Northern Colorado Food Cluster

Executive Director

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Posted On: Thursday, 28th December 2017
Category: Administrative
Location: Fort Collins, CO
PO Box 1545 Fort Collins, CO 80522
Job Type:
Full Time

Job Description:


About the Company

The mission of the Northern Colorado Food Cluster (NoCo Food Cluster) is to promote food systems-led community economic development in the Northern CO region. It achieves its mission by fostering cross-sectoral collaboration; leveraging resources and strengthening regional assets to support food supply chain businesses. In addition, the Cluster organizes and runs the Fort Collins Winter Farmers Market. The NCFC is a 501(c) 3 organization, supported by grants and through membership fees.


About the Position

The Northern Colorado Food Cluster (NCFC) is looking for its Executive Director to lead the organization promoting food systems-led economic development in the Northern Colorado region. We are seeking a dynamic and passionate individual with proven experience in non-profit operations, program development and with a successful track record in fund raising activities. The candidate will be committed to the mission of the NCFC, have strong communication skills including written and oral, relationship building skills and experience with operations, financial and accounting management. The Executive Director reports to the Board of Directors who sets the strategic orientation of the organization.


Overall Description

The Executive Director is responsible for running and operating the organization on a day-to-day basis. Responsibilities include program development and management, staff and contractor oversight, financial management, outreach, and communication. The Executive Director reports to the Board of Directors and is accountable for ensuring compliance with the Board’s expectations, organizational policies and procedures, and the stated mission of the organization. The Executive Director is expected to deliver on the strategic plan established by the organization. The NoCo Food Cluster is a non-profit organization and as such, the Executive Director is expected to understand and follow best practices in terms of monitoring and tracking all activities pertaining to the Cluster in compliance with 501(c) 3 regulations and directives.



Fundraising and grant writing

  • Ensure that the Cluster has a diverse funding stream
  • Perform fundraising activities (at least 50% of the time) in order to secure continuing funding for the operating budget
  • Write general and targeted grant proposals to secure adequate funding to support new and ongoing programming
  • Continue to develop membership, in-kind donations and sponsorships.

Communication and Outreach

  • Support Cluster stakeholders, its members, and broader food system players
  • Understand the needs associated with the cluster in regional economies/cultures
  • Identify opportunities for projects which advance the mission
  • Act as a key point person for food systems led economic development opportunities, including facilitating supply chain relationships Executive Director Job Description Northern Colorado Food Cluster p. 3
  • Develop strategic external relationships and act as an advocate for the organization
  • Oversee the Fort Collins Winter Market

Program Management

  • Ensure that the Cluster is implementing high impact projects, developing processes and tracking relevant data, and evaluation
  • Understand and synthesize the current action plan and strategic plan in order to cultivate or sustain programs that will deliver mission-oriented outcomes
  • Identify opportunities for low-hanging program/project wins
  • Take leadership and bring creativity innovating to meet regional needs and advance the mission
  • Monitor programs for efficiency and relevance

Financial Management

  • Manage the organization’s budget and forecast year-to-year
  • Oversee the Winter Market budget and financials with staff and contractors of the market
  • Prepare and present financial reporting to the Board Treasurer for Board approval
  • Keep the accounting books and ensure ongoing and annual tax and fiduciary responsibility


  • Lead the NoCo Food Cluster by following Bylaws Policies and Procedures Handbook
  • Comply with the law pertaining to non-profit institutions
  • Put in place ethical standards
  • Ensure accountability for the organization’s operations
  • Propose measures to evaluate performance of the organization and validate with the board for implementation
  • Engage and motivate the Board in leading the organization to positive and successful outcomes
  • Based on background and creative outlook, pursue diverse and mission-specific activities and programs
  • Manage any staff or volunteers that may be brought on board to assist in running the organization



Competencies and skills

  • Fund raising (demonstrated)
  • Grant writing (demonstrated)
  • Leadership and relationship skills
  • Executive presentation capabilities
  • Communication
  • Reporting
  • Able to advocate strongly for the organization
  • Innovative thinker


  • Master’s Degree in AgriBusiness or related field or commensurate academic credentials
  • 2 years of proven experience in fund raising
  • 3-5 years experience operating in a non-profit organization or commensurate experience
  • Knowledge of economic development, industry clusters, and/or food system dynamics preferred
  • Basic financial and accounting knowledge required

Note: The board is willing to consider broader experience or qualifications if the applicant believes they are relevant.


To Apply

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