Friends of the Cleveland Public Library Executive Director Position Open

As an organization in the early stages of a profound transformation, the Friends of the Cleveland Public Library is seeking a seasoned fundraising professional with management experience and a strong commitment to Cleveland. Historically a membership organization, our capacity has been expanded over the last year to drive significant financial support for the activities of the Cleveland Public Library (CPL). Our primary focus is threefold: public awareness, advocacy and fundraising. We look forward to adding an experienced executive director to continue the Friends ‘transformation and expand our support of CPL’s mission.

Please submit your resume and cover letter to All resumes will be reviewed against the skills outlined in the following Job Description. Initial phone interviews will be scheduled with dialogue continuing until a candidate is selected.


Friends of the Cleveland Public Library
Executive Director Job Description


Primary Objectives of the Executive Director

This position provides both leadership and management oversight of all activities of the Friends of the Cleveland Public Library (“FOCPL”). The Executive Director will work in partnership with the FOCPL Board of Directors to accomplish its strategic priorities and will work in collaboration with the Cleveland Public Library Director, Staff and Community to expand the impact of the Cleveland Public Library System.


Major Areas of Responsibility

Organization Building / Administration

1. Work with the Board to refine the organization’s Mission, Vision and Values;
2. Work with the Board to draft and implement a strategic plan that outlines immediate, intermediate and long-term priorities with particular emphasis on expanding fundraising and advocacy;
3. Provide leadership, mentoring and developmental guidance to existing (3) FOCPL and (1) Library staff who are responsible for:
a. Managing retail activities and book sales;
b. Developing and executing a comprehensive public advocacy initiative;
c. Establishing and coordinating volunteer and donor development activities;
d. Writing and submitting grants to appropriate funders;
e. Producing all FOCPL print and electronic communications;
f. Maintaining fundraising database;
g. Planning and executing member programming.

4. Cultivate a strong and collaborative dialogue with the Cleveland Public Library Director, staff and [Board of
5. Develop an annual operating budget [with Finance committee] for Board approval that reflects the capacity and priorities of the organization;
6. Manage the fiscal profile of the organization including maintaining operations within budget, administer
organizational funds and maintain adequate fiscal control, procedures and reporting;
7. Work with the [Governance Committee] to develop an employee policy handbook including an expense policy;
8. Prepare annual employee assessments;

9. Monitor and assess recent infrastructure enhancements to data management, social media presence and financial reporting/accounting;
10. Engage in dialogue with architects to ensure appropriate retail and office footprint;
11. Set and manage Board meetings and committee schedules, maintain active dialogue with, and among, Board members;
12. Work with the Executive Committee to plan and execute the Annual Meeting of Members and any other events.


13. Develop and monitor a complete fundraising program including membership, annual campaigns, planned giving programs and solicitation of major gifts;
14. Engage the Board of Directors, especially the Fundraising Committee, in fundraising planning and development activities;
15. Identify and recruit new corporate and individual sponsors and cultivate and maintain existing relationships;
16. Interface with the Library Director to identify future library funding priorities and ways in which FOCPL
fundraising efforts might provide support through corporate, special purpose, annual or capital campaigns.


17. Coordinate all advocacy activities in collaboration with the [Advocacy Associate] and the Advocacy
18. Represent the organization in its relationships with government agencies, civic organizations, community- based organizations and the general public to foster awareness of and support for the Friends of the Cleveland Public Library.

Professional Requirements

• A firm understanding of, and belief in, the fundamental value of a strong library to a vital community.
• A minimum of five years experience in a senior leadership role with a fundraising organization, including corporate, private foundation, and individual donor solicitation and public advocacy.
• Experience managing all aspects of a non-profit’s business activities and experience managing early stage
growth challenges, including board relations.
• Strong knowledge of the Northeast Ohio philanthropic landscape, Northeast Ohio residency preferred.
• Demonstrated ability to independently initiate, plan and coordinate multiple projects ranging from the routine to the complex. Able to be flexible and adaptable to changes in work priorities while meeting deadlines.
• Strategic leadership and organizational skills as well as excellent writing and communication skills.
• High energy with a tolerance for stress, political skill, a comfortable level of self-confidence and an abiding sense of humor.
• Minimum four-year college degree.