Director of Board Operations

Requisition Number: 
Job Status: 
Reports to: 
Chief Development Officer with dotted line to President & CEO
Up to three direct reports
Manage the strategic and operational needs of the Garden’s Board of Directors and up to two auxiliary boards, ensuring effective volunteer leadership, engagement, and alignment with the organization’s strategic imperatives. This position is the main point of contact for board members and is responsible for ensuring and supporting a strong governance program.
Duties and Responsibilities: 
  • Manage the strategic and operational needs of the Board of Directors
    • Support requirements to deliver effective board and committee meetings
    • Manage board relations budget
    • Support on-boarding process for new board members
    • Provide strategic support to President & CEO in staffing the Executive Committee and the Nominating and Governance Committee; work in cooperation with Executive Assistant responsible for these committees to ensure preparation, delivery, and follow-up
    • Ensure that administrative liaisons to all board committees operate to agreed requirements for meeting logistics, minute-taking, archiving of materials, committee memberships, annual calendar requirements, etc.
    • Ensure effective meetings for Board of Directors
  • Manage special projects for the Board and the President & CEO (e.g. Facing Change Board diversity project, by-laws review, workshop development, strategic updates, special Garden events)
  • Provide strategic oversight of the Garden’s relationship with its auxiliary boards (The Woman’s Board and the Guild), and manage the team that provides support to these entities, ensuring alignment with strategic objectives and annual operating plans
    • Regularly review effectiveness of this operation and revise as necessary
  • Support delivery of major fundraising events, with annual target of $600,000. Includes annual plan of engagement activities, budget, and implementation of major event. Manage and mentor direct reports offering positive guidance, growth, enthusiasm, and a collaborative, team-oriented attitude.
  • Maintain the confidentiality required in dealing with donors, donor records, and donor relations

Key Garden competencies/behaviors desired

  • Communicates in a manner that gains the trust and support of others at all levels.
  • Works effectively with others despite differences of opinion and style; builds alliances.
  • Has a tolerance for opposing points of view.
  • Strives for collaboration. Works cooperatively, as a positive contributor to the team.
  • Demonstrates a positive attitude and shows kindness in all workplace interactions
  • Makes decisions appropriate for level of responsibility.
  • Can effectively adapt to change; can shift gears comfortably; is flexible, and embraces change with a “can-do” attitude.
  • Is self-aware; knows personal strengths and weaknesses; seeks feedback and is open to negative feedback as an opportunity for improvement.
  • Is cool under pressure; can be counted on to hold things together during tough times; can handle stress; is not knocked off balance by the unexpected; is a settling influence during a crisis.
  • Recognizes problems, constructively identifies and articulates solutions.
  • Picks up garbage when it is seen regardless of position.
  • Follows safety guidelines to ensure a safe working environment and consistently demonstrates safe work behaviors.
  • Is welcoming of new hires.
  • Bachelor’s degree and a minimum of seven years’ experience in nonprofit organizations is required
  • Demonstrated experience in managing and supporting nonprofit boards, leading event committees, and managing volunteers  
  • Strong organizational skills, project coordination experience, proven problem-solving, decision making, interpersonal skills, and data analytics
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • A demonstrated understanding of fundraising principles and donor stewardship
  • Familiarity with donor database software, and a willingness to develop expertise on Raiser’s Edge
  • Proficient in Microsoft suite and digital meeting platforms
  • Demonstrated high level of attention to detail and the ability to respond calmly to shifting priorities
  • Demonstrated experience in working with a sophisticated donor base, executive leadership
  • Demonstrated commitment and support of equity, diversity, inclusion and access goals
  • Ability to attend evening and weekend donor events
Physical Demands: 
Frequent, standing, walking, bending, listening, speaking, lifting, pushing. Must be able to lift and carry 20 pounds. Licensed driver insurable by the Society.
Why Apply?: 

Come work in a setting that is like no other as you support our mission: We cultivate the power of plants to sustain and enrich life. Take the first step toward being one of the employees who make the Garden one of the treasures of the Forest Preserves of Cook County. Apply today. Please note that applicants who do not meet the required qualifications will not be considered.

Disclaimer: The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by people assigned to this classification. They are not intended to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities and qualifications required of personnel so classified.

We are an Equal Opportunity Employer and do not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, color, sex, age, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, status as a veteran, or basis of disability or any other federal, state, or local protected class.

In accordance with Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972, the Chicago Botanic Garden does not discriminate on the basis of sex in its programs or activities, including in employment or admissions. Please call (847) 835-8264 to contact our Title IX coordinator should you have questions or concerns.