About the Role
Reporting to CFR’s Board of Directors, the ED/CEO is responsible
for all aspects of CFR’s programs, staff, stability and growth.
Specifically, the ED/CEO will:
- Ensure the continuation of high quality programming for
CFR’s clients and oversee managing the revenue that
supports it by working closely with and partnering with all program
Directors on quality assurance, training and consistent
supervision, support and review of staff, new programs and
alignment of all programs with CFR’s mission.
- Lead and support CFR’s internal DEIB work by
working closely with CFR’s first Chief Operating Officer (COO) and
CFR’s internal management DEIB work as well as external
consultants; ensure that CFR’s DEIB commitment and work is
reflected throughout the organization, externally, and in pertinent
- Act as the chief liaison to the Board by
meeting regularly and working closely with CFR’s Board Chair,
co-leading quarterly full Board meetings with the Chair, and
participating in finance, development and special committees of the
- Oversee CFR’s finances, with a focus on
preserving adequate cash, revenue and net assets and closely
managing CFR’s operating expenses, by partnering with CFR’s Chief
Financial and Deputy Financial Officers (CFO and Deputy CFO) and
the Board Finance Committee; this also includes work with the
Deputy CFO on managing a variety of government contracts
(proposals, reporting and budgeting) and building upon data to
reflect CFR’s work.
- Act as CFR’s chief fund-raiser, including:
responding to RFP’s and negotiating with City and State officials
who control CFR’s multi-year government contracts along with the
CFO and Deputy CFO; securing a variety of additional government
support by working closely with CFR’s retained lobbyist and
designated senior and supervisory staff; overseeing CFR’s
foundation revenue, proposals and reporting, by partnering with the
Director of Development; securing private donations, primarily by
supporting and assisting the Board Development Committee and
Director of Development and working with them on CFR’s annual
- Act as CFR’s primary external spokesperson
with the public, elected officials, supporters, court leadership,
and leadership of those agencies that impact CFR’s clients, (i.e.
ACS), with a focus on the challenges CFR clients face related to
poverty and racial harm and elevating the voice and experience of
CFR’s clients; this includes public speaking, various written
communications, social and conventional media, testimony, work on
city-wide, state and national task forces, including frequent
coalition work with agencies that are similarly situated to CFR;
this work also involves support for and work with CFR’s internal
policy team and Development and Communications staff.
- Ensure and improve staff recruitment and
retention, by working closely with and supporting CFR’s
COO, including in Human Resource, on DEIB routines and programming,
and facilities maintenance.
- Maintain and build on CFR’s reputation as a nationally
recognized family and youth defense expert by
participating in national policy coalitions, continuing robust
external training of practitioners at the city, state and national
level, and overseeing a variety of communications and offerings;
this includes work with a variety of senior, supervisory and
director level staff.
- Lead the organization through periods of growth and
transition such as the continued transition to a hybrid
work setting, the development of new programs, and/or a greater
presence in the community that CFR serves; this involves work with
staff at all levels and close coordination with CFR’s COO,
Directors and CFO and Deputy CFO.
- Strategic planning for the continued health and success
of CFR with Board, CFR’s COO, CFO, Deputy CFO, Directors
and pertinent senior and supervisory staff. This includes support
of the COO in work with CFR’s staff union and could include leading
the next negotiation of the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA)
in 2023. It includes anticipating RFP’s and insuring CFR is
well-positioned to respond, developing concept papers and outreach
to prospective funders as well as engaging in sometimes difficult
decision-making processes on cost-savings, and fiscal and
Attributes of the Successful
The next ED/CEO must be passionately committed to CFR’s mission
and possess significant, meaningful experience in indigent legal
services; experience with an interdisciplinary, holistic service
model is preferred. The person should have a deep desire to lead
CFR, with all the challenges and exhilaration that accompany the
role. A genuine and demonstrated commitment to CFR’s clients and
their communities and to social and racial justice is a must. In
addition, the successful candidate will be:
- An attorney, in good standing, and licensed to practice law in
New York State.
- Energetic, a creative problem-solver, and self-aware.
- An analytic and an effective critical thinker.
- An effective and persuasive communicator, for a variety of
audiences and in a variety of settings, that are both internal and
external; strong oral and written communication skills are required
in many aspects of the role.
- Able to steward a culture committed to equity and belonging and
able to connect across levels and lines of difference, including
those related to race, culture, position in the agency and
different lived experiences.
- An effective team builder, with a track record of motivating,
partnering and supporting teams to achieve high quality services
for clients; able to build and achieve consensus where possible (as
CFR is structured presently, the ED/CEO will manage several
director and executive teams, including program directors, and
engage in project-specific and routine collective work of the COO,
CFO and Deputy CFO).
- Adept at nurturing the professional development of those with
whom the person will work most closely.
- Doggedly attentive to detail; well organized and able to manage
multiple deadlines and projects, simultaneously.
- Able to focus and move toward both short- and long-term goals
at the same time.
- Enthusiastic about being a leader in multiple circles impacting
CFR’s clients and passionate about amplifying and elevating the
experience of CFR’s clients with multiple stakeholders.
- Adept at strategic relationship building, internally and
externally, with the ongoing objective of improving CFR and its
reputation as well as securing financial and political support for
- Committed to continued learning and bringing joy to the
* In recognition of CFR’s growth and the increasing
complexity of the organization, the incoming ED/CEO will have the
opportunity to create a second executive level position to share in
many of the activities of the ED/CEO role and continue to attend to
and grow other agency programs and routines (i.e., government
contract management, expansion of external training, and new
About Center for Family
Founded in 2002, CFR is a vibrant, and entrepreneurial
place—staffed with passionate advocates who are devoted to their
clients and to one another. CFR provides direct legal
representation and social work support and advocacy to parents
facing investigations and prosecutions by New York City’s
Administration for Children’s Services (“ACS”), and to young people
who are charged in criminal and delinquency matters. CFR serves
2400 clients a year, who are primarily Black and Brown, indigent
city residents, in Queens and Manhattan. CFR’s mission is to serve
families at risk of separation through the foster care or youth
incarceration systems. CFR works to prevent or mitigate family
separation to avoid the long-term and potentially devastating
consequences of the foster care and youth incarceration systems.
Beginning with three people and a budget of $250,000, CFR now has
more than 125 staff and an operating budget of $15 million. CFR
pioneered a model that gave every client an attorney and a
social worker, and the support of ‘parent advocates,’ who are
professionals with direct experience of family separation and
reunification. CFR was the first legal services agency in the
country to add system-impacted parents to its legal teams.
Beginning in 2015, and to better serve clients, CFR began its
Home for Good program, to provide team representation to
clients in the collateral areas of housing and public benefits
(civil defense), as well as criminal and immigration matters. In
2019, CFR began its Youth Defense practice and its Early Defense
and Statewide Central Register of Child Abuse and Maltreatment
(“SCR”) practice; the latter provides representation to parents
during an ACS investigation and in proceedings to amend their SCR
records to enhance their employment opportunities. A recognized
national expert, CFR regularly trains around the country, more than
500 practitioners annually, and actively participates in system and
policy reform at the city, state and national levels. CFR has a
robust focus on staff well-being, supervision and
resiliency-building. Beginning in 2019, CFR re-committed its
efforts to be an anti-racist organization and its internal
Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging (DEIB) efforts now
include monthly cultural recognition celebrations, a weekly open
Black Lives Matter discussion group, affinity groups for BIPOC and
staff who identify as White and four management-staff
sub-committees that focus on internal DEIB programming and
CFR’s growth and work has been led for the last six-plus years
by its Co-Founder and Executive Director who will step down after
20 years with the organization, in Fall of 2022. She will remain
available as necessary, on a consultant basis, to guide and support
the transition for the new ED/CEO.
Interested candidates should submit a cover letter and a C.V.
including all experience that you believe is relevant to the
position to BoardChair@cfrny.org.
CFR strives to create an inclusive and antiracist environment
for all of its staff. Candidates from all backgrounds are
encouraged to apply; CFR is an EOE.