Chief Executive Officer

May 11th, 2022
Chief Executive Officer

Chief Executive Officer

  • Full Time
  • Senior Level
Job Category: Executive
Location: Manhattan
Job Sectors: Arts & Culture, Community Improvement, Education


The Food Education Fund (FEF) supports culinary-focused public high school students and alumni to prepare them for college or careers in food-related industries. FEF runs various programs to accomplish this mission, including a job training and internship program, visiting chef program, and a student-run cafe and restaurant. FEF also awards scholarships and assists with the college prep and search process.

FEF’s journey began with Food and Finance High School in Hell’s Kitchen in 2008, providing job training and internships. Over time, the organization has broadened its program offerings to achieve four main goals for its students: Discover, Explore, Achieve and Launch.

Highlights of the programs include a visiting chefs program that features some of the most recognizable cooks in the world, scholarships to culinary schools and college, and a culinary competition that culminates in a week-long culinary experience in Italy for winning students. FEF launched Pass the Spatula, the only high school-based food media program in the country, and developed an entrepreneurial opportunity for students with the School Grounds Cafe, a fast-casual concept in the Barclays Center. They now have programs in 13 high schools throughout NYC. Students at FEF schools come predominantly from economically-disadvantaged neighborhoods in all five boroughs.

Mission: Through experiential learning in culinary arts, hospitality and entrepreneurship, Food Education Fund prepares and empowers its students and alumni to continue their education and cultivate sustainable careers.

Values: Community, Equity, Integrity, Employment, Joy



Food Education Fund is seeking a visionary leader to inspire, realize, and oversee the tremendous growth on the organization’s horizon. With deep industry relationships, a committed board, enthusiastic and engaged funding partners, and a desire to empower all of NYC’s culinary-focused high school students and alum, FEF has unlimited possibilities. The CEO will act as the public face of the organization, serving as the liaison between FEF and its board of directors, the primary school administrators, the industry partners, and government agencies.

In partnership with the Board of Directors, the CEO will lead and collaborate with a talented staff and oversee an operating budget of $2.0 million. The CEO will be prepared to grow that operating budget to $5 million within 3 years. The CEO will have the opportunity to develop and implement a strategic plan, strengthening synergy across programs, data, partnerships, and embrace the organization’s ambitious goals to expand programs, increase the budget and effectively reach more students.

The CEO will be a strong advocate for FEF and the students and alums. They will be a fearless fundraiser, building brand recognition and pathways for partnership and investment by representing the organization across education, corporate, public, philanthropic, and social sectors. They will be a passionate, authentic voice in state and national conversations on the topics of culinary education, hospitality, entrepreneurship, equity, and career pathways.



Strategic Vision and Leadership

  • Provide strategic vision to FEF in service of its mission and lead the organization into its next phase of development and impact.
  • Ensure that FEF’s vision and values are expressed in every aspect of the organization, including its culture, personnel, and programs.
  • Partner with the Board to continue to identify and cultivate culinary industry partners.
  • Direct strategy development and implementation, program growth, fundraising, community relations, educational program development, personnel administration, facilities and financial management, marketing.
  • Create and promote a positive, equitable and inclusive culture that supports and ensures open communication and alignment around the organization’s goals.
  • Provide inspirational leadership and direction to the team, encouraging innovation while ensuring the development and management of a high performing and effective organization; establish decision-making processes that will support FEF in achieving its objectives.

Fundraising & Business Acumen

  • Seek innovative and lasting funding opportunities and industry partnerships to increase mission visibility and strengthen programmatic impact.
  • Assume ultimate oversite for the effective and sound management of FEF’s operational infrastructure including optimizing policies, practices and systems ensuring the organization operates within budget guidelines.
  • Track and analyze metrics that identify fiscal strengths of organization and areas of focus for the short and long-term future.
  • Seek effective ways of engaging FEF’s Junior Board and alumni network in the ongoing growth of the organization.
  • Ensure that the flow of funds permits FEF to make continuous progress towards the achievement of its mission and is allocated properly to support present needs and future opportunities.
  • Oversee the financial status of the organization, including: developing long and short range financial plans, monitoring the budget and ensuring that sound financial controls are in place; set financial priorities accurately to ensure the organization is operating in a manner that supports the needs of the program and staff.

 Strengthening Infrastructure and Operations

  • Provide direction and vision to the organizational talent structure while ensuring all staff have clear roles and responsibilities.  Provide direction and vision on the infrastructure needed to ensure that there is capacity to achieve programmatic goals.
  • Facilitate cross-departmental collaboration and maintain clear internal communications across staff.
  • Ensure clarity and consistency throughout the organization’s strategy, operational methods, and data collection processes to support the continued development and management of a professional and efficient organization.
  • Recruit and manage a team of employees; provide empathetic leadership and development to department staff and amplify their contributions through mentorship, strategic instruction, and management.


The ideal candidate is detail-oriented, has prior fundraising and non-profit operations experience, and has launched and scaled programs based on data-driven KPIs. The candidate must show success with building and evolving organizational structure and delivering impact with agility. Experience in education, culinary arts, and/or hospitality is helpful but not required. Additional desired qualifications are included below:

  • At least 10 years’ executive leadership experience with a social services or social justice nonprofit. CEO experience with an organization serving youth, education is ideal
  • Strong analytical skills with knowledge of evidence-based program evaluation and community needs assessments
  • Capacity to manage data systems and identify solutions that resolve pain points while promoting greater efficiency and transparency
  • Expertise in creating and implementing strategic plans, including developing business and staffing plans to advance strategic goals
  • Prior experience working with a nonprofit board, including a demonstrable understanding of board development and governance
  • Successful track record cultivating individual, institutional, and governmental funder relationships
  • Experience overseeing government contract execution and compliance. Prior experience with NYC’s Department of Education or Department of Youth and Community Development is ideal
  • Highly organized, consistent, empathetic, and respectful when it comes to working with high school students from a variety of backgrounds
  • Have knowledge of drivers of educational inequity and key issues that impact youth development
  • Excellent relationship builder and comfortable reaching out to third parties for assistance and advice.
  • Flexible in working both independently and collaboratively. Self-motivated.
  • Willingness to address emergent priorities in any capacity
  • Exceptional editing, writing and verbal communication and interpersonal skills with a high emotional IQ
  • Ability to understand, translate, and adapt content for a variety of audiences
  • A management style that embodies respect, transparency, teamwork, and accountability
  • Ability to work with a variety of learning abilities

Compensation and BenefitsThe salary for the position is $220K-$250K. FEF offers all full-time employees a health insurance reimbursement plan.

This position description is based upon material provided by the Food Education Fund, an equal opportunity employer.

Food Education Fund

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