Skip to main content

Sr. Strategic Initiatives Officer

National CASA/GAL Association

Sr. Strategic Initiatives Officer

Location: Seattle, WA or Atlanta, GA

The National Court Appointed Special Advocate/Guardian ad Litem (CASA/GAL) Association for Children fulfills society’s most fundamental obligation by making sure a qualified compassionate adult will fight for and protect an abused or neglected child’s best interests. The mission of National CASA/GAL, together with its state and local members, is to support and promote court-appointed volunteer advocacy so that every abused or neglected child can be safe, establish permanence, and have the opportunity to thrive. But today, not all the children in the system have access to a CASA volunteer. The National CASA/GAL organization is committed to ensuring 100% of the children in the system have access to a CASA volunteer.

Position Summary

The Sr. Strategic Initiatives Officer coordinates and manages strategic initiatives, special projects and program design and innovation out of the office of the CEO. The Officer also supports special projects and assignments to support the CEO in carrying out the mission and vision of the CASA/GAL network. The Officer, on behalf of the CEO, will consult, communicate and work across the organization on priority issues, strategic plans and network engagement, to ensure goals and objectives are implemented in alignment with National CASA’s strategic objectives and themes.

Reporting Relationships: The position reports to the Chief Executive Officer. Supervisory relationships vary based on phases of project and program design and implementation and could include: Director Fostering Futures, Director Program Design and Innovation, Executive Office staff, Director Professional Development and other Officers as needed and on an interim basis.

Core Duties and Responsibilities

Strategic Planning

  • Supports the Chief Executive Officer in managing the strategic planning process, long-range capacity building, program services and strategy development.
  • Works in partnership with the program services team, performance measurement and network committees and councils to develop a growth strategy and plan for reaching the goal of serving every child.
  • Makes recommendations regarding strategic opportunities for growth.
  • Plans, coordinates, and initiates projects to implement strategic objectives.
  • Analyzes and provides strategic advice and counsel on priority issues impacting the organization and the network.
  • Advises the CEO on the progress of strategic initiatives, network engagement and overall implementation of strategic objectives.
  • Provide leadership and input for all strategic plan implementation processes with the CEO and staff.
  • Leads the development of the annual operational planning process and the development of the operational plan to include working in partnership with Finance to align the budget planning process with the organizational annual plans
  • Works with functional area leaders in the development of functional area annual plans and the induvial goals and objectives of the functional area team
  • Develop and implement a system for tracking and reporting on the progress of the strategic plan implementation.
  • Ensure that the performance measurement project, when implemented, informs the strategic plan activities and outcomes.
  • Coach Key staff as they implement the strategic plan

Strategic Initiatives

Leads strategic initiatives arising from the strategic planning process and key initiatives developed out of the office of the CEO to include but not limited to:

Diversity and Inclusion Initiative

  • Develop diversity and inclusion objectives and build capability at all levels of the organization to reduce disproportionality and ensure equitable outcomes for children regardless of race.
  • Provide consultation to state and local CASA/GAL programs on diversity, inclusion and racial equity, including development of model diversity and inclusion plans for use and adaptation by member state and local CASA programs nationwide.
  • Collaborate with the training team to identify, assure delivery, and measure effectiveness of diversity, inclusion and racial equity training network-wide.
  • Identify promising practices related to racial equity, and develop action plans, time lines and expected outcomes for projects that improve practice and address the disproportionate representation and disparate outcomes for African American, Hispanic/Latino, and American Indian/Alaska Native children.
  • Develop assessment strategies to measure program impact at the national, state and local levels, and make recommendations for program enhancement and improvement.
  • Consult with internal stakeholders and external promise partners to develop collaborative activities designed to achieve equity, end disproportionality, increase cultural awareness and competency, and undo racism.
  • Represent the National CASA/GAL Association at meetings, conferences and seminars or on boards, panels and committees related to issues of equity in child welfare.
  • Partner with the communications team to develop messages and marketing tools around diversity, inclusion and equity.
  • Promote, monitor, and ensure that respect is demonstrated within the organization for cultural diversity and equity; support and make recommendations to the HR Officer and staff inclusiveness team regarding individual, team, and group learning (e.g. book clubs, e-learning modules, classroom training, etc.) to advance the cause of inclusion and equity.

Older Youth Initiative

  • Leads the strategy design for new programs and initiatives to effectively train and develop volunteers to work with older youth.
  • Oversee the development of the Fostering Futures initiatives team
  • Establish an lead an internal network-wide planning team to develop the program
  • Work in partnership with the Training and Network Development Team and external consultants to develop training for volunteers and staff
  • Build an external team of experts and participants with lived experience to advise the development of this new initiative
  • Partner with and lead the Fostering Futures Program Team
  • Consult with internal stakeholders and external promise partners to develop collaborative activities designed to achieve desired outcomes for older youth

Program Design and Innovation

  • Provides guidance to projects and support development of project strategy and design; lead specific project objectives; and represent projects internally, to donors, and other stakeholders as necessary
  • Leads the program ideation process leading to the development of new program models and initiatives that support the work of the CASA/GAL network and advances the mission
  • Lead strategic thinking. Establish key issues, objectives, strategies and tactics as well as develop multi-year growth strategies and innovation vision for being mindful of macro trends impacting child welfare, geographic and cultural trends and the funding environment
  • Plan, organize, and conduct regular capacity-building activities on critical thinking, innovation and design
  • Manage implementation of new and innovative approaches, including reporting and maintaining relationships with funding agencies
  • Participate in relevant conferences and meetings to represent
    National CASA/GAL and to continue to build knowledge to inform key initiatives

Special Projects

  • Work across functional areas to fill interim or special project roles as requested.
  • Seeks out and evaluates information and data from a variety of sources pertaining to special projects and provides specialized reports to the CEO.
  • Facilitates special projects originating out of the Executive Office.
  • Develops and implements policies and procedures when leading a special project.
  • Provides project management oversight on special projects with regard to progress, challenges and outcomes; communicates same to the CEO.
  • Monitors and tracks project milestones, deliverables and ensures adherence to budget.
  • Supports funding proposals and the Resource Development team in developing resources to support special initiatives.

Experience and Professional Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree required, advanced degree including PhD in social work or JD preferred
  • 15+ years in a senior management position in a nonprofit organization, foundation, or government agency; child welfare experience strongly preferred
  • Highly intelligent, capable and driven senior leader
  • Extensive leadership in DEI initiatives development and implementation
  • Strong ability to move an objective forward, break bottlenecks, and make good decisions
  • Track record delivering superior results, earning respect and assuming leadership roles
  • Success in roles requiring execution of multiple tasks while responding to multiple priorities
  • Proven ability to work with efficiency, flexibility, and good humor
  • Mentoring, coaching; visible, approachable sounding board/resource
  • A consensus builder and team player with a collegial working style
  • Operates with excellence in mind in all matters, with the confidence to defend/debate ideas without ego interfering
  • Outstanding verbal and written communication skills and excellent interpersonal skills are essential
  • Passionate about National CASA/GAL’s mission and impact
  • Ability to exercise tact and diplomacy in organizational settings
  • Remain focused in the face of pressure, delivers against timelines, not intimidated by tasks/time limitations
  • All National CASA/GAL staff must be committed to the National CASA/GAL mission, strategic goals, and workplace values including a demonstrated commitment to diversity and inclusion.

Salary and Benefits

National CASA/GAL offers a competitive base salary plus benefits and generous paid leave.

Organizational Values

Adaptability ◦ Collaboration ◦ Integrity ◦ Respect ◦ Quality ◦ Service ◦ Stewardship

National CASA/GAL is headquartered in Seattle, Washington, with additional offices in Washington D.C. and Atlanta, GA, and is committed to an inclusive and welcoming workplace environment. National CASA/GAL has been certified by the Standards for Excellence Institute for ethics and accountability in the nonprofit sector.

To apply: Send resume and cover letter to with a subject line that reads Strategic Initiatives Officer.

National Court Appointed Special Advocate/Guardian ad Litem (CASA/GAL) Association for Children