Raffa Nonprofit Search Retained by Victory Housing to Find CEO

January 6, 2017 – Raffa Nonprofit Search has been selected by Victory Housing, Inc. (VHI) to lead its search for a new president and chief executive officer. Current CEO Jim Brown is retiring, after 25 years. Peggy Sand, Raffa senior search and sustainability consultant, is leading the assignment. The organization seeks a visionary, mission-oriented and seasoned leader to take Victory Housing into its next phase of measured growth and stability.

VHI serves as the private, non-profit housing affiliate of the Archdiocese of Washington (ADW), specializing in the development and operation of affordable housing. The mission of VHI is to build, acquire, renovate, manage and operate affordable housing and to provide related social services primarily to low and moderate income frail and independent senior citizens, and to families. On a consolidated basis with its affiliates, the annual budget of the organization exceeds $34 million in total revenue with assets of nearly $212 million.

The Position

Given the unique Catholic identity and mission of the organization and the need to protect and preserve that mission, the incoming president / CEO will provide direction and leadership for the organization’s mission and vision, representing and speaking for the organization and its work, and overseeing the development of projects. The next leader will inherit a fiscally sound organization that is well respected in the community and has a strong and engaged staff, and a solid governing board.

The chosen leader will identify new affordable housing development opportunities and work with the organization’s vice president of real estate to determine the feasibility of these opportunities. In addition, he or she will advise the board regarding administration and operation of the organization and the properties in its portfolio, and support the board in its oversight role.

Experience and Attributes

Ideal candidates for this position will reflect VHI’s core values and demonstrate an ability to quickly integrate into the community and become an engaged, inspiring, innovative, and visionary leader. Candidates will bring a variety of experiences and attributes to VHI, including a strong passion for the mission of VHI and experience in and understanding of the low income and affordable housing development environment.

They must also possess a commitment and willingness to support the mission of the ADW as well as have the experience and background in affordable housing development, financing affordable housing development, legal document review and negotiation. He or she will require to have 10 or more years of senior level organizational management experience in a similar environment and an understanding of or involvement with senior housing and/or assisted living operations.

Raffa Nonprofit Search partners with transition and search committees to select executives who fit the future leadership needs and culture of non-profits. The firm is currently leading executive director / CEO searches for the Arch of Chemung, the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy and the Citizens for Tax Justice, the Advertising Research Foundation, Social Impact 360, and the Community Development Corporation of Long Island.

Non-Profits Seek Transformative Leaders

As the economy continues to strengthen, hiring in the non-profit sector has been gaining momentum. In the past decade, employment in the sector grew by 17 percent. It has also become a hot area for corporate executives looking to switch careers. As a result, business managers and executives are turning to the non-profit world for employment in record numbers.

The sector is now the third largest employer in the U.S. Nearly two million non-profit organizations employ 10.7 million people and produce revenue in excess of $1.9 trillion. Hunt Scanlon Media recently dedicated an entire issue of its newsletter, ESR, to 50 trailblazing non-profit search firms that are considered leaders in the space.

“Non-profits are seeking transformative leaders who inspire and bring passion and purpose for a mission,” said Scott A. Scanlon, founding chairman of Hunt Scanlon and the newsletter’s editor-in-chief. As such, he said, it is one of the hottest sectors for executive recruiters.

Non-profit leaders today require complex skill sets and many come to their new roles with hybrid backgrounds. “The non-profit sector has shifted toward more integrated models of collaboration between communications, marketing, branding and development,” he noted. “Incoming leaders have therefore brought along skill sets from the for-profit sector, including strategic planning, financial and operational expertise, and people management.”

Recruiters have pointed out that Baby Boomers who spent the majority of their working lives in the private sector are looking to round out their working years serving a mission. Called the ‘encore career phenomenon,’ this often means switching to a non-profit organization or institution as a means of starting a second career.

Contributed by Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor, Hunt Scanlon Media

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