Director of Charlotte

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Venture For America is changing the face of entrepreneurship. We envision a world where anyone who wants to be an entrepreneur can be. We search the country for talented recent college grads who are eager to make a meaningful impact in their careers and in the community. We help them find jobs at startups in one of our thirteen U.S. cities across industries from edtech and clean energy to consumer goods. Then we help unlock their limitless potential as creators and builders by providing access to programming, funding resources, and an expansive network. Visit our website to learn more and check out our strategic plan to get an idea of where we’re headed in the coming years.

The role:
This is an exciting opportunity to drive continued growth for Venture For America and entrepreneurship in Charlotte. We’re looking for a sales/fundraising/partnerships professional who is passionate about building and fostering diverse and inclusive entrepreneurial ecosystems.

As the Director of Charlotte, you will be an ecosystem builder, opportunity connector, and revenue generator.

As an ecosystem builder, you will approach the work with a systems lens seeking to build transformative relationships and strategic partnerships across the local entrepreneurial, philanthropic and corporate community. You will be responsible for rallying a local network of donors, company partners, advisory board members, mentors, and ecosystem stakeholders around our shared vision for a more diverse and inclusive entrepreneurial ecosystem.

As an opportunity connector, you will build relationships across the entrepreneurial ecosystem with a continued focus on advancing our mission and finding ways to make connections that support and enhance the entrepreneurial and professional development of our network of Fellows and Alumni. You will seek out ways to add value to the broader entrepreneurial ecosystem as well as the VFA community.

As a revenue generator, you will be responsible for generating earned revenue and philanthropic support. You will collaborate with our Development Team to grow philanthropic support in Charlotte through engaging a diverse network of individual donors, and foundation and corporate supporters. You will also build meaningful relationships with local founders and serve as a talent partner to their startups by communicating the value of hiring VFA Fellows.

Salary range:

Location requirement:
Charlotte, N.C. (within 50 mile radius)

Start date:
Late August 2023

What you’ll do:
External relationship building (30%)
• Build transformative relationships with a variety of stakeholders across the entrepreneurial ecosystem and pitch VFA’s vision, mission, and benefits to each stakeholder group
• Build VFA brand awareness and serve as a positive, collaborate, and solutions-oriented representative for VFA in the community
Identify potential leads for the VFA donor pipeline in Charlotte and support the growth of local and national relationships in partnership with the Development team
• Grow, cultivate, and engage a donor pipeline of individual donors, and foundation and corporate partners
• Engage a Regional Advisory Board of 6-8 diverse stakeholders through regular board meetings and ad hoc engagements and event participation in order to increase their affinity for VFA; identify and recruit new, diverse members to help share the mission of VFA in Charlotte
• Track and maintain accurate donor, Company Partner, and/or Fellow records in Salesforce related to donations, moves management activities, and relationship
• Build a network of VFA champions who are mission and values aligned and identify volunteer opportunities for them to engage with VFA on a local and national level
Company partner recruiting (30%)
• Build relationships with a portfolio of 75+ diverse startup leaders and convert those that are a good fit to Company Partners that engage in the VFA Connect hiring process annually, with a goal of bringing in a cohort of 10+ Fellows each year
• Serve as the primary sales representative and talent partner for our network of VFA Company Partners seeking to add value to local startups and secure earned revenue through hiring fees
• Engage with VFA company partners on a regular basis to understand business needs and identify additional ways the VFA network can add value
In-city fellow experience and community building (25%)
• Build relationships with the current Fellows and Alumni who reside in your city and help identify people, organizations, and opportunities that could advance their entrepreneurial career and professional development; serve as a dot connector to make timely connections across these various groups and opportunities
• Execute and facilitate local programming that is designed by our national Programs team and takes place across all VFA markets as a core part of the VFA Fellowship experience
• Plan, execute, and host local events that build connections between the local entrepreneurial ecosystem and VFA community
Fellow recruitment and selection and other internal projects (15%)
In addition to the responsibilities unique to Community Directors described above, all VFA team members devote a portion of their time to Fellow recruitment and Selection, which occurs on an ongoing basis between August and April, as well as other internal strategic projects. In this capacity you will:
• Participate in local recruitment events, relationship building, and partnerships
• Evaluate written Fellowship applications, conduct candidate interviews, and serve as a facilitator for Selection Days
• Serve as a positive role model for VFA’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion initiatives
• Support additional organizational initiatives, priorities, and responsibilities, as needed

What you may have already done:
• Worked for 5+ years and have a proven track record of growing an organization/company/division through sales, business development, fundraising, and/or partnerships
• Worked for a startup or organization supporting startups and/or have experience supporting diverse entrepreneurs
• Developed a working knowledge of the Charlotte philanthropic and/or startup community
• Planned and executed events that range in scale from intimate (10 people) to large scale (100+ attendees)
• You may have experience being a thought leader or representing an organization or industry and served in panel discussions, keynote presentations, etc
• Achieved results while working autonomously with limited direction
• Created tangible impact while juggling competing deadlines, priorities, and various types of work
• Demonstrated familiarity and comfort with using fundraising and/or CRM systems

Work demands:
• Working with colleagues across the country leveraging remote technologies
• Occasional nights and weekends as necessary for programming implementation and networking
• Travel to VFA cities to lead or participate in VFA Programing including: occasional Selection Day participation (~2 days per trip, up to 3 times per year); occasional team retreats (dates and duration vary); occasional nights and weekends as necessary
• Staff members work remotely from a home office and collaborate with colleagues working remotely in each of our 13 cities. We provide a $750 tech stipend (renewed every three years) , a monthly $25 internet and $50 phone stipend to support staff members’ technology needs in their home offices

The good stuff:
• High performers at VFA are given substantial opportunity to grow and develop
• You’ll participate in a robust performance management system that will support in annual personal and professional goal setting
• You’ll earn a competitive salary, commensurate with experience
• We offer inclusive benefit packages with VFA covering majority employee premiums in medical, dental and vision with FSA and HSA eligibility, wellness and professional development stipends
• We have a generous vacation policy, plenty of paid holidays, expansive parental leave policy and a remote work environment
• VFA is a dynamic mission-driven environment with varied responsibilities and a different challenge each day (we mean it – there are always plenty of interesting problems to work on)
• You’ll work alongside an inclusive team of exceptionally motivated, high-caliber people

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