/ Features / Search Process Begins for a New Executive Director

Search Process Begins for a New Executive Director

The Campus District on September 19, 2017 - 11:03 am in Features

Profile of the Organization

Campus District Inc. (CDI), is a non-profit community development corporation serving the education, medical, business, arts and residential district in eastern downtown Cleveland. The Campus District is home to Cleveland State University, Cuyahoga Community College, St. Vincent Charity Medical Center, the Superior Arts District and numerous small to mid-sized businesses. It has a diverse residential population comprised of students, low-income families and seniors in public housing, artists in live-work studios, professionals in market rate apartments and nearly 600 people residing in homeless shelters. The Campus District board and staff hold diversity and inclusion as a core value and believe in the principles of equity, self-determination and social justice. We see relationships and connections as essential building blocks for healthy communities.

Campus District, Inc. has an annual operating budget of approximately $245,000 of which 47% comes from board member dues, 24% from additional anchor institution contributions and 29% from other contributions and grants. The organization has three full-time staff people in addition to the executive director – a Director of Programming and Community Engagement, an Economic and Communications Coordinator through Americorps VISTA (ending June 2018) and a Business Development Specialist through a partnership with Downtown Cleveland Alliance. Campus District, Inc. engages over 200 stakeholders,  property and business owners,  and volunteers annually in community building activities which include arts programming, safety organizing, public art, community planning and creative placemaking strategies.  For the past four years the Campus District has worked closely with Third District Police and Downtown Cleveland Alliance (DCA) on safety strategies for the northern part of the district where increased real estate development is taking place. This includes the formation of a Business Improvement District which will begin operation in 2018. Campus District, Inc. is in the process of forming a strategic alliance with DCA to build capacity and implement its strategic plan.

Job Posting

Campus District, Inc. is seeking an Executive Director who will lead a dynamic anchor institution neighborhood by building and sustaining an organization with the CDI Board that positively develops, manages, and promotes the Campus District.  The Executive Director should possess cultural competency, demonstrated fundraising capability, entrepreneurial management skills, and be a strong communicator who will thrive in a dynamic and diverse urban environment. The ideal Executive Director will possess significant non-profit management or private sector business experience and/or experience in public service or other place management experience.  Candidates may have experience working in other non-profit neighborhood development corporations or commensurate areas of community service.  Ideally, they will have had experience with Board and community relations, have the ability to work with a Board and engage stakeholders in a culturally sensitive manner to implement the Campus District strategic plan and contribute positively to the growth and vibrancy of the District with an eye towards inclusion and equity.

The director is responsible for managing services in the District, which include planning and physical development, community relations, and marketing/advocacy.  In conjunction with the Board, the executive director also oversees fundraising, budgeting, staffing, and contracting for the organization.  With district stakeholders and members of the Board, the director will supervise overall place- making and promotion for the District in concert with the individual plans of its non-profit institutions, for-profit businesses, and the needs of residents, employees, students, and visitors.  With the Campus District staff, the director will implement the strategic initiatives in furtherance of the organizational mission and the 2017-­‐2019 Strategic Plan.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

Organizational Management

  • Oversee and coordinate the activities of staff and contracted services
  • Direct the financial assets of the organization in compliance with Board directives and applicable grantor requirements
  • Lead private and public resource development efforts for the organization

Board & Member Coordination

  • Work with member organizations to ensure that the board, executive committee and other committees of the board have the appropriate representation in accordance with the particular mission and strategies
  • Staff all meetings, special committees and ad hoc task forces of the member institutions with assistance from staff and community partners.
  • Build a robust and diverse general membership of the Campus District so that good ideas from diverse community stakeholders have the opportunity to be shared within the organization and that the Campus District gains additional financial support to carry out its activities.
  • Work with the Board and general members ongoingly to review and update strategic planning efforts periodically to assure a sustainable business model and authentic community input into

Planning and Physical Development

  • Lead and execute Campus District strategic plan 2017-2019.
  • Encourage growth and development of the District by identifying and promoting real estate development opportunities, overseeing ongoing planning and zoning changes, and advocating for needed public infrastructure improvements.
  • Support member institutions’ and other real estate development in the District with common area services needed to create safe, clean and vibrant neighborhoods and develop activities in support of the economic vitality of the community
  • Participate when relevant in the Downtown District Design Review Committee

Community Relations

  • Serve as the organizational liaison to District residents, businesses, and member institutions as well as all public agencies and public officials
  • Develop and support community programs that maintain affordable housing for low income families and individuals and preserve affordable live work space for existing and aspiring artists.
  • Facilitate capital budget and program related financial requests from local, state, and federal sources as well as other philanthropic sources such as community, corporate, and family foundations as well as individual donors
  • Oversee all aspects of public engagement

Marketing and Communications

  • Develop organizational and District brand strategies, using outside consultants as needed and partnering with adjacent city neighborhoods and community development organizations (e.g. SPARX City Hop and Downtown Digs with Downtown Cleveland Alliance, Night Market with St. Clair Superior Development Corp and Asiatown community, Euclid Avenue bridge enhancements with Midtown Cleveland)
  • Oversee all means of communication and media engagement which includes regular e-news distribution, social media, and print media.


  • Strong leadership and team building skills and an ability to build rapport and relationships in community, business and institutional settings
  • The ability to engage in advocacy on behalf of a diverse community and build collaborations and partnerships for effective solutions to community needs
  • Strong planning and organizational skills and the ability to think strategically in the design and management of projects
  • Possess an entrepreneurial spirit and creative and solution-oriented approach to issues and a strong passion for creating social change
  • The capacity to learn, understand, and navigate the unique needs of the anchor institutions and the diverse set of Campus District stakeholders
  • The dedication to cultivate and grow funding relationships
  • The capacity to work with government, foundations and local organizations

Education and Experience

  • Candidates for Executive Director of Campus District Inc shall possess an undergraduate college degree.
  • Ideal candidates will also hold a Masters Degree with a relevant professional specialization in Business, Urban Planning, Marketing and Communications, Non-Profit Management or Law.
  • Candidates shall possess seven years of relevant work experience in these areas of specialization of which at least five have been in a supervisory capacity.
  • Strong background in fundraising, organizational or place-based management, service coordination, marketing and communication and/or urban planning and development is advantageous as these skills correlate to the daily requirements of the job of the Executive Director.
  • Salary is competitive and commensurate with experience.



Campus District, Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer and values diversity on its staff.

For best consideration please submit resume, cover letter and salary requirements via email by October 15, 2017 to:   

Shannon Brown

Office of the Campus President

Cuyahoga Community College


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