Thursday, November 06, 2008

Fair Trade Leadership Position Open

As post-election euphoria subsides for many of us, we begin to think of how we as individuals will be called to help President Elect Obama implement a new era of American leadership. Each of us will have a part to play, and our "day jobs" are often a way we can devote our energies to causes we believe in.

After volunteering for a Fair Trade cooperative in Mexico back in 2000, I got my professional start in the movement with the Fair Trade Resource Network. Over the course of four years, I was fortunate to help this small but significant grassroots organization and its volunteers shape the Fair Trade movement in the United States. I'm excited that the position of Executive Director is open and I wanted to share the description in case some readers might be interested in applying according to the details below:

Executive Director for the Fair Trade Resource Network
Schedule: Full-time
Compensation: $40,000-$50,000 annual salary, health insurance, 2 weeks paid vacation
Start Date: January 1, 2009

The Fair Trade Resource Network is seeking a full-time executive director to conceptualize, energize, secure support for and carry out Fair Trade education campaigns in the U.S. and abroad. Salary, benefits and office location are negotiable.

About the Fair Trade Resource Network

The Fair Trade Resource Network (FTRN) seeks to improve people’s lives through Fair Trade alternatives by providing information, leadership, and inspiration. FTRN gathers, develops, and disseminates educational resources to people and organizations interested in the movement to build a more just and sustainable world through Fair Trade. See to learn more about our work.


The FTRN Executive Director is responsible for all aspects of leading a small non-profit organization devoted to advancing fair trade. S/he will envision, fundraise, plan, manage and promote all of the organizations programs. S/he reports directly to the FTRN Board Chairperson and will work closely with an active board of directors.

1. Vision and planning

Working closely with the board, the E.D. will envision and execute new and existing programs designed to promote fair trade.

2. Fundraising

Fundraising is an essential responsibility for this position. The E.D. will write and report on grant proposals, solicit gifts from major donors and small donors, organize fundraising events, seek sponsors for programs such as World Fair Trade Day, and innovate new fundraising opportunities.

3. Staff Management

FTRN has one part time administrative staff person, and a fulltime temporary program staff person, both of whom will report to the E.D. The E.D. will be expected to manage these staff, and recruit and hire new staff as growth allows.

4. Program Development and Management

FRTN’s major programs include:

1. World Fair Trade Day
2. Fair Trade and the Arts traveling exhibition
3. Fair Trade Leadership Training
4. Fair Trade Institute (online library partnership)
5. Education for Fair Trade and the Environment
6. Fair trade pen-pals and curriculum development

5. Outreach and Communications

As an educational non-profit, outreach and communications are major elements of the E.D.’s workload. The E.D. create and capture opportunities to promote fair trade through the media and grassroots outreach.

6. Networking & Partnerships

As a small non-profit, and the only one in the U.S. devoted exclusively to promoting fair trade, networking with allied individuals and organizations is essential in order to leverage our message. The E.D. will seek new allies, and manage existing partnerships with organizations such as the Sierra Club, Fair Trade Towns Initiative, TransFair USA, IFAT, Fair Trade Institute, and others.


The ideal candidate is a social entrepreneur who is:

1. A passionate, visionary spokesperson for Fair Trade education, with a strong grasp on the complexities of Fair Trade and global trade issues, a compatible personal values system, and the ability to communicate fair trade messages powerfully in writing and speaking to the public and other stakeholders.

2. A strong fundraiser who enjoys connecting with potential funders and donors, able to make in person fund raising solicitations, get people excited about Fair Trade education, and secure contributions; able to develop fundraising strategies with the board and support the board in fund raising activities; and able to develop and monitor strategies for ensuring the long-term financial viability of FTRN. Grant writing and reporting abilities are required.

3. An established networker in Fair Trade, ready to network in the U.S. and abroad with other Fair Trade and Alternative Trade organizations in a collaborative, coalition building format.

4. An enthusiastic team player able to work with board and staff to conceptualize and implement new projects and programs. Program development and project/staff management experience must be demonstrated.

5. An effective manager able to oversee and streamline (but not perform) low-level administrative work, by contracting out services, and managing staff and volunteers; able to attract and energize volunteers and interns to help execute projects and/or administrative work and maintain a supportive work environment that reflects FTRN’s organizational values.

6. A prudent financial steward who can develop annual budgets that support FTRN’s operating plans and manage FTRN’s resources within those budget guidelines.

7. A persuasive communicator with media networking, outreach and PR skills; able to conceptualize strong and effective long term communications outreach strategies that will gain attention for fair trade.

8. A computer-savvy person familiar with web-based communications technologies (or eager to learn them), capable of basic web site content management (not programming or design but such tasks as posting news and other new content), managing e-newsletters, email lists and other online communications.

9. A person ideally located in or near a major metropolitan area for easier access to foundations, conferences, volunteers, partners, and media.

Other helpful experience would include:

o Experience in education or curriculum development
o Experience in running a profitable business and developing income-generating projects to supplement grant money.
o Experience in event planning and management

To apply, please send the following materials to work "at"

o Cover letter describing qualifications and interest in Fair Trade education;
o Detailed resume/CV;
o Any supporting materials as examples of relevant work, such as successful grant proposals, marketing or communications materials, newsletters or other related materials;
o At least three references, ideally including at least one person who served as a board member or executive director.

No comments:

Post a Comment