We're hiring! RYH Executive Director

Downloadable and printable RYH Executive Director job description here.


Raise Your Hand for Illinois Public Education Executive Director

Raise Your Hand for Illinois Public Education engages, informs and empowers parents to protect and strengthen public education for all children in Chicago and Illinois, eliminate inequities in public schools, and work at the grassroots for the public good that is public education.


The Executive Director (ED) for Raise Your Hand for Illinois Public Education (RYH) oversees all day-to-day operations of the organization, including administration, finance, operations, development and programming. The ED participates in strategic decision-making and serves as the collaborative relationship manager, working closely with a strong team that includes the Communications and Outreach Director, the Administration and Finance Assistant, RYH independent contractors and professional advisors, Board leadership, and key volunteers who provide ample support in their assigned areas. The position requires a multi-skilled leader to maximize and strengthen the internal capacity and the external work of a well-respected, high-impact organization.

The ideal candidate will have financial, administrative and operations management, and development experience in a non-profit environment as well as a strong background knowledge of public education policy. Important personal qualities include integrity, credibility, and dedication to the mission of RYH.


  • Hire and fire staff and independent contractors (other than the Executive Director)
  • Decide external spokespersons at the recommendation of or in consultation with the Communications and Outreach Director
  • Represent RYH in joint decision-making with Raise Your Hand Action (a related c4 organization) regarding priorities, budget, and staff capacity, based on an understanding of RYH (c3) priorities and approved budget


  • Direct and maintain RYH’s on-going programs (Board approval required to initiate new programs)
  • Set leadership roles for staff and volunteers on RYH campaign and issues
  • Oversee and maintain relationship with internal and external stakeholders
  • Build organizational capacity
  • Oversee and strengthen RYH fundraising and capacity building efforts
    • Make fundraising and growth a priority and “always ask” subscribers, supporters and donors to help financially and with time and talent
    • Develop and execute RYH’s annual fundraising plan, including joint fundraising with RYHA
    • Lead and develop annual fundraiser committee and other fundraising events
    • Research grant opportunities and establish relationships with grant making entities
      • Develop and track proposals for foundation and corporate funding; direct and manage grant-writing process and reporting and organize all aspects of foundation site visits
      • Collaborate with Board members to develop and update RYH Theory of Change and Logic Models to facilitate grant-writing and foundation support
    • Work with Treasurer and Administrative and Finance Assistant to create Donor Management database for tracking donations and acknowledgements
    • Develop and maintain relationships with major donors and create plan to grow base of major donors
  • Oversee and maintain financial, administrative and management systems
    • Supervise Administration and Finance Assistant and any independent contractors
    • Oversee financial planning and annual budgeting and progress monitoring; review financial systems and financial status; communicate and present the critical financial matters to the Board
    • Ensure efficient, compliant and consistent operations


Effective interpersonal and management skills

  • Good communication and interpersonal skills, including an ability to work collaboratively with wide array of people from diverse backgrounds
  • Understand organizational human capital needs and capacity and be able to discern when and how to give appropriate support to personnel, board leaders, volunteers and others involved in organization’s work
  • Ability to look at situations from an organization-wide perspective, help establish organization-wide priorities, and contribute constructively to the strategic thinking of the senior management team
  • Keep an eye on the overall organizational performance and hold staff and contractors accountable for their work
  • Be an active listener – to understand what is being shared and identify core issues and concerns or outcomes

Financial and technology aptitude

  • Ability to manage and forecast organization’s finances (resource capacity and opportunities)
  • Ability to translate financial concepts
  • Knowledge of accounting and reporting software
  • Technologically savvy (Microsoft Office, Google Docs, Excel, Nationbuilder, Dropbox, Quickbooks)

Think strategically

  • Awareness of the changing social, political and technical environment around the organization, including changes in social or governmental policy
  • Needs to read widely and network extensively to keep abreast of important external trends
  • Has analytic, organization and problem-solving skills which support and enable sound decision-making
  • Ability to execute multiple tasks while responding to multiple priorities; a multi-tasker who can wear many hats in a fast-paced environment
  • Operates with excellence in mind in all matters, with the confidence to defend or debate ideas
  • Ability to exercise tact and diplomacy in organizational settings
  • Transparent and direct, but with substance
  • Remains focused in the face of pressure, delivers against timelines, not intimidated by task/time limitations


Salary TBD depending on qualifications with a range of $45,000 - $55,000

Paid time off

Flexible Scheduling


Email a cover letter and your resume to Brenda Delgado, President, at brenda.delgado_als@yahoo.com.

RYH is committed to a fair and equitable workplace where everyone is a respected and valued member of the team. RYH is an equal opportunity employer.

Downloadable and printable RYH Executive Director job description here.