Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Executive Director - Women, Food & Agriculture Network (WFAN)

See the original job posting here.


Are you passionate about advocating for women engaged in healthy food and farming? Do you have the skills to build capacity of a growing national non-profit organization? Women, Food and Agriculture Network (WFAN), a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, is seeking a new executive director to take our growing network to the next level and expand this network to engage more women involved in all aspects of healthy food and farming.


Women, Food and Agriculture Network (WFAN) was founded in 1997 by a group of visionary women to address the absence of female voices in agriculture. It has grown into a premiere national network of more than 4,000 women across the U.S., providing education, leadership development and networking opportunities.
The mission of WFAN is to link and empower women to build food systems and communities that are healthy, just, sustainable, and that promote environmental integrity. Our dedicated staff and volunteer board of directors are mostly based in Iowa and a national advisory council is being created in 2014 to provide a broader scope of perspectives from various network constituents across the U.S.
We fulfill our mission by maintaining a community of women engaged in healthy food and farming nationwide through in-person meetings and conferences, our website (, our newsletter, listserv, online forum, social media presence, and through three primary programs:
Women Caring for the Land (SM) supports and educates women farmland owners who want to improve soil and water conservation on the land they own, through web resources and women-only learning circles meetings. (
Harvesting Our Potential (SM) provides aspiring and beginning women farmers with networking, business planning education, and on- and off-farm mentorship opportunities with experienced women farmers.
Plate to Politics (SM) helps women ramp up their leadership in healthy food and farming from the farmhouse to the White House, through online and in-person leadership development training. (


Reporting to the board of directors, the executive director will be WFAN’s public face and speak for the organization on a regular basis. She will be in charge of all day-to-day operations, and have overall strategic and operational responsibility for WFAN’s staff, programs, expansion, and execution of its vision and mission. She will develop deep knowledge of WFAN’s programs, operations, and organizational plans. The executive director is also WFAN’s chief fundraiser, responsible for raising the organization’s budget and expanding the organization’s development and individual donor campaigns.
All candidates should have proven non-profit leadership, financial management, and relationship management experience. The successful candidate will demonstrate that she has the skills to move our growing organization from being funded primarily through grants to a more diverse funding portfolio, including a robust individual donor program. In addition, she must build upon our current growth and momentum to add to the size and effectiveness of WFAN by educating and advocating for women working in healthy food and sustainable agriculture across the nation.


  • Experience and/or education to equal 5 years of experience with a similar non-profit organization
  • Proven track record of successful grant writing and fundraising
  • Experience with financial management including grant oversight, project and organizational budgeting, and personnel management in a non-profit setting
  • Experience planning conferences and events
  • Ability to motivate, guide and supervise a decentralized staff
  • Capacity to manage a staff and interact with a board that will continue to be based in Iowa
  • Progressive viewpoint on, and familiarity with, current issues in healthy food and sustainable agriculture, specifically those relevant to women
  • Demonstrated strength in verbal and written communications skills
  • Willingness and capacity to travel within Iowa and nationally for conferences and other meetings
Strongly preferred:
  • Proven track record of building and maintaining partnerships and alliances with local, regional and national organizations engaged in similar work
  • Experience building grassroots networks and managing advocacy campaigns
  • Mastery of a wide range of communications tools including email marketing (such as iContact), online form builder (such as Wufoo), WordPress, Google Groups, Facebook and Twitter
  • Residency in or near Iowa, as most of the governing board and staff are located in Iowa, and our organization is an important member of the sustainable agriculture community in this primarily commodity agriculture-driven state
  • Strong familiarity with Microsoft Office Suite, desktop publishing (Pages or InDesign), and online donor management software such as DonorSnap


Full time position strongly preferred, with paid vacation, holidays, and additional benefits including retirement fund options. Salary negotiable.


Please submit a cover letter addressing how you meet the above qualifications, resume, 4 professional references, and 2 writing samples (excerpts are fine, 3 pages max.) to no later than 5pm central time on March 24, 2014. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis, so early application is strongly recommended. Please put “Executive Director Application” in the subject line. Questions regarding the position announcement can be directed to Steph Larsen ( or Dana Foster (
NOTE: This position will remain open until after the March 24 application deadline.
WFAN is an equal opportunity employer.