CEO Search

Howard Center's logo, simplified to one color.

About the Organization

Started in 1865 as a program for the widows and orphans of the civil war, today Howard Center is a cornerstone in the community, offering an array of mental health, substance use, and developmental services with 1,600 staff members serving in over 50 different programs in 60 locations throughout Chittenden County and Vermont. With a mission focused on helping individuals, families and communities thrive, we offer accessible, compassionate, and lifesaving support and services. Our dedicated team of professionals continually strive to foster a healthy and inclusive community, embodying the core values that define Howard Center’s enduring legacy. The people we serve, and our staff are at the heart of everything we do.

About the Opportunity

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) at Howard Center is a pivotal role, meticulously developed for a seasoned, collaborative leader eager to propel the mission of Howard Center further into the community. The CEO, under the guidance of the Board of Trustees, is the cohesive anchor for the operations, functions, and programs of the agency, aimed at the consistent achievement of the agency’s mission, vision and values. This role encompasses a robust partnership with the Board to carve out a strategic direction, including short-and long-term objectives while formulating pertinent policies. The CEO is expected to exhibit exemplary leadership, fostering a spirit of collaboration among staff, agency stakeholders, donors, and community partners. The essence of this role lies in selecting, managing, and evaluating executive and key senior leadership team members, thus providing an overarching direction for agency operations and programs. Establishing fiscally responsible short-and long-term goals aligning with the mission, vision, and values of the agency is a key aspect of this role with a budget of $134.5M.

A wholehearted commitment to the principles of diversity, equity, and belonging is essential, along with engaging the community in setting agency direction, priorities, and service needs identification. The CEO will also be instrumental in developing effective relationships with the legislature, state agencies, local community leaders, and other relevant local and statewide providers to promote the agency, its myriad of services, and a statewide community-based system of care. The successful candidate will navigate through challenges, capitalize on opportunities, and foster innovation to maintain financial viability, working collaboratively with the Board of Trustees on regular programmatic and financial reporting, and ensuring the agency meets requisite accreditation standards while maintaining certification and licensure.

About the Ideal Candidate

The ideal candidate for the CEO position at Howard Center will reflect a deep understanding and have extensive experience across the human services landscape. The successful candidate will have an advanced degree in related human services field or completion of behavioral health or business management credentials, supplemented by over 10 years of progressively responsible leadership positions within community mental health, substance use disorder treatment and/or developmental disability services, including five years of supervisory experience in an executive leadership role.  The successful candidate will demonstrate a proven ability to develop strong relationships with donors and funders and the ability to fundraise on behalf of the Agency.

The successful candidate will have experience working with unions, showcasing the candidate’s capacity to navigate through complex labor relations landscapes. Engaging with state and local government entities, understanding legislation, and advocating for policies that advance the mission of Howard Center is a significant aspect of this role. The successful candidate should possess media experience and be capable of representing Howard Center across various media platforms, projecting a positive agency image, while effectively articulating the agency’s mission, vision, values and impact to the public.

A robust commitment to racial justice is paramount, with the successful candidate expected to drive initiatives that promote diversity, equity, and inclusion both within the organization and in the community at large. The ability to authentically engage with a wide range of key stakeholders and community partners and to foster a culture of inclusivity is crucial. Enthusiasm, flexibility, and empathy are essential traits, enabling the successful candidate to invoke trust and confidence among key stakeholders of the agency.

The ideal candidate will have the ability to translate strategic visions into actionable goals, ensuring sound fiscal and organizational management that aligns with the agency’s overarching mission and values. The capability to adapt to evolving community needs, innovate solutions, and lead the agency in a manner that resonates with the core values of Howard Center is what will set apart the ideal candidate in fulfilling the dynamic responsibilities of the CEO role.

How to Apply

Inquiries regarding the CEO position should be directed to Jami Armstrong, Senior Consultant at Nonprofit HR at jarmstrong@nonprofithr.com. Please submit your CV/resume and cover letter outlining your interest and qualifications specific to the role.

Howard Center is an equal-opportunity employer fully committed to creating an environment and team that represents a variety of backgrounds, perspectives, styles, and experiences. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, disability, age, sexual orientation, military status, veteran status, genetic information, gender identity, or any other characteristic protected by applicable federal, state, or local law. We encourage ALL qualified candidates to apply.