Fair Food Network is seeking its next Senior Director, Impact Investing to lead its Fair Food Fund and impact investing programming. This work is reimagining how capital in all forms – financial, social, intellectual – moves in communities so that food entrepreneurs can be leaders of a more equitable future. Fair Food Network deploys multiple tools — from financial investments to capacity building to policy advocacy — in pursuit of its mission to grow community health and wealth through food. Fair Food Network focuses on creating immediate impact alongside systemic change in ways that harness the power of the food economy to address root causes of racial, social, and environmental inequities. Together with a national network of partners, the Fair Food Network is generating improved health, economic well-being, and environmental regeneration. The successful candidate will blend impact investing skills and knowledge of effective entrepreneurial support strategies with strategic thinking, superb communications skills, and an entrepreneurial approach to advance Fair Food Network’s impact in this rapidly evolving space.
Fair Food Network impact investing programming includes a national Food Fund that deploys integrated, catalytic capital investments, often in partnership with other community lenders, as well as a growing array of technical assistance offerings. The program’s goal is to unlock opportunity for entrepreneurs, with a focus on businesses led by women and BIPOC entrepreneurs, in pursuit of a thriving, equitable local food economy. Current areas of work are in Michigan, the Northeastern US, and Camden, New Jersey.
Over the last 8 years, Fair Food Network has supported hundreds of entrepreneurs with technical assistance and invested $4 million in businesses across nine states. Its work enables deals that otherwise might not be possible, developing leaders and fostering new funding collaboratives. In Michigan, Fair Food Network is the administrator of the Michigan Good Food Fund, a statewide collaboration that supports good food entrepreneurs working to increase access to healthy food and spark economic opportunity in places that need it most.
As Fair Food Network looks to the future, it is expanding its vision and seeking to grow its impact. This includes bringing in new and diverse resources and continuing to innovate, expand its offerings, and deepen the community integration of place-based collaborations like the Michigan Good Food Fund.
This full-time position will be at the forefront of this critical work, in collaboration with a dedicated team of four (4) direct staff reports and several consultants.
OPPORTUNITIES AND CHALLENGES FACING THE NEW SENIOR DIRECTOR
Reporting to Kate Krauss, Executive Director/Chief Operating Officer of Fair Food Network, the Senior Director, Impact Investing will engage in the following challenges and opportunities:
Craft and implement a strategic vision for the Fair Food Fund.
- Shape and evolve the program thesis, including:
- The deployment of integrated capital and capacity-building investments that catalyze other investments;
- Community engagement strategies, including developing and refining community ownership, localized decision-making, and power shifting models; and
- Strengthen place-based models that bring together community partners for collective impact, including the Michigan Good Food Fund.
- Provide vision for portfolio construction to ensure the Fair Food Fund is meeting the needs of entrepreneurs, community and lending partners, and investors, as well as contributing toward Fair Food Network goals.
- Identify and drive opportunities where the Fund’s risk-tolerant capital can be deployed to close deals that otherwise wouldn’t be possible.
- Engage the Fund investment committee to provide optimal strategic support and oversight.
Demonstrate sector leadership and fundraising acumen.
- Represent FFN’s work in public forums, industry events, and with prospective and current funders/investors.
- In collaboration with our development team, grow the network of funders and investors supporting community investment, building relationships, and serving as “opener” and/or “closer” for significant gifts.
- Develop content for proposals and reports, quarterly and annual impact reports, portfolio analyses, essays for regional and national publication, and other pieces as needed.
Manage a cohesive and collaborative team.
- Contribute as a member of Fair Food Network’s Leadership Team, bringing a collaborative and strategic approach to growing a strong, diverse, and healthy organizational culture.
- Guide, develop, and mentor program staff, and manage the team to achievement of measurable objectives aligned with long-term vision.
- Support program evaluation including refinement of short-term outcomes and long-term results measuring social impact.
QUALIFICATIONS OF THE IDEAL CANDIDATE
While no one candidate will embody all the qualifications enumerated below, the ideal candidate for the Senior Director position will possess many of the following professional and personal abilities, attributes and experiences:
- Experience in direct lending, private investment, and/or community development finance.
- Demonstrated success in deal sourcing and designing creative financing strategies, particularly within Black and Latino/a communities.
- Highly developed acumen for integrating community engagement into program implementation.
- Strong presentation and oral communications skills and experience with selling a program to funders, industry partners, and other stakeholders.
- Management experience with proven ability to grow and mentor an efficient, committed, and creative team.
- Entrepreneur and “builder” orientation with a track record of professional innovation paired with a desire and ability to shape the internal systems necessary to support its success.
- Vision and passion for this work, including a desire to push against the status quo and bring about change.
COMPENSATION AND BENEFITS
The starting salary for this position is $140,000. Comprehensive benefits include: flexible Paid Time Off (PTO); available comprehensive health insurance (medical + dental + vision) for employees and dependents with a low employee contribution; available 5% employer match on a 401k; up to 12 weeks of Family/Parental leave; and opportunities for professional development.
Fair Food Network is headquartered in Ann Arbor, Michigan and prefers this Senior Director position to be co-located within commuting distance. A relocation package is available. Remote employment will be considered for exceptional candidates anywhere in the United States, provided that s/he/they are able to attend meetings virtually, make regular trips to Fair Food Network headquarters and work during regular Eastern Time Zone office hours. Travel to client sites and stakeholder offices around the US will be required.
More information about Fair Food Network may be found at: fairfoodnetwork.org
Fair Food Network’s commitment to diversity includes the recognition that our mission is best advanced by contributions of people of diverse backgrounds, beliefs, and culture. Recruiting and mentoring staff to create an inclusive organization that reflects the diverse communities that we serve is a priority, and we encourage applicants of all ages, cultures, races, colors, religions, national or regional origins, disability status, sexual orientation, gender identity, veteran status or other status protected by law.
Ann Arbor, MI