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SAJ: Judaism That Stands For All
Executive Director
Deadline to Apply: October 2, 2023

About SAJ: Judaism That Stands For All

SAJ: Judaism That Stands for All (SAJ), which celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2022, is the founding congregation of the Reconstructionist movement and a vibrant community on the Upper West Side of New York City with reach throughout the United States. Ever since SAJ introduced America’s first bat mitzvah in 1922, it has been reconstructing Judaism, questioning tradition, and expanding its boundaries to ensure that Torah remains relevant, engaging, and welcoming to all.

Our 260+ households are seekers and non-believers alike; families with children and without children; single, married; young and old; white, black, Asian, Latino; gay, straight, transgender; Jewish by birth, by choice or friends of other faiths living in a Jewish household. We believe that all human beings are created in the image of the Divine and deserve dignity and respect, and that all members of our sacred community should have a voice in the interpretation of Jewish tradition and the shaping of its future. At SAJ, we act through advocacy, public action, community education, and organizing. Seeking to engage a diverse base of congregation members and generations, we mobilize for timely events and engage in long-term change work.

Position Description:

We are seeking a dynamic Executive Director (ED) who will strengthen and support our growing programmatic, operational, and educational activities. In this newly created position, the ED will report to the Board Chair, and be a vital strategic partner to the Rabbi and lay leadership in achieving SAJ’s mission and vision. The ED will oversee the operational management of SAJ, and work with the Board, clergy, and staff to foster a thriving, collaborative, and well-functioning environment.

The successful candidate will have strong management, organizational, teambuilding, and communications skills, a strategic mindset, fiscal stewardship experience, a track record of innovative problem solving, and a commitment to the values of SAJ.

Responsibilities below indicate the full scope of the position. Depending on the expertise the Executive Director brings, some of the components of the job could be shared with clergy, lay leadership, and/or other staff.

Key Responsibilities:

Strategic Operations Management

  • Act as a thought partner to the Rabbi and work with the staff and Board on strategic visioning and short- and long-term planning for future growth
  • Provide operational assessment of new initiatives that considers staff and operations impact and supports key decision making
  • Identify processes, technology improvements, and policies that elevate SAJ’s performance, and oversee the successful training and adoption of these changes among staff and membership

Staff, Congregation, and Community Planning and Engagement

  • Supervise all in-house and outsourced operations-related staff to ensure that congregational, clergy, and lay leader needs are met in a timely and effective manner, and that all rituals and events run smoothly
  • Evaluate operational needs, resources, and skills to provide the best staffing fit, training to improve staff functionality, and strategic insource/outsource staffing decisions
  • Manage and support operational staff by providing clear job descriptions, goal setting, formal annual evaluations and intermittent feedback, coaching, and career development
  • Create clear and documented employee policies and procedures
  • Build trusting relationships and create team alignment across multiple constituencies, including clergy, operational staff, and lay-leadership
  • Plan and attend Board and Executive Committee meetings, and report on matters for the Board’s consideration or information. Make policy and action recommendations to the Board. Attend and report at core Committee meetings (e.g., Finance, Fundraising, Membership). Collaborate with and make connections among various Committees as appropriate.
  • Foster a warm, inclusive, and high-performing culture to ensure the SAJ office and facilities are welcoming to staff, clergy, congregants, and visitors
  • Serve as an ambassador of SAJ internally and externally
  • Consistently strive to infuse the values of SAJ in all interactions

 Financial Management

  • Ensure sound and timely financial management, including appropriate financial systems and controls to ensure legal compliance, integrity, and transparency
  • Ensure processes, systems, and responsibilities are functioning smoothly for timely billing, payments, donations, collections, and financial assistance
  • Manage annual budget in conjunction with Treasurer, Board, Bookkeeper, and Finance Committee to develop future year’s budgets
  • Work with Committees to identify their budget needs and manage their spending
  • Oversee the timely and accurate provision and presentation of monthly, quarterly, and annual reports to ensure effective financial decision making
  • Identify opportunities for reducing costs and increasing revenue

Communications, Membership, and Development

  • Develop and oversee the implementation of SAJ’s communications strategy
  • Oversee all internal and external communications and marketing, including the website and social media
  • Oversee support for membership functions, including recruitment, engagement, and retention
  • Work closely with the Board and Clergy to create appropriate fundraising strategies and goals, and execute the associated activities
  • Identify grant opportunities, and oversee and/or write grant reports and proposals
  • Participate in stewardship of existing or new donors when appropriate
  • Provide support in providing data, research, and prospect tracking to SAJ development efforts

Facilities Management and Building Security

  • Oversee the building and associated facilities to ensure that the structure and equipment are well maintained, licensed, and are used in flexible ways to meet the religious, educational, and programmatic needs of the congregation
  • Identify short- and long-term facilities needs and work with lay leadership to create a plan to proactively address needs
  • Oversee the cost-effective acquisition and/or leasing as well as the effective maintenance of technology and equipment
  • Provide management and/or staff oversight for short- or long-term rental of SAJ facilities
  • Work with SAJ leadership to ensure adequate building and cyber security. Oversee implementation of security plans

Qualifications:

  • At least 5 years of relevant experience, including a proven track record of managing organizational operations and supervising staff and/or volunteers
  • Exceptional project management skills, with both strategic and detail oriented executional skills
  • Demonstrated ability to manage financial resources
  • Success in managing a multi-faceted workload and problem-solving while maintaining positive relationships
  • Proven ability to work effectively and positively in a high-energy, fast-paced environment, and to multitask and be flexible
  • Ability to independently recognize and prioritize key issues and to identify and implement creative and appropriate solutions
  • Familiarity with the rhythm of Jewish life, including Shabbat, Holidays, and life-cycle observances. Experience working in a synagogue is not required
  • Exceptional interpersonal and communications skills
  • Well-versed in utilizing technology and social media

The ED will also have personal characteristics that include:

  • Dynamic, highly accountable, results-oriented leader, with a passion for Jewish communal work
  • Unquestionable integrity, reliability, and credibility
  • Personal warmth and compassion
  • Collaborative and creative spirit, to partner with Rabbi and key lay leaders in dreaming and achieving an exciting vision for SAJ’s future
  • Comfort with a highly diverse membership, including race, gender, sexuality, ethnicity, class, ability, and age
  • A natural desire and can-do orientation to align, partner, and collaborate with clergy and lay leaders and create a positive office culture
  • Passion for social justice, inclusion and equity
  • Adaptability, resilience, and ability to manage calmly in a crisis
  • Commitment to a healthy work/life balance

Compensation range: $100,000 – $135,000

Benefits package includes: Medical insurance, parental leave and a generous vacation policy

SAJ: Judaism That Stands for All is proud to be an Equal Employment Opportunity employer. We do not discriminate based upon race, religion, color, national origin, gender (including pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions), sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, status as a protected veteran, status as an individual with a disability, or other applicable legally protected characteristics.

Interested applicants, please submit a cover letter and resume to: execdirsearch@saj.nyc

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