Food Forward

Senior Director of Operations

Employment type
3 months ago
Los Angeles

Food Forward, an award-winning Los Angeles-based anti-hunger and food waste NPO has been growing exponentially since its inception 10 years ago. The executive director (ED) and board of directors are looking for a mission-focused, seasoned, strategic, systems-thinking and process-minded leader with experience scaling an organization, leading a high-functioning management team, and further developing a performance culture among a group of diverse and talented individuals. The Senior Director of Operations must be a leader who inspires others to deliver measurable and cost- effective results. She/He will have the skills, sensitivity, integrity, discipline, and confidence to tap into the power that each member of the Food Forward team brings to our mission and the fight for social justice. * See our core values below.
The Senior Director of Operations is a key member of the Executive Team and reports directly to the Executive Director. Programmatically, the role works closely with and connects our four distinct program areas: Backyard/Public Space Harvesting, Farmers Market Recovery, Wholesale Recovery Program, and Produce Pick-Up. It is essential that the Senior Director of Operations bring experience implementing efficient and effective systems to increase the productivity of the organization and manage complex logistics. It is also critical that the Sr. Director works with the team to retain the creative spark that drives the Food Forward mission and culture. The Senior Director of Operations works to ensure alignment between the organization’s human capital, vision, mission, and organizational strategies.

Reporting directly to the Executive Director (ED) of Food Forward, the Senior Director of Operations will lead all internal day-to-day operations in the specific areas of Logistics, Human Resources, Finance & Information Technologies and will have the following responsibilities:

  • Serve as a transformational leader, and one of two key internal leaders of the organization, managing the organization’s managers and directors.
  • Provide vision, execute, and evaluate logistics/workflows for Food Forward programs; and identify the organization’s overall risk, gaps, and opportunities for improvement in its current form and as it scales.
  • Oversee Human Resources initiatives through organizational change, while staying true to mission, culture, and values of Food Forward.

Site Development:

  • Oversee staff responsible for the maintenance of 3 Food Forward facilities (North Hollywood, Ventura and its 6,000 square foot cross-docking Produce Pit Stop Warehouse [depot]), including a growing fleet of 9 commercial vehicles which are responsible for the transportation of 25 million+ pounds of produce to 8 SoCAL counties annually.
  • Negotiate all organizational vendor contracts and oversee organizational MOU’s.


  • Logistics oversight, innovation, compliance and implementation
  • Manage the programs toward increased KPIs and assess tools for gathering and analyzing organizational-wide metrics.
  • Lead staff on regular strategic and tactical planning initiatives.
  • Develop and maintain safety protocols, policies and implementation organization wide.

Human Resources:

  • Supervision of day-to-day personnel matters.
  • Instill a human capital development and “coaching” culture within Food Forward
  • Develop curriculum and cross-training tools to strengthen staff. Cultivate the values of Food Forward within the organization.


  • Analyze the organization’s current technology infrastructure and direct staff towards the next level of Information Technologies (IT) and financial systems that support the growth of specific programs and the organization overall.
  • Keep Food Forward ahead of IT trends in the food recovery and volunteer management space.
  • Supervise all organizational software, hardware and other IT needs as they relate to logistics, programmatic work, data collection/analysis, data security, backup, and volunteer and donor privacy.

Compliance & Budgeting:

  • Supervise and ensure compliance with all insurances; and local, state and federal regulations.
  • Budgeting: Lead the senior management team in annual budgeting process, and budget tracking to quarterly and annual goals.
  • Assist with the selection of an accounting system that provides quick access to financial information, timely and accurate compliance and enables strategic budgeting, and ease of reporting for annual 990 filings and financial audits.
  • Supervise finance staff regarding the review of monthly and quarterly expenditures and expense reports.
  • Oversee all key relationships with financial institutions, insurance carriers, workers comp (including employee classifications), state and local licenses, etc.
  • Work with staff and outside legal counsel, as necessary, on the development of organizational agreements, such as: MOU’s, NDAs, waivers and partner engagement agreements.


  • A personal passion around food security/anti-hunger and food waste issues.
  • At least 5 years of experience in operations management and/or executive level of expertise in a non-profit organization of a size of 20 staff or greater. (Food Forward is an organization driven by the values of its people, so experience in managing a “values-driven” organization will be highly prioritized.)
  • Direct experience in managing complex logistics and related management systems.

Additional requirements include:

  • Results-proven track record of exceeding goals and a bottom-line orientation.
  • A demonstrable high level of business acumen, including successful P&L management. The ability to balance the delivery of programs against the realities of a budget.
  • Real-time and deeply-focused problem solving, project management, and creative resourcefulness expertise.
  • A history of proving strategic vision and agile ability to think strategically, anticipate future consequences and trends, and incorporate them into the organizational plan.
  • Capacity Building—ability to scale up while effectively building organization and staff capacity, developing a top-notch workforce and the processes that ensure the organization runs smoothly.
  • Self-Motivated and Self-Directed—enjoys working hard and looks for challenges; able to act and react, as necessary, even if limited information is available; not afraid to take charge of a situation; can take unpopular stands, when necessary.
  • General Management—thorough understanding of financial reporting, IT and Human Resources; broad experience with the full range of business functions and systems, including strategic development and planning, budgeting, business analysis & information systems
  • A comprehensive high-level understanding of an array of logistics software/IT work flows, plus specific IT platforms, such as Ruby on Rails, PHP and Wordpress is essential.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Valid California Driver’s License in good standing
  • Ability to work some weekends and occasionally travel throughout the SoCAL region, and beyond
  • Solid educational background—undergraduate degree required; MBA or similar advanced degree highly desired

Salary Range: $85K to $105K
We are seeking an individual of outstanding quality with an accomplished track record. Food Forward is prepared to offer a very attractive compensation package, including a competitive base salary, as well as a robust benefits package.
Sample Benefits currently include:

  • 100% paid Medical and Vision
  • Simple IRA with 3% employer matching (after one year of employment)
  • PTO, additional sick days
  • Cell phone allowance
  • Regular telecommuting and work flexibility

Food Forward Core Values:

  • Creativity – We seek to innovate in all facets of our work.
  • Joyfulness – We cultivate a meaningful, fun, positive and spirited work environment.
  • Committed to Food Justice – We believe that access to wholesome food, and fresh nutritious produce, is not a privilege, but a right. We work hard to end food inequality and reduce food insecurity.
  • Authenticity – We are transparent and honest in our words, deeds and actions. We act at the highest level of integrity.
  • Disciplined – We are reliable, professional, accountable, rigorous and committed to excellence in all areas of our work, both internally and externally.
  • Community-minded – We aim to include and connect people in the community, and to remain open, diverse, respectful, and accessible. We take pride in offering people meaningful volunteer and work experiences.
To apply

How to Apply:
Send a cover letter in the body of the email, including (a) where you discovered this listing, (b) describe which variety of surplus produce you would be and why, and (c) attach your resume in a PDF version to [email protected] The subject line should read, Senior Director of Operations –(Your Name). No phone calls please. Please follow these instructions to ensure that we process your application in an efficient and timely manner.

Food Forward strongly encourages people of color, women, l/g/b/t/q individuals, those with disabilities, and those with protected class backgrounds to apply.

Application closes 9/30/2019