Chief Executive Officer, The Santa Fe Animal Shelter and Humane Society - Military veterans preferred

Noetic Search


  full-time   part-time   employee   contract

Santa Fe
New Mexico
United States

MISSIONThe mission of the Santa Fe Animal Shelter is to support animals, save lives and spread compassion.BACKGROUNDThe Santa Fe Animal Shelter (the Shelter), a nonprofit, 501 (c)3, is the largest open admission, no-kill animal shelter and care facility in northern New Mexico.On average, the Shelter serves more than 5,000 lost, stray, abandoned or injured animals and offers services to more than 20,000 companion animals and their guardians each year. The Shelter contracts with the City and County of Santa Fe to care for homeless and stray animals, but also serves every animal brought through the front doors from any other source. They work to reunite people with their lost animal companions, and re-home all animals it serves. The Thaw Animal Hospital is open to the public providing high quality veterinary services at competitive prices and the low-cost spay/neuter clinic, situated off site, also provides micro-chipping, vaccinations, and other wellness services to the community. The Shelter serves animals in need in Santa Fe and they also transport in pets from other parts of New Mexico and other shelters in New Mexico when those shelters cannot care for them.The Shelter is situated on a beautiful 100-acre campus with four distinct buildings. The Lapides Adoption Center provides an airy and comfortable area for potential adopters to meet healthy, adoptable animals in private rooms or in the outside fenced play yards. Every detail of the shelter is designed for the comfort and health of the animals. The second building, the Robin Sommers Animal Receiving & Care Center, allows the Shelter more room to house stray and abandoned animals during their stay. High-tech ventilation systems allow the Shelter to better control the spread of contagious diseases and to safely treat the animals in their care more effectively. A third building, the Clare Eddy Thaw Hospital, is a full service state-of-the-art veterinary clinic available to anyone looking for quality care for their pets and medical care for injured homeless animals. The Roddey Rehab Center is a one-of-a-kind facility built with animals with special behavioral needs in mind. This life-saving Center provides a safe, quiet environment for an exceptional behavior team to work one-on-one with animals with special behavioral needs. The Shelter also has 25 acres of dog parks, which are made available for community use without charge, creating a place not just to adopt an animal or find a missing one, but one to visit over and over again. The Shelter is designed for the community to use as a resource and a place to find joy with the animals.In addition to receiving and caring for thousands of animals each year, the Shelter provides a wide variety of services and resources.The Adoption Program: Approximately 2,400 animals are adopted into new homes annually at the Shelter. All animals are spayed or neutered before leaving and receive the required age-appropriate vaccines.The Behavior and Training Department: Behavior specialists assess every dog and cat shortly after admission. Any in need of behavior training receive special attention from specialists. Animals with special behavioral needs are moved to the Roddey Rehab Center away from other animals to allow specialists to focus on their needs.Humane Education: Pre-COVID, the Shelter brought in-person humane education programs to students in Santa Fe’s private and public schools, as well as adult clubs and organizations. During COVID, the volunteer-based humane education program created a series of educational videos to be used in the schools.The Pet Outreach Program: This program qualifies dogs to be therapy animals. Dogs who qualify for this program visit health care facilities, senior citizen centers, and schools.The operating budget for the Shelter in 2020 was approximately $7.1M. Approximately 70% percent of the operating revenue was derived from earned income generated primarily from the Thaw Animal Clinic and the two highly successful resale stores, The Cat and The Cat South. The remaining portion of the annual budget is raised through grants, contracts, investment income and private donations. Fundraising activities are focused on a range of efforts including contributions from major individual donors, bequests, and planned gifts as well as broad based and effective story telling campaigns that are disseminated through direct mail and on traditional and non-traditional media platforms.The Santa Fe Animal Shelter is governed by a 9-member Board of Directors, each of whom brings a deep commitment to the animals and people of our community. The staff of the Shelter is exceptional and brings years of collective experience in animal welfare and related fields.About Santa FeSanta Fe has a long-standing reputation as a great place to live. It offers a diverse economy, moderate climate, stimulating cultural environment and a high quality of life. With a population of 84,000 the city has hundreds of years of history and small-town charm combined with the sophistication of a world-class destination. Residents of Santa Fe enjoy the qualities of a healthy economy, high quality healthcare, schools, an abundance of retail shopping, a phenomenal food scene and numerous cultural and entertainment events.Santa Fe holds a powerful appeal for those who love arts and cultural activities, and the area holds equal advantages for those who love the outdoors, offering anything from beautifully groomed golf courses to a variety of other sports, including skiing and other snow-sports, hiking, cycling, trail-running, white water rafting, and fly-fishing.THE OPPORTUNITYWith a 95% live release rate, the Shelter is recognized as a progressive animal welfare organization that combines the tenets of both open admission and no kill. The exceptional behavior and training team and public clinic services also position the Shelter as a leader in the animal welfare field across the country. With the leadership of Jennifer Steketee, DVM, the Shelter has become a stronger, fiscally sustainable organization. The new Chief Executive Officer (“CEO”) will be able to take the Shelter to new levels by working with the Board on their new strategic plan with goals and actions items that will continue and increase the organization’s successes.Over the past five years, there has been an unrelenting focus on building visibility for the Shelter as well as closing the financial gap between the costs to run the Shelter and the earned and philanthropic support required to build a healthy, growing organization. There has been thoughtful diligence put into cutting expenses while maintaining excellent outcomes for the shelter animals and the community at large. Going forward, the focus will be on growing revenue. Progress in this direction has been made as evidenced by the recently established endowment that already has a corpus of $1.2M. To grow the potential support for the Shelter, fundraising outreach efforts have been legally expanded to reach states outside of New Mexico. Going forward, there will continue to be a strong focus on growing the base of philanthropic support from all sources, individuals, corporations, and foundations. Strengthening major and planned giving programs, refining the messaging around the “Shelter Different,” and clearly articulating the unique aspects of the Shelter are ongoing needs.On the earned revenue side of the house, the Thaw Animal Hospital has consistently seen profits grow through a reputation of excellent veterinary care at more affordable prices than private veterinary clinics, combined with strong internal management of resources. The low cost spay/neuter clinic is an essential service to the community and is currently booked three months out. Both clinics are working at capacity. To grow revenues will require recruiting additional vet techs and veterinarians. There are currently nine veterinarians (two of the nine will be new additions to the existing team). While recruiting for veterinary staff is a challenge nationwide, the Shelter has been able to attract talented DVMs and vet techs. Overall, recruiting and retaining staff, particularly hourly staff is increasingly a challenge. Competition for talent has increased significantly with the opening of big box stores that are able to pay a higher hourly rate than the Shelter. The Shelter has increased pay, but more increases will be needed to reduce turnover and attract the best talent.Success for the new CEO will be building new revenue streams and strengthening existing lines of business. Historically, the two retail stores, The Cat and The Cat South, have been extremely profitable. In 2020, the revenue from the resale stores decreased significantly due to COVID restrictions but the difference was made up largely through the PPP Loan Forgiveness program. Rebuilding the stores revenue to pre-Covid numbers will take time. Changes in consumer purchasing practices have not significantly impacted the shops as many of the customers are purchasing items for their own resale purposes.Through contracts with the City and County of Santa Fe, the Shelter cares for all the animals that are brought in by the animal control teams. These teams are housed at the Shelter, but they are not shelter employees which can be confusing to the public. Continuing to build awareness for the work of the Shelter, as separate and distinct from animal control is ongoing. The role of the Shelter in advocacy and legislation is an area of exploration.The new CEO has the opportunity to become one of the leaders in the Santa Fe corporate, social and nonprofit communities. There is a lively, energetic population living in Santa Fe, both as full time and part time residents. There is a sophistication that is evidenced by the many art galleries, the world-renowned opera and chamber music companies and shops and restaurants. The new CEO will become a part of the fabric of this community, and will build new relationships with current donors, prospective donors and other colleagues working in the city and other areas outside of Santa Fe.THE POSITIONReporting to the Board of Directors, the CEO is responsible for setting the vision and direction as well as general oversight of the Shelter, which includes administration of all programs. The CEO will assist the Board in continued implementation of the strategic plan.The CEO is responsible for the operations of the organization, managing and developing a $7.1 million budget, approximately $6.2 million in investments including an endowment that is currently valued at about $1.2M. This includes, working in conjunction with the Director of Finance, development and oversight of the Shelter budget and business plans and ensuring sound fiscal management and capital allocation. Applying financial insight by understanding both the Shelter’s financial imperatives and mission driven objectives is needed. This individual is responsible for the overall management and operation of the Shelter in compliance with Board adopted policies and with all applicable regulations and laws.The new CEO will be an important liaison to the major donors in the community. It will be his/her job to lead the effort in raising funds to ensure the ongoing financial sustainability of the Shelter. As a key spokesperson, with strong communications and relationship-building skills, the CEO will be the face of the organization with volunteers, community members, veterinary community, animal welfare advocates, funders, the media, governmental entities, and other key stakeholders to promote animal welfare and the mission of the Shelter. This person will continue the tradition of finding partners across the public, non-profit and private sectors to maximize resources and enhance community well-being.There are approximately 100 employees and 400 active volunteers. The CEO directly manages nine direct reports. The CEO is responsible for developing an organizational culture that empowers growth, appreciates staff and volunteers, treats people fairly and applies best practice in business leadership and management skills. Leading by example, ensuring that staff understand the vision and direction of the Shelter, and providing professional development opportunities is expected.Based on Board-approved strategic plans and goals, the CEO will develop and implement new programmatic activities and capitalize on opportunities for new service areas. The CEO will have to be willing to take calculated risks, foster an atmosphere of continuing quality improvement and growth. This person will ensure that the Shelter is represented locally, regionally, and nationally at coalitions, membership organizations and other humane field associations.CORE COMPETENCIESVisionary Leadership with a capacity to translate vision into effective action and an ability to see opportunities for strategic initiatives and new arenas for program developmentStrategic Management to enhance and lead a productive and sustainable organizationExternal Relations to have deep knowledge of the community served by the Shelter and represent the Shelter to the community, funders, and mediaDevelopment coordinate, cultivate, solicit, and steward plans for donors; advance and manage a strategic annual and multi-year fundraising plan. Personal Excellence acts with integrity. Exhibits courage and composure when facing challenging situations. Understands own strengths and limitations. Is focused on self development. Is authentic, approachable, open and honest.THE PROFILEWe seek a highly experienced leader and manager with demonstrated vision and passion for the humane and ethical treatment of animals. A successful track record of strong, innovative, and inclusive leadership that continues to facilitate open communication is needed.Demonstrated accomplishments in fundraising, including developing new relationships, successful cultivation, solicitation and closing of gifts is essential. Financial management of a multi-million-dollar budget is expected. Experience in a senior leadership role where he/she has either reported directly to or worked closely with a Board of Directors is needed. The ideal candidate will bring strong and successful leadership of an animal welfare/control agency or other animal welfare nonprofit. The person we seek should demonstrate a balance between creative thinking and management acumen as well as the ability to assess and maintain policies and procedures to sustain a growing organization. The candidate should excel in planning, forecasting and determining courses of action.Exceptional verbal and written communication skills, with a successful background in external relations, including experience speaking with the media in a variety of situations is expected. The successful candidate will be a credible and passionate spokesperson who will respect the multiple perspectives and groups that demonstrate an active interest in animal welfare. A strong leader who exhibits exceptional listening skills, ensuring camaraderie and staff participation is needed. Trustworthiness is of the utmost importance as are the traits of humility, honesty, integrity and empathy. Personnel management skills that include an ability to keep calm under stress, provide feedback, build morale, delegate, “roll up one’s sleeves,” and make decisions are essential.An understanding of business principles applied to a nonprofit enterprise, including a background of good budget management, is necessary. The candidate should be motivated by the best interests of the organization and be an exemplary manager of financial, capital and human resources. Fluency in information technology is helpful.An undergraduate degree from a four-year college or university is required; a graduate degree is preferred. Evidence of a passionate commitment to the proper care of all animals is strongly recommended. Professional education in such areas as business management, marketing, non-profit or association management, fundraising and administration is also desired. CAWA certification is a plus.Applications and nominations are being received by Noetic Search. 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