POSITION: Executive Director

REPORTS TO: SBEF Board of Directors

STATUS: Exempt 


Santa Barbara Education Foundation (SBEF) provides and supports programs that enrich the academic, artistic, and personal development of all students in the Santa Barbara Unified School District.


The Santa Barbara Education Foundation seeks an Executive Director with the skills and experience to lead the high-performing staff of a strong and growing community organization. Reporting to the Board of Directors, the Executive Director will have management responsibility for a $2.5 million annual budget, 5 employees, multiple programs, fiscal sponsorships, and quasi-endowment funds. The Executive Director serves as the spokesperson of the organization,  cultivates and stewards relationships with the Santa Barbara Unified School District, teachers, supporters, other local foundations, and partner programs.  This position involves fostering a community-honoring organization that exemplifies transparency, integrity, inclusivity, and accountability.


Leadership & Management

  • Provide overall management of the Foundation’s operations.
  • Foster and sustain positive connections with local community organizations.
  • Oversee external written and verbal communications, public relations, and marketing.
  • Ensure ongoing programmatic excellence, rigorous program evaluation, consistent quality of finance and administration, long-term fundraising, communications, and systems; build strategies, timelines, and resources needed to achieve the strategic goals.
  • Supervise and manage all of SBEF’s staff including annual reviews.
  • Collaborate with and support a strong Board of Directors; serve as ex-officio of each committee (Executive, Hope Awards, Programs, Development, Marketing, Governance, Social Justice, and Finance); seek and build Board involvement with strategic direction for ongoing operations.
  • Continue to educate the Board, staff, and community on SBEF’s mission, programs, and day-to-day operations.
  • Ensure compliance with and implementation of goals, objectives, policies, reporting, and regulatory requirements. 
  • Maintain official records and documents, and ensure compliance with federal, state, and local regulations.
  • Actively engage and energize SBEF Board members, committees, partnering organizations, funders, and volunteers.
  • Implement effective systems to track scaling progress, and regularly evaluate program components, so as to measure successes that can be effectively communicated to the Board, funders, and other constituents.
  • Maintain all MOUs, fiscal sponsorship agreements, and internal policies (including bylaws, conflict of interests, whistle-blower, and payroll policies) up-to-date.
  • Meet with directors of fiscally-sponsored programs to keep abreast with progress and developments.
  • Coordinate staff alignment with the Santa Barbara Unified School District and their strategic priorities, working together toward common goals.

Development & Fundraising

  • Build relationships with current and potential donors, and oversee grant writing, event planning, and implementation.
  • Expand revenue-generating and fundraising activities to support existing and new program operations and regional expansion.
  • Research and write or supervise the writing of grants to foundations.  Oversee interim and final reports, as required, to donors.
  • Oversee the processing of gifts and acknowledgments.
  • Deepen and refine all aspects of communications—from web presence to external relations with the goal of creating a stronger brand.
  • Prioritize efforts for major donor development.
  • Lead SBEF’s major fundraising events including HOPE Awards, Love of Literacy, and End of the Year appeals.
  • Continue to build SBEF’s name and image in Santa Barbara County and publicize the activities of the organization, its programs, and goals through presentations before community organizations, local schools, and public events.
  • Cultivate Planned Giving with a willingness to continue education in this field.

 Finance & Strategic Planning

  • Lead the Board’s and staff’s effort to have an equity lensed approach for policy and grantmaking.
  • Understand and oversee all aspects of the finance function including bookkeeping, audit, and grants administration.
  • Oversee fiscal sponsorship for projects including payroll, disability claims, workers comp, medical leave, and insurance.
  • Work with the Board of Directors to develop/implement SBEF’s strategic plan and strategic objectives to move the mission and agenda forward.
  • Oversee annual work and budget planning, regularly updating plans and coordinating to ensure long-term objectives are met.
  • Prepare audit and filing of the IRS 990 with the support of an external CPA.
  • Approve and manage expenses relative to budget.
  • Manage all financial matters in accordance with SBEF policies and financial standards.

Communications & External Relations

  • Establish strategic and tactical plans for the implementation of the SBEF’s outreach into the local community.
  • Maintain a strong working relationship with the Santa Barbara Unified Superintendent and all fiscally sponsored projects of SBEF.
  • Oversee communications through social media channels.
  • Prioritize and build relationships with major donors, foundations, and community members.
  • Communicate vision and direction to donors, foundations, and community members.
  • Interact and network with community, public, and educational leaders to affect positive joint outcomes.
  • Work closely with local media to communicate SBEF’s mission and vision throughout the region.


  • Bachelor’s Degree or equivalent level of experience is preferred.
  • Experience coordinating implementation and evaluation of programs and curriculum.
  • Experience with Board management.
  • Strong written and verbal communications skills.
  • Experience managing in a team-oriented environment with demonstrated success.
  • Experience in finance and organizational budgets.
  • Cultural awareness competency.
  • Commitment to language access.
  •  Experience raising funds for nonprofits from diverse sources (Private, Corporations, Major Gifts, etc.) and meeting set fundraising goals.
  • Demonstrated commitment to social justice and education equity.
  • Demonstrated commitment and passion to support student access to education.
  • Experience with and desire to work with diverse cultures and the ability to engage people from a variety of backgrounds on a one-on-one basis or group format.
  • Comfort with large group presentations and public speaking.
  • Tech and social media savvy – have skills beyond basic computer literacy. 
  • Ability to work independently, setting own work priorities, managing responsibilities and time efficiently.
  • Ability to link neighborhood-based issues with regional, state, and national issues.
  • Sense of humor, creative thinker, and an informed risk-taker.


The physical demands described here (job description) are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.


Background check through the California Justice Department is required.


A competitive salary is commensurate with experience. Benefits include two weeks paid vacation in addition to 12 office holidays; medical insurance is provided to employees covered 100% by SBEF and also offers vision and dental insurance. SBEF closes offices the week between December 24 and January 1, which is paid time off. The Executive Director’s salary will be at least $120,000, with a range existing to recognize candidates with more extensive experience.


Please submit a resume, cover letter, and references in one combined PDF document by the initial deadline of May 6th, 2022 by 5:00pm to [email protected] with the subject: Executive Director. Position is open until filled.


Santa Barbara Education Foundation has a deep commitment to fostering equal opportunity in employment and encourages applications from individuals of diverse racial, ethnic, and cultural backgrounds and representing all genders, ages, spiritual beliefs, and identities.