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Interim Chief Executive Officer

Third Sector New England
Job Title: Interim Chief Executive Officer
Job Type:
Executive Director
Job Search Ends:
December 31st, 2016
Organization's Website:

TSNE is launching the search for an interim chief executive officer after Jonathan Spack, our current CEO of 34 years, announced his retirement at the end of 2016. The search is conducted by the external organization Management Assistance Group. Read Jonathan's retirement announcement here.


Third Sector New England provides management and leadership resources to help nonprofits, networks and individuals support healthy, just communities. With a staff of dedicated nonprofit professionals, TSNE is a fiscal sponsor, convener, consultant and grantmaker offering a unique blend of capacity-building programs and services focused on strengthening change agents for a deeper impact on the communities they serve.

Founded in 1959 as the Massachusetts Health Research Institute, Third Sector New England has expanded our programs over the past half century to serve individuals and groups throughout New England, across the country and internationally. Today, we are strengthening proven methods and using new tools and strategies in our work to support our clients and partners, foundations, colleagues working in nonprofit capacity building, and the many others committed to social change.

Current Context and Opportunities

TSNE is a vital organization in the landscape of social justice actors concerned with capacity building and strong performance. We are a complex organization on solid financial footing with multiple program lines, varied revenue streams and property ownership. Jonathan Spack, the longtime CEO of TSNE will retire in December, 2016.

TSNE has prepared for this executive leadership transition through a number of thoughtful steps, including establishing a Transition Committee. Perhaps most importantly, we are prepared for an honest and mutual exchange with serious candidates to achieve a common understanding of the strategic challenges that will shape the Interim CEO’s mission. 

There is a rich and sturdy dialogue within TSNE, dedicated to applying an equity lens to our work and to ourselves. Addressing equity issues is a critical value to the organization, and we believe it greatly strengthens our performance and our standing. This is a strong organization with highly skilled staff prepared to work with a new leader, with much pride and excitement about the importance of this work.

The TSNE Board is composed of highly experienced individuals, with backgrounds in organizing, advocacy, politics, law, finance, fund raising and private, nonprofit and government executive leadership. Many Board members have experienced a transition from a strong founder to the next generation of leadership. The Board is fully committed to more active engagement with the organization to support the transition process and the Interim CEO.

The TSNE Board has created a Transition Committee, composed of Board and staff representatives. With the facilitation of the Interim CEO and the support of external consultants from Management Assistance Group, this committee will work to define what the organization needs in a new permanent CEO and launch the search.

Role and Responsibilities

The Interim CEO must be a skilled leader and manager, and have experience managing through organizational changes.

We anticipate that the Interim CEO will be in place by the end of 2016. S/he will serve in that capacity for approximately 9 months (6 months minimum and 12 months maximum.) Determination of part or full-time service will be made in discussion with candidates.

Our robust financial and human resources, including a strong Board and staff, provide us with the flexibility to shape the priorities for the Interim CEO. It also allows flexibility for the Interim CEO to build a fully prepared team, and align staff and resources to achieve the best organizational results.

Critical tasks for the Interim CEO are:

  • Preserve organizational stability.
  • Maintain focus and build strategic momentum for TSNE as it engages in internal capacity building and organizational alignment.
  • Support staff through the Executive Transition process.
  • Support the Board as it prepares for a more active role in governance.
  • Work with the Board, staff and consultants to conduct a strategic assessment and evaluation process which helps shape the job description and skills criteria for the new CEO.
  • Support a smooth and well informed transition to the new CEO.

Reporting to the Board of Directors, the Interim CEO will have overall responsibility for the planning, implementation, administration and management of all TSNE programs and systems. S/he will serve as an advisor to the Board on all organizational matters, and will have the active involvement and support of the Board.

With the management team, the Interim CEO will be accountable for the fiscal health of the organization. S/he will oversee TSNE’s operating and capital budgets and maintain fiscal control over expenditures. The Interim CEO will have no significant fundraising responsibilities.


TSNE is seeking an Interim CEO with demonstrated commitment to the social justice field. A minimum of ten years’ experience in a senior leadership role, or its equivalent, is required. A successful track record in effective organizational management, in particular managing change, is critical.

The Interim CEO must have a value set consistent with a culture that is based upon respect, collaboration, high ethical standards and a passion to make a difference.


TSNE is an equal opportunity employer. All candidates will be evaluated on a merit basis. Compensation is negotiable, depending on qualifications and experience.

Resumes and a cover letter may be submitted, in confidence, to:

Ford Webb Associates, Inc.
60 Thoreau Street
Concord, MA 01742



For more information, visit: http://tsne.org/interim-chief-executive-officer-third-sector-new-england

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Phone: 617.426.2606
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