JOB: Chief Executive Office

Organizational Overview:
Ducks Unlimited Canada, a nonprofit organization dedicated to conserving, restoring and managing wetlands and associated habitat for North America’s waterfowl and for the benefit of wildlife and people, is seeking a Chief Executive Officer.
In 1937, a group of conservation-minded sportsmen set out to contend with the destruction and neglect of wetland habitat. They initiated habitat conservation projects in Canada-where seventy percent of North America’s waterfowl originate-by raising funds in the United States. They called their effort Ducks Unlimited. DUC was formed in 1938 to continue the conservation effort in Canada. More than 75 years later, DUC has grown and increased Canadian support and funding for wetland conservation.
About the Position: Chief Executive Officer
Supported by a committed Board of Directors and a dedicated professional staff, the CEO will be challenged to provide leadership at an important time in DUC’s history. The CEO must fully appreciate the qualities that make DUC a leader in Canadian wetland conservation community – a commitment to science-based wetland habitat conservation; a cohesive and integrated management and leadership operation; support for on-the-ground projects and public policy work to protect, restore, manage wetland habitat; and a commitment to broadening the engagement of volunteers and the public in the mission of the organization. The CEO reports to the President and serves the Board of Directors. The CEO is based in the national headquarters located at Oak Hammock Marsh Conservation Centre, Stonewall, Manitoba.
In order to advance the work of DUC, the CEO will be challenged to lead an organization that fully utilizes its human and financial assets in the most effective manner possible. The CEO should be a person who possesses a deep conservation ethic and a vision that embodies the collective view of the whole organization to multiple constituencies. Moreover, the CEO must continue to usher forward creative and innovative approaches to resource development – targeting individuals, foundations, corporations and governmental agencies as well as expanding long-term investment opportunities in DUC.
Because of the breadth of DUC’s operations, the CEO must possess a demonstrated capacity to leverage the organization’s brand and strategic value to enhance impact on critical wetland habitat program and policy priorities. The CEO should also have an ability to involve all aspects of DUC’s organization into a highly effective team. The CEO will act to strengthen the fabric of DUC by convening, brokering and nurturing strategic relationships and partnerships. The CEO must be an energetic and entrepreneurial leader and possess sophisticated financial and management capabilities. The CEO must be able to direct, motivate and develop volunteer leaders and professional staff – empowering and inspiring all parties to reach and achieve critical organizational goals.
In the role as CEO, this person will also serve to carry DUC’s conservation message to critical international, federal and provincial public policy, philanthropic, nonprofit and corporate leaders. In that regard, the CEO needs to bring a genuine excitement and commitment about DUC’s mission. The CEO will continue to position DUC through its programs and activities as an innovative, inclusive and forward-looking wetlands conservation organization. The broad objectives for the CEO are as follows:

  • To support the development of a vibrant future by continuing to cultivate, expand and make best use of DUC’s shared leadership structure of Board and volunteer leaders.
  • To support the achievement of critical conservation and organization goals by fostering the development of a coherent and fully integrated professional organization – aligning critical staff competencies with organizational priorities and goals.
  • To enhance the organization’s revenue and conservation goals by working with private landowners.
  • To lead and implement strategies to enhance alignment among regional and corporate activities in order to insure greater accountability and impact.
  • To diversify and expand Canadian revenue streams pursuing philanthropic funding sources and other creative and new sources of revenue for the organization.
  • To increase stewardship activities with existing funders as a means to increase their level and regularity of giving.
  • To continue to build a productive and fully engaged partnership with Ducks Unlimited, Inc and Ducks Unlimited de Mexico, respecting the different cultures and enhancing the bonds which will create a dynamic North American wetland habitat conservation strategy.
  • To continue to foster DUC’s communication and marketing activities as a critical strategic process imbedded in the organization and focused on identifying and meeting member and partner needs.
  • To maintain DUC’s leadership as a science-based conservation organization.
  • To manage key relationships that support collaboration and cohesion within the organization as well as with other key conservation, private and public sector and philanthropic organizations.

Professional Qualifications and Personal Attributes:
The CEO should ideally possess the following professional qualifications and personal attributes:
Professional Qualifications:

  • Leadership and business acumen; a proven record of organizational effectiveness, engaging and fully utilizing a Board; and competence with personnel management, budgeting, and stewardship of financial resources.
  • Experience recruiting, directing, motivating and developing staff while building a nimble yet effective infrastructure to support a member and volunteer-based enterprise.
  • Experience building effective networks, partnerships, and/or coalitions; and motivation to use new social media and other web-based tools to deepen organizational connections.
  • Ability to listen to others and learn from their best ideas, demonstrating intellectual curiosity, approachability, and openness to input from all levels of staff.
  • Superb organizational and interpersonal skills combined with an ability to diplomatically prioritize sometimes conflicting demands.
  • Bachelor’s degree required with an advanced degree or equivalent experience strongly preferred.
  • The highest level of personal and professional integrity and quality standards.
  • Strong work ethic and willingness to travel extensively, often for weekend and evening meetings.

Personal Attributes:

  • Passionate commitment to the values and mission of DUC and a demonstrated conservation ethic.
  • A deep personal appreciation for waterfowl heritage and hunting.
  • Ability to inspire trust, lead and facilitate with strong interpersonal skills and move from ideas to action.
  • A personal style of acting with humility and grace – in sum a superb professional and personal presence.
  • Ability to think strategically, tactically and creatively.
  • Visionary, articulate, and diplomatic.

Compensation for the Chief Executive Officer includes a competitive base salary, performance bonus and an excellent package of health and other employee benefits.
Interested candidates should email a cover letter explaining how your skills and background fit this position and a resume to: Daniel Sherman, President, Explore Company at Refer to DUC/CEO in the subject line.
No phone calls please.

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