Executive Director

Disability & Philanthropy Forum
Virginia, United States
$180,000.00 - $220,000.00
Closing date
Mar 4, 2024

Founded in 2019 by the Ford Foundation and Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Disability & Philanthropy Forum is a philanthropic-mobilizing organization created in response to calls to action by the disability community to address gaps in disability representation in philanthropy and funding. Now fiscally sponsored by the Proteus Fund, the Forum has evolved to fill a void in the philanthropic sector. The Forum mobilizes philanthropy to dismantle ableism in the field by increasing funding for disability inclusion, rights, and justice; amplifying the leadership of disabled people in the philanthropic sector; and educating philanthropic organizations on building a culture of inclusion. 


The Disability & Philanthropy Forum fulfills its mission by utilizing programmatic strategies of Learning, Philanthropic Advocacy, and Peer Networks. The mission is achieved through the Forum’s three main strategies:


  1. Building a learning ladder of programs and resources that help funders increase disability inclusion and deepen their commitment to disability rights and justice;
  2. Advocating for disability rights and justice within philanthropy while building systems of accountability to monitor progress; and
  3. Sustaining peer networks at all levels in philanthropy, from program and support staff to CEOs.


With the Forum’s support, philanthropic leaders and staff are beginning to incorporate disability inclusion into their operations and grantmaking and are transforming philanthropy through their collective commitment. 


To learn more, please visit the Disability & Philanthropy Forum’s website



The Disability & Philanthropy Forum seeks its next Executive Director to carry forward the organization’s mission and strategic plan and to usher the organization through a period of transformation. The Forum’s next Executive Director will spearhead the organization’s outreach to achieve greater levels of influence, impact, and recognition in the philanthropic sector. The Executive Director will play a critical role in elevating the Forum’s brand as a leader and resource for disability inclusion in the philanthropic sector and growing the organization into a financially sustainable philanthropy-serving organization with diverse sources of income within five years.


The Executive Director will provide sound fiscal leadership, staff leadership and supervision, program and operational oversight, and external relations. They will lead the charge to advance disability inclusion across the philanthropy sector, build paid organizational membership, and grow the network of Disability Inclusion Pledge signatories. They will be responsible for working with the Governance and Advisory Committees to establish and realize strategic goals, foster relationships with Forum members and external partners, and implement diversified fundraising strategies.


The Executive Director must be a hands-on and collaborative leader who is comfortable actualizing a highly visible role in the disability and philanthropic communities. The Executive Director will serve as the Forum’s preeminent ambassador who can combine their profound knowledge of the philanthropic sector with their experience in/knowledge of the disability community to bring the philanthropic sector on a collective journey toward disability inclusion, rights and ultimately, justice. The Executive Director must be an extremely effective communicator who can represent the Forum across various audiences and venues.


The search for the Disability & Philanthropy Forum’s next Executive Director is being conducted by LaCire. Application instructions can be found in the To Apply section of this document.



Outreach and Expansion

  • Grow and maintain the Forum’s membership and peer networks by building meaningful and authentic relationships with foundation and philanthropy-serving organization (PSO) leaders, and professionals in philanthropic and grantmaking institutions. Maintain a responsive posture toward the interests and needs of current and future members.
  • Nurture, expand, and serve as the primary liaison to the Forum’s key stakeholder groups, including the Forum’s founding peer network, the Presidents’ Council (which is currently composed of 17 foundation CEOs), and others. Collaborate with the Presidents’ Council Co-chairs and the Disability Inclusion Fund at Borealis Philanthropy to encourage and support Council members as donors, and to oversee planning for two annual meetings (one in-person and one virtual) focused on education and accountability.
  • Cultivate the Forum’s work to uplift and support the efforts of Presidents’ Council members and Disability Inclusion Pledge signatories in advancing disability inclusion, rights, and justice.
  • Works towards aligning Forum members and Peer Networks around key disability inclusion issues where the philanthropic community can have an impact. These issues include educational barriers, healthcare disparities, employment issues, disability and diversity, legal and policy gaps, and more.
  • Advocate for philanthropy to engage in learning and collective action around issues identified by the disability community.
  • Deftly maintain, cultivate, and leverage relationships with key decision-makers across multiple stakeholder groups.
  • Expertly bring together diverse networks and communities, both within and outside the Forum’s network, and facilitate cross-pollination between various groups and identities.
  • Grow and diversify the organization’s funding base through new and innovative partnerships and build robust, trusting relationships with key funders.
  • Oversee the development of new organizational membership products and programming, ensuring they align with the Forum’s vision and core values, and ensure the continued offering of exceptional programs and services to Forum members.


Financial and Organizational Management

  • Manage relationship with fiscal sponsor, Proteus Fund.
  • Prepare the organization’s annual budget. Monitor monthly spending and review monthly financials with the Forum’s fiscal sponsor, Proteus Fund.
  • Prepare, develop, edit, and submit grant proposals, reports, and other donor communications (including grant budgets) alongside the organization’s grant writing consultant. Work with staff to ensure timely grant spend down and to adjust plans accordingly, and work with Proteus Fund, consultants, and staff to ensure appropriate financial and narrative reporting.
  • Develop and manage long-term revenue streams and business models to support programs, activities, operations, and new initiatives.
  • Oversee all business and HR operations in coordination with the Proteus Fund. Develop, implement, and refine operational policies, procedures, practices, and guidelines as needed to customize them for the Forum.
  • Serve as primary liaison to Governance and Advisory Committee and Presidents’ Council and prepare for their meetings, including developing agendas and overseeing meeting logistics, materials, presentations, and communications.


Advocacy and External Leadership

  • Serve as the chief ambassador for the Forum and a notable “philanthropic mobilizer” who can rouse foundations and philanthropic leaders around the organization’s mission and purpose.
  • Serve as a key thought leader in the philanthropic and disability communities who stays up to date on relevant policy and advocacy issues surrounding disability rights, inclusion, and justice. This leader will communicate and write publicly to make effective connections between disability inclusion, social change, and philanthropic priorities.
  • Lead efforts to dismantle barriers to disability inclusion in philanthropy and beyond. Champion disability inclusion in all aspects of philanthropic operations and resource allocation.
  • Analyze and develop strategic approaches to engage and partner with other philanthropy-serving organizations to lift up and amplify broader and intersecting priorities.
  • Elevate the Disability & Philanthropy Forum into a recognized and respected institution for disability advocacy in the philanthropic sector.


Organizational and Staff Development

  • Guide Forum staff in the development and implementation of work plans, ensuring their alignment with the organization’s existing strategic plan, priorities, and core values.
  • Partner with Forum Committee members and staff to articulate and implement the vision for the Forum’s future, aligning with and building on the five-year strategic plan created in 2023.
  • Inspire, lead, and manage a diverse and talented team of professionals in a virtual environment. Foster a positive culture of connectivity, inclusion, shared values, enthusiasm for the work, and high performance.
  • Model self-care to avoid burnout and prioritize overall wellbeing and support Forum staff in doing the same.
  • Mentor Forum staff and cultivate opportunities for professional development.
  • Provide regular and thorough updates to the Governance and Advisory Committees as well as the Presidents’ Council on areas of success and needs for support.



Strong candidates will bring excellent management and operational skills, superb communications and relationship building skills, experience with philanthropy, experience with disability inclusion and advocacy, and a demonstrated ability to build a dynamic team and organization during a pivotal growth period. 

The ideal candidate should possess:

  • A profound understanding of, and demonstrated experience in, the disability community and a demonstrated commitment to advancing disability inclusion, rights, and justice.
  • Visionary leadership in the philanthropic, nonprofit, and/or public service sectors. Experience with membership associations and/or private foundations is a plus.
  • Exceptional communications, writing, and public speaking skills. Comfortable representing an organization to external audiences and amplifying an organization’s voice.
  • Strong fundraising skills, including a proven track record of successfully driving revenue diversification.
  • Strong internal management and operational skills, including financial and business acumen. Demonstrated experience in work planning and budgeting.
  • Experience managing a dynamic and diverse team of people with disabilities and ensuring an accessible and safe workplace for all staff.
  • Experience in long-term planning with an organization and operationalizing organizational visions.
  • A proven track record of successfully collaborating with multiple teams and diverse stakeholders to achieve shared objectives.

Preferred qualifications include:

  • Experience in disability advocacy and/or policy and a deep appreciation for the intersectionality of systems that impact disabled people.
  • Experience hosting convenings/events to collaborate with stakeholders in the philanthropic field.
  • A strong grasp of communications and social media, particularly as these tools are used to understand and engage with conversations going on in the disability community.
  • Experience leading/working with a virtual team.
  • Adept at navigating spaces that include collaborators with diverse backgrounds and identities and addressing equity with staff and the broader philanthropic community.
  • Proficiency in additional languages other than spoken English (i.e. ASL, French, Haitian Creole, or Spanish.)


The Disability & Philanthropy Forum is committed to equal employment opportunity and full accessibility of the candidate selection process (please see more about our commitment to equity below). Candidates who have lived disability experience and identify as having a disability are welcome and highly encouraged to apply for this position.


This is a full-time, exempt position with a work schedule of 40 hours per week. During the summer months, the Disability & Philanthropy Forum operates on a reduced work schedule with half-day Fridays.

This is largely a sedentary role requiring prolonged periods of being at a desk and working on a computer. Standing is not required.


This position typically requires an indoor setting, the use of standard office equipment, such as computers and phones, and access to a stable Wi-Fi network. The Disability & Philanthropy Forum will provide a fixed monthly stipend for telecommunications costs.


This position is fully remote. Typical core working hours are 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Central Time (CT) or Eastern Time (ET), but there is flexibility based on time zones and other needs.


Travel will be required for this position. The anticipated travel schedule is approximately 40-50 days per year.



A comprehensive salary and benefits package will be provided, including health, dental, and vision coverage; retirement plan offerings; generous vacation, holiday, and sick leave; professional development opportunities; and more.

The starting salary range offered for this position is $180,000 – $220,000 per year and is based on a variety of factors including, but not limited to: geographic location, skill set, number of years of previous/applicable experience, and Proteus Fund's commitment to ensuring pay equity within the organization. The recruiting team will share more details regarding salary bands based on the factors noted above.


The Disability & Philanthropy Forum and its fiscal sponsor Proteus Fund are committed to diversity and equal opportunity employment. The Disability & Philanthropy Forum and Proteus Fund do not discriminate based on race, creed, color, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, age, height, weight, physical or mental ability, veteran status, military obligations, or marital status. This policy applies to hiring, internal promotions, training, opportunities for advancement, and terminations and applies to all Disability & Philanthropy Forum and Proteus Fund employees, volunteers, members, clients, and contractors.


To maintain and safeguard staff's health, well-being, and safety, Proteus Fund requires all employees to be vaccinated prior to their employment. Proof of the CDC-recommended level of COVID-19 vaccination is required as a condition of employment with Proteus Fund. Exemptions will be considered for medical reasons and/or religious beliefs.





The Disability & Philanthropy Forum is partnering with Jamie Albaum and Lauren Bell of LaCire to manage applications. To apply for this position, please use the application form.

If you encounter any challenges accessing or using the online form, please reach out to jamie@lacire.co and we will ensure proper accommodations are provided.

Please note that only candidates who are selected to move forward will be contacted. Candidates who are selected to move forward will be contacted by the end of February 2024. The hiring process will take place in three rounds during March and April 2024.



If you require reasonable accommodation in completing an application, interviewing, completing any pre-employment testing, or otherwise participating in the candidate selection process, please direct your inquiries to our lead recruiter, Jamie Albaum, at jamie@lacire.co or (504) 941-1086.














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