The ACLU of Northern California (ACLU-NC) seeks a Chief Operating Officer for the San Francisco, Sacramento or Fresno offices. This leader will be directly responsible for the organization’s overall operations and administration, guided by core values of excellence and equity, so that the organization’s staff and constituencies can achieve maximum programmatic impact for civil liberties and civil rights.
The COO provides oversight of each of the major functions and their integration with each other, and alignment with the overall mission and strategy. The six major domains include 1) Human Resources & DEI, including the full life-cycle of employee experience, overall HR systems, integration of diversity, equity and inclusion, and labor union relations, 2)Finance, including systems and controls, reporting, forecasts and investments, 3) Operations, including administration at 3 sites, 4) IT Systems Administration, including through staff and outside service providers, 5) Risk Management and Compliance, including with IRS, state FPPC, insurance, safety and other requirements, and 6) Organizational Management and Strategy, serving as a key leader in planning, strategy and implementation and board and staff relations. The position includes supervising and supporting a number of direct reports, some of whom in turn supervise team members. They will also collaborate with the national ACLU, ACLU of Southern California, ACLU of San Diego and Imperial Counties, and ACLU California Action to exchange best practices and to identify and administer any shared infrastructure.
About the Organization
The ACLU of Northern California is an affiliate of the American Civil Liberties Union, a nationwide, non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to the defense and expansion of civil liberties and civil rights. The ACLU of Northern California (ACLU NorCal) is comprised of two distinct corporations, the ACLU Foundation of Northern California (the “Foundation”, a 501c3) and the ACLU of Northern California (the “Union”, a 501c4). The incumbent is a joint employee of both corporations. For most of the last century, ACLU Nor Cal has been part of many of the most major – and sometimes controversial – struggles for civil liberties and civil rights in our state.
Our mission is to ensure that Constitutional rights don’t just exist on paper but are protected in practice. As we move into a new era, we face dangerous policies that threaten our civil rights and civil liberties, we must use our decades of experience in impact litigation, legislative advocacy, and fearless organizing to fight these policies and protect our most cherished rights and freedoms. At the same time, ACLU Nor Cal is committed to advancing proactive and positive change to transform laws and institutions to advance our values. We are committed to fostering an anti-racist work culture and to anti-racist principles and learning.
Duties & Responsibilities
The COO provides oversight of a number of major functions and their integration with each other, and alignment with the overall mission and strategy. The six major domains include 1) Human Resources & DEI, including the full life-cycle of employee experience, overall HR systems, integration of diversity, equity and inclusion, and labor union relations, 2)Finance, including systems and controls, reporting, forecasts and investments, 3) Operations, including administration at 3 sites, 4) IT Systems Administration, including through staff and outside service providers, 5) Risk Management and Compliance, including with IRS, state FPPC, insurance, safety and other requirements, and 6) Organizational Management and Strategy, serving as a key leader in planning, strategy and implementation and board and staff relations. The position includes supervising and supporting a number of direct reports, some of whom in turn supervise team members. They will also collaborate with the national ACLU, ACLU of Southern California, ACLU of San Diego and Imperial Counties, and ACLU California Action to exchange best practices and to identify and deploy/administer any shared infrastructure.
Human Resources & Diversity Equity and Inclusion (DEI)
- Big Picture Oversight: Provide big picture oversight of the management of the human resources program (including recruiting and onboarding program, employee relations, policy and procedure development and implementation, benefits administration) and in the overall evaluation and improvement of HR practices.
- Diversity, equity, and inclusion: Provide leadership to integrate DEI goals in the full spectrum of HR practices and in the organizational culture and climate, by producing measurable and sustained results and improvements.
- Labor Relations: Work closely with the HR Director and General Counsel on collective bargaining and labor union relations, ensuring that the organization respects the rights of employees in the union and providing for effective management.
- Financial Strategy: Provide strategic financial leadership on issues affecting the organization, including deployment of resources and long-term planning to achieve our mission.
- Internal Controls: Ensure strong internal controls, financial systems, and effective procedures in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles and best practices of financial management.
- Financial Management & Accounting: Ensure a rigorous budget process, timely reporting during the year and an efficient year-end closing, annual audit, and tax return processes.
- Investment Oversight: Make recommendations for investment levels and choices consistent with our socially responsible investment guidelines.
Operations and Facilities Management:
- Provide oversight of administrative, procurement and operational functions for all offices, including Sacramento and Fresno sites, which are leased offices, as well as the San Francisco office, which is a building owned by the organization.
- For the San Francisco site, oversight responsibilities include property management, relationship with building co-owner, code compliance, and capital improvements.
IT Infrastructure Oversight
- Ensure that IT infrastructure is aligned with organizational and staffing needs, including working closely with external IT managed services provider to strategize and implement IT solutions.
- Authorize business technology decisions, purchasing and project implementations. Ensure information security is in line with ACLU NC practices.
- Supervise IT staff, as needed.
Compliance and Risk Management
- Working closely with General Counsel:
- Oversee risk management, including MOUs, contracts, and other legal documents and agreements, serving as final approver and signer on contracts after review by General Counsel
o Coordinate on FPPC reporting and compliance
- Identify areas of vulnerability and risk across the organization, including evaluating and aligning organizational policies, protocols, guidelines, and practices to be consistent with compliance program.
- Develop and implement internal controls and conduct internal spot audits.
- Ensure adequate insurance and also coordinate those insurance requirements with the other ACLU California organizations.
- Ensure that the ACLU Nor Cal 501c3 and 501c4 entities have sufficient and necessary separation, while benefiting from sharing resources to advance their missions.
- Health and Safety: Ensure organization is compliant with all laws relating to hazard control and industrial health/safety – including with the organization’s continuing response to COVID and future health hazards, as well as physical security of staff/facilities, safety risk assessments and injury prevention programs.
Leadership, Management and Strategy
- Board Relations: Work closely with both the Union and Foundation boards, and their respective board committees, to fulfill their fiduciary duties. Support their direct reports in their work with their respective board committees (especially Finance and Investment Committee, Audit and Compliance Committee, and Personnel Committee) and work closely with both the Union and Foundation boards to fulfill their fiduciary duties.
- Organizational Management:
- Serves as a key member of the ACLU-NC’s Executive Management Team and Senior Management Team
- Directly supervise 3-5 reports at the level of directors and managers and provide leadership and cohesion to the administration of functions including Finance, HR, and Operations departments (approximately 15-20 Administrative staff).
- Builds strong relationships with the departments, managers, and staff in Development, to steward donor resources and relationships, and in Legal/Policy, Communications, and Organizing to develop and deploy systems that enhance the organization’s effectiveness to carry out its programs.
- Handle a variety of special projects, and other related duties, as assigned
- Consistently apply our Equity & Inclusion philosophy and values to each function and to the overall organizational management, producing measurable and sustained results to advance equity.
- Promote a culture of high performance and continuous process improvement.
- Policy Development: Working closely with General Counsel and other key stakeholders, develop and implement policies and procedures of the organization by way of systems and education that will improve the overall operation and effectiveness of the organization.
- ACLU Collaborations: Collaborate with the national ACLU, ACLU of Southern California, ACLU of San Diego and Imperial Counties and ACLU California Action in the areas of finance, operations, IT and HR to exchange best practices and identity and deploy any shared infrastructure.
The Chief Operating Officer will be a focused, self-motivated individual who is deeply invested in the defense and expansion of civil liberties and civil rights. They will be a broadly skilled organizational management superstar who is willing to both work at the strategic level and roll up their sleeves and dig into the nuts and bolts of two organizations. They will be a results-oriented leader who creates effective managerial and administrative processes and structures; has a demonstrated commitment to equity and inclusion; takes leadership initiative and engages in strategic goal setting; listens well, communicates clearly, and seeks advice and feedback from others; has experience leading teams, facilitates problem-solving, and has top-notch organizational skills and attention to detail.
Education / Experience:
- A. or equivalent education and experience
- Deep experience in managing and administering organizations., including 10+ years of directly related experience. This experience can be based in non-profits, for-profits, campaigns, or government. Successful candidates may have their deepest experience in any of the major functions of the position, but must demonstrate knowledge and familiarity across most of the functions, and must show overall aptitude and experience in organizational management
- Minimum of 5 years leadership experience in a supervisory role, with a depth of experience in managing teams and the success of people who report to you.
- Experience creating effective processes, systems, and structures
Required Skills / Competencies:
- Effective written and verbal communication skills
- Strategic and solutions-oriented thinker. Can handle multiple projects at once, meet deadlines, and effectively manage your time. Takes pride in the quality of work and exceptional level of attention to detail.
- Thrive in a busy, bustling environment, and have the ability to easily balance being available to staff while staying focused on details that matter
- Strong analytical abilities and proven accomplishment in a position requiring independent planning and efficient utilization of resources
- Excellent judgment, tact and diplomacy
- Excellent organizational and project management skills
- Demonstrated experience in areas of diversity, equity and inclusion and applying those frames to the administration of an organization
- Comfort with learning and using computer applications, for example HRIS systems, accounting platforms, constituent management systems, video conferencing, etc.
- Highly proficient in Microsoft Office 365 Suite, especially Outlook, Word, and Excel.