Associate Executive Director (AED) - DJDS
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Associate Executive Director (AED)




DJDS is a non profit architecture and real estate development firm that innovates in and around the built environment to address the root causes of mass incarceration with a focus on restorative justice and restorative economics. To achieve this mission the team is comprised of architects, designers, real estate developers, operations/events production  and community organizers within which the production designs and administrative lead is an integrated part of a multidisciplinary team.  This newly created position requires a dynamic, experienced, and innovative leader.  The AED will help  lead the organization to greater impact and effectiveness. As a trusted thought partner  to the Executive Director (ED), and in collaboration with the Senior Leadership Team,  the AED will provide strategic leadership to the organization’s staff and will also engage  key stakeholders including the board.


RESPONSIBILITIES (Executive level)


  • The AED will be responsible for providing leadership in the following areas: 
    • Mission, Vision, and Strategy 
      • Lead DJDS in implementation of its strategic vision and goals, building alignment  across all teams, initiatives, and staff; 
      • Understand, articulate, and with the Senior Leadership Team, operationalize/implement the ED’s ideas and perspectives in  pursuit of DJDS’s strategic objectives and operational and programmatic excellence;
      • Provide leadership in the development and implementation of strategic and  operational planning, long-term goals, and organizational development;
      • Ensure alignment and prioritization of goals and activities in pursuit of DJDS’s  mission and strategic objectives; monitor, evaluate, and report on progress; work  with the Senior Leadership Team to assess the need for course corrections or  adjustments to plans; 
      • With Senior Leadership Team, work to enhance an active strategic thinking  culture, regularly assessing emerging trends and changes in the landscape and  developing adaptive, nimble strategies to address emerging issues;
      • Create strategic plans to develop and promote systems and strategies that support organizational health and sustainable growth;
    • Financial Control and Risk Management 
      • In collaboration with others, bring in Architectural data collected from staff.
      • Control project profitability and liability exposure.  Monitor in collaboration with others
      • Collaborate with Studio Director, Project Managers and CFO firm profitability
      • Collaborate with Studio Director, Project Managers and Operations in writing project contracts.
      • Collaborate with Studio Director in monitoring project receivables and assist in the collection of receivables.
    • Communications, Collaboration, and Organizational Learning 
      • With leaders of DJDS’s Communications, Operations, and Advocacy teams, build  stronger systems aligned with our values; 
      • Foster and sustain collaboration, communication, and knowledge sharing across  departments; 
      • Maintain continuous lines of communication with and between departments and  teams, keeping the ED informed of all critical issues; and 
      • Mentor staff with a facilitative, supportive, and collaborative approach, while  promoting a culture of high quality performance and continuous improvement.
      • Conduct program evaluations and develop social change metrics to measure  progress related to DJDS’s strategic goals and overall efficacy and long term  strategic impact; 
      • Lead or participate in various organizational projects at the direction of the  Executive Director. 
    • Management and Board Relations 
      • Apply skills and experience in senior level non-profit management to facilitate regular Senior Leadership Team meetings, ensuring its collective work  is strategic, effective, timely, and progressing towards goals; 
      • Work with Board leadership on setting of Board meeting agendas;
      • Prepare and maintain organizational, Senior Leadership Team, and Board  reports as requested; 
      • Work with ED to advise and inform the Board about programmatic and  organizational matters of importance between Board meetings; 
      • Serve on board committees and attend board meetings as requested by the ED;
      • Assume the ED’s management responsibilities during periods of ED absence;  and 
      • Perform other duties and responsibilities as assigned by the ED. 
    • Fundraising and External Relations 
      • Work with development staff on grant proposals/reports and attend meetings with  donors as requested; 
      • Represent DJDS at conferences, events, and other public fora, and with donors,  partners, and others as relevant; 
      • In conjunction with the ED, Legal Support, Communications team, and others,  help develop and leverage strategic partnerships to advance DJDS’s mission and  work.  


(Expected duties of an Executive level position)

  • Consult on key decisions for the organization, guide directors if needed on decision making for their respective areas of responsibility.
  • Review and approve expenses outside of the director level authorized limits.
  • Collaborate with the DJDS Leadership team on organization-wide matters.
  • Develop and maintain internal and external relationships on behalf of  the organization.
  • Act as a fiduciary and officer of the organization, ensuring knowledge of, and compliance with legal requirements as well as acting within the best interest of the organization and its values.
  • Establishes company directives, vision, and goals in collaboration with the Board of Directors and Executive Team. 
  • Collaborate with the respective Board committee.




  • 20+ years of experience in the architecture/real estate development industry. 
  • Prior experience with managing an architecture and/or real estate development firm with a preference for having led organizations with a tax exempt status. 
  • Ability to maintain confidentiality and a high level of discretion.
  • Exceptional skills in cross-disciplinary collaborative team work
  • Facilitation skills and conflict management
  • Commitment to DJDS’ mission and goals
  • Cultural competency for a diverse range of cultures, communities, and lived experiences
  • High level of emotional intelligence and ability to apply it
  • Commitment to learning and understanding robust community-led processes and practices
  • Adaptability to emergent project processes and problem-solving
  • Acute understanding of systemic racism and social inequities and its impacts on a range of individuals from systems impacted individuals and their communities of care to elected officials.
  • Thoughtful, empathetic negotiation skills 
  • Strong command of firm practice and risk management 
  • Strong command of project delivery methodology and standard AIA contracting




  • Healthcare benefits with options for medical insurance under the company group plan. Employer contributes 100% of employee healthcare offered under the group healthcare offerings.
  • Compensation commensurate with experience.




Please send a resume and cover letter using the instructions listed below.

Email: [email protected]

Subject Line: AED

Attachment: One multipage PDF not to exceed 3MB

The PDF should include:

  • Cover letter (in your cover letter please include (please limit to 400 words max):
    • Your definition of Restorative Justice 
    • Your definition of Trauma-Informed Practice
    • An example where you have observed or participated in Non Violent Communication
    • Your understanding of Emotional Intelligence and it’s relation to personal accountability
  • Resume


Please, no phone calls or recruiters. All applicants must be eligible to work in the U.S.