Executive Director (Volunteer)

  • Engineers for a Sustainable World
  • Remote
  • Jan 11, 2021
Volunteer role

Job Description

Reports to:    Board of Directors

Team:         Executive Committee

Time:         Up to 10 hours/week

Salary:     $0, but opportunities for a paid position are possible depending on fundraising

Location:     Flexible within United States or Canada

Travel:     Occasional (5% of time); paid by organization. Travel currently suspended due to coronavirus.

The Executive Director (ED) serves as Engineers for a Sustainable World’s (ESW) most significant fundraiser and prominent external spokesperson. The ideal candidate will be passionate about sustainability and dedicated to embedding it within engineering. Candidates should be able to articulate a vision for ESW’s role in a rapidly changing world to stakeholders including members, potential and current donors, corporations, and foundations. As an equal member of the Executive Committee, the Executive Director is responsible for helping to grow the organization’s resources to more effectively tackle large problems, supporting a large decentralized team of staff and mostly volunteers in the implementation of our strategic plan, and developing a stronger network of business, nonprofit, and academic partners. This position offers the opportunity to help put sustainability into the education and practice of the next generation of technical students and professionals.

Responsibilities include:

  • Lead fundraising strategy and obtain dedicated and secure resources for successful operation and program management (50% of time)
    • Work with the Development Team to collectively design and execute fundraising activities
    • Identify and help secure funding from corporations and philanthropists for programs and operating expenses
    • Guide the planning and implementation of individual fundraising campaigns
    • Assist with proposal writing to governmental agencies or foundations to fund programs
    • Develop partnerships for shared resources in the form of in-kind donations and professional expertise 
  • Build the ESW brand in the form of public and organizational recognition and key partnerships (30%)
    • Provide representation for ESW at public events and in the media
    • Identify potential for collaboration and develop connections between ESW and: faculty and staff at institutions of higher education in order to build ESW’s presence on college campuses; engineering and or sustainability-related companies; and existing non-profit networks

    • Coordinate creation of an Annual Report for public distribution
  • Support Internal Coordination and Achievement of the Strategic Plan (20%)
    • Oversee reporting and tracking of metrics in the strategic plan, monitoring success of current programs and identifying potential adjustments
    • Support communication and coordination between leadership, the Board of Directors, and the Advisory Board
    • Identify areas for new programs and impact and targets for expansion, prioritizing between stakeholder groups as necessary
    • Work with the Board of Directors and Leadership Team on strategic planning for both short and long term horizons
    • Help develop annual budgets which make efficient use of resources and grow the organization’s overall impact

Desired skills and ideal qualifications:

  • Experience with nonprofit administration
  • Knowledge or experience in engineering or sustainability is a plus.
  • Superb verbal and excellent written communication skills and confidence communicating to a wide variety of audiences 
  • Demonstrated experience meeting funding goals from government and foundation sources and individual fundraising
  • Experience dealing with a range of organizational stakeholders, including university faculty, non-profit leaders, and businesses
  • Demonstrated ability to help create, share, and act on a large-scale vision
  • Management experience, especially in a non-hierarchical and shared decision making environment
  • Experience creating and/or managing multi-stakeholder projects and programs
  • Experience working with and engaging a diverse group of volunteer staff located around the country that primarily collaborates virtually
  • Project management

ESW does not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, race, ethnicity, age, religion, or economic background. Further, we strongly encourage individuals from traditionally underrepresented identities to apply, including identities not explicitly named above. If there are any considerations or qualifications not acknowledged in our job description that you feel are important and relevant to this position, we encourage you to bring them to light in your application.

Organization Type


Organization Size



Atmosphere, Buildings & Cities, Carbon Removal & Utilization Engineering, Ecosystems & Biodiversity, Energy, Food & Agriculture, Materials & Manufacturing, Pollution & Waste Reduction, Research & Education, Transportation

Mitigation / Adaptation

Mitigation focus,   Adaptation focus  


Lead a network of students and professionals passionate about technical sustainability.