining what’s possible for the food and hospitality industry.
Hospitality for Social Justice
While the hospitality sector has the potential to be an opportunity for our youth, Drive Change recognizes that the annual turnover rate for entry level employees in the US hospitality sector is 73.8% (Bureau of Labor Statistics), with 6% of employees quitting every month. Therefore, Drive Change challenges the hospitality industry to hire, train, and retain qualified young people and provide workplaces that are equitable and supportive.
To support this demand for culture change, we provide training, coaching, and direction to the leaders of our Hospitality for Social Justice restaurant network, focusing on unconscious biases, identity and privilege.
Hospitality for Social Justice (HSJ) challenges leaders in the sector to run workplaces that center marginalized populations and invest in their talent once they are hired. HSJ is making a massive impact to make grinding low paying jobs in the sector more equitable and more sustainable, though it is slow moving, seed planting work. As we continue to focus on systematic change, we are also committed to evolving our programming.
Food Empowerment & Fellowship Training
COVID + M4BL reaffirmed the need for change in the food sector. Nearly all our Fellows were laid off from partner restaurants. In response, we built two programs that center Fellows and provide quality employment internally at Drive Change while we work to shift the sector to be a healthier space for employment. Our food empowerment program feeds our nearby community experiencing food insecurity while we run a year long paid Fellowship, centering project based learning, healing, and entrepreneurship.
Drive Change is seeking a charismatic, strategy-oriented Executive Director to provide vision, leadership, and management to all aspects of the organization. Reporting to the Board of Directors, this person will have ultimate oversight of a 1.3M budget, 7 staff, and 3 fellowships supporting young people throughout 4 NYC boroughs.
This is a unique opportunity for a leader to be apart of a progressive, innovative mission situated at the intersection of social justice and hospitality.
The ideal person for this role is deeply committed to equity and transforming historically oppressive systems and institutions by providing young people with opportunities and support. They are a visionary with a strategic mindset who can lead with inspiration, authenticity, and transparency. They are a people-connecter with the ability to cultivate innovation and empower teams to do impactful work.
Strategic Vision & Leadership
The ideal Provide strategic vision for Drive Change and lead the organization into its next phase of development and impact.
Oversee the development and implementation of a strategic plan in alignment with the Drive Change vision.
Cultivate a strong and transparent working relationship with the Board and ensure open communication about the measurement of financial, programmatic, and impact performance against states milestones and goals.
Provide inspirational leadership and direction to the team, and ensure the continued development and management of a professional and efficient organization; establish effective decision-making processes that will enable Drive Change to achieve its long-and short-term goals objectives.
Promote a positive, empowering work environment and culture that is supportive without sacrificing acountability and organizational needs.
Infrastructure & Program Delivery
Oversee the planning, implementation, integration and evaluation of Drive Change programming, ensuring consistency and alignment with the strategic vision.
Assess the current business model and make strategic decisions to ensure that programming is sustainable and connected to the long-term vision.
Provide operational direction and vision on the organizational infrastructure needed to ensure that there is capacity to achieve programmatic goals.
Oversee the financial status of the organization including developing long and short range financial plans, monitoring the budget and ensuring sound financial controls are in place; set financial priorities accurately to ensure the organization is operating in a manner that supports the needs of programs and staff.
Serve as the chief spokesperson for Drive Change and act as the primary driver in donor cultivation, solicitation and stewardship.
Partner closely with the COO to maintain relationships with current donors; actively pursue opportunities to increase and diversify funding from foundations, major donors, and other stakeholders.
Cultivate a culture of philanthropy and serve as a motivational force in fundraising efforts across the organization.
Collaborate closely with the programmatic team to ensure accuracy and efficiency in grant reporting.
Evaluate the organization's strategies for fundraising and set new goals each year to create a donor-centered and segmented fundraising approach to better meet organization's mission and organizational objectives.
Continuously stay up to date with funding trends to help position Drive Change ahead of major funding changes.
Demonstrated experience overseeing leadership development, criminal justice, or workforce development programming; experience in trauma-informed programming a plus.
A big picture thinker with the ability to think ahead for opportunities for Drive Change to maximize impact and adapt accordingly to trends and changes within the hospitality and the social justice landscape.
Deep commitment to racial justice and equity and a strong understanding of social justice rhetoric.
Experience building an internal infrastructure to support a mission; change management expertise related to organizational structure, processes and culture.
A seasoned fundraiser with a track record of cultivating and soliciting gifts from private institutions and diversifying fundraising revenue.
Excellent managerial skills with a track record of building and supervising high-performing teams; the ability to lead with humility and empathy without sacrificing accountability.
Experience designing and implementing a high-quality programmatic strategy in alignment with organizational vision and goals; experience evaluating programmatic impact.
We strongly encourage applicants who identify as BIPOC and/or have been directly impacted by the criminal justice system to apply.
This position description is based upon material provided by Drive Change, an equal opportunity employer.
Drive Change provides equal opportunity in all of our human resource practices to all qualified applicants and employees without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, national origin, ethnicity, age, disability, marital status, military service status, or any other protected classification. This policy applies to all aspects of the employment experience, including recruitment, hiring, compensation, promotion, transfer, disciplinary action, layoff, return from layoff, organization-sponsored training, and social and recreational programs. Any and all such employment decisions will be made in a non-discriminatory manner.