AMPT: Advancing Nonprofits is a new initiative that will offer capacity building support, professional development, trainings, resources and connectivity to nonprofits in under-resourced communities, initially on the West Side of Chicago, and later to other communities. AMPT grew out of a research project during which hundreds of stakeholders were surveyed and interviewed about the capacity-building needs of community organizations doing the most critical work with the least resources. Research and experience confirm that explicit and consistent investment in capacity building and organizational development is critical to ensuring that organizations realize their full potential.
Chicago Cares proudly serves as the fiscal sponsor for AMPT. Established in 1991, Chicago Cares mobilizes volunteers to build a stronger, more unified Chicago. In 2017, Chicago Cares launched an exciting new Community Investment Strategy to use impact volunteerism as a catalyst for community change efforts on Chicago’s south, west, and northwest sides where the infusion of resources and capacity could be transformational.
Given the daunting challenges facing Chicago today and a renewed emphasis in the non-profit and corporate sectors on impact, isolated acts of generosity are no longer sufficient as we seek to move the needle on large, intractable social problems like violence and poverty. Impact volunteerism responds to this complexity by connecting volunteer service to the civic engagement, community development, and collective impact work already happening on the ground in communities of greatest need.
The work of AMPT: Advancing Nonprofits will revolve around the following core priorities:
- Focus on Equity: Prioritize investments in under-resourced communities through a variety of programs and services.
- Navigation, Programming and Supportive Grants: Help organizations get and stay on a developmental path over time, moving from one-time offers to long-term capacity-building support including assessments, grants for customized capacity building projects, connection to culturally competent consultants, referrals to sources of expertise, etc.
- Support Nonprofit Connectivity and a Strong Ecosystem: Promote capacity-building efforts that build connections between and among organizations, their leaders and their peers, ultimately creating a physical hub on the West side where leaders can come together to facilitate innovative approaches to solving common problems, hold meetings and events, network with other nonprofits, etc.
AMPT is looking for an Executive Director who understands nonprofit operating realities and life cycles, ideally has experience with nonprofit start-up, is a self-starter, possesses an entrepreneurial drive and who is committed to capacity building to support organizations led by people of color and those organizations who serve people of color on Chicago’s West Side.
The Executive Director, in consultation with AMPT’s Governing Board and Executive Committee, will oversee all aspects of the program’s high-level planning (e.g. launch and start-up and mapping out its strategic direction and workplan development). The project’s core funders will provide the first three years of operating funds to support the Executive Director to hire staff (a Program Manager and part-time administrative assistant), design and implement programming, work collaboratively with a Board of Directors and create a grants pool from which funds can be tapped for capacity-building projects and support for designated organizations.
As the leader of a new initiative, key priorities for AMPT’s Executive Director will focus on:
- Inspiring and cultivating stakeholders
- Further developing the identity and visibility of AMPT
- Building strategic relationships necessary to ensure the success of a new organization
- Steward relationships with founding donors while anticipating growth of fundraising program in the future
- Creating innovative programming
- Strengthening internal operations and management
- Developing effective governance and leadership
- Ensuring successful program delivery
- Creating a culture of ongoing evaluation and learning
How To Apply
Chicago Cares has retained Morten Group, LLC to assist with this search.
Applicants should email a cover letter and resume in PDF format to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “Chicago Cares – AMPT Executive Director Search”. Cover letters will be evaluated as a writing sample and should include the applicant’s salary requirements. Application materials must be directed to the email address above. No phone calls, please. For best consideration, applications should be received by Friday, March 6, 2020. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.
Chicago Cares provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, age, genetic information, disability, or veteran status. In addition to federal law requirements, Chicago Cares complies with applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment in every location in which it has facilities. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation and training. Applicants from historically underrepresented communities, including people of color, are strongly encouraged to apply.