President, Atlantic Division MS Society of Canada

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1 President, Atlantic Division MS Society of Canada The Opportunity The MS Society of Canada is seeking a new President, Atlantic Division to lead a dedicated team of employees and volunteers to help achieve the MS Society s mission. The President will be the most senior champion and ambassador for the Society s activities in the region, promoting its important role and work to people with MS, volunteers, donors, potential donors, and governments. Key among the President s priorities will be increasing our fundraising and public profile, developing strong government relations, and continuing the implementation of our organizational Renewal Initiative. Reporting to our national President and CEO, and working closely with the Division Board of Directors, the President will serve as a national leader as part of the Society s Executive Team. The President will foster a collaborative approach to the overall management of the Society s human and financial resources and will work extensively with regional chapters, the Atlantic Division Board and the National Office. This position is located at the Society s office in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. The MS Society For over 60 years, the MS Society of Canada has kept people living with MS at the centre of our work. The MS Society mission to be a leader in finding a cure for multiple sclerosis and enabling people affected by MS to enhance their quality of life has kept us focused on only those activities that move us closer to a world free of multiple sclerosis. The MS Society provides services to people with multiple sclerosis and their families and funds research to find the cause and cure for this disease. With more than 100,000 Canadians living with MS and 1,000 more diagnosed in Canada every year, the stakes are high, giving us the impetus to constantly look for ways to deliver on our mission as effectively as possible. We have a membership of 28,000 and are the only national voluntary organization in Canada that supports both MS research and services. Conscious of its rich history, and against a backdrop of a rapidly changing environment, the MS Society is not standing still. In late 2011, the Board of the MS Society launched the Renewal Initiative. Under the direction and leadership of the Board of Directors of the MS Society, a taskforce was struck to examine all aspects of the MS Society, including its internal structure, roles and responsibilities to determine if there are ways we can more effectively and efficiently deliver on our mission. The Board has mandated the Executive Team to lead the implementation of the Renewal Initiative. A copy of the recommendations is available at

2 Of the $33 million that the MS Society disbursed in program expenditures last year: $9.7 million supported client services, including education programs, self-help groups, recreational and social programs, information and referral services, financial support for daily living or equipment needs. $9.8 million research funded research grants, scholarships, fellowships, support of our endms Research & Training Network. $6.9 million supported public education and awareness through communications campaign and activities. $4.0 million funded chapter and volunteer support and development, including volunteer recruitment and training. $1.7 million was directed to government and community relations, focused on educating all levels of government about needed changes to benefit people living with MS and assistance to clients dealing with local transit and accessibility issues. $1.1 million funded MS clinics that provide direct medical support to people living with MS. The Atlantic Division The Atlantic Division of the MS Society of Canada opened its doors in 1974 and is one of seven Divisions of the MS Society of Canada. The Division encompasses the provinces of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland and Labrador. There are ten active chapters in the Atlantic Division. Each chapter is the face of the MS Society in its geographic area, and connects the local community to the divisional and national offices of the MS Society. In Atlantic Canada, a centralized service delivery model ensures equal access to information and support from anywhere in the region. Support and education is also offered in communities served by chapters. A team of 13 staff, based in Dartmouth, NS works with volunteers, members, event participants, donors and researchers to make a difference in the 7,000 Atlantic Canadians living with multiple sclerosis. There are plans afoot to hire a professional fundraiser in St. John s, Newfoundland in the current year to seize opportunities for revenue growth in that province. Our Client Services team provides information, support, referrals, education and funding assistance, and responds to over 3,000 inquiries annually. Other programs include our MS Ambassador Program to increase awareness and visibility of multiple sclerosis and the MS Society, and advocating for persons affected by MS through our government relations activities. The Ideal Candidate The new President will possess broad-based experience in not-for-profit leadership, with particular strengths in the areas of fundraising and government relations. A strong and passionate representative of the Society, the new President will possess exceptional relationship-building and communications abilities. The new incumbent will be articulate and thoughtful, and a quick study able to think on their feet. Persuasive and professional, yet genuine and sincere, the ideal candidate will work hard to understand and act upon the important mission of our Society. Integrity and authenticity will permeate everything they do

3 A transparent and clear communicator with a consultative and collaborative approach, the new President will be adept at grasping nuance and astute at understanding our various constituencies and their motivations. The President will be equally comfortable addressing myriad audiences ranging from people affected by MS, to journalists, elected officials, and health professionals and researchers. The successful candidate will be an accomplished fund development leader with a track record of success in personally closing leadership gifts from individuals and organizations ($50,000+) and growing overall development programs and revenues. An ambitious and driven innovator, the new incumbent will bring an entrepreneurial mindset and a proven ability to set and achieve ambitious goals. Self-confident and assertive, the new President will be a model for the Division s staff. The successful candidate s leadership skills will have been honed by managing teams and supporting volunteers, ideally in a geographically-dispersed health care environment. With a strong team orientation, the new President will bring people together and harness the power of motivated and committed staff, volunteer and member groups. An inspiring and forthright leader, the successful candidate will have demonstrated success and affinity for mentoring and supporting others. The new President will be accountable directly to the President and CEO of the MS Society and will thrive in a complex environment. The Board of the MS Society of Canada has assigned responsibility for a number of shared services (i.e. information technology, research, human resources policy and compensation, real estate, financial management and gift processing) to the National Office thereby focusing the role of the divisions and divisional presidents on the promotion of the MS Society and its work to people with MS, volunteers, donors, potential donors, and governments. The new President will therefore be someone who is adept at an externally-facing role with a clear priority on relationship-building to advance the interests of people with MS. Key Responsibilities Fundraising and Donor Relations Works with the Director of Development to define targeted and efficient fundraising plans and ensures that these plans are implemented and assessed on a regular basis to achieve strategic objectives. Develops creative and visionary fundraising ideas for discussion with the Board and staff in keeping with nationwide strategies and policies. Actively engages with current and prospective donors on matters related to major gifts, bequests and annual giving initiatives. Leads the divisional implementation of nationwide strategies in marketing, fundraising and leadership giving such as on-line and leadership giving. Government Relations Works with the Director, Public & Government Relations to develop appropriate strategies to ensure government relations issues are identified and dealt with at the provincial and regional levels. Provides support in Atlantic Canada to the Society s federal government relations program with a focus on building relationships with Members of Parliament (MPs) and Senators representing Atlantic Canada. Cooperates with other organizations that promote social action in areas of mutual concern, using policies consistent with the goals of the MS Society of Canada. Works to develop effective relationships with the provincial governments, elected federal Members of Parliament, other agencies and MS Clinics

4 Public Awareness and External Relations With the Board Chair, serves as ambassador and chief spokesperson for the Atlantic Division. Works with the Director, Public & Government Relations to promote the Division s brand and strengthen awareness of its mission, vision and goals, and ensures that effective communication strategies are developed and implemented. Develops positive, collaborative working relationships with relevant stakeholders within the Society, MS Clinics, the health research community, health institutes and universities, provincial governments, regional health authorities, and other organizations. Leadership and Management Provides exceptional leadership to the staff of the Atlantic Division and rallies the team around a shared vision for the organization. Builds, develops and leads a strong team by sustaining an efficient organizational structure, creating an environment that enables staff to excel, and implementing effective human resource policies and practices. Works in conjunction with the national office on human resources, salary and benefits policies. Ensures opportunities and resources are available for coaching, mentoring and professional development. Board of Directors and Strategic Development In collaboration with the Board of Atlantic Division, leads the development, periodic updating, and implementation of a strategy and plans to guide the direction and work of the Atlantic Division dovetailing the Society s own strategic plan Action to end MS. Monitors the plan and its timeline, and recommends courses of action and alternatives to the Board for its consideration. Works with the Chair of the Board of the Atlantic Division, other officers and board committee chairs to ensure the effective functioning of the Atlantic Division Board of Directors, including regular reports to the Board on financial and other matters and preparing agendas and supporting documentation for Board Meetings. Builds and sustains effective working relationships with individual members of the Atlantic Division Board, and engages them to support fundraising activities. Regularly attends in-person meetings of the MS Society of Canada Board of Directors. Client Services & Volunteer Development Works with the Director, Community Programs to ensure that programs and services are developed, implemented and evaluated to meet the objectives established by the Board of Directors. Ensures that a high level of quality and cost-effectiveness is maintained in the delivery of services. Works with the Director, Community Programs to ensure that learning materials and opportunities are available which relate to recruitment, orientation, training and development of volunteers. Finance and Operations Oversees the achievement of the Atlantic Division s financial objectives. In consultation with the Chief Financial Officer, oversees development and preparation of the Atlantic Division budget and recommends it to the Board for approval. Ensures that appropriate processes and controls are in place to monitor and evaluate the effective handling of funds, and ensures the operational and financial performance of the Division through accurate financial and other management reports. Interaction with Chapters, Other Divisions, and National Works with the Director, Community Programs to develop good relationships between the Division and its chapters and between the chapters themselves. Serves as a resource to chapters to improve the functioning of their organizations, and as a communication link between chapters and National Office. Works to develop good relationships between other divisions and National, facilitating the exchange of information and feedback regarding programs and activities

5 Key Competencies Skills and Competencies: Exceptional leadership skills, including the ability to guide and support, motivate and delegate. Sound knowledge of the cornerstones of a health charity including fundraising, volunteer development, program delivery and development, marketing, and financial management. Solid administrative, supervisory and organizational skills. Strong interpersonal, team building, and conflict management skills. Superior communication and public relation skills. Ability to work with a wide variety of volunteers. Ability to represent the MS Society in an appropriate manner. Special Considerations: This position is located at the Society s office in Dartmouth. The President will be required to travel extensively throughout Atlantic Canada, travel to the National office in Toronto, as well as travel to conferences and meetings as appropriate. Occasional evening or weekend work will be required. About MS Multiple sclerosis is a disabling disease resulting from the inflammation of and damage to nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. It is the most common neurological condition in young adults worldwide. Canada has one of the world s highest prevalence rates for MS, with the disease estimated to affect more than 1 in 500 Canadians. The incidence of the disease is estimated at 1,000 new cases in Canada per year meaning three cases per day are being diagnosed. MS is three times more prevalent in women and affects children as young as three years of age. MS is extremely costly for families, employers and governments in terms of direct health care and support costs, loss of income and lost productivity. Close to 80% of people with MS are eventually unable to work full time. The economic burden to the Canadian economy of MS is estimated at almost $1 billion per year the lifetime economic burden is estimated at $1.6 million per person with MS. Canada is a worldwide leader in multiple sclerosis research. Thanks to our generous donors, the MS Society of Canada and its affiliated MS Scientific Research Foundation has granted over $140 million for MS research and researchers in Canada since This investment in MS research is achieving results. While the cause of MS is still unknown, there is a growing body of evidence which suggests that the disease is the result of a complex interplay of both genetic and environmental factors. Steady progress in MS research means researchers are no longer asking whether, but rather when the cause and cure for MS will be found. Over the past several decades, significant progress has been made in understanding MS. Interest in MS within Canada s research community has increased exponentially over this timeframe, especially within the past 15 years with the emergence of disease-modifying therapies. Over 150 clinical trials are currently underway. MS Society of Canada s research funding program has more than doubled over the past decade, both in terms of dollars and in the number of applicants funded. Despite this progress, significant questions about MS remain to be answered. The MS Society is more hopeful than ever that continued investigation of when and how the symptoms of MS first begin will help us better understand how to diagnose, treat and manage the disease at the earliest possible stage and, ultimately, to cure and prevent MS

6 More importantly, we know that this knowledge will help to protect the quality of life of people with MS and their families. It is vital to continue research in all areas of promise, to further specify our scientific understanding of the causes of MS and to determine effective ways to treat and ultimately prevent the disease. Philanthropy at the MS Society Since our founding in 1948, the core support of the MS Society has been from tens of thousands of dedicated individuals, companies and foundations in communities across Canada. Unlike many charitable organizations, the Society receives less than 2% of our revenues from government. Of the nearly $60 million raised annually, approximately: $24 million comes from Community-based fundraising events $15 million comes from Individual Giving and Direct Marketing $9 million comes from Leadership Giving (major and planned giving) $5 million comes from dinners, tournaments and third-party events $1.7 million comes from United Way and Health Partners $1.6 million comes from gaming $1.2 million comes from public awareness activities The remainder of revenue comes from sale of goods, investment income, memberships, and other miscellaneous activities In the Atlantic Division, in fiscal 2014 we raised approximately $1.6 million from our supporters, including over $1 million from community-based events and $215,000 from leadership giving activity. The endms Campaign The MS Society s ultimate goal is to end MS as soon as possible. Every effort must be made to accelerate discovery in the field of MS. To address this urgent need, the MS Society and the MS Scientific Research Foundation successfully completed the $60 million endms Campaign with a goal to attract, train and retain MS researchers in Canada and to expand and enhance their opportunities to conduct MS research. Building on this success, we continue to attract significant gift to support bold research priorities and other programmatic initiatives. For More Information KCI (Ketchum Canada Inc.) has been retained to conduct this search on behalf the MS Society of Canada. For more information about this leadership opportunity, please contact Sylvie Battisti, Senior Search Consultant at or by at Candidates who wish to apply for this position should ensure that a resume and letter of interest are sent to the above address by May 18, All enquiries and nominations will be kept in strict confidence. More information about the MS Society is available at The MS Society has a bold vision for the future. We have a team of dedicated professionals who share a common goal to end MS and to improve the lives of those affected by MS. We strive to be an employer of choice and provide a working environment that values diversity, team work, and professional development. The MS Society of Canada embraces diversity and encourages all qualified applicants to apply

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