Southwest Initiative Foundation Job Description
We believe that dignity and belonging are core human values and that all people deserve the opportunity to reach their full potential.
We are a human-centered organization and acknowledge that people have different needs and aspirations. We commit to removing barriers that prevent full participation in southwest Minnesota’s abundant opportunities. We use our resources to create opportunities for all people to thrive in the communities they call home.
The Southwest Initiative Foundation is an equal opportunity employer and proudly values diversity. We encourage candidates of all backgrounds to apply.
Community Engagement Specialist
The Community Engagement Specialist performs a wide range of technical and interpersonal activities across southwest Minnesota to build and strengthen southwest Minnesota toward a more fully inclusive region where all people thrive by identifying strengths and challenges, building community-based skills and being a resource to the region. The Community Engagement Specialist strengthens Southwest Initiative Foundation’s overall impact of our commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging through community-led partnerships, especially with Black, Indigenous, and People of Color. This specialist provides leadership, research and community engagement to create cohesion for SWIF’s emerging leadership and Grow Our Own efforts across our region. This leader is responsible for nurturing community opportunities that impact critical needs in southwest Minnesota by connecting to and working with southwest Minnesota residents, teams and organizations that span sectors. They serve as a liaison between the Foundation and community leaders, as well as the nonprofit community. As such, this position requires exceptional interpersonal and communication skills. Additionally, this position offers a high degree of flexibility and creativity for the individual to develop and promote new initiatives and projects that align with SWIF’s values, goals, and mission.
- Provide structure for community forums and community building opportunities around the Grow Our Own initiative, especially in the diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging areas. Facilitate community and regional dialogues; engage and empower local leaders. Develop and evaluate engagement modules and materials. Promote programs, including presentations at local informational sessions as well as state and regional conferences as appropriate.
- Deliver field knowledge of economic mobility issues, opportunities, and research; the experience of BIPOC, LGBTQ+, and other marginalized communities; to stay abreast of trends, research and emerging opportunities that impact local communities, regional stakeholders and SWIF.
- Explore and pursue partnership opportunities including, but not limited to, Welcoming Communities, Lead for America, and True Tuesdays to provide resources to communities related to Grow Our Own opportunities, supporting our most vulnerable populations through innovative approaches.
- Facilitate assessment, planning and accountability with local partners to create pathways to leadership opportunities.
- Be a working partner for the Emerging Leaders Cabinet, including assisting in the recruitment and orientation of members; participating in applicable meetings, community experiences, relationship-building, and leadership capacity-building opportunities.
- Fully engage in the development and deployment of community engagement practices and principles for SWIF staff and stakeholders.
- Create the programmatic work plan and budget, including benchmarks and evaluation; prepare board and annual reports.
- Perform other duties as assigned
KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS, AND ABILITIES REQUIRED:
- Educational or knowledge base and interest related to creating a more equitable and just world. We will consider lived experiences and experience in community organizing & convening in both formal and informal settings. This is a mid-entry level position.
- Excellent relationship-building, facilitation and training, grassroots organizing, public speaking, and problem-solving skills
- Strong knowledge of the nonprofit sector, volunteer management, and program design and evaluation principles
- Ability to lead, equip and empower others in informal, non-supervisory situations
- Strong interpersonal, written, and verbal communication skills; ability to clearly articulate, present, and promote ideas and issues before a wide range of stakeholders.
- Appreciation of southwest Minnesota and its unique attributes; team-player; self-directed; customer-service oriented; detail-oriented; flexible; innovative
- Working knowledge of Microsoft Outlook, Excel and Word; database management and the ability to learn and adapt to new technologies
- Ability to lift 20 pounds on occasion
- Must have a current driver’s license and an insured personal vehicle.
- This position requires extensive travel, mainly within the southwest Minnesota region. Possible evening and weekend commitments.
Manages Complexity, Values Differences, Cultivates Innovation, Nimble Learning, Resourcefulness, Demonstrates Self Awareness, Communicates Effectively, Situational Adaptability, Plans and Aligns, Strategic Mindset, Drives Engagement
Southwest Initiative Foundation employees are expected to demonstrate these core values: Integrity, Equity, Curiosity, Collaboration and Optimism.
STATUS: REPORTS TO:
Full Time, Exempt Vice President for Community Impact
SWIF region-based field office with regular Hutchinson office presence, or Hutchinson-based with flexible work option