Foster & Rescue Program Manager (volunteer Services Program Manager)

Fairfax, Virginia
$56,957.47 - $94,929.54 Annually
Nov 26, 2022
Dec 10, 2022
Full Time
Job Announcement

Are you an enthusiastic individual looking for a career where you can make a difference in the lives of animals and people? Do you have previous experience managing robust, multi-species foster and rescue programs, and/or experience in the veterinary field? Fairfax County Animal Shelter has an exciting position for you!

Works as a member of a high-performing staff team and leads a critical volunteer team providing care for at-risk and vulnerable animals and will work collaboratively and effectively with internal and external stakeholders to further the FCAS mission. Using best practices, innovative programs, and measurable outcomes, manages our robust foster program and rescue program, to ensure pets benefitting from foster receive the individualized care from trained foster volunteers, and to facilitate the transfer of animals in and from our shelter. Oversees one part-time employee currently who assists with program needs and will manage the anticipated both full-time merit Foster Program Assistant and Transportation Coordinator with the opening of the Lorton Campus Shelter.

This position will provide you with the opportunity to connect dedicated foster volunteers with the shelter pets who need them most - neonatal kittens, nursing moms with babies, injured and ill pets recovering from surgery and treatment, large dogs in need of a break from the shelter - while they become ready for adoption. Provides the opportunity to help pets from partner shelters by transferring pets into our shelter for the opportunity to meet their new families via adoption, and to help pets from our shelter be transferred out to rescues that better suit their needs. Both programs are incredibly robust, and critical to furthering the life-saving mission of our shelter.

Fairfax County Animal Shelter is the only open-access, municipal shelter located in Fairfax, Virginia, with a second animal shelter opening in Lorton during Spring 2024. Our shelter has a live release rate of over 90% and are very proud of our excellent volunteer and foster programs, compassionate staff, progressive sheltering policies and practices, and the wonderful animal-loving community we’re a part of.

  • Collaborates with animal shelter staff, under general supervision of the Communications and Outreach Manager, to determine foster and rescue program needs.
  • Performs planning, implementation, and coordination functions for the animal shelter's foster program of 200+ foster volunteers and 100+ rescue partners.
  • Determines foster and rescue program needs by collaborating with animal shelter staff and veterinarians.
  • Recommends and develops written policies and procedures needed to administer the Animal Shelter's foster and rescue programs.
  • • Formulates, recommends, and implements plans for the recruitment, screening, training, directing, and evaluation of Animal Shelter foster volunteers, and for sending and receiving rescue partners.
  • Recruits, coordinates, and trains foster volunteers to care for shelter animals with needs including, but not limited to, neonatal, nursing, sick or injured, contagious illnesses, being in the shelter for an extended period, and behavioral exigencies.
  • Coordinates with animal care managers, veterinarians, and shelter leadership team to determine which animals should be placed in foster.
  • Coordinates foster animal placements with foster volunteers and coordinates follow-up visits at the shelter for a variety of reasons.
  • Analyzes foster volunteer job tasks and designs job descriptions for positions. Updates the foster handbook and develops other written materials involved in the foster and rescue programs.
  • Serves as a liaison between foster volunteers and rescue partners with shelter staff and veterinarians.
  • Must possess excellent written and verbal communication skills and ability to maintain a professional composure when sensitive or emotional issues arise within the program.
  • Learns all aspects of shelter operations to be able to train fosters and communicate effectively with foster volunteers and rescue partners.
  • Monitors foster volunteer service hours and communicates regularly with foster volunteers through the shelter volunteer program management software system and other platforms.
  • Plans and implements foster volunteer appreciation activities.
  • May be required to work shifts at and/or be transferred to any Department of Animal Sheltering facility. May perform planning, coordination, and other management functions for the shelter’s Trap, Neuter, Return Program. May perform other related duties to meet the ongoing business needs of the organization.
  • Must possess excellent verbal and written communication skills and be able to communicate effectively with regard to animal care and treatment, and Shelter policies and programs. Must be comfortable in public speaking and training roles and be computer literate. Must demonstrate the ability to exercise sound judgment and maintain professional composure.
  • Must be efficient and able to work well under pressure and be able to work both independently and as a member of a team.

Note: May be required to work shifts and/or be transferred to any Department of Animal Sheltering facility.

Salary: The salary offer will be in the minimum to midpoint of the advertised compensation range ($56,957.47 to $75,943.71). Promotional rules apply for current Fairfax County Government and Fairfax County Public Schools employees.

Schedule: This position requires flexible scheduling for program and Shelter needs, including evenings and weekends and weekend rotations.

Illustrative Duties

(The illustrative duties listed in this specification are representative of the class but are not an all-inclusive list. A complete list of position duties and unique physical requirements can be found in the position job description.)

  • Establishes and maintains liaisons with agency program managers to insure efficient and continued use of volunteers;
  • Directs the preparation of reports, budgets, position papers, legislative input and proposals;
  • Prepares and presents speeches to civic and community organizations to promote volunteerism;
  • Coordinates annual plan of training offerings for volunteers and develops in-service training materials including program-specific manuals and resource materials for diverse volunteer workforce;
  • Supervises full performance level Volunteer Services Coordinators and volunteer positions.

Required Knowledge Skills and Abilities

(The knowledge, skills and abilities listed in this specification are representative of the class but are not an all-inclusive list.)

  • Ability to supervise both professional level staff and volunteers effectively;
  • Ability to develop, implement, and evaluate program goals and objectives;
  • Demonstrated interpersonal and organizational skills;
  • Effective oral and written communication skills, including effective presentation skills.

Employment Standards

Any combination of education, experience, and training equivalent to the following: (Click on the aforementioned link to learn how Fairfax County interprets equivalencies for “Any combination, experience, and training equivalent to”)
Graduation from an accredited college or university with a bachelor's degree in social or behavioral sciences, liberal arts, education, or personnel administration; plus two years of professional volunteer services coordination experience, including recruitment, selection, and/or placement of volunteers.


Driver's License (Required)
Fear Free Shelter Certification (Required within 3 months)

  • All newly hired employees are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 (two weeks after the last required dose) as a condition of employment or obtain approval of a medical or religious exemption prior to their start date. Proof of an exemption or vaccination status will be required during the pre-employment onboarding process. New employees who obtain an exemption from the vaccine mandate for medical or sincerely held religious beliefs may be subject to a weekly testing requirement. Vaccinated employees and employees with a medical or religious exemption will complete the attestation online on their first day of employment or shortly thereafter.
  • The appointee to the position will be required to complete a criminal background check and driving record check to the satisfaction of the employer.

  • Three years of progressively responsible foster and rescue program management.
  • Two years of supervisory experience.
  • Experience in an animal welfare-related organization.
  • Experience working with and handling animals, including orphaned, sick, injured, and behavioral-needs animals of various species and sizes.
  • Experience with volunteer database Volgistics, including updating volunteer records, designing web volunteer applications, auditing service and volunteer hours, and communication pieces in the database.

Visual acuity is required to read standard text and data on a computer monitor. Ability to operate keyboard-driven equipment. Pre-exposure rabies vaccination (required within 3 months). Ability to converse with volunteers, visitors, staff, and others in person, via e-mail, and on the phone, and make presentations in person and virtually. Ability to create materials and operate equipment necessary to complete work tasks. Work is somewhat sedentary; however, employee is required to walk, stand, sit, bend, kneel, climb stairs, and handle animals of various species; may be required to lift or carry up to 50 pounds occasionally. Uses hands to grasp, handle, or feel. Must be able to maneuver safely in kennels, dog play yards, cat rooms, small animal room, off-site events, etc. Ability to work a varied schedule, including early mornings, evenings, and weekends. Must not have allergies to animals or animal supplies (ex: hay, peanut butter, etc.) that will impede working in an animal environment. All duties performed with or without reasonable accommodations.

Panel interview and may include a practical exercise.

The population of Fairfax County is very diverse where 39.8% of residents speak a language other than English at home (Spanish, Asian/Pacific Islander, Indo-European, and others) and we encourage candidates bilingual in English and a foreign language to apply to this opportunity.

Fairfax County Government prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions, age, marital status, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetics, political affiliation, or military status in the recruitment, selection, and hiring of its workforce.

Reasonable accommodations are available to persons with disabilities during application and/or interview processes per the Americans with Disabilities Act. Contact 703-324-4900 for assistance. TTY 703-222-7314. EEO/AA/TTY.

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