Urban Harvest Executive Director

Urban Harvest is searching for an outstanding individual with strong leadership, management, and
fundraising skills to become its next Executive Director. We invite applications and nominations for
candidates with the skills, characteristics, and experience described below. Applications and nominations
will be accepted until Friday, May 18.

Urban Harvest is searching for an outstanding individual with strong leadership, management, and fundraising skills to become its next Executive Director. We invite applications and nominations for candidates with the skills, characteristics, and experience described below.  Applications and nominations will be accepted until Friday, May 18.

Organization Overview

The mission of Urban Harvest is to cultivate thriving communities through gardening and access to local,
healthy food. Our work addresses urban hunger, good nutrition, sustainability, community development,
economic development and teaches individuals how to feed themselves through their own gardens.
Urban Harvest staff and volunteers address these issues by promoting farmers' markets, providing
gardening education for all ages, and supporting a network of community and school gardens throughout
the greater Houston area. These projects improve food access and promote local food sources while
helping people work productively, sustainably, and creatively on the land.
Urban Harvest is led by a 12-member Board, and the Executive Director will report to the Board. Work of
the organization is conducted through a number of active committees, a large volunteer base, and a
hardworking seasoned staff of 9. Funding is provided by private foundations, corporations, community
organizations, individuals, Houston area school districts, farmers markets, an annual fruit tree sale and
fundraising events.

Job Description

The Executive Director of Urban Harvest will work with the Board, staff and partners to promote the
organization's mission and accomplishments, position the organization to grow and thrive, and set
priorities for achieving optimal community impact. He or she will provide strong leadership for the
organization, including management of programs, staff, operating budget, strategic plan, donor and
community relations, marketing, and development efforts. Specifically, the Executive Director has the
following responsibilities:
  1. Serve as Urban Harvest's primary spokesperson and advocate.
  2. Work with the Board to develop and execute the strategic plan and yearly operating plan.
  3. Continue to foster the ability of the Board, key stakeholders, and the staff to work together in support of the strategic plan. 
  4. Implement and coordinate Board actions and policies, and maintain close communications with Executive Committee to ensure the organization's effectiveness and sustainability. 
  5. Lead and manage Urban Harvest's staff and consultants, and recruit and effectively use volunteer resources in support of the organization's efforts.
  6. Help to ensure the financial integrity of the organization. This encompasses maintaining appropriate financial records; managing within the yearly operating budget; ensuring proper processing of expenditures; overseeing appropriate use of resources available to the organization; and producing reports for committee and Board review.
  7. Work with development director to generate revenue to meet annual development plan goals established in the Board-approved budget, including events and endowment from current and new individual, corporate, and foundation donors.  Support development director as necessary with grant applications, grant management, and reporting to ensure funding sources for existing and new enhancement programs.  Oversee donor database and fundraising reporting schedule. Nurture major donor and foundation relationships.
  8. Lead efforts to maintain and create new partnerships and collaborations that will support the organization's mission. 
  9. Oversee the development of marketing and communications strategies and materials to build the profile of Urban Harvest.  Promote the work of Urban Harvest through appropriate traditional media (print and electronic), online and social media, and other collateral.
  10. Perform other duties as mutually agreed.

Desired Characteristics

  1. An energetic, charismatic leader that has a strong public presence and the ability to represent the organization effectively, communicating knowledgeably and enthusiastically about Urban Harvest before a wide range of audiences.
  2. The capacity to facilitate visionary thinking and to articulate a clear and compelling vision that will motivate and inspire major donors, staff, and Board.
  3. A genuine passion for and deep personal commitment to Urban Harvest's mission
  4. The ability to develop, motivate, and supervise staff, consultants, and volunteers.
  5. The commitment and capacity to proactively engage and support the Board in its role as a fiduciary, steward, and strategic institutional asset.
  6. Well-organized, adept at handling multiple tasks, and skilled at setting priorities and focusing on issues that will contribute most to the organization's growth and success.
  7. The ability to effectively identify and communicate issues and challenges in a timely way.
  8. A good listener and a creative problem solver who is politically savvy, patient, collaborative, and able to reconcile divergent points of view. 
  9. Personal qualities of commitment, integrity, and sensitivity to the needs of others.

Ideal Experience and Requirements

  1. At least 10 years of business experience, preferably in the nonprofit field with time as an executive director or in senior management.
  2. Management experience leading an organization with measurable results in hiring, mentoring, developing, and retaining staff.
  3. Proven experience with financial management, fund accounting, and budgeting.
  4. A demonstrated track record of generating revenue through major donors, marketing, corporations, and foundations for an organization, as a volunteer, consultant, or professional.
  5. Proven success engaging, building, and supporting a nonprofit governing board at the national, regional, or local level.
  6. A college degree is required.


The salary for this position will be commensurate with experience and qualifications.  The compensation will include a competitive benefits package.

Guidelines for Candidates

Nominations, applications, and questions should be emailed to Heather Houston, Interim Executive Director, heather@urbanharvest.org.  No telephone calls, please.


Candidates should provide a cover letter describing their interest in and qualifications for the position, a resume, and the names and telephone numbers of at least three professional references.  References will not be contacted until candidates have been interviewed.  Materials must be received by Friday, May 18.  

Starting a Community or School Garden Workshop
In this 4 hour comprehensive workshop, the presenters will take you through the process of building community, setting goals and exploring funding options, to the nuts and bolts of creating the garden and helping to ensure its sustainability. For more information or to register click here!
3800 Montrose Blvd, Houston, TX 77006

When: June 16th

Time: 8:30AM - 2:30PM