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Communities In Schools of North Carolina | Raleigh NC 27601 USA | Full Time - 12 Month | Revised: 06/16/2017

Job Descriptiontop

Communities In Schools of North Carolina

Position Description: President and Chief Executive Officer

Applications will be accepted until July 16, 2017 or until position is filled


Communities In Schools of North Carolina (CISNC) seeks a President/CEO with a passion for ensuring that all children receive the support they need, inside and outside of school, to reach their full potential. CISNC is a national leader in the CIS network, breaking new ground in service delivery and programs. The next President/CEO must be a visionary leader with the experience to strengthen the foundation on which this newly re-organized structure is built and take the model to new heights of success.



Established in 1989, Communities In Schools of North Carolina (CISNC) is part of the national Communities In Schools network. Its mission is to surround students with a community of support, empowering them to stay in school and achieve in life. Communities In Schools believes the formula for student success is ABC+P: attendance, behavior, coursework and parent/family engagement. Trained Student Support Specialists partner with school leadership to identify students in danger of not achieving their potential, assess student needs and provide wrap-around interventions and resources to change outcomes. The national Communities In School network empowers 1.5 million students to stay in school and on the path to graduation each year.


During the last four years, CISNC has gone through a major transformation on several fronts. Historically, CISNC provided support services to a federation of independent 501(c)3 nonprofit affiliates. In 2014 CISNC created a parallel system of “embedded sites” to better serve students in resource-challenged parts of the state. Bringing these sites in-house ensures the fidelity of the CIS model in these communities and provides funding that had been difficult for local independent affiliates to raise. CISNC hires and supervises embedded site staff who serve 33 schools across the state. Plans call for six additional schools to be added in July. Twenty-two affiliates in the state still operate as independent nonprofits, continue to receive support services from CISNC, and remain a critical part of service delivery. CISNC has expanded the CIS model by initiating programs that are focused on career and college preparedness and on better serving youth in the juvenile justice system. None of these changes has diminished CISNC’s key nonpartisan role in advocating for CIS programs with the Governor, members of the General Assembly and the state’s Department of Public Instruction leadership and staff. The CIS national office supports these changes and considers CISNC a model for CIS programs across the country.


The data-driven CIS model ensures that all students receive the very best that CISNC can offer. Data also provides the proof of program impact that funders are seeking. A recent review conducted by RTI International for the 2015-16 school year shows that 2.29% of students statewide drop out of school as compared to 1.18% of students served by CISNC. That year, CISNC served a total of 150,244 students from 337 different schools in 40 school districts. More than 16,000 of these students received additional targeted and intensive support including individualized success plans. Of these, 86% reached attendance goals, 90% reached behavior goals and 90% reached coursework goals.


At the heart of CISNC is a staff of 60 highly skilled professionals who work on local, state and national levels; 20 are operational and 40 are direct-service with the embedded sites. A six-person senior leadership team reports to the President/CEO including HR, finance, fundraising, marketing/communications, network relations (support for independent affiliates) and programs (embedded programs, youth services, career/college readiness). CISNC is overseen by an engaged 25-member Board, including the President/CEO, with representation from education, government, academia, business and consumers. In recent years the board has strengthened its committee structure and grown in its overall effectiveness. The total operating budget for FY 2016-17 is $3,524,673 with 69% ($2,446,750) coming from the state, 16% ($577,053) from program fees/contracts, 7% ($238,565) from contributions, 4% ($134,805) from foundations and another 4% ($127,500) from event income.  Program fees/contracts includes services provided to the South Carolina CIS. More than $400,000 of state support flows through CISNC to affiliates.  The organization is operating under a strategic plan that began in 2016 and is set to run until 2019.


Candidate Description

The next CEO will take the reins of a recognized leader in the national CIS network, known for its innovation and high expectations. CISNC is financially stable, enjoys a positive reputation, and is respected by government and educational officials at both state and local levels. The organization seeks a forward-thinking leader who thrives in a complex environment and will bring its new operational model to full potential set forth in its strategic plan. The newly embedded programs required a great deal of attention to plan and implement and have been a primary focus over the last several years.  Moving forward, the CEO will need to balance continued growth with the provision of excellent services to both the embedded programs and the independent affiliates.


The new CEO will inherit a team of talented, mission-oriented professionals with decades of leadership experience who have been through several years of significant change. They are dedicated to improving the lives of students and are looking for a leader with the skills to recognize their talents and build a strong team culture where staff feel engaged and connected with the new direction. The board has made a concerted effort to augment the skill set of the leadership team with key new hires in the last 18 months, and the new leader will be able to leverage these new skills to propel the organization forward.


CISNC staff and board leadership have worked diligently to maintain strong and positive connections with state government leaders by staying nonpartisan, trustworthy, and knowledgeable about the needs of students and the impact CISNC’s work can have on them. Though CISNC employs a lobbyist, its success with state leadership may rise or fall on the relationship with the CEO. The State is considered the number-one donor in the CEO’s fundraising portfolio. The CEO must also take the lead in growing and diversifying the base of funding, working in conjunction with staff and members of the board. Philanthropy will probably never outpace the need for state funding but expanding philanthropic efforts and fee-for-service opportunities can build a greater base of unrestricted funding. Corporations have played a leadership role for CISNC since its inception. Maintaining relationships with current corporate friends and creating new relationships also will be critical to the future success of the organization. 


CIS works with and in the world of public education, but its work is different from that of educators. It is about providing the constellation of support that each student needs to succeed in school and in life. It is about collaboration with other community resources and being an advocate for the needs of students inside and outside of the school. The CEO needs to understand the educational system from an academic and political perspective, and she/he must have experience and a real passion for advocacy on behalf of students.


CISNC’s new structure creates a unique situation. The embedded site staff are under the leadership of the CEO and the network of 22 independent affiliates are not, yet both entities must adhere to a common set of standards and expectations. CISNC was built on providing the independent affiliates with training, technical support, assistance building strong relationships with principals and superintendents, funding, and a vehicle for affiliate networking and professional education. Leading a federation requires the ability to truly listen in a way that promotes understanding, diplomacy, and excellent communication, and that inspires a commitment to shared goals.


The CEO is the face and voice of CISNC. The successful candidate will be an outstanding communicator and great networker who can articulate the vision and impact of CIS in a one-on-one meeting, in front of large groups, in a tweet or in an op-ed article. The CEO will have a desk and chair in the Raleigh headquarters, but she/he will spend a significant amount of time on the road meeting with local affiliates, funders, legislative and education leaders, partners and collaborators. 


Becoming President/CEO of CISNC is an incredible opportunity for a visionary leader who is passionate about helping students succeed and be prepared for their future. He/She will need the head for making a great organization even greater and the heart for the people who work on the frontlines and behind the scenes to make CIS a success.






  • Provides visionary strategic and operational leadership, while embracing CISNC’s mission, values and direction; ensures that best practices are followed throughout the organization.
  • Makes certain that the organization’s core values are reflected in all that it does.
  • Works with the Board and staff to create a strategic plan, when required, and ensures its implementation, monitoring and evaluation. Keeps the Board and staff apprised of progress and challenges.
  • Works with Board and staff to ensure the organization has the resources required to be financially healthy and maintain adequate reserves.
  • Leads the organization’s work with North Carolina’s state government, building strong relationships with the General Assembly, the Governor’s office, and the Department of Public Instruction, as well as thought leaders who may influence or have an effect on CISNC.
  • Coordinates and leads relationships with CIS national and other state offices.
  • Sets the tone in creating a healthy, supportive and productive work environment. Maintains a climate that attracts, keeps, and motivates a diverse staff of top quality people.
  • Supervises, evaluates and mentors the senior leadership team as well as communicates with and engages all staff on a routine basis.
  • Ensures staff and volunteers have the best training the budget can afford and the support they need to excel in their positions.
  • Develops a thorough knowledge of the founding, history, major accomplishments and challenges of CIS (national, state and affiliates) and the key leaders and funders who have had a significant impact on CISNC. Stays current on research relevant to dropout prevention.



  • In collaboration with senior leadership, ensures all CISNC-run programs and affiliates are given the support and resources required to be successful. Evaluates progress toward goals and institutes changes when required.
  • Ensures that CISNC programs and affiliates support the CIS model with fidelity and that data is collected and used effectively.
  • Creates and maintains effective, collaborative and supportive relationships with affiliate leadership and superintendents in the counties served by affiliates to help build strong relationships.
  • Stays current on the needs of affiliates; keeps them apprised of issues on the state and national level.




Fundraising, Marketing/Communications

  • Works with the staff grant writer to ensure that government and foundation grants are completed in accordance with deadlines and that effective working relationships are established with key decision makers in the granting organizations.
  • Coordinates with the development team to create a diversified fundraising strategy; maintains a personal portfolio of top funders/donors and prospects.
  • Works with communications/marketing and development teams to ensure that all communications have a unified message and appearance and are being directed to the most appropriate audiences for maximum impact. Positions CISNC for maximum visibility through personal appearances and the media.


Finance and Operations

  • Has a thorough knowledge of the organization’s finances and reporting requirements, programs and operations.
  • In coordination with the CFO, develops and monitors the organization’s budget and ensures that all records and documents comply with federal, state and local regulations; evaluates the organization’s policies and procedures on a regular basis; ensures the organization has the best technology it can afford and the resources required to protect data and increase efficiencies.


Board Relations

  • Reports to and is accountable to the Board of Directors.
  • Plays an active role in the recruitment of new board members and seeks ways to maximize each member’s contributions. Keeps former board members engaged.
  • Assists the board’s leadership in creating a culture of philanthropy through personal giving, involvement in fundraising and positioning CISNC for success.
  • Staffs board committees or assigns appropriate staff; keeps the board informed of issues of importance to the organization and keeps staff informed of board actions.
  • Works with individual board members to maximize each member’s contribution to the success of the organization.



Education and Preferred Qualifications

  • Graduate degree required (Ph.D. a plus) with seven or more years of progressive experience at an executive level in a complex nonprofit or for-profit organization. Leadership experience with a statewide or national organization, CIS or an organization similar to CIS, would be a plus.
  • Passionate about the needs of children and helping to create communities that support all children to reach their potential.
  • Seasoned organizational leader and manager with a reputation for integrity and a track record of creating and nurturing effective, collaborative work environments built on trust, clear expectations and accountability.
  • Proven ability to work effectively with a nonprofit board of directors and to influence, engage and build long-term relationships with a wide range of donors and key stakeholders.
  • Exceptional planning skills with a results and action-oriented record of achievement. Able to set goals, meet deadlines and evaluate results.
  • A proven history of working effectively with legislators, government officials, education leaders and/or corporate leaders.
  • Politically savvy with the ability to be a nonpartisan advocate and collaborate with other leaders and organizations with common goals.
  • Creative and effective fundraiser with a proven history of success with grants, individual or corporate fundraising or fee-for-service activities.
  • Strong cultural competency with a history of working effectively with all people irrespective of their history, economic status, challenges, race, gender, educational level or sexual orientation; belief in the importance of diversity and equity and a history of creating diverse and inclusive organizations.
  • Excellent communication and networking skills with the ability to listen, engage, inspire, educate and move people to action as a public speaker, in personal meetings and in written form.
  • Knowledge of state and national educational policies and experience with evidence-based practices and data.
  • Energetic, creative and with a sense of humor.
  • Willingness to travel extensively in NC and out of state when necessary.  



Compensation:  Commensurate with experience and abilities and reflective of salary levels in nonprofit organizations.


To apply:  Submit one document that includes your cover letter (providing your salary requirements and how you learned about the position) and your resume and send via email to:


Mr. Blaine Morehead

Chair, Board of Directors

Communities In Schools of North Carolina


Applications will be accepted until July 16, 2017 or until the position is filled.


Communities In Schools of North Carolina is an Equal Opportunity Employer.


Writing samples, a short presentation to the Transition Committee and five references will be required from finalists. Academic, credit and criminal checks will be conducted before a final offer is made. 


The consulting firm of moss+ross ( has been retained to assist with the search.

Job Detailstop

Location Raleigh, NC, United States
Categories CEO/Superintendent/President
Organization Type Non-profit Organization
Grade Level Elementary 1-3, Elementary 4-6, Middle School/Junior High, High School
Teaching field Support Staff
Experience Years 7 yrs

Location Maptop

How to Applytop

Contact Name Mr. Blaine Morehead
How to apply Applications are no longer accepted for this job posting.
Job Code -