LearningWorks Executive Director Search


The board of directors of LearningWorks in Portland, Maine, seeks a proven leader to drive this well-established, highly regarded nonprofit to new heights. LearningWorks responds to educational needs in the community by providing tutoring, mentoring, and alternative education opportunities designed to ensure the success of learners whose needs are not met by traditional systems.

In the face of pandemic-related learning losses, student disaffection, and the demands of a global, knowledge-based economy, the urgency of the organization’s work is at an all-time high. At this important juncture, the board seeks an executive director with business acumen and deep experience in resource development, community engagement, and team-building – an inspiring leader and exceptional manager who will work collaboratively to increase organizational impact and ensure sustainability.

Organizational Overview

LearningWorks arose from a neighborhood advocacy group that took shape originally in the mid-1960s to advocate for change on behalf of families struggling to maintain affordable housing. Through its housing rights work, the group came to appreciate that education is the best pathway out of poverty. LearningWorks was thus born in 1979, with a mission solely focused on education.

The nonprofit has grown to serve more than 1,500 people annually in 19 towns in southern Maine and 20 local schools. With an annual budget of more than $3 million, it currently advances its mission through four programs:

LearningWorks AfterSchool provides free, high-quality afterschool and summer programs for studentsin grades Pre-K-5 who are academically performing below grade level, and may lack the resources to access a paid afterschool enrichment or tutoring program. The primary focus is academic enrichment through project-based, hands-on, and engaging curricula.

English Language + Literacy Program provides adult immigrants and refugees the chance to thrive in their new country through free one-on-one tutoring and life-skills-based conversation classes.

Service Works organizes community service projects for young people making amends for non-violent offenses as a positive alternative to juvenile justice system involvement or school suspension or expulsion.

LearningWorks YouthBuild serves teens and young adults who have struggled to find their way in the traditional education system through an alternative education model that includes HiSET exam preparation, construction and culinary skills training, leadership development, work readiness instruction, case management and life skills.

With a committed board of directors, skilled and passionate staff, dedicated volunteers, and mission-aligned community partners, the new executive director will build on the successes of the past in steady pursuit our shared vision: a world in which every learner has the tools, resources, and confidence they need to realize their full potential. More information about LearningWorks can be found on the website:

Position Requirements

Leading LearningWorks requires a broad set of attributes and skills. Responsibilities include strategic planning in partnership with the board, financial and human resources management, public relations and fundraising, oversight of program development and implementation, and regulatory compliance. We expect that the successful candidate will embody our values – community, equity, leadership, learning, perseverance and racial justice – and bring the following to our organization:

• A passion for our mission and solid organizational leadership experience in the nonprofit sector, preferably in education or youth development

• A strong track record of resource development and diversification, including securing and managing public and private grants, cultivating major donors, and engaging businesses and others to ensure sustainability

• Financial acumen and experience developing, managing, and overseeing budgets of $2-4 million

• Exceptional communication skills, eagerness to engage as the public face of the organization, and the power to inspire

• Experience building effective external relationships and enduring community-based partnerships

• Demonstrated strength in attracting, developing, and retaining strong talent

• Success in working with a nonprofit board of directors in alignment with best governance practices

• Attention to detail and the ability to multitask, make sound decisions, and manage critical timelines

• Curiosity, high energy, and humility


The compensation package includes a competitive salary of $90,000-110,000 commensurate with experience; health, dental and life insurance; and PTO, bereavement and retirement benefits. This position reports directly to the board of directors. The successful candidate can expect a formal review after six months as well as an annual review.


LearningWorks is an equal opportunity employer. The board of directors recognizes and values leadership of diverse and historically marginalized communities and encourages people of all identities to apply. Applicants will not be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, national origin, ancestry, ethnic background, age, religion, familial status, disability, sex, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression and any other legally protected characteristic. The organization complies with all applicable national, state and local laws pertaining to nondiscrimination and equal opportunity.

To apply

Interested candidates should send a cover letter and resume to Starboard Leadership Consulting at the following address: search2@starboardleadership.com.

Paper copies may be sent to Jessica Weiner, Starboard Leadership Consulting, 84 Harlow St., Bangor, ME 04401, but electronic submissions of material are preferred. No phone inquiries, please. The application deadline is January 13, 2023, and review of all submissions will begin immediately thereafter.