Executive Director

Job Type

Full Time


Details: DOE



Start Date


Application Deadline



8414 Greenwood Ave.North
United States


The Greater Seattle Bureau of Fearless Ideas (BFI)

The Bureau of Fearless Ideas launched its programs nearly 13 years ago, in October 2005. BFI believes that the power of words, well-written and well-spoken, can open doors to important opportunities. Our writing, publishing, and after-school tutoring programs prepare students, ages 6 to 18, to succeed in our diverse world by developing strong writing skills, championing different communication styles, and helping kids share their stories.

All programs are free and open to families from any socio-economic background (http://www.fearlessideas.org).

The Job

We are seeking an Executive Director who can embrace the qualities that have made BFI a valued and successful organization focused on inclusivity, creativity, and community. This person is able to inspire creativity in children, volunteers, and staff; encourage kids to let their individuality shine; and teach them that even their zaniest ideas are worth writing down and sharing with others.

We are seeking a visionary Executive Director with well-honed nonprofit leadership and management skills and experience helping nonprofits thrive and grow. Our Executive Director must also have a talent for attracting donors, a passion for investing in the potential of each student, and a gift for running an organization with grace and humor (preferably equal parts wry and wacky).

Job Responsibilities


  • Collaborate with the board and staff to promote, distinguish, and carry out the mission of BFI.
  • Respect and nurture the expertise, creativity and commitment of BFI's wonderful staff; oversee the hiring, development, and productivity of new staff to guarantee their success at BFI.
  • Guide and sustain the excellence of BFI programs, events, and activities with their unique and quirky character in tact.
  • Make sure our programs meet the requirements of funding sources and achieve the intended outcomes for the kids involved.
  • Motivate parents, partners, and potential funding sources to support and further our mission.
  • Develop collaborative and mutually beneficial alliances with youth organizations, nonprofits, arts organizations, families, schools, foundations, corporations, local officials, and community partners.

Fiscal Management

  • Develop, implement, and monitor BFI’s annual budget in collaboration with financial staff and the BFI Board of Directors.
  • Make sure that incoming donations, grants, foundation awards, and other funding meet the revenue goals of the annual budget, including adequate cash flow.
  • Guide the development of annual financial and development plans to support each year's programmatic goals.
  • Take the lead role in ongoing fundraising for the organization, including cultivating, engaging, and stewarding donors and other funding sources at all levels of giving.
  • Oversee the planning and execution of outreach and fundraising events.


  • Establish and ensure the necessary administrative and operational systems are in place to support organizational goals.
  • Oversee BFI administrative functions, including finances, human resources, facilities, technology, communications, store operations, and program evaluation.
  • Support staff responsible for the training and management of volunteers to sustain a vibrant volunteer pool, while ensuring that each volunteer is a good match for the program or project he or she supports.
  • Make sure that evaluation and record-keeping processes accurately capture and report all BFI activities, frequency of participation in BFI youth programs, and notable trends, achievements, and problems or issues.
  • Ensure that BFI technology and information systems are maintained, monitored, and updated as needed, and that funding is available for the technology required for efficient operations.

Outreach, Brand Development, and Marketing

  • Work with staff to develop and implement an annual marketing communications plan to increase the visibility of our work and keep supporters well-informed.
  • Oversee all public communications — including emails and letters, social media postings, the web site, newsletters, brochures, and public relations materials — to preserve the unconventional spirit, voice, and messages of BFI. (As a foundation director once said, “Your newsletter is the only one I read start to finish every month.”)

Board Relations

  • Report to the board, attend each meeting, and keep the board thoroughly informed of BFI's progress and any obstacles to success.
  • Personally engage each board member in BFI's work to build a lasting commitment; enlist his or her support whenever needed to help achieve immediate and long-term goals.
  • Collaborate with staff on routine presentations to the board that highlight what, how, and where programs are occurring, as well as their desired outcomes, problem areas, and notable achievements.
  • Work with the board to develop a strategic plan, monitor its implementation, and measure progress on an annual basis.
  • Help the board identify, recruit, and develop active board members who can support the work of BFI in multiple ways.
  • Assign and oversee staff liaisons to board committees so committees have the information and support necessary to fulfill their objectives.

Experience and Qualifications

  • Personality: Charismatic, open-minded, articulate, child-friendly, and in possession of an excellent sense of humor.
  • Education: Bachelor's degree in education, arts, or other relevant specialty from an accredited college or university. Preferred: Masters degree in education, nonprofit management, or other relevant specialty.
  • Nonprofit: Four to six years' experience managing nonprofit youth programs, staff, and operations, with notable experience in education and/or the arts.
  • Leadership: Ability to guide, mentor, delegate, listen, problem-solve, and make timely and effective decisions.
  • Financial: Experience creating and managing budgets, overseeing financial and fundraising staff, and working with staff and board to sustain financial health.
  • Fundraising: Experience as a nonprofit development director and/or demonstrated ability to secure funding from corporations, foundations, and other sources, while inspiring individual donors to give.
  • Network: Access to a strong and diverse network of connections throughout Seattle and the Northwest.
  • Collaboration: Experience working with many different cultures and constituents, including donors, community organizations, parents, teachers, volunteers, and children.
  • Communications and Public Speaking: Outstanding written, oral, and interpersonal communication skills; a public speaking style that can clearly convey the spirit and purpose of BFI while holding the audience's attention.


Salary will be commensurate with the applicant’s experience and competitive with nonprofit executive director salaries in the Northwest. The job also includes a stipend for health care, flexible work hours, and a generous vacation policy.

Starting Date

November 2018

How to Apply

Please email your resume, along with a one-page cover letter and three references, to edsearch (at) fearlessideas (dot) org. Your email’s subject line should read “Executive Director.” We are accepting applications through August 31, 2018. Please no phone calls.


The Greater Seattle Bureau of Fearless Ideas is an equal opportunity employer committed to building a diverse applicant pool for this position that includes persons of color; women; lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered persons; and disabled persons.

Level of Language Proficiency


Professional Level


Minimum Education Required

4-year degree

How To Apply


Please email your resume, along with a one-page cover letter and three references, to edsearch (at) fearlessideas (dot) org. Your email’s subject line should read “Executive Director.” We are accepting applications through August 31, 2018. Please no phone calls.