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PAAR: Executive Director

Pittsburgh Action Against Rape (PAAR) has been serving the Pittsburgh community for more than 43 years through advocacy, counseling, prevention, and education. PAAR combines research and evidence-based theories of change with practice-based experience to create dynamic programming impacting the local community and resulting in social change. As one of the oldest rape crisis centers in the country, PAAR is dedicated to putting victims first while also educating the greater Pittsburgh community on prevention and identification.

During the 2018-2019 fiscal year, more than 30,000 people were impacted by PAAR’s counseling services, advocacy, education programs, and trainings.

PAAR’s Core Programs

  • Adult Counseling: Individual and group counseling is provided to adult victims of sexual violence.
  • Child & Family Counseling Center: Long-term and short-term individual counseling sessions are provided to children, 2 through 18 years of age, who have been sexually assaulted. Counseling for parents or caregivers of those children is also available.
  • Crisis Services: Hotline – With the help of dedicated volunteers, hotline calls are answered 24/7 for individuals and families in crisis, as well as, providing information for callers. Emergency Medical Advocates – PAAR staff meets recent assault victims and their families at local hospital emergency rooms and are present during the forensic medical examinations.
  • Legal Advocacy: Legal Advocates provide support to victims as they navigate the legal system in Allegheny County.
  • Prevention and Outreach: PAAR presents sexual assault prevention education programs throughout Allegheny County to elementary, middle, high school, and college students, as well as various community groups

PAAR has a passionate and dedicated team of volunteers. Over 80 volunteers donated 28,611 hours of their time valued at $727,566 to answer helpline calls and accompany survivors to Emergency Departments in 2019 alone.

To learn more about PAAR, please visit

Position Overview

PAAR seeks a dedicated and visionary Executive Director to lead the organization into a continued era of sustainability and community impact. Compassionate and forward-thinking, the new Executive Director will maintain a balance of program innovation, mission passion, and leadership with transparency and an appreciation for diversity and respect.

With a budget of $3.5m and a team of over 40 staff, the new Executive Director will be accountable to the 22 members of the Board of Directors. This innovative and driven leader will possess a deep understanding of human services, trauma support, victim services, and the operational needs of a successful nonprofit. With strong community ties and a focus on relationship-building, this leader will serve as an emissary for PAAR and continue to share the organization’s impact with the greater Pittsburgh region.

The Executive Director is primarily responsible for the following:

Leadership and Management

  • Assures the organization effectively achieves its mission by providing leadership and programmatic innovation. This includes day-to-day operations, fiscal management, fundraising, and program development.
  • Serves as an inspirational leader – externally and internally. Builds trust easily and energizes the team around a shared vision for the current and future state of work.
  • Fosters an inclusive workplace culture that is positive and respectful. Places emphasis on cultural and racial awareness and promotes diversity.
  • Develops new program concepts in collaboration with staff in accordance with PAAR’s strategic direction.
  • Demonstrates capacity to value diversity and adapts to the cultural contexts of the communities served.
  • Grows the organization’s impact, overseeing the implementation of the strategic plan in cooperation with the Board and Staff. Establishes and effectively executes an annual operating plan which strengthens organizational success and sustainability.

Revenue Generation and Community Relations 

  • Seeks opportunities for collaboration and cooperation with similarly missioned organizations and forges cross-sector relationships.
  • Actively engages with local, state, and federal officials in order to strengthen broad support for the PAAR mission.
  • Represents PAAR with all constituents; embraces opportunities to promote the mission and programs of the organizations.
  • Works closely with funders to ensure the ongoing engagement of existing donors and cultivation of new ones.
  • Creates and monitors internal systems for government and foundation funding and compliance.

Board Relations 

  • Develops, maintains, and supports an effective and increasingly diverse Board of Directors.
  • Acts as primary liaison to the Board of Directors, engaging Board members in the current and future needs of the organization, ensuring the Board is able to fulfill its oversight and funding responsibilities.
  • Participates in Board recruitment and collaborates with Board leadership to promote governance best practices in order to maximize Board involvement.
  • Develops, tracks, and reports quantitative and qualitative metrics, which monitor the performance of the organization with respect to the mission and key objectives of the organization. 

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

The Executive Director of PAAR will have a deep passion and focus for providing resources for all in need of PAAR’s services. All candidates should have proven management, leadership, and relationship management experience. Concrete demonstrable experience, competencies, and qualifications include:

  • Educational background that is aligned with the expectations and needs of the position.
  • Past success working with a Board of Directors; the ability to cultivate existing board member relationships and build a diverse team.
  • Experienced leader that understands the value of hiring, managing, and retaining talented staff, preferably in a nonprofit organization. Adept at building effective teams and motivating others. Working style that is consistent, transparent, encouraging, and collaborative.
  • A solid background and knowledge of sexual assault and antiviolence issues.
  • Cultural competency that includes a defined set of principles and behaviors to work effectively cross-culturally.
  • Successful record of building and maintaining relationships with community organizations.
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills; a persuasive and passionate communicator with strong public speaking ability.
  • Strong organizational abilities including planning, delegating, program development, and task facilitation.
  • Knowledge and understanding of diverse funding landscapes.
  • Values an inclusive work environment and can demonstrate cultural competence. Track record of creating and sustaining an organizational culture that fosters diversity, equity, and inclusion.
  • Strong evidence of rigorous use of data (qualitative and quantitative) to drive strategy and decision making.
  • Experience overseeing budgets, with the capability to allocate resources strategically and manage spending effectively.

Performance Objectives

The successful Executive Director will deliver outstanding outcomes while successfully addressing the following in the first six to nine months in the position:

  • Thoroughly review the COVID-19 implications to the organization. Develop a framework for additional planning and action needed to move forward.
  • Complete a review of the current Strategic Plan, making suggestions to alter course as needed.
  • Immerse in the Staff and programs to understand culture, direction, and opportunities. Make recommendations for staffing alignment and program portfolio.


This position offers a competitive compensation package, including a salary starting at $125K- $140K and a complement of health and retirement benefits.

DEI Imperative

PAAR seeks to recruit candidates for employment that represent our diverse community in race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, and ability. Inclusive and equitable in our recruitment and retention practices, we are dedicated to uplifting diverse opinions and backgrounds in order to grow and evolve as a welcoming workplace for all. Pittsburgh Action Against Rape is an equal opportunity employer.

How to Apply

PAAR has retained Nonprofit Talent to assist with this important organizational change process. Confidential, position specific questions may be emailed to Michelle Heck at Applications are not accepted at this email address. Please direct all inquiries related to this position to Nonprofit Talent, and do not contact PAAR.

Resume, position specific cover letter, and salary expectation may be uploaded here:

APPLICATIONS ARE DUE BY 5pm on November 30th, 2020