UsAgainstAlzheimer's (UsA2) seeks a COO to help strengthen its operational foundation as a leading global voice in the fight to stop Alzheimer’s. This position will be part of the UsA2 leadership team and will be based in the Washington, DC office. The only non-negotiable qualification the successful candidate will have is a sense of urgency in the fight against Alzheimer’s. UsA2 is an entrepreneurial, collaborative, creative and flexible organization that welcomes candidates with outside-the-box thinking and experience.
UsA2 is an innovative non-profit organization demanding – and delivering – a solution to Alzheimer’s. Driven by the suffering of millions of families, UsA2’s presses for greater urgency from government, industry and the scientific community in the quest for an Alzheimer's cure – accomplishing this through effective leadership, collaborative advocacy, and strategic investments.
UsA2 embraces urgency, creativity, inclusiveness, and flexibility as we pursue our goals to:
- Increase federal Alzheimer’s research funding
- Increase the speed, efficiency and diversity of Alzheimer’s clinical trials
- Boost attention to brain health and early detection
- Include insights and preferences of patients and caregivers in drug development
- Advance national Alzheimer’s care goals and policies
- Mobilize Americans to demand a cure
The organization engages those most affected by the disease – and best positioned to fight it – through seven networks, including its newest network, VeteransAgainstAlzheimer’s. The enterprise includes a 501c3 (UsAgainstAlzheimer’s) and a 501c4 (UsAgainstAlzheimer’s Action), which have two overlapping boards. UsA2/A has a unique operating model, in which some board members also hold operating roles with the enterprise, so, in addition to their Board roles, they lead key programs and initiatives.
UsA2’s was founded in 2010 by George and Trish Vradenburg with an initial investment of $500,000. They founded UsA2 with the conviction that they could bring more urgency and momentum to the fight to end Alzheimer’s, which had earlier claimed Trish’s mother. The organization has grown to a nearly $8 million operation with diverse revenues streams (including corporate, government, individual and family foundation support), active advocacy programs, robust digital outreach/engagement, events in various cities throughout the year, a 13-member Board of Directors and a staff of approximately 25 (a combination of full- and part-time staff).
The UsA2 enterprise includes the Global CEO Initiative on Alzheimer’s Disease, a coalition of industry leaders; the LEAD Coalition (Leaders Engaged on Alzheimer’s Disease), which UsA2 co-convenes and now has more than 90 organizational members; AD-PACE (Alzheimer’s Disease Patient and Caregiver Engagement), an initiative UsA2 is incubating; as well as the Global Alzheimer’s Platform (GAP) Foundation, which UsA2 formed and is now a standalone 501c3 focused on improving the Alzheimer’s clinical trial system.
UsA2 operates as an in-person and a virtual enterprise of seasoned, talented individuals and firms who provide the key capacities to ensure UsA2’s success. The enterprise includes programmatic verticals (networks, other programs) and a cross-cutting support platform (policy, development, finance, communications) that undergirds programs. Many areas are staffed by firms (policy, digital communications, media, development, and website); others, by individuals (finance, most of the Networks). UsA2 has no one office location, aside from a suite of offices for our development and finance teams, in Chevy Chase, MD - this location is available for in-person meetings as needed. As the organization grows and builds an executive team, dedicated office space will be evaluated.
In just a few short years, UsA2 has achieved substantial accomplishments and is widely recognized for doing so by policy, science, health advocacy and industry leaders. Our signature achievements include:
- Securing the national goal of preventing and effectively treating Alzheimer’s by 2025 through the National Plan to Address Alzheimer’s Disease.
- Driving global efforts that resulted in the leaders of the world’s most powerful nations—the G7 group—embracing a similar 2025 goal and calling for greater levels of research investment and collaboration.
- Helping drive US investment in dementia research at the National Institutes of Health from $448 million in 2010 to over $2.3 billion today—a more than fivefold increase.
- GAP, launched by UsA2, has established a standing 69-site North American clinical trial network optimized for AD trials.
- Helped to position Alzheimer’s as an urgent health disparity impacting communities of color and women.
For more information, see usagainstalzheimers.org.
The Position and Key Responsibilities
The COO will report to the Chairman and Co-Founder, will be part of the UsA2 leadership team, and will work closely with the Board of Directors. He or she will be responsible for building and managing well-designed internal systems that better positions the organization to achieve its bold goals. The COO will facilitate internal conversations that build support for and engagement in processes that advance UsA2’s strategic priorities and he/she will be responsible for overseeing the careful execution of those processes. The COO will help strengthen and grow UsA2’s leadership team, lead the strategic planning process, and operationalize the organization’s goals across its core platforms (programs, communications, development, and policy). Additional responsibilities include:
Strategic Vision and Organizational Leadership
- Collaborate with the co-founder and the board to develop and implement a strategic planning process while ensuring that the budget, staff, and priorities are aligned with the organization’s core mission and vision of stopping Alzheimer’s disease.
- Cultivate a strong and transparent working relationship with the Board and ensure open communication about the measurement of financial, programmatic, and impact performance against stated milestones and goals.
- Establish effective decision-making processes that will enable the organization to achieve its long- and short-term goals and objectives.
- Foster a climate which attracts, retains, and motivates a diverse staff of top-quality people.This role will be responsible for strengthening and building out a “C-suite.”
- Direct the periodic evaluation, adoption, and implementation of new infrastructural systems (including technological systems) that promote efficient internal operations.
- Develop and establish the performance culture of the organization and lead performance management and evaluation in consultation with the leadership team.
- Build out UsA2’s business model and overall organizational structure; identify office space to support UsA2’s growing work portfolio.
Financial Planning and Budgeting
- Ensure that the organization has a long-term strategy that will enable it to maintain its financial health and implement its impact priorities in an effective and efficient manner.
- Work closely with the Chief Financial Officer, in consultation with the leadership team, to coordinate the annual operations plan and budget, ensure the organization meets its annual budget goals, and align expenditures and revenues.
- Ensure the organization’s legal compliance, coordinating with outside counsel as needed.
Ideal candidates for this position will be deeply committed to UsA2’s mission of bringing greater urgency and new strategies to the fight against Alzheimer’s and who believe they will thrive in an organization that is networked—not hierarchical—fast moving and highly communicative. UsA2 is entrepreneurial, collaborative, creative, flexible, and opportunistic, and the COO should possess these qualities and foster them among the extended UsA2 team.UsA2 seeks a COO with the following qualifications:
- Proven experience as a leader delivering measurable results and leading in complex organizations.
- Operational experience building strategic teams and organizations.
- Talent for extracting, analyzing, and articulating data in ways that support effective, efficient decision-making; includes knowledge of best practices of non-profit governance and financial oversight.
- Comfort overseeing a wide range of financial functions, including developing and managing complex budgets, participating in financial reporting, and managing risk.
- Experience working with an engaged board of directors.
- Understanding of healthcare policy and the healthcare system; knowledge of Alzheimer’s a plus.
- Strategic thinking with a results-orientation.
- Entrepreneurial, creative, and proactive; possesses the ability to react quickly to and lead the pursuit of opportunistic initiatives.
- Exceptional written and verbal communications skills.
- Experience working in an environment where partnerships and collaboration are at the core of increasing organizational leverage and impact.
Salary is commensurate with experience.
Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action
UsA2 is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or national origin.
Resume reviews begin immediately, with the ideal start date in early 2019.
About Raffa – Marcum’s Nonprofit and Social Sector Group
On behalf of UsA2, Raffa – Marcum’s Nonprofit and Social Sector Group is working with the leadership team to advance the work and lead the COO search. Founded in 1984 and recently merged with Marcum, Raffa is, and always has been, a mission-driven professional services firm seeking to do more for nonprofits and socially conscious companies. We exist to do meaningful work for organizations like UsA2 who are making a difference in our communities and our world. Learn more about our work at http://marcumllp.com/industries/nonprofit-social-sector/.