Posted On: 2019-10-23
Closing On: 2019-11-15
Location: Toronto, ON
Employment Type: Full-Time

Job Description

1.0 Profile of Sheena’s Place

Sheena’s Place is Toronto’s first community-based agency and charitable organization that supports individuals, families and friends affected by eating disorders to overcome barriers with valuable services at all stages of recovery. It is well known for serving people via a highly qualified professional delivery of its therapeutic framework, including life skills and support programs with trauma-informed and harm reduction approaches.  It also connects clients to eating disorder treatment and support centres, while concurrently offering those individuals group therapy programs before, during and after treatment. 

The organization’s goal is to transform lives, build community and eliminate stigma through the demonstration of compassion and creating caring relationships built on acceptance, trust and honesty.  All those involved at Sheena’s Place believe in the inherent dignity of all people and recognize that eating disorders do not discriminate based on income, age, gender, sexual orientation, race ethnicity or ability.  It is committed to ensuring that everyone has equitable access to support with the belief that it can accomplish more when everyone works together to achieve shared goals.

Sheena’s Place plays an important role in the broader mental health community.  Eating disorders have the highest death rate of all mental illnesses and are the third most common type of chronic illness among Canadian youth. 

The doors to Sheena’s Place were officially opened in 1996 after its founding members rose from personal tragedy and their subsequent identified need for resources to support those with eating disorders.

Over the last 5 years alone, Sheena’s Place has:

  • Welcomed 6,290 clients
  • Offered 7,950 hours of therapeutic services
  • Provided 9,050 of volunteer hours
  • Raised over $3M with no additional government funding

Sheena’s Place offers free services with no waitlists and where no diagnosis is required.  Groups and programs are led by mental health professionals in fields such as psychology, social work and art therapy.  Four types of groups are offered throughout the year:  support groups, expressive art groups, body image groups and skill building groups.  Most programs run 10 to 12 weeks with up to 15-20 participants in each session.

Over the next three years, as driven by its Strategic Plan, Sheena’s Place’s focus will be on building its current strengths, while being responsive to changing community needs and opportunities.  This Strategic Plan is framed as follows: 

VisionTransform lives, build community, eliminate stigma

Mission:  We support individuals, families and friends affected by eating disorders to overcome barriers and provide effective, community-based services at all stages of recovery


  • Compassion:  We demonstrate compassion by caring relationships that are built on acceptance, trust, and honesty.
  • Dignity – We believe in the inherent dignity of all people and respect their right to be valued and accepted without judgement. 
  • Inclusion – We recognize that eating disorders do not discriminate based on income, age, gender, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity or ability, and are committed to ensuring that everyone has equitable access. 
  • Collaboration – We believe that we can accomplish more when we work together to achieve shared goals. 
  • Excellence – We provide evidence-informed and effective practices and services, delivered by highly qualified professionals.

The Plan itself has the following inter-related and inter-dependent directions: 

Optimizing the Model of Care:

  • Developing programs and services that respond to unmet/emerging needs and system gaps.
  • Building systems that evaluate programs and services based on impact.

Building Awareness of Eating Disorders and Sheena’s Place:

  • Developing clear, consistent messaging and amplifying our story.
  • Collaborating with strategic mental health partners.

Generating Sustainable Revenue:

  • Creating and implementing a long-term plan for financial stability and growth.

Strengthening Organizational Capacity and Competencies:

  • Developing high performing and engaged teams.
  • Creating system efficiencies (IT, HR).

The Board of Directors is now seeking an Executive Director who will champion this Plan and lead the organization in its continuing objective to provide meaningful support to those impacted by eating disorders and, more broadly, to have impact within the broader mental health community.


2.0 Key Contacts

Susan Walker, M.B.A

Chair, Board of Directors 

Susan Walker has been a Board Director of Sheena’s Place for 5+ years and has occupied the Chair role since May 2018.  She also advises the United Way as part of the Strategic Resource Development Committee, reporting directly to the board.  She has expertise in marketing strategy through past roles with Kraft General Foods, Coca-Cola Ltd., and consulting engagements in both profit and non-profit organizations.  She has a degree in Psychology from Queen’s University and an MBA from the Rotman School of Management.


Beth Adams, M.Ed., C.P.A.

Member of the Board of Directors and HR Sub-Committee

Selection Committee Member

Beth Adams has recently joined Habitat for Humanity GTA to provide leadership to the HR, Marketing and Communication and Family Service teams, in addition to the overall organization’s strategy.  She is a CPA by training and has had the pleasure of a career that has spanned time at KPMG, CIBC and most recently, Quandl, a Toronto-based fin-tech start-up that was acquired by Nasdaq in 2018.


3.0 The Position – Overview 

The Executive Director serves as the chief executive at Sheena’s Place and, in partnership with the Board, is responsible for the success of the organization. Together, the Executive Director and the Board assure Sheena’s Place’s relevance to the community, the accomplishment of its mission and vision, and the accountability of the organization to its diverse stakeholders. 

The next Executive Director of Sheena’s Place will be a passionate leader, advocating on behalf of the people that the organization services, at local and systemic levels.  The ideal candidate will:

  • Continue to build on the vision, be an inspirational communicator and ambassador for the cause, and a thought leader in the mental health sector.
  • Possess tested operational skills and be adept at building and creating a positive culture with employees and dedicated volunteers.
  • Be focused on serving all new and existing clients of Sheena’s Place and ensure that the programs and their assigned facilitators uphold that steady focus. 
  • Have meaningful networks in the mental health community and the ability to inspire others to join in order to add capacity and address gaps in the health system specific to eating disorders.

Priorities in the first 12 months: 

  • Gain familiarity with the work and key issues facing Sheena’s Place.
  • Continue to execute the 3 year Strategic Plan and measure/report back on milestones/success.
  • Maintain and build upon the staff, facilitator and volunteer teams’ engagement, ensuring they are continually focused on the organization’s goals.
  • Build upon the revenue development plan to support the organization’s infrastructure, operations and growth, with particular focus on sustainable donor contributions, through the on-going outreach and maintenance of key donor/stakeholder relationships.
  • Implement systems/technologies/measures to obtain maximum operational efficiencies for all critical organizational undertakings/processes.

In place to support the incoming Executive Director: 

  • A strong, engaged Board.
  • A keen staff, eager to continue to support the work of Sheena’s Place with strong experience in fund development, programming and outreach.
  • A sound financial position.
  • Established systems for outreach, programming and client intake.


4.0 Relationships 

Reports to: Board of Directors 

Board Standing Committees:  Finance, Human Resources, Marketing and Communication, Fundraising, Clinical Advisory

Direct Reports:

Program Manager

Program and Outreach Coordinator

Senior Development Officer

Operations Manager/Bookkeeper

Registrar and Program Administrator

Director of Finance

Other contract workers, as needed

As a key voice of the organization, the ED also interacts with: clients, current and potential donors (individuals, corporations, foundations), corporate sponsors, government officials, volunteers, media, partner organizations, other leaders/representatives in the mental health community.


5.0 Responsibilities 


Collaboratively implement the strategic and operational plans of the organization with alignment to Sheena’s Place’s vision, mission and value statements.

  • Contribute to strategy formulation and translate that direction into effective operational plans.
  • Lead organizational change initiatives based upon the dynamic nature of the mental health services, non-profit environment.
  • Foster a positive and engaging work environment, encouraging innovation, teamwork and effective performance.
  • Work collaboratively with the Board (e.g., identification, assessment and communication of internal and external issues that affect the organization) to support their overall governance effectiveness.
  • As the chief spokesperson for the organization, enhance and protect the integrity and reputation of the organization by being active and visible in the sector and community.

Financial, Risk Management and Governance

  • Develop and manage the organization’s budget in collaboration with the Treasurer, Board Finance Committee and Bookkeeper. Provide quarterly financial reports to the Board, including communication of significant variances to budget and any other financial concerns.
  • Supervise the adherence to sound financial, accounting and risk management practices, control and accounting of funds, ensuring maximum resource utilization.
  • Identify and evaluate risks to the organization’s stakeholders, property, finances, human resources and image and implement measures to capitalize on, control or mitigate these risks.
  • Ensure effective communications with the board and its committees, develop meeting agendas, and provide timely and accurate reports, presentations and supporting materials necessary for them to function effectively and make informed decisions.

Fund Development

  • Ensure the organization has an achievable fundraising plan to secure funding for the operation and future growth of the organization.
  • Lead and/or participate in the identification and cultivation of meaningful funding/donor relationships.

Program and Operational Planning and Management

  • Ensure programs and services are aligned with the mission, vision and values, internal policy guidelines, donor reporting obligations and governmental/legal requirements.
  • Lead and support the staff with the input of the Clinical Advisory Committee in the development and management programs and services that are responsive to the needs of the community and the emerging trends within the sector, promoting high standards and innovative models, and ensuring the model of care is optimized.

Human Resources Management

  • Lead, guide, support, mentor, motivate, develop and coach the team in their operational objectives, thereby promoting staff retention and talent management.
  • Ensure the organizational structure and related resources, including both staff and volunteers, support the agency and program delivery operational requirements of the organization.
  • Implement a complete performance management process for all staff positions, including effective compensation, performance reviews, recognition, development opportunities and discipline processes.
  • Sets specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-limited goals as part of a personnel annual review process.
  • Ensure that there is a sound succession plan in place to deliver continuity for all roles within the organization and actively participate in the recruitment of roles that will contribute in the delivery of the organization’s mandate.
  • Develop and maintain relevant HR policies and ensure compliance at all times with legislation.
  • Build, model and maintain a culture of collaboration, professionalism and adherence to organizational values.

Community Relations

  • Establish and maintain community connections to support organizational goals.
  • Represent the organization and articulate the organization’s mission, vision, values and position to funders, politicians, donors, other organizations, and the general public, and engage in relevant committees, task forces, or working groups.
  • Communicate with stakeholders to keep them informed and engaged and to identify emerging community needs and potential collaboration opportunities.


6.0 Qualifications 

Experience, Skills and Attributes: 

  • Relevant experience in a senior management or executive leadership role in either/both the non-profit or for profit world, ideally 5+ years.
  • Knowledge of the eating disorder community locally, provincially and nationally, hospital-based treatment centres in Toronto and GTA, eating disorder treatment and recovery frameworks, trauma-informed approaches and harm reduction principles.
  • Experience with strategy creation and its subsequent execution.
  • Experience in fundraising and fund development, particularly with major gifts, corporations and foundations.
  • Skilful in managing change in a small workplace environment.
  • Demonstrated ability to build strategic relationships with key stakeholders.
  • Demonstrated ability to build meaningful staff relationships and cultivate a positive work culture.
  • Strong communications and advocacy skills with diverse audiences.
  • Demonstrated success in planning, coordinating and evaluating programs.
  • Knowledge in financial management and budgeting.
  • Ability to influence others including the team, community, donors, sponsors and other stakeholders.
  • Excellent management and self-management skills – to be in charge of a focused team (including volunteers) and to nurture a culture of diversity and inclusivity.
  • Passion for the mission of Sheena’s Place.


• University degree in social work, business or other relevant area that would bring expertise to bear in the role as Executive Director.


7.0 Application Information & Selection Process 

To apply: By November 15th, 2019, qualified applicants are invited to submit  their CV and letter of interest to Beth Adams -

Questions about the position? Contact Beth Adams -

We thank all applicants for applying, however, only qualified candidates selected for an interview will be contacted. 

Selection Process

1. Declare your Candidacy If you are interested in this position, please submit your CV and letter of interest per the instructions above. 

2. Review of Credentials When we receive your expression of interest, we will review your background and experience against those of other candidates and Sheena Place’s needs. 

3. Introductory Interviews and Due Diligence Should your background and experience meet our requirements, we will invite you to come in for an interview with our selection committee. It is during this interview that we will ask more about your experiences, skills, and working style and give you the opportunity to learn more about Sheena’s Place. Our goal is to look for a potential fit and interest from both parties. 

We would ask you to take some time to consider the compensation and the cultural fit with the organization. Please come prepared to discuss what you need in an organization to help you thrive. 

4. Board/Staff Panel Interviews

If you are chosen to move forward and are invited back for a set of second interviews, you will be asked for two advocates (early references) who can speak to your track record.

During this phase, you will meet with some of our Board members, as well as our outgoing Executive Director and key staff representatives at a panel session. You will also be asked to prepare a 10-minute presentation for the panel on a relevant topic to the ED role at Sheena’s Place.  The topic and outline for the presentation will be forwarded to you such that you have at least least one week’s time to prepare.

If you are not chosen to move forward, we will advise you immediately and provide you with feedback as to the rationale for this decision. 

We do our utmost to protect the confidentiality of your candidacy throughout the search. 

5. Final Phase

Once the final round of interviews is complete, we will inform you as soon as possible as to the status of your candidacy. If you are the finalist, you will be made an offer that is contingent upon the completion of your references. We will at this time ask for your final references which will include: 2 direct reports, 2 colleagues/volunteers or board members and 2 managers to whom you have reported. 


6. Dates to Note in Your Calendar: 

Deadline for applications: November 15th, 2019

Selection Committee Interviews:  By November 30th, 2019

Final Interviews:  By December 20th, 2019

Ideal Start Date:  January 6th, 2020


Resume AccuracyPlease know that Sheena’s Place verifies the contents of CV’s and conducts background checks. If there is anything we need to know, we ask you to disclose this to us as early as possible in the process.