Omaha Housing Authority (OHA) is seeking its next Chief Executive Officer (CEO) to lead the agency in a rapidly evolving world of public housing. OHA has a long and exceptional history of service and advocacy for those it serves. With a committed Board and a skilled staff inspired by the vision of our next CEO, OHA aims to create and implement new, innovative strategies to tackle the challenges facing our residents and impacting all of us working to promote affordable housing, health, education, job readiness and strong families.
With a staff of 149, an annual operating and capital budget of $12.6 million, 2,800 public and tax credit housing units and 4,300 housing choice vouchers issued, OHA directly serves over 7,000 families, while impacting many others through our advocacy and collaboration with our many community partners.
More detailed information about OHA and its range of programs can be found at http://www.ohauthority.org
Great care has been taken to shape this recruiting process to empower a leader who will continue OHA’s dedicated service to its residents and realize our greatest potential contributions to affordable housing, healthy families and productive lives.
Public housing is changing, in part driven by federal policies that promote privatization, community engagement and healthy living. The complex policy and funding framework that has shaped public housing organizations have sometimes, by default, instilled cultures of constraint and rigidity. While regulatory standards must be adhered to, we believe they need not constrain innovation and creative and collegial problem solving.
OHA has a talented and committed staff, with subject matter experts and institutional historians well equipped to inform and support an aspirational agenda. A leader who inspires innovation, demonstrates and insists on transparency and leads a collaborative process to shape and hold the organization accountable to achieving strategic performance standards will find an eager staff and a deep well of expertise to inform and drive this agenda.
The successful candidate will find a number of unique strengths and resources to support innovative leadership, including:
- The OHA Board is keenly aware that change and great performance will rise out of a fully realized relationship between the board and CEO. The board is eager to work with a CEO who will bring strategic leadership and innovative ideas, who will support the board’s focus on high level strategy and policy, assure the board has the quality of information and accountability needed to meet its fiduciary duties, and who will collaborate with the board in its role as champion of OHA to the larger community. Should it prove to be helpful when the new leader is in place, we will welcome support from outside resources to strengthen and maintain excellent board governance and a fruitful relationship with the CEO.
- We understand that a CEO who is focused on overall strategy, communications and shaping a collaborative, creative culture will need to assemble a team with complementary skills in policy, finance, regulation, operations and development. The CEO will find staff eager to rise and respond to these needs and will find support to also identify new leadership from outside the organization to the extent that is called for.
- The board has engaged Christine Johnson of Johnson Macchietto Enterprises as interim CEO. Ms. Johnson is well known and highly respected in Omaha for her expertise in capacity building and organizational performance. Her mandate from the board has been to initiate this change and improvement process to help prepare the way for a permanent leader. Her efforts to promote trust, respect, responsibility, empowerment, authority and dedicated customer service have already begun to excite the interest of staff at every level.
- Candidates who are not familiar with Omaha should be aware there are unique and incredible resources to support innovation and community development. There is a compelling history of philanthropic, business, and community leaders coming together to support entrepreneurial, “can do” initiatives to strengthen the Omaha community, protect those in need and provide resources for health, education, job readiness, affordable housing and strong families.
The great service OHA has historically provided its clients is not well understood by the general public and so OHA has had limited engagement with this abundant network of community builders. We believe that as OHA demonstrates a greater capacity to collaborate with this network of supporters and reveal an appetite for innovation and expanded service to its clients and the community, that support will come.
- There are now material opportunities and resources to create affordable housing development in Omaha on a scale that will be notable at the national level and will be transformative to this community. OHA is in the ideal position to lead this development. In part, this is why we are calling for a leader with the skills and values that will help us achieve these noble goals, and why we are organizing to support such a leader.
ROLE AND RESPONSIBILITY
The CEO is responsible for providing strategic leadership and operational oversight by working with the Board of Directors and senior management team to establish and implement short and long-range goals, strategies, plans and policies. This includes the ability to build and sustain strong relationships with funders, key political and community constituents, colleagues and policy makers. It is crucial that the CEO has the reputation, knowledge and competency to impact and expand OHA’s contribution to the residents it serves and the greater Omaha community.
We seek a politically astute and financially savvy leader with the ability to set clear priorities, delegate and guide investment in people and systems; who has keen analytical, organizational, problem solving and emotional intelligence skills which support and enable sound decision making.
Reporting to the Board of Directors and the Board Chair, the CEO will have overall responsibility for the planning, implementation, administration and management of all agency programs, services and systems. A near term priority will be to lead the redevelopment of a number of outdated housing sites. S/he will serve as an advisor to the Board on all agency matters and can expect the active involvement and support of its members.
The CEO will be expected to work with the Board, staff, funders, policy makers and many stakeholders to enhance and continue the strategic evolution of OHA. S/he will be the spokesperson for the organization in a wide and highly visible range of situations, providing confidence-inspiring leadership, mobilizing broad based support, and identifying and acting on opportunities for the growth and funding of the agency’s mission.
Developing institutional strategy, forming external relationships to bolster programmatic, communication and growth strategies, fundraising and her/his role as the principal spokesperson for OHA will be central to this role. Working with the senior management team, the CEO is accountable to the Board for assuring that the agency’s activities achieve its service, advocacy, public policy, and performance and outcomes goals.
With the support of the senior management team, the CEO is accountable or the fiscal health and management of the agency. S/he oversees OHA's operating and capital budgets and maintains fiscal control over expenditures. S/ he provides leadership in identifying sources of public and private support for its operations and capital development, actively meeting with potential donors and growing an expanded and robust network of supporters.
The CEO must be vigilant in sustaining OHA's commitment to team building and must be attentive to internal management within the organization, assuring that all parts of the organization are working toward the same goals. Providing innovative, best quality services to those we serve is at the core of OHA's mission. The CEO must provide both leadership and management as OHA intensifies its focus on best practice models of development, advocacy, innovation and efficient delivery of services, and must act with confidence, knowledge and wisdom on behalf of those we serve.
OHA is seeking a CEO who has an unswerving commitment to improving the lives of those we serve - someone who will command respect for his or her accomplishments and inspire broad-based, deeply felt commitment to the advancement of the agency’s mission. Strong leadership, communication, fundraising and decision-making skills are critical to success in this position.
While maintaining excellent relationships with government and traditional supporters, the CEO must also expand OHA’s connection and influence with major donors, foundations, academic and research institutions and the business community. Integrity, strong written and oral communication skills and a passion for this important work is a fundamental requirement.
The CEO will be a leader with extraordinary vision who is able to realize that vision through a rich interaction with the Board, staff and those the agency serves. The CEO must have values that inspire a culture that is based upon respect, trust, connectedness, entrepreneurship, high ethical standards, and must have a proven ability to encourage teamwork and collaboration among many individuals and organizations.
The CEO must have a sophisticated understanding of the legal, social, educational and healthcare issues facing those we serve. The ideal candidate will have experience working with local, State and national government agencies and policymaking and grant making systems.
Experience and skills in the management of a large complex agency, and in the effective oversight of finance, human resources, operations and systems, will be key.
A minimum of five years’ experience in a senior leadership role is required. An advanced degree in social services, law, public policy, business or a related field is strongly preferred. The CEO must have Executive Management Certification through NAHRO or have the ability to acquire certification within the first twelve (12) months of OHA employment.
Resumes may be submitted in confidence to:
Ford Webb Associates
60 Thoreau Street
Concord, MA 01741
Email to firstname.lastname@example.org