Executive Director - VPAP
The next Executive Director (ED) of the Virginia Public Access Project (VPAP.org) will have the opportunity to lead an organization whose work provides information integral to the transparency of Virginia’s government and to a healthy democracy. After 25 years of building an organization with an excellent reputation and strong financial foundation, the current ED and founder has indicated his decision to retire. The next ED will work with VPAP’s Board of Directors and staff to broaden VPAP’s impact by reaching new constituencies and expanding its service offerings. The ED will lead a talented and committed staff, represent VPAP in the statewide community, nurture existing partnerships and develop new ones that support its mission.
If you believe in the importance of access to unbiased political information and are ready to lead a dynamic organization into its next phase, this position may be of interest to you.
Mission: The nonprofit Virginia Public Access Project elevates public understanding of politics and government by organizing and presenting information in ways that are easily accessible and free of partisan bias.
VPAP is fiercely nonpartisan. It does not lobby or take positions on issues. The singular focus is to give Virginians information they need to make their own decisions.
VPAP’s approach is grounded in verifiable facts drawn directly from government databases. It presents this data in easy-to-understand formats. VPAP is a source of reliable information for professionals involved in government relations, journalism and politics. It is a resource for students, researchers and concerned citizens. The integrated methods used provide unique and valuable insights into decisions that impact families and communities. Data visualizations turn complex data into easily digestible information. In addition, VPAP operates a news aggregation service. VaNews provides a convenient way to find articles from across the Commonwealth about government and politics that meet high standards for original news reporting.
VPAP's unique, nonpartisan approach is supported by partisans and independents alike; it is valuable to all voters. The Board composition is half Republican and half Democrat, each committed to working together on behalf of Virginia’s citizenry. VPAP’s work has won awards from numerous organizations, including the Virginia Coalition for Open Government, the Wilder School of Public Policy at VCU and the Society of Professional Journalists.
Executive Director Position Priorities
The Executive Director has important internal and external responsibilities:
- In conjunction with the Board and staff, implement strategies that enable VPAP to sustain and expand its important role in Virginia’s political life.
- Protect the VPAP brand and its reputation for integrity and nonpartisanship.
- Determine the appropriate organizational structure to support the future initiatives.
- Oversee operations and provide staff with opportunities for professional growth, especially in ways that also strengthen VPAP.
- Serve as the outward face and primary spokesperson for VPAP.
- Expand VPAP’s constituencies and increase usage of the information it provides.
- Develop relationships with organizations and people who are important to VPAP’s success.
- Take a leadership role in fundraising to ensure adequate financial resources.
- Serve as the primary liaison with the Board, and ensure committees are staffed appropriately.
- Develop strong relationships with Board members, and draw on the Board’s strengths to support the organization.
- Work with the Board to cultivate potential Board members for upcoming classes.
- Gain an understanding of the Board’s priorities and communication preferences.
- Provide information to the Board in a timely manner.
Finance and Administration
- Ensure that VPAP remains financially stable.
- Oversee budget development and implementation.
- Attract and retain a talented and diverse staff.
- Ensure that procedures are in place to meet legal requirements and enable the organization to function efficiently.
- Explore ways to increase revenue streams in a manner that does not impair VPAP’s brand or integrity.
The next Executive Director must have an unwavering commitment to making nonpartisan, Virginia political information accessible to increase civic engagement. Beyond that, the search committee understands that qualified individuals will bring unique blends of skills and experience.
The following list is not exhaustive but provides a good overview of skills the search committee believes to be important.
- An understanding of the political environment in Virginia and comfort in working in it, including an understanding of Virginia’s election laws and reporting requirements.
- Ability to develop strong relationships with a range of shareholders and constituencies.
- Unquestionable integrity and ability to build trust.
- Ability to analyze and expand VPAP’s constituencies.
- Excellent oral and written communication skills.
- Excellent critical thinking skills.
- Experience in obtaining and analyzing complex information.
- A sense of what types of information and stories are of interest to constituencies.
- Progressive experience in an organization or department leadership role.
- Demonstrated ability in fundraising.
- Experience managing a budget.
VPAP offers a competitive compensation package commensurate with experience. The minimum starting salary for the Executive Director is $150,000.
Please send a cover letter, resume and three references with the subject line “VPAP Executive Director."
References will not be contacted until later in the process with the permission of the candidate. The search committee and the consultant understand the importance of confidentiality and that expression of interest may be only explorative in nature.
For best consideration, please respond by February 12, 2023.
VPAP is an Equal Opportunity Employer. We seek to recruit, develop, and retain the most talented people from a diverse candidate pool in the belief that employees from diverse backgrounds are critical to achieving our goals. We strongly encourage applications from persons with diverse backgrounds and experiences.