Executive Director


The Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital seeks a visionary leader to serve as Executive Director (ED). The ideal candidate will have the skills to inspire the Festival’s 30,000+ annual attendees by presenting programs that showcase the power and impact of environmental filmmaking. The Executive Director leads a staff of six FT employees, with an annual budget of $1,000,000+. The ED has overall responsibility for the delivery of a high-quality, engaging festival that convenes many of the world’s top environmental filmmakers, subject matter experts, and policy leaders to present and discuss pressing matters of public concern. S/he works with the Board of Directors to provide high-level strategic direction and vision for the organization and to raise funds to execute this vision. S/he also works with the programming team to ensure the highest quality, integrity, cohesion, and diversity of the film program, and to advance and position the Festival as the leading entity of its type. As the Festival approaches its 25th anniversary in 2017, the Executive Director will work with the Board, staff, and other friends of the festival to plan and implement a 25th Anniversary commemoration and to develop a new Strategic Plan to guide the next critical phase of the organization’s growth and development.


Organizational Leadership and Management (30%)

  • The ED leads the organization in advancing its vision and mission – including the planning, implementation, management and evaluation of all EFF programs. This includes working with the Board of Directors to spearhead creation of the next strategic plan, and communicating a clear and compelling strategy to funders, staff, partner organizations, the media and the public.
  • The ED demonstrates leadership in promoting and maintaining the profile of EFF, representing the organization in public settings, including with media and government officials and during the Festival itself, and speaking knowledgeably and persuasively about its mission and impact.
  • The ED directly manages department heads to ensure the success of each team and coordination across functions, timelines, and work plans. The ED’s direct reports are the Managing Director, Director of Programming, Director of Development, Director of Marketing, and Director of Public Relations.
  • The ED works with EFF’s department directors to develop the annual operating budget and plan and ensures responsible accounting and financial management practices, including regular tracking and reporting on income and expenses, both as a management tool and for reporting to the Board and other donors and supporters.

Fundraising (30%)

  • The ED works with the Director of Development (DoD) and Board to set overall fundraising strategy and annual goals to ensure EFF has the resources to achieve its organizational objectives, while setting and meeting the annual operating budget and building the organization’s operating reserve.
  • The ED plays a critical role in high-level donor and partner relationships and helps to develop strategies that support an increase in individual, government, corporate, and organizational or institutional giving.
  • The ED works closely with Director of Development to ensure overall stewardship, prospect identification, cultivation and solicitation, from individuals and institutional funders.

Board Communication and Coordination (20%)

  • The ED serves as a liaison between Board and Staff, and works with the Board Chair in planning and convening three annual Board meetings, which include high-level discussions of the EFF budget, funding, and film program development.
  • The ED maintains regular communication and consultation with members of the Board of Directors during and outside Board meetings to keep them well-informed of EFF activities; solicits their opinions, ideas and feedback; and requests their leadership and assistance with planning and fundraising.
  • The ED serves as an ex officio member of the Board and works with the chairs of all of its committees (Development, Nominating, Strategic Planning, and Audit) and staff to plan and convene committee meetings prior to each Board meeting. The ED may also work with the Executive Committee of the Board (its officers) to advance organizational priorities as needed outside the regular thrice-yearly full Board meeting schedule.
  • The ED works with the Chair of the EFF Advisory Council to deliver three times/year Advisory Council meetings after each Board meeting, involving and engaging the Advisory Council members and leveraging their support for EFF.

Programming (20%)

  • The ED has ultimate responsibility for the overall quality of the annual Festival program and year-round films and programs through supervision of Festival programming staff and any consultants or volunteers.
  • The ED provides oversight of the broad programming strategy of the organization, managing the team responsible for creation of the annual Festival film program, including: developing the vision and themes of the Festival; ensuring that the Festival schedule, partnerships, and programs are strategic and advance organizational goals; and working with selected partner organizations and developing new high-level partnerships.
  • The ED serves as a public spokesperson and representative of the Festival, introducing key programs, moderating discussion panels, representing EFF at other festivals, and developing high-level organizational partnerships that advance the mission of the organization.

Qualifications and Experience

  • Minimum eight years of experience and demonstrated success in non-profit management in senior leadership positions.
  • The passion and energy to engage audiences, partners, staff and Board in advancing the organization’s overarching agenda.
  • Demonstrated track record of non-profit fundraising ($1M-$3M annual budgets) with an emphasis on major funders ($10,000+ level) from individual, corporate, foundation, and public agencies.
  • Knowledge of film, film festival industry, and environmental issues strongly preferred.
  • Ability to instill, manage, and maintain culture of highest performance standards and accountability. Strong management and team-building skills; ability to respect and learn from experience of staff team while helping guide organization to new levels of efficiency, coordination, and productivity.
  • Experience with organizational and strategic planning, with the ability to motivate and facilitate staff to implement creative solutions to achieve organizational goals.
  • Exceptional communications skills, both individually, with small groups, in writing, and through public speaking.
  • Additional desired attributes include confidence, humility, sense of humor, grace under pressure, and diplomacy.
  • Knowledge, experience, and involvement in the Washington, DC philanthropic, arts, and environmental communities.
  • Willingness and ability to work occasional evenings or weekend days throughout the year, to travel to other festivals, and to work for two weeks straight during the primary Festival required.
  • College degree required, with advanced degree related to film, environmental studies, business or non-profit management preferred.

To apply, please send your resume and cover letter to Chris Head by September 11, 2015.

Environmental Film Festival in the Nation's Capital