Executive Director

  • Job posted by Maryland Soccer Foundation

Job Type

Full Time


Details: Salary will be competitive and commensurate with experience.




United States


The Maryland Soccer Foundation seeks a dynamic Executive Director to advance the next chapter for the premier soccer facility in the MidAtlantic region. The Executive Director (ED) will integrate outstanding relationship building and problem solving skills, promote state-of-the-art fields, emphasize youth health, and innovate environmentally friendly maintenance techniques.    

The Organization

In 1998, the dramatic need to improve the quality of soccer fields and support the growing number of youth playing soccer at all levels launched the first Montgomery County, MD public-private partnership: the Maryland Soccer Foundation (Foundation). This joint venture between the Foundation and the Maryland National-Capital Park and Planning Commission (MNCPPC) built a $19M soccer complex in Germantown, Maryland. 

The Maryland Soccer Foundation sets itself apart from all others with its ideal location and breathtaking landscape and architecture. Today, the organization continues to innovate and impact the lives of over 650,000 youth and adults through the following facilities and recreational space:

  • The Championship Stadium, with seating for 4,000, sits in a natural bowl with a paved lit plaza surrounding it. The Stadium, which serves as home to the Washington Spirit of the National Women’s Soccer League, has also hosted US Olympic qualifying matches, MLS Open cup matches, and the ACC Men’s Soccer Championships.
  • 23 additional full sized premier soccer fields, including 3 lighted synthetic turf fields.
  • Discovery Sports Center, a 66,000 square foot, indoor facility with eight basketball and/or volleyball courts, party and conference rooms, locker rooms, and a café. 
  • SAM, the second largest soccer club in Montgomery County for recreational through elite youth soccer with 4,000 members.
  • Innovation to deliver the best fields, including research and development on grasses, drainage systems, and environmentally sustainable field development strategies.

The innovation that launched the Maryland Soccer Foundation 20 years ago carries on today as we continue to serve as the model for public-private partnerships. The MD SoccerPlex welcomes more than 650,000 visitors from all over the country every year, generating nearly $20M in tourism-related revenue to the region’s economy. Regional soccer clubs and leagues play more than 5,000 matches at the complex annually, and teams from all over the country participate in some of the most competitive youth soccer and lacrosse tournaments. The Foundation also researches and drives innovation for premier field development including grass seed, drainage systems, growth blankets, and environmentally sustainable pest controls.  

A 501(c)(3) organization, the Maryland Soccer Foundation is governed by an 11-member board of directors and has an annual operating budget of $6M. This self-sustaining enterprise is led by the Executive Director with a full-time staff of 16, and over 50 part-time and seasonal employees. See more about the organization at  http://www.mdsoccerplex.org/.


The Position

Reporting to the Board of Directors, the Executive Director provides strategic direction, oversees day-to-day operations, and stewards effective relationships throughout the community. The Board of Directors anticipates a start date for this position to be late Fall 2018, which aligns with the timeframe for the current Executive Director’s departure. Our founding executive, Trish Heffelfinger, will be retiring in December of 2018. 

Leadership Outlook and Near-Term Priorities

Near-term priorities for the new Executive Director include to:

  • Build strong relationships with the board, staff, and across the community including, but not limited to, youth soccer clubs, county officials, the planning board and parks staff, and national youth soccer organizations. 
  • Ensure that the organization sustains high staff morale, advances a vibrant and inspiring culture, and has the ability to attract, optimize, and retain top talent.
  • Align with the organization’s mission of fueling people’s passion for soccer by providing an exceptional, enjoyable, sports experience.
  • Ensure that annual goals across business lines are met and provide sound fiscal management of the organization.
  • Partner with the board, staff, and stakeholders to build the Foundation’s leadership in youth health & safety, environmentally sustainable and organic field development, and innovative programming that generates a world class experience for the entire family.

Key Responsibilities

The Executive Director’s primary responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

  • Guiding and facilitating the development, execution, and evaluation of annual business plans that advance the strategic priorities of the organization. 
  • Serving as the face of the organization and representing the Foundation and the SoccerPlex in the community, including relationships with the planning and parks staff, county and city officials, other professional and youth soccer organizations, area businesses, media, etc.
  • Leading and managing the staff; fostering strong staff morale; advancing a culture that values a high level of customer service; and attracting, empowering, and retaining a high performing team with an eye toward professional development and growth.
  • Partnering with the Board of Directors to ensure that the Foundation carries out its mission, plans for the maintenance and overall advancement of the complex’s fields and facilities, and sustains the board’s fiduciary responsibilities.
  • Ensuring the continued efficiency, effectiveness, safety, and compliance of the organization’s operations and programs.
  • Overseeing the management of the day-to-day operations, including effective fiscal management and revenue diversification.

Experience and Attributes

Ideal candidates for this position will share our commitment to, and passion for, sports, and soccer in particular. Candidates will bring a variety of experiences and attributes, including:

  • Transformational leadership with the ability to bring innovative, creative, and outside-the-box thinking that supports sustainable advancement in an organization or department.  
  • Familiarity with youth soccer or other youth field sports, and insights into how the landscape of youth soccer is changing. 
  • Senior management experience in an organization with a business model that includes facilities management and a focus on generating a high-value customer experience. 
  • Exceptional relationship building skills across diverse audiences including government relations, media/public relations, nonprofit and private partnerships, etc.
  • Strong and articulate verbal and written communicator. 
  • Ability to successfully navigate unexpected opportunities and challenges in support of the organization’s mission.
  • Effective decision-making, capably integrating input from appropriate sources, facilitating robust discussions, and finalizing/implementing a decision using the organization’s mission as the fundamental guide.
  • Strong business acumen with demonstrated experience managing multiple lines of business and revenue sources, successfully analyzing and forecasting financials, and diagnosing business issues to support economic growth and mission sustainability.  
  • Diagnostic and proactive visionary leadership.
  • Collaborative, empowering team leader.
  • Entrepreneurial, open-minded.
  • Past success supporting and working with a Board of Directors is a plus.
  • Bachelor’s degree required.

Professional Level


Minimum Education Required

4-year degree

How To Apply

To apply, e-mail resume, cover letter and salary requirements to: MDSoccerPlex@raffa.com (e-mail applications are required). For other inquiries contact Adrienne O’Rourke at aorourke@raffa.com.

Resume reviews begin immediately. The Transition Committee hopes to advance interviews and other selection activities in the fall. 

About Raffa PC

Founded in 1984, Raffa is a woman-owned consulting and professional services firm whose mission is to be a catalyst for positive, systemic change. Dedicated to strengthening and supporting the nonprofit sector, the Firm and its affiliates now employ nearly 300 full-time employees who deliver an array of business consulting, search and accounting services to clients. Seventeen partners direct the Firm. Raffa’s client-centric, customized approach helps each client meet its potential and ensures each client’s success is sustained and maintained.

Learn more about Raffa at www.raffa.com.