Chicago Lights provides hope and opportunity to our city’s children, youth, and adults who face the challenges of poverty. Through supportive relationships and diverse programs, we empower people to thrive academically, secure economic stability, lead healthy lives, and build community.
Tutoring, the longest running Chicago Lights program, was established in 1964 and serves children and youth in grades one through twelve, predominantly living in economically disadvantaged neighborhoods and attending under-performing schools. Tutoring promotes long-term academic and social success while striving to build self-esteem among participants through positive one-to-one relationships, innovative educational and enrichment resources, literacy enhancement, leadership development, scholarship support, and career development opportunities. In 1981, the program expanded to include Summer Day, which serves the same population of students in first through ninth grades. Summer Day is a six-week initiative that combats summer learning loss and offers students the opportunity to sharpen their academic skills in core subject areas while engaging creatively in art, music, drama, and dance activities. Field trips, enrichment activities, and a final performance are also highlights of the program.
Provide effective and inspiring leadership of Tutoring and Summer Day by being actively involved in all programs and services.
Execute the vision for the Tutoring and Summer Day programs and ensure that all activities operate consistently within the mission of Chicago Lights. The major year-round initiatives of the programs include: education, mentoring, arts and enrichment, and youth development.
Specifically oversee ongoing programmatic excellence in the following areas:
One to one tutoring and mentoring
Recruitment, orientation, training, and retention of participants
Education, arts, and enrichment programming
Career Development and Career Prep
High school and college awareness and preparation initiatives
Scholarship and Ferguson Fellows
Uphold an organization-wide trauma informed care plan, ensuring that program environments are safe, inviting, and demonstrate best practice. Ensure that all staff are implementing care regularly and appropriately.
Implement the strategic goals as outlined in the current Chicago Lights Strategic Plan.
Manage the measurement and continuous improvement plan. Oversee the use of evaluation as a tool in accomplishing program objectives and ensure that data is collected accurately, analyzed appropriately, and adapted as needed. Stay informed on research-based best practices and data driven outcomes to ensure that the programs are serving students in the most effective way.
Oversee the management of the Efforts To Outcomes (ETO) database. Ensure that all staff are trained on usage of the database, the database is current and user-friendly, and data is being entered by staff regularly.
Effectively communicate program success, goals, needs, and challenges within Chicago Lights and Fourth Presbyterian Church and externally with funders, donors, and partners. Work with the Chicago Lights Communications team to implement communication strategies that will broaden programmatic reach and deepen impact.
Use the S.P.I.R.I.T. principles of hospitality when interacting with visitors, guests, members, and staff of Fourth Presbyterian Church and Chicago Lights.
Attract, develop, coach, and retain high-performing team members, empowering them to elevate their level of responsibility, engagement, and performance.
Supervise key Tutoring and Summer Day team members, including the Associate Director of Tutoring and Summer Day, the Youth Programs Manager, and the Education and Enrichment Manager. Develop staffing plans that meet the changing needs of the program. Facilitate professional development opportunities and goal development and attainment for staff.
Manage the process of evaluation, raises, and termination in compliance with Fourth Presbyterian Church’s personnel policies and the Chicago Lights annual budget. Work with the Executive Programs Director and the Human Resources Department in dealing with all personnel issues.
Internal and External Partnerships
Actively participate in all Chicago Lights directors’ meetings and activities to enhance and uphold the vision and mission of the organization. Explore collaboration with all Chicago Lights programs.
Communicate as needed with the Board of Directors, including development of an annual plan, responding to the Board’s strategic plan with an implementation plan, and participating in an annual Board/Staff Retreat if requested.
Collaborate with other organizations/collectives and form meaningful partnerships that leverage information and resources that promote youth development, education, arts, and mentoring.
Development and Fiscal Oversight
Work with the Executive Programs Director to develop accurate and visionary annual budgets for submission to the Chicago Lights Board of Directors.
Work with the Chicago Lights Foundations Relations Officer to increase program revenue through collaboration on compelling grant proposals and post-grant activity reports to foundation/corporate funders. Cultivate and retain donors by collaborating on stewardship efforts.
Manage budget adherence for Tutoring and Summer Day, including the various projects.
Other duties, as assigned or needed.
Masters degree preferred. Minimum of a Bachelors degree.
At least six years of experience in youth development, education, social work, nonprofit management, or related programming field with three of those years in a team management role.
Strong project management skills managing complex, multifaceted projects resulting in measurable successes and program growth.
Proven ability and experience in nonprofit programming and managing budgets.
Strength in hiring, recruiting, managing, developing, coaching, and retaining individuals and teams, empowering them to elevate their levels of responsibility and performance.
Experience having worked with a high-performing, collaborative, and constructive peer group.
Ability and preference to handle a variety of constituencies, manage multiple tasks simultaneously, and thrive in a diverse, multicultural environment.
Ability to both lead the programs and participate within the Chicago Lights Management Team.
Deep understanding of and commitment to providing trauma informed care.
Excellent verbal and written communication skills with exceptional attention to details.
Strong work ethic, solid judgment, and apparent leadership skills
Personal qualities of integrity, credibility, and a commitment to for Chicago Lights’ mission.
Comfortable working in a faith-based and diverse work environment.
Additional Salary Information:
• Medical PPO, HMO, or HDHP plans - employer pays 85% of employee monthly premium (75% of eligible dependents), zero ($0) deductible, $10 office co-pay • Optional dental and visions plans •
Generous PTO plus eleven holidays per year •
403b (employer contributions after one year of employment) • FSA for unreimbursed medical and dependent daycare expenses • Mass transit and commuter parking benefits • Life and short term disability insurances, optional life insurance and long term disability plans
About Chicago Lights at Fourth Presbyterian Church
At Fourth Presbyterian Church, we believe that through mission outreach, we can serve the community in need, sharing in their struggles and hopes and working together for a world of compassion, peace, and justice.
Fourth Church also hosts Chicago Lights, which seeks to support and meet the needs of children, youth, and adults facing the challenges of poverty in our city. Chicago Lights grew from the commitment of Fourth Presbyterian Church to social justice and compassionate service and offers five signature programs, serving more than 4,000 individuals annually: Tutoring, Summer Day, Urban Farm, Dance Academy, and Social Service Center. Our core service areas include one-to-one tutoring and mentoring, arts education, social services, and urban farming.
Fourth Presbyterian Church of Chicago and Chicago Lights are a proud, three-time winner of the Chicago Tribune's Top Workplaces in Chicago.
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