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Now Hiring: Executive Director (Half Time)

“Advancing the treatment of swallowing disorders in our lifetime”

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Position Description

Executive Director (half time)


The National Foundation of Swallowing Disorders was founded in 2006 as a 501 (c)(3) non-profit. It is the leading resource for increasing dysphagia (swallowing disorder) awareness, providing patient/caregiver support worldwide, promoting promising dysphagia research, and providing dysphagia education to both patients and therapists.

We advance the treatment and resources for those living with dysphagia by offering programs, webinars, support groups, patient referrals, university outreach, awareness campaigns, and select educational grants for professionals who treat and support those with swallowing disorders.

The NFOSD also funds innovative research initiatives. This has included funding in 2013 for Tongue Stem Cell research which became an FDA Phase I approved human trial in 2016. We are currently funding an outcomes research program on the annual cost impact of Dysphagia in the U.S.

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About the position

Reporting to the Board of Directors, the Executive Director (ED) will have overall strategic and operational responsibility for the NFOSD staff, programs, fundraising, daily operation, marketing and public relations, IT and business plans. Preference will be given to those with non-profit fund-raising experience and knowledge of this medical field.

The Executive Director is currently available as a half-time position with the expectation that it will grow into a full-time position over time as the Foundation becomes more fiscally sustainable. The timeframe from half-time to full-time is largely dependent on the Foundation’s finances and the Executive Director’s mutual desire to move into a full-time position. The Foundation will make a minimum one year commitment to fund this position. The Board of Directors and the successful candidate should recognize that both the responsibilities and priorities for this position will evolve over time. Fiscal sustainability along with maintaining the high quality of ongoing operations will top the responsibility and priority list during this initial year.



Leadership & Management

  • Ensure ongoing programs and offer rigorous program evaluations. Manage daily administration of financial obligations, fundraising, communications and systems; recommend timelines and resources needed to achieve strategic goals.
  • Actively engage and energize NFOSD staff, board members, event committees, partnering organizations, funders, supporters and volunteers.
  • Assist in developing, maintaining and supporting a strong board of directors; seek and build board involvement with strategic direction for ongoing programs and growth initiatives.
  • Develop and put in place effective systems to track progress and regularly evaluate program components, so to measure success that can be effectively communicated to the board, funders and other constituents.
  • Take on special projects as prioritized by the Board of Directors.



  • Manage day-to-day operations of the Foundation. This includes, but is not limited to the following: paying bills, maintaining insurance, writing letters of donation acknowledgement, triaging/organizing patient contacts, and overseeing/balancing financials monthly.
  • Organize ongoing awareness and educations programs such as our webinar series, e-newsletter, and patient stories.
  • Directing website and social media activities.



  • Establish an on-going plan to grow NFOSD membership including developing a method to monitor and renew memberships.
  • Identify new fundraising opportunities with current and new sponsors.
  • Facilitate the planning and managing the Foundation’s participation in conferences. Attend the conferences.



  • Manage and refine all aspects of communications from web presence, to communication between board members and medical board members, employees, supporters and sponsors.
  • Direct and facilitate social media contacts with the assistance of our current social media manager.


Planning and New Business

  • Begin to build partnerships in new markets and with new sponsors.
  • Help the Foundation be the top national and international organization that publishes and communicates news and results of research into dysphagia and swallowing problems.
  • Begin to build partnerships in new markets, establishing relationships with funders and political and community leaders.



The Executive Director will be thoroughly committed to the National Foundation of Swallowing Disorders’ mission. All candidates should have proven leadership, fundraising, coaching and relationship management experience in the non-profit arena. Other qualifications include:

  • Organizational management with the ability to coach staff, manage and develop teams and committees, set and achieve strategic goals and manage a budget.
  • Past success working with a board of directors with the ability to cultivate existing board member relationships.
  • Strong marketing, public relations and fundraising experience with the ability to engage a wide range of stakeholders and cultures.
  • An understanding of Dysphagia and the medical field and culture. Experience working with Speech Language Pathologist or physician’s group or being an SLP would be very helpful.
  • Strong written and verbal communications skills, a persuasive and passionate communicator with excellent interpersonal and multidisciplinary project skills.
  • Action-oriented, adaptable and innovative approach to business planning.
  • Ability to work effectively in collaboration with a diverse group of people.
  • Passion, idealism, integrity, positive attitude, mission-driven and self-directed.


Salary, location, and timing

Salary is based on a half-time position. It is competitive and in line with non-profit industry guidance for organizations of our size. It will also be commensurate with experience. The salary range is $35,000 to $50,000 (annualized that would be $70,000 to $100,000).

The NFOSD does not have a physical office. Work will be performed from a home-based location and the hours are flexible making this ideal for those in part-time clinical practice, graduate level students who have a proven workforce record with a minimum of 3 years of relevant work experience, patients with a swallowing disorder (or their caregivers), and educators.

We are actively recruiting and hope this fill this position by the end of the 3rd quarter 2017.



Interested applicants are encouraged to submit a cover email and resume to by the end of July 2017. No hardcopy letters or resumes will be considered. If there is interest on our part, we will contact you. Candidates should expect a round of online interviews by board members. Background checks and references will be requested as needed.