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Chief Executive Officer

SPECIAL OLYMPICS NORTH DAKOTA (SOND) is seeking a dynamic Chief Executive Officer (CEO) to lead this long established and successful organization. The SOND CEO’s primary responsibility will be to champion a powerful mission of inclusion through a world-class sports organization. This requires strategic leadership, operational management, fundraising, outreach and advocacy, all designed to bring out the best in our athletes. The CEO will have primary responsibility for the leadership, operational management, fundraising and growth of the Special Olympics movement.  Reporting to the Board of Directors, s/he will articulate a vision that ensures the organization’s role as the leading institution serving people with and without intellectual disabilities throughout the state.  This person will possess immense passion, a deep understanding, and total and unwavering commitment to Special Olympics and its mission. 

The CEO is responsible for managing the organization’s day-to day activities and overseeing staff and more than 5000 volunteers with an annual operating budget more than $1.2 million.  S/he is also responsible for the overall fiscal management and stability of the organization, further developing the strategic vision for the organization’s future and demonstrating bold thinking and effective use of resources to achieve the goals of SOND, including strengthening and diversifying the funding base. The CEO will guide and direct the program in accordance with the standards, policies and procedures set forth by Special Olympics Inc. and the SOND Board of Directors.


Fundraising/Community Engagement/Public Relations

  • Develop and implement strategies aiming to promote Special Olympics North Dakota’s mission and presence in the community and media; cultivate and maintain strong relationships with donors and partners
  • Oversee and achieve diversified and sustainable growth in all major fundraising areas, including Corporate Sponsors, Special Events, Online Giving, Major Gifts, Foundations/ Grants, Charitable Gaming and Planned Giving
  • Champion, execute and protect the mission, vision and brand of Special Olympics North Dakota
  • Collaborate with community leaders, Special Olympics athletes, their parents and volunteers to ensure Special Olympics North Dakota understands the needs/desires of the community and is meeting its goals and objectives
  • Demonstrate to stakeholders and the public the benefits and impact achieved by Special Olympics North Dakota

General Administration & Management

  • Oversee the day-to-day operations and the related reporting and communications
  • Carries overall responsibility for fiscal management and assures the future of SOND through the initiation and completion of strategic financial planning processes.
  • Recruit, cultivate, mentor/counsel, inspire and evaluate staff (paid and unpaid)
  • Manage the assets and resources of the organization effectively, ethically and responsibly
  • Accountable for developing and implementing annual budget and providing financial oversight and reporting
  • Understand current not-for-profit industry trends and practices and ensure compliance with state and federal laws, organization bylaws, Special Olympics, Inc. accreditation requirements, General Rules and Sports Rules
  • Leverage Special Olympics North America’s resources and collaborate to drive process and program improvements
  • Conduct regular Program assessments and provide strategies for correction or improvement
  • Ensure alignment with Special Olympics, Inc. and Special Olympics North America strategic priorities and initiatives
  • Other duties as assigned

Board Relations

  • Serves as Chief Executive Officer of SOND with powers specified in the Organization’s Bylaws, enabling SOND to meet all organizational goals as established by the Board
  • Work with the Board of Directors to ensure effective Board governance and engagement
  • Support and service the Board of Directors and any committees to be effective stewards, fiduciaries and fundraisers of the organization
  • Collaborate with the Board of Directors to assess and develop the current and long-term strategic and financial needs of the organization

Program Leadership

  • Lead the Program in accordance with the mission and policies of Special Olympics North Dakota and of its governing organization, Special Olympics, Inc
  • Provide leadership to the planning process for and development of all SOND programs and services provided
  • Provide vision and operational direction to Special Olympic North Dakota local program leadership
  • Together with staff, review and expand existing programming, and identify and secure strategic partnerships to support and grow current and future programming
  • Drive digital strategy by identifying opportunities and develop initiatives to leverage digital communications in order to drive organizational growth, innovation, and sustainability

Required Qualifications

  • Proven senior management experience
  • Bachelor’s degree or higher

Preferred Skills, Traits, Qualifications

  • Passion for sport, health, and wellness
  • Experience in non-profit leadership and management
  • Experience in development, fundraising, or sales
  • Experience working with dynamic and very engaged Board members and a large volunteer workforce
  • Strong financial management skills (including budget processes), organizational management and strategic planning
  • Grant-writing experience
  • Proven event-planning, partnership creation and community engagement experience and success
  • Excellent communication skills including the ability to deliver effective presentations to a wide variety of audiences and media

Final offer of employment is contingent on a successful background and credit check.

Work Location: Grand Forks, ND

Time and Travel expectations: 

  • Work occasional evenings and weekends, as necessary
  • Travel throughout the state, regularly attending events and meetings 
  • Occasional travel outside of North Dakota for Special Olympics, Inc. meetings and conferences

Compensation: Salary is commensurate with experience.   Special Olympics North Dakota offers a competitive salary and benefits package.  Benefits include: 401 (k), 401(k) matching, health insurance, dental insurance, life insurance, paid vacation, sick time, paid holidays, and workers’ compensation.

Special Olympics North Dakota is an equal opportunity employer.  We encourage all qualified individuals to apply for open positions regardless of race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, sexual orientation, qualified disability, marital, veteran or any other legally protected status. 

Apply:   Email cover letter and resume to:  Position is open until filled.  Initial review of applications will start on Wednesday, December 9, 2020.

Special Olympics North Dakota is proudly sponsored by these program partners