Ada Jenkins Center (AJC)

Executive Director  – Position Description

Location:           Ada Jenkins Center, 212 Gamble Street, Davidson, NC 28036

Reports To:       Board of Directors


Organizational Overview


Ada Jenkins Center exists to help people in our community create lasting solutions for economic stability.

About the Organization

The Ada Jenkins Center, in Davidson’s historic west side community, serves as a resource hub for approximately 900 client-partners annually on a budget of $3.5 million. The Center focuses services on eligible individuals and families who live in Davidson, Cornelius, and Huntersville.

For more than 25 years, the Ada Jenkins Center has been north Mecklenburg’s answer for unmet social needs. Often, when individuals and families come through the doors at Ada Jenkins Center, they are facing a crisis. Sometimes, the need is specific such as acquisition of a medical or dental home. Other times, the needs are multiple and seemingly without end. Based on the situation, client-partners work with the organization’s Coordinated Services team to first assess eligibility for programs and services and then choose the right mix of supports to uniquely meet their needs. Core services are Education (adult and child), Housing/Workforce Development, Free Medical Clinic, Mobile Dental Unit, and Coordinated Services.

The organization is unique among area service providers in its dedication to bridging federal, state and nonprofit programs that too often operate in isolation. The Ada Jenkins Center’s integrated, multi-generational approach is based on a premise that positive health outcomes (physical and mental) will lead to positive education/employment outcomes and a consequential increase in family economic stability, which, in turn, will improve a child’s (physical and academic) well-being. Stable, healthy, safe children reduce adult stressors and contribute to the well-being of adults. The loop continues with positive outcomes for all family members and successive generations. This model is the only fully integrated and holistic one locally, partnering with many area providers to avoid duplication.

For more about Ada Jenkins Center please visit

The Opportunity

At a time when economic mobility has been identified as a critical challenge in our communities, Ada Jenkins Center focuses our resources and efforts to work with families seeking long-lasting solutions and change. The organization has revised its mission statement and service delivery model in recent years to focus on economic stability. Recognizing that this work does not occur in a vacuum, the Center intentionally engages with a wealth of other community partners who also support this commitment to change. The Executive Director will take the reins of a well-respected organization with a twenty-plus history of serving the community, an outstanding reputation, and a compassionate team driven to meet the need for long-term economic stability in north Mecklenburg County.

The Role

The Executive Director (ED) will be a visionary leader with excellent fundraising, administrative operations, relationship-building, and advocacy skills. Reporting to the Board of Directors, the ED is responsible for overall leadership and operations of Ada Jenkins Center including personnel, finances, mission delivery, communication, fund development, and management. The ED will continue organizational development and further its sustainability in conjunction with staff, Board, and stakeholders.

The ED embodies, and serves as chief role model for, the Center’s Guiding Principles: Relationships Driven by promoting a culture of trust and respect, Mission Drive and Excellence, and a Steward of Resources.

Key responsibilities include:

Strategic Leadership and Board Relations

  • Works in partnership with Board members, to assist them in their board operations, administration, planning, and information dissemination.
  • Helps build, sustain, and strengthen all Board functions including meetings, policy adherence, and committee work.
  • Communicates regularly with the Board and engages the Board in meaningful participation to further AJC goals.
  • Works with members of the Board to help identify and onboard new members to further advance the AJC mission.
  • Ensures implementation of organization policies, services and goals as approved by the Board.
  • Serves as a strategic, visionary leader with the ability to proactively communicate how specific priorities are driving overall business goals to key stakeholders, staff and Board.
  • Utilizes a dynamic strategic plan that leads to viable, comprehensive growth for AJC.
  • Oversees all operations of the organization, working in partnership with the Board, appropriate committees, and the Senior Leadership team.
  • Engages and collaborates with the Senior Leadership team: Director of Operations, Director of Development, and Director of Impact and Engagement. Oversees all AJC personnel.

Relationship Building for Resource Development

  • Serves as the organization’s lead spokesperson and relationship-builder in the community, acquiring and nurturing relationships that advance Ada Jenkins Center’s mission.
  • Expands public awareness, representing the organization within the community, including the media. Explores ways for Ada Jenkins Center to gain new external support and resources.
  • Maintains relationships with major donors of the organization and shares critical information with development staff for appropriate donor stewardship.
  • Cultivates trusting positive relationships with philanthropic foundations, corporations, individual donors, faith-based organizations, and local, county, federal, and state governments to support growth of the organization.
  • In conjunction with the Director of Development, and with an entrepreneurial spirit, develops diverse funding streams including the possibility of earned income revenue.
  • Anticipates spending at least 50% of the time focused on this category.

Financial Performance and Viability

Alongside the Director of Operations:

  • Maintains the fiscal integrity of AJC by submitting monthly financial statements, income, and expense forecast updates, and proposed annual budgets that accurately reflect the financial condition of the organization to the Finance Committee and Board.
  • Provides fiscal management that generally anticipates operating within the approved budget, ensures maximum resource utilization, and maintenance of the organization in a positive financial position.
  • Builds and/or maintains a healthy operating reserve that mirrors nonprofit best financial practice, as well as a capital reserve available for unexpected events.
  • Delivers financial records that are organized and maintained and confirms that ethical accounting standards are followed with effective checks and balances.
  • Ensures completion of annual independent financial audit and IRS Form 990.

Organizational Operations

  • Provides inspiration and encouragement to staff, continuing to foster a cohesive, inclusive, and positive team culture with an emphasis on work-life balance.
  • Conducts regular staff meetings to ensure that staff works as “One AJC Team” to achieve the organization’s mission and goals.
  • Develops strategic goals and key performance indicators (KPIs) to define and measure team and outcomes.
  • Promotes the on-going culture of coaching, as well as personal and professional development opportunities for all staff.
  • Maintains cohesive and collaborative Leadership teams.
  • Alongside the Director of Operations:
  • Oversees and implements appropriate resources to ensure that the operations of the organization are sufficient.
  • Ensures that sound and legally compliant human resource practices are in place and they align with the organization’s mission, guiding principles and strategic plan.
  • Recognizes that staff are the organization’s greatest asset. Prioritizes retaining a competent, passionate, and diverse staff to appropriately meet the strategic needs of AJC.
  • Maintains effective and safe facility operations, authorizes necessary campus repairs and maintenance, as well as routine inspections.
  • Provides direction and guidance on facility capital maintenance and renovation projects with AJC’s strategic plan and future in mind, while maintaining the historical integrity of the site.

Mission Delivery

  • Promotes an environment that places client-partners at the forefront of all decision-making.
  • With an eye towards social justice, provides consultation and guidance about the on-going visioning and planning of service delivery to fulfill the mission.
  • Shares information with the Board and appropriate committees regarding mission, model, or service changes.
  • With the Director of Impact and Mission Team:
  • Establishes outcomes, tracks progress and evaluates achievement in reaching service and mission goals.
  • Develops collaborative relationships with other service agencies, including the government and faith communities and other entities.
  • Participates in community strategic planning to maximize community resources while maintaining the vision and mission of the organization

Performs other job duties as requested by the Board of Directors and committee chairs, within the scope of the position.

Required Qualifications & Competencies

The ideal candidate will have the following capabilities and qualities:

  • Demonstrated commitment to the AJC mission of economic stability, our client-partner families, and the North Mecklenburg community.
  • Familiarity with North Mecklenburg County funders, leaders, and community groups preferred.
  • Community leader for systemic change preferred.
  • Experience consistently raising funds and managing an organizational budget of greater than $1.5M.
  • Experience managing, coaching, and genuinely relating to a diverse team of full and part-time staff of approximately thirty, as well as a cadre of volunteers who supplement the AJC work-force on a daily basis.
  • Ability to serve as a strategic visionary leader, with a demonstrated track record as a change manager with excellent fundraising, administrative operations, financial management, strategic planning, service delivery model growth and development, relationship-building, and advocacy skills.
  • Fluent, cogent, oral and written communication skills, and the ability to present formally and informally to client-partners, staff, volunteers, community partners, Boardroom audiences, government and other key and potential stakeholders.
  • Experience setting organization-wide strategic goals and effectively leveraging the skills of employees to achieve goals.
  • Previous experience in engaging Board relations, developing policies, goals and objectives (optimizing the inherent resources of board members) and onboarding and training new members.
  • Demonstrated competence in reading, creating, and understanding financial documents, including budgets, cash flow, income statements, balance statements, and statements of functional expenses.
  • Creative and compassionate attitude towards serving families working toward economic stability, with an ability to define win-win parameters on behalf of AJC, our client-partner families, and the community.
  • Integrity and well-defined principles, practical business instincts and the ability to adapt to corporate and nonprofit environments.
  • Demonstrated ability to negotiate, collaborate, and foster inclusiveness among a wide range of people with diverse backgrounds.
  • Bachelor’s degree required.
  • A minimum of five years of senior leadership experience required; preferably in the social good or nonprofit sector.

To Apply

Ada Jenkins Center has partnered with Next Stage to help in this hire. All inquiries, nominations and applications should be directed via email to Next Stage ( Applications must include a compelling cover letter and resume to be considered for the role. Please also indicate where you learned of the opportunity. Please note that only those candidates invited for screening will be contacted. NO PHONE CALLS PLEASE.

Ada Jenkins Center provides equal employment opportunity to all persons without regard to race, color, creed, age, sex, religion, disability, nationality, or sexual orientation, and promotes the full realization of this policy through a positive, continuing program of affirmative action.


About Next Stage

Next Stage is a strategy and implementation firm based in Charlotte, NC and serves nonprofit organizations and social cause start-ups throughout the Carolinas. Next Stage works with nonprofit organizations to develop game-changing strategies and strengthened operations in service to mission and long-range vision. For more information about Next Stage, please visit