Location: Hartford, Connecticut
Website: South Park Inn
Founded in 1984, South Park Inn has been a leading provider of shelter and alternative housing solutions for men, women and children in the Hartford, Connecticut metropolitan area who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. Its beds for women and families are a critically important part of Hartford’s fabric of services. On a given night, nearly 150 people are sleeping in a bed at one of South Park Inn’s facilities. South Park Inn is a member of the Greater Hartford Coordinated Access Network and an integral member of the region’s mission to end homelessness. Its mission is to serve people who are homeless and at risk of homelessness who lack the means to provide for themselves the most basic of human needs: a safe place to live.
South Park Inn was led for several decades by an Executive Director who was also the organization’s co-founder. This long-tenured executive stepped down in March 2018 and the organization has employed an interim executive to support operations during the transition.
The Board of Directors of South Park Inn seeks a dynamic professional with a collaborative leadership style, excellent communication skills and the passion and competence for engaged leadership both internally and with partners in the wider Hartford system of homeless services. The board seeks an individual whose career demonstrates deep commitment to values shared by South Park Inn to lead this highly effective organization as it plans to extend its impact.
Organizational Programs and Services
South Park Inn undertakes a suite of high impact programs and services designed to effectively implement its mission and support key strategic aims.
Strategic Opportunities and Challenges
South Park Inn has had only two executive directors in the last 35 years and faces an important and exciting juncture in its organizational history. While recent developments in the policy and funding environment have resulted in the loss of important funding streams, South Park Inn has rapidly innovated new programs with strong funding. To take hold of these developments the organization undertook an intensive review process throughout fall and winter 2017-18 and completed a new three-year Strategic Plan in March 2018. The Executive Director will be charged with providing both guidance and effective partnership with the board, committee chairs, staff and other regional leaders to navigate newly-developed strategic decisions. In addition, high priorities for the next executive director include:
Profile of the Ideal Candidate and Qualifications
South Park Inn offers prospective candidates the opportunity to lead a highly-regarded organization, through a time of significant organizational and sector transition and change. The ideal candidate will have experience embracing such changes as practical opportunities to reach for excellence and impact, and be energized by the opportunity to both forge a future orientated vision and to drive change towards that vision.
Maintaining and building on the strength of South Park Inn’s programs and fundraising efforts; energetically, transparently and effectively leading South Park Inn’s board and staff; and managing important relationships with funders and other regional partners and stakeholders are clear priorities for the Executive Director.
The ideal candidate will serve as a powerful and effective public spokesperson for South Park Inn, to broaden its visibility and to initiate and lead strategic efforts that further its mission. Experience in leadership within a tightly woven network of peers, partners and funders is a significant plus. The candidate will have or commit to develop deep understanding of the special issues and stakeholders integral to supporting homeless individuals to rapidly find the housing appropriate to their needs. More specifically, the ideal candidate will demonstrate:
Skills and Experience
A Passionate Advocate for South Park Inn’s Mission and Values
The Executive Director will be leading a strongly mission based organization. South Park Inn’s staff and board members' commitment to the importance of dignity, respect and purpose in the lives of individuals at risk of homelessness run deep, and thus demonstrable evidence of such ethical commitment, in a mission-based setting, is a requirement for this role.
An Engaged and Collaborative Leader in Times of Change
The Executive Director will discover a board and staff that is talented and effective. The ideal candidate will have worked in a leadership position with demonstrated success in inspiring staff, in delegating effectively and in generating trust and respect across an organization. He or she will also have experience working successfully with a board of directors to achieve its full potential impact. The Executive Director needs to be hands-on in his/her grasp of the work, but comfortable and competent in activating others to make their own contribution.
A Strategic Thinker
The ability to take a comprehensive view of South Park Inn’s offerings and to assess effectiveness at a strategic level is an essential skill for the new Executive Director. South Park Inn is seeking a strategic thinker who will focus on continuous improvement and on developing, sustaining and implementing a shared vision that both the board and regional partners can embrace. Experience in partnering with a board and other constituents to forge and implement a strategic plan will be an asset for the new Executive Director.
An Exceptional Communicator and Collaborator
The Executive Director is the public face of South Park Inn and should act as a pivotal leader and collaborator within the ecosystem of homeless services in Greater Hartford. The Executive Director must be completely comfortable in that role and highly effective in external communications. South Park Inn’s Executive Director must be able to listen carefully, speak persuasively, educate and respond effectively, while bringing intelligence, humility and value to both internal and external discussions. He or she must have the ability to articulate powerfully the purpose, contributions and impact of South Park Inn.
Solutions and Opportunity Focused
The policy and funding environment for homeless services nationally and in Connecticut are undergoing substantial and rapid change. The ability to think creatively about South Park Inn’s capabilities and assets and to identify and implement new revenue streams, programs, partnerships and internal systems and processes, will be a significant asset for the Executive Director.
Technical & Sector Skills
The Executive Director must have a firm grasp of financial issues, be able to work with the Finance Committee to develop realistic and reliable budget projections and have the competence and experience to implement South Park Inn’s strategies within realistic financial parameters.
Experience in oversight and development of programs that are outcomes and metrics driven and which seek to utilize data as a lever for improving quality is an important skill set for the Executive Director.
The Executive Director must be a skilled manager with demonstrated experience leading and supervising staff towards agreed upon goals, in an environment of accelerated change.
This search is being conducted by TSNE Mission Works with Transition Consultant Gregg Davis. All submissions will be acknowledged and are confidential.
Please include your resume along with a cover letter with salary requirements, where you learned of the position and a description of how your qualifications and experience match South Park Inn’s needs. Electronic submissions are preferred.
Candidates are strongly encouraged to submit materials by May 30, 2019. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled, with priority given to those received by this date.
South Park Inn will offer a competitive salary package commensurate with experience, along with benefits.
South Park Inn is an Equal Opportunity Employer and actively seeks a diverse pool of candidates.