Executive Director, AEA

Washington, D.C.
Sep 27, 2017
Jan 08, 2018
Executive, Director
Full Time

SmithBucklin, a 100 percent employee-owned association management company, is hiring an Executive Director to work closely with the board of directors for its client, American Evaluation Association (AEA) based in our Washington, D.C. office. The goal of this leadership role is to work closely with the board, members of the evaluation community, and organizations that use evaluation to demonstrate the value AEA as well as the importance of evaluation in improving society. This person will work with AEA leaders to strategize on how to achieve the organization's strategic plan through programs and membership activities and programs.

AEA began in 1986 as a result of a merger of three research and evaluation organizations. Today, AEA is an organization with over 7400 members, 33 affiliates, 56 Topical Interest Groups with 17% of its membership based outside of the United States. Members are academics and practitioners who engage in evaluation activities from a social science perspective in a variety of settings.

AEA's mission is to improve evaluation practices and methods, increase evaluation use, promote evaluation as a profession, and support the contribution of evaluation to the generation of theory and knowledge about effective human action.

The timing of attracting a new leader coincides with both an exciting and critical time in AEA's evolution. With a forward-looking strategic plan, the new leader will have the opportunity to collaborate with AEA's members to create a meaningful future for the organization.

What You Will Do

  • Establish yourself as a leader in the evaluation community
  • Identify and implement new, relevant programs in alignment with the organization's strategic plan, mission, visions, values
  • Work closely with the board to develop long- and short-term strategic plans to strategically expand the benefits of the organization and create a strategy position the organizational stakeholders
  • Oversee the development of new programs and offerings including the implementation of a professional development program
  • Engage in evaluation related policy discussions with the Evaluation Policy Task Force
  • Lead staff and collaborate with volunteers for program planning, solutions, support and service delivery
  • Track the effectiveness of organizational programs and enhance the Board of Director's decision making ability by establishing data and monitoring systems
  • Continue to enhance the Board's understanding and practice of Policy Governancetm as a governing methodology
  • Continue to enhance the Diversity and Inclusion initiatives employing inclusive decision-making methodology and viewing solutions through an equity lens

This Role Might Be for You If You Are…

  • A strategic and visionary leader, with the ability to envision future possibilities and translate them into breakthrough strategies
  • A confident collaborator who effectively fosters formal and informal collaborative approaches and relationships inside and outside the organization by serving as a community builder
  • Action-orientated and someone who comfortably balances the excitement of developing new opportunities with the ability to create thoughtful and integrative processes
  • Knowledgeable about the field of evaluation in order to lead strategic initiatives to influence the future of the evaluation profession
  • A professional with fundraising experience in fundraising and grant-making/receiving with organizations focused on enhancing the public good
  • Highly collaborative, with a proven record of accomplishment in building partnerships and fostering collaboration with a professional community to meet shared objectives, in addition to sourcing and deploying resources (board, volunteers, partners, staff) effectively and efficiently while anticipating the needs of multiple stakeholders
  • A strong communicator that has proven success developing and delivering multi-mode communications and implementing public relations strategies that convey a clear message while promoting the mission of the organization
  • Financially savvy, with a keen understanding of key financial indicators and the highest standards of fiscal accounting, controls and best practices to make better business decisions
  • Someone with vision and purpose that has a history of painting a compelling picture of the vision and strategy of an organization and motivating others to action


  • A minimum of 10 years of experience in administrative roles within the non-for-profit sector, preferably with a similar professional association
  • Experience as an Executive Director, CEO working with a volunteer board of directors, preferably using the Policy Governancetm methodology
  • Demonstrated passion for the mission of his/her organization, his/her professional community and cultivating a collaborative culture
  • Knowledge and a measurable track record of elevating the profile of an organization through outreach and policy development
  • Experience in managing all financial aspects a non-profit organization
  • Experience in developing and working with volunteer members in a collaborative manner
  • Relationship building skills to cultivate and maintain engagement with volunteers
  • A track record of driving successful programs
  • History of leading a staff of full-time employees and managing their professional development
  • An undergraduate degree is required; an advanced degree is preferred
  • CAE (Certified Association Executive) is preferred

Where Do You Fit?

As an accomplished executive, working at SmithBucklin will offer you countless opportunities to advance your career growth, acquire meaningful knowledge and gain rich experiences while leading highly respected membership organization. By working collaboratively with smart, ambitious, multi-talented, genuine and hardworking colleagues, you will build meaningful, deep and enduring relationships that will serve you well throughout your career, regardless of your chosen path. In addition, as a 100 percent employee-owned company, SmithBucklin offers all of our people - regardless of position or compensation - an equal chance to experience the fulfillment and reap the benefits of ownership. As owners, our employees control the destiny of SmithBucklin and are unified in the goal of building a great, enduring company.

Equal Employment Opportunity

At SmithBucklin, Equal Employment Opportunity is our commitment and goal. All qualified candidates will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, national origin, gender, age, religion, disability, sexual orientation, veteran status, marital status or any other protected status designated by federal, state or local law. Applicants are encouraged to confidentially self-identify when applying. Employment is contingent upon successful completion of a reference and background investigation based on position.