Chief Equity, Outreach, and Initiatives Officer



Administration · Full-time
Cleveland, OH, USA
Posted on Tuesday, May 2, 2023

About JumpStart Inc.

JumpStart is a non-profit venture economic development organization whose mission is to unlock the full potential of entrepreneurship to transform entire communities. Our vision is to collaborate with partners to generate dramatically improved and inclusive economic outcomes by supporting diverse entrepreneurs, optimizing entrepreneurial ecosystems, and accelerating innovation.

Key to JumpStart’s success is its ability to leverage the skills, experience, and creativity of its inspired team to transform entrepreneurial aspirations into actions with measurable impact. In addition, JumpStart associates take great pride in making JumpStart a highly demanding yet incredibly fun place to work.

Position Summary

The Chief Equity, Outreach, and Initiatives Officer is a critical executive leadership role within JumpStart. This leader champions equity and understands it as a social and economic impact driver. Additionally, this leader will align the importance and value of a diverse and inclusive entrepreneurial ecosystem and develop a vision and effective strategy to advance an inclusive entrepreneurial ecosystem and equitable business growth opportunities for diverse entrepreneurs across northern Ohio.

The ability to influence and be a change agent, to design strategy and deliver results, to create metrics and drive accountability, and to communicate effectively across all levels of the community is essential. Therefore, the Chief Equity, Outreach, and Initiatives Officer partners with the CEO, Chief Operating & Relationship Officer, and Chief People & Culture Officer on the development and implementation of proactive initiatives focused on diversity, equity, and inclusion in support of JumpStart’s strategic plan.

Responsible for researching and identifying potential new initiatives, partnerships, and strategic business alliances supporting JumpStart’s growth and impact. The position develops financial and operational analyses to determine the possible benefits, financial and economic impact, and degree of mission alignment and fit for potential new partnerships.

Highly visible and deeply engaged in community projects across various dimensions and stakeholders, this leader will provide direct oversight of current diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives, including FutureLAND, Verizon Learning Centers, Initiative for Inclusive Entrepreneurship, CentroVilla25, JumpStart’s Social Responsibility Program, and collaborating with partners and guiding the incubation of these and future efforts to yield demonstrable and sustainable socio-economic impact for diverse entrepreneurs and communities.

The ideal candidate is an effective change agent, aligning inspiration and strategy to drive socio-economic transformation across northern Ohio and beyond. To be successful in this position, the individual must be deeply committed to helping entrepreneurs and the community achieve its highest potential. The Chief Equity, Outreach, and Initiatives Officer must embody our values, be highly organized and relationship-driven, have strong business acumen, communicate effectively, analyze, and interpret a wide variety of information and data, discern, continuously iterate, and make equitable and sound business decisions.

Essential Job Functions

  • 50% – Provide leadership on strategic priorities to impact socio-economic outcomes (individual & community) through diversity, equity, and inclusion strategies and practices.
  • Serve as equity, inclusion, and outreach champion and liaison to external stakeholders, including diverse entrepreneurs, funders, the business community, entrepreneurial collaborators, and others.
  • Support the strategic planning process by gathering, analyzing, and interpreting a wide variety of information; apply an equity and inclusion lens; assist in senior management decision-making and planning.
  • Partners with the Chief People & Culture Officer and consults with HR and the business to design integrated solutions which support the organization’s needs.
  • In partnership with JumpStart’s CEO and other senior team members, deeply understand and engage with JumpStart’s external partners (funders, collaborators, entrepreneurs) to understand the goals, objectives, and results expected of our diversity, inclusion, and equity initiatives.
  • Support the execution of community partnerships consistent with diversity, equity and inclusion, and social responsibility objectives aligned with business strategies.
  • Support all aspects of the company and associate giving campaigns and volunteer programs to ensure success both internally with associates and externally with the community.
  • Ensure stakeholder/funder satisfaction with our diversity, inclusion, and equity efforts.
  • Develop and sustain solid relationships with organizations, stakeholders, and clients.
  • Analyze client and stakeholder feedback data to determine whether stakeholders are satisfied with organizations, programs, services, and initiatives.
  • Staff and support the Inclusion Committee of the Board of Directors
  • Accurately maintain particular records and perform all related business functions.
  • 50% Business Development – Emerging Projects, Partnerships & Initiatives
  • Manage high-performing, cross-collaborative teams consisting of FTEs and contractors
  • Lead current DE&I initiatives, including FutureLAND, Verizon Learning Centers, Initiative for Inclusive Entrepreneurship, CentroVilla25, and JumpStart’s Social Responsibility Program, and cultivate pipeline for future efforts.Provide insight into program and service development and competitive positioning.
  • Conduct market research to identify new business and initiative opportunities. Locate or propose potential business deals by contacting potential partners, discovering and exploring opportunities via business development efforts.
  • Collaborate with leadership to determine the most viable, cost-effective approach to pursue new business, partnership, and initiative opportunities.
  • Meet with potential investors to present company offerings and negotiate business deals.
  • Develop negotiating strategies by studying the integration of new ventures with organization strategies and operations; examining risks and potentials; estimating partners, needs, and goals.
  • Closes new opportunities by coordinating requirements, developing and negotiating contracts, and integrating contract requirements with business operations.
  • Ensure regular alignment and open communication between Advancement, Marketing & Communications Department to maximize brand efforts and initiatives.
  • Perform complex special projects as assigned.

Decision-Making Responsibility

This role has high-scale autonomy for decision-making and regularly consults with the CEO, Chief Operating & Relationship Officer, or other senior-level leaders. As a senior leader and member of JumpStart’s Executive team, all cross-cutting decisions are informed by JumpStart’s consensus decision-making process and require CEO approval. Routinely consults or advises the Board of Directors. Routinely makes decisions that may influence the entire organization regarding strategic alignment and prioritization of emergent opportunities, partnerships, and special projects. Has extensive responsibility for facilitating groups externally to achieve decisions and raising issues that need further consideration and decided upon by senior management and executive leadership. This role makes daily work decisions regarding the prioritization and execution of projects and other tasks.

Direct Reports

The (Position) directly supervises:

  • Director, Learning Centers, Curriculum & Education

Physical Demands/Working Conditions

  • Up to 25% Travel
  • Attend local and out-of-state meetings, conferences, workshops, and special events when required.
  • Modest physical activity is required for lifting and moving office supplies, equipment, and furniture on occasion
  • Normal professional office environment
  • Eligible for hybrid work agreement

Required Qualifications

  • Willingness to live and work in Cleveland
  • In-depth experience with structuring and leading DEI initiatives and programs

Education, Training, and or Experience

  • Bachelor’s degree in business management, marketing, entrepreneurship, or equivalent experience required
  • Experience drafting and implementing DEI strategies and initiatives
  • 10+ years’ experience in senior management, corporate sales, engagement, and project management in a mid-sized business or non-profit.
  • 3+ years of direct management responsibility
  • DE&I Training and or Certification(s)

Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, and Personal Characteristics

  • Proven leadership of team(s) with the ability to generate significant outcomes
  • Exceptional emotional intelligence
  • Comfort and skill with making persuasive presentations when speaking in front of small and large audiences
  • Significant interest and commitment to working collaboratively, whether within JumpStart or with external stakeholders
  • Firm understanding of Microsoft Office – Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. Must be proficient in a Windows environment and computerized accounting software.
  • Proficient in social media platforms (LinkedIn, Twitter, IG, Facebook)
  • Strong ability to use and analyze data to drive decision-making
  • Strong writing and interpersonal skills
  • Ability to build consensus, promote teamwork, and drive results
  • Ability to incubate and evaluate new opportunities

Preferred Qualifications

Certifications, Licenses, Registrations

  • Advanced degree

JumpStart’s Core Values and Key Cultural Behaviors

  • Accountability: Act to deliver on commitments and generate results, and if expectations aren’t clear, ask
  • Entrepreneurial: Embrace opportunity, continuous improvement, and change, and contribute to the solution as we evolve
  • Equity: Committed to corrective action regarding historically underserved and underrepresented populations through entrepreneurship and innovation
  • Energy: Address our work with focus, grit, and enthusiasm
  • Collaboration: Collaborate with others to play our most helpful role(s) and to increase the effectiveness
  • Humility: Balance self-assurance with listening to understand, having an open mind, and demonstrating patience

JumpStart’s Definitions for Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity

  • Diversity: A measure of psychological, demographic, physical, and social differences occurring among any individuals in a specific group, including but not limited to racial identity, ethnicity, nationality, religion, socio-economic status, education, marital status, language, age, gender identification, sexual orientation, culture, developmental ability, and learning styles.
  • Inclusion: Promoting and maintaining an environment in which diverse groups of individuals are welcomed, respected, supported, valued, and empowered. A domain prioritizes differences and offers respect and acceptance in all people’s words/actions/thoughts.
  • Equity: An acknowledgment and understanding that there are historically underserved and underrepresented populations and corrective action regarding these unstable conditions is needed to eliminate barriers and guarantee equality in providing fair treatment, access opportunities, and advancement of inadequate options to all groups.
  • Emphasis Statement: Historically, African Americans, Latinx people, and women have been economically disenfranchised and disconnected from innovation and entrepreneurship. For these reasons, we emphasize these populations as we work to diversify our culture and be inclusive in our daily interactions and decisions.

JumpStart’s Operating Style: JumpStart team members are expected to be:

  • Honest: We speak the truth plainly, kindly, and considerately. We will challenge you as we seek to accomplish great things. And we hope you will do the same with us.
  • Responsive: We respond rapidly to your inquiries and actively communicate so we are all on the same page.
  • Resourceful: We will be creative and efficient in helping you to access relationships, contacts, and other resources to help you succeed.
  • Insightful: We will provide the knowledge and insight about entrepreneurship and innovation you can’t quickly get from others.

This position description is intended to be a partial list of all responsibilities, duties, or skills required for the job. Therefore, it is subject to review and change at any time, with or without notice, by the needs of JumpStart. Since no position description can detail all the duties and responsibilities that may be required from time to time in the performance of a job, duties, and responsibilities that may be inherent in a position, reasonably required for its performance, or required due to the changing nature of the appointment shall also be considered part of the job holder’s responsibility.

JumpStart is an equal opportunity employer.