United Way is an equal opportunity employer, offering competitive salaries and benefits and a friendly, diverse work environment.

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When there are open positions at United Way, job descriptions and application instructions will be posted below.

Position Title:  President

Reports to:  Board of Directors

Staff:  Twenty five total with six direct reports

Organization Overview

With roots dating back to 1917, the United Way of Central New York (“UWCNY”) has been committed to helping those in need and fulfilling its mission of improving lives by mobilizing the caring power of our community.  Through the generous support of nearly 20,000 donors and with a total 2016 budget of $9 million (campaign and grant revenue), the UWCNY currently supports over 30 agencies and 90 individual programs that serve Syracuse and Onondaga County.  In addition to campaign activities, the UWCNY has been a leader in problem solving and collaboration amongst the network of service providers in our region and is a leader, often as fiscal agent, on numerous initiatives designed to address changing, and relevant, community needs.  The UWCNY is governed by a board of 40 community leaders, with a succession system for board leadership, and a network of volunteers supporting the various sub-committees that oversee our primary functional areas.

Expectations for success:

The President will be highly visible in the community and active in the development of meaningful partnerships with business leaders and their organizations, public sector entities and other not-for-profit organizations. The successful candidate will demonstrate the ability to build a culture that recruits, develops and retains outstanding staff and an active volunteer Board of Directors. The President will ensure the organization remains financially strong so that our cause-driven United Way can deliver on our brand promise.

Key competencies for success as the President include:

Leadership, high energy with passion, collaboration, communication skills, persuasiveness and integrity. The ideal leader will have vision, build consensus, hold others accountable and develop staff. S/he will use networking, persuasion and closing skills to encourage others to support the United Way’s cause.

Key Responsibilities/Essential Functions: The major responsibilities of this position include, but are not limited to:

Resource Development:

Along with the Director of Resource & Leadership Development, the President is charged with driving key results in fundraising; identifying, cultivating, and soliciting prospective donors and key leaders of prospective new corporate partners; maintaining existing donor relationships; leveraging personal and professional contacts and relationships into fundraising opportunities; and promoting a culture of fundraising in the organization, both at the staff and board level.

Strategic Leadership:

The President serves as the principle resource to the Board of Directors and its key committees and provides strong direction toward fulfillment of the organization’s vision and policy. S/he partners with members of the board and senior staff leadership in designing organizational goals and in developing strategies.  S/he also models and communicates the vision throughout the community through networking and presence in key organizations and relationships with regional and state leaders.

Staff Leadership:

The President is accountable for building and leading a high-performing team, ensuring all are aligned to achieve organizational results. S/he maintains accountability for the operational and fiscal integrity of the organization within policies set by the board.  The President assesses organizational capacity to implement strategies and identify gaps in systems and staffing; directly supervises senior leadership and establishes their individual goals; ensures that the UWCNY’s goals of inclusiveness and diversity among staff and volunteers are met.

Community Impact:

Working with the Director of Community Impact, the President is responsible for UWCNY’s overall impact on the community, with particular emphasis on maintaining and increasing its capacity to drive positive outcomes. The President works closely with the board to design and adapt the strategy to achieve these outcomes, including raising funds to support it. S/he will establish and build relationships with relevant stakeholders, including corporate and individual donors, recipient agencies, area foundations, government leaders and regional, state and national leaders of the United Way.

Financial Stewardship:

The President works with the Vice President, Finance & Operations to manage organizational expenditures, monitor budget compliance, and mitigate financial risks.  S/he will be accountable for P&L and sign off on all financial statements and filings for the organization.

Current Initiatives and Opportunities:

The President will have the opportunity to lead and advance several exciting and highly visible initiatives, including:

  • Work Train – dedicated to addressing the challenges of training the unemployed in hiring areas directly needed by local companies, benefitting job seekers and businesses alike
  • 2-1-1 – a telephone and internet resource that streamlines the search process for finding providers, both public and private, of various social services
  • CA$H Coalition – working to ensure low income working families receive all the tax credits they deserve along with financial education to maximize asset building
  • org – connecting volunteers with volunteer opportunities throughout the region
  • Gifts in Kind – collection and distribution center of donated and discounted items for participating agencies
  • Greater Syracuse HOPE – A coalition of community leaders and residents identifying the critical challenges our community must face regarding the issue of poverty.
  • Literacy Coalition of Onondaga County – A collective approach to raising literacy levels across the life span in Onondaga County.
  • Early Childhood Alliance – Community stakeholders who are creating a community where all children are healthy, thriving and ready to succeed in school.

Experience/Position Requirements:

  • Demonstration of high levels of innovation, vision and
  • Experience in building revenue and increasing philanthropic
  • The ability to effectively communicate both internally and externally UWCNY’s vision and mission to multiple stakeholders using multiple methods (verbal, written, presentations, ) as the face of the organization.
  • Experience working in multiple sectors, including non-profits, public and corporate environments, and interaction with volunteers and diverse
  • Experience in leading and managing organizations of comparable size and mission, as well as capacity to build productive teams and community
  • Ability to build enduring relationships that gain the confidence and respect of
  • Demonstrated track record of promoting diversity and building collaboration with the community at-large.

Education Background:

Required:  Bachelor’s degree or equivalent high level executive experience.

Desired:  Advanced degree, and/or additional coursework and/or licensure or certification.

Salary: Commensurate with experience.

Benefits: A comprehensive benefit package is included.

Work Environment

Office setting during normal business hours; some evening and weekend work is required.  Some travel will be required.

Interested applicants should send a cover letter and current resume to: presidentsearch@unitedway-cny.org  no later than March 17th.   

Additional inquiries may be directed to Virginia Biesiada, Chair, Search Committee, at gbiesiada@pioneercos.com.


Please note: We welcome resumes from qualified candidates applying for specific open positions, but we do not retain unsolicited resumes submitted for general consideration. We ask candidates to apply separately for each position for which they would like to be considered.