Senior Director, Community (Ontario)
MS Canada is seeking a seasoned professional for the important role of Senior Director, Community (Ontario). This position will have regional responsibilities to engage and inspire the people of Ontario to take collective action to advance the MS Canada’s mission and create greater impact for those living with and affected by MS.
The Senior Director, Community will advance the goals of MS Canada by leading decisively, maintaining the highest quality of service, and leveraging the involvement of key MS community members and opinion leaders. As the Ontario region’s front-facing MS Canada representative, the Senior Director’s key accountabilities include:
- Community engagement: deepening engagement and outreach to the MS community and communities of Ontario, stewarding a portfolio of fundraisers and volunteers, and influencing community leaders.
- External and internal relations: building and maintaining external relationships and fostering internal relations and collaboration to align regional goals and enterprise objectives.
- Regional representation and strategy: acting as the regional spokesperson and championing the region’s priorities in strategy development and execution across the organization.
- Advocacy: driving advocacy, marketing and promotion, education, public awareness, and social action activities.
- Fundraising: assisting with partnership development and fundraising efforts, including generation of revenue partnerships, pipeline/donor cultivation and development, and organization of fundraising events.
Location: This position is hybrid, depending on candidate location and proximity to a local hub or office. Periodic travel to Toronto and other locations in the province is expected. Candidates should be located in or near a major city in Ontario.
About MS Canada
This is an exciting time to join MS Canada as we move forward with our bold vision of a world free of MS. With a mission to connect and empower the MS community and to create positive change, MS Canada provides essential services to people with MS and their families, and funds research to find the cause and cure.
Canada has one of the highest rates of multiple sclerosis (MS) in the world, with an estimated 90,000 Canadians living with the disease. While it is most often diagnosed in young adults aged 20 to 49, younger children and older adults are also diagnosed with the disease. Health sector costs for MS are expected to reach $2 billion by 2031.
We are privileged to be a part of a determined group of change agents who are working tirelessly to create a world free of MS. About 1500 Canadians affected by MS serve as leadership volunteers on division and chapter councils and committees, and an estimated 13,500 volunteers work tirelessly delivering programs, fundraising events, public awareness campaigns and social action activities.
Our strategic vision builds upon the work of the entire MS community and moves our mission forward. Through discoveries, innovation, and collective action, we work together to alleviate the uncertainty that MS causes, help provide accessible options for disease management and reach out to partners to eliminate physical and social barriers in our communities.
Our strategy lays out the roadmap in our journey to create a world free of MS, and we hope it provides inspiration for all in the MS community to connect and collaborate to advance treatment and care, enhance well-being, understand and halt disease progression, and prevent MS from happening. Discover. Innovate. Act.
MS Canada is guided by a Board of Directors with a governance mandate that includes strategic direction, policy development, budget approval and investment decisions that impact all levels of the organization.
What is MS
MS is classified as an autoimmune disease of the central nervous system (brain, spinal cord, and optic nerves). The disease attacks myelin, the protective covering of the nerves, causing inflammation and often damaging the myelin. Myelin is necessary for the transmission of nerve impulses through nerve fibres. If damage to myelin is slight, nerve impulses travel with minor interruptions; however, if damage is substantial and if scar tissue replaces the myelin, nerve impulses may be completely disrupted, and the nerve fibres themselves can be damaged.
MS is unpredictable and may cause symptoms such as extreme fatigue, lack of coordination, weakness, tingling, impaired sensation, vision problems, bladder problems, cognitive impairment, and mood changes. Its effects can be physical, emotional, and financial. Currently, there is no cure, but each day researchers are learning more about the causes and are zeroing in on ways to prevent MS.
We are here to help. No one needs to face MS alone. In communities across Canada, MS Canada provides information, support, educational events, and other resources for people living with MS and their families.
Researchers funded by the MS Canada are working to find the cause of MS, develop better treatments with fewer side effects, and ultimately cure the disease for everyone who is affected by it.
Research at MS Canada
The overarching goal of MS Canada is to invest in research that will provide the greatest benefit to individuals who are deeply affected by MS. Each year the organization is hopeful that its commitment to research will bring the MS community one step closer to finding a cure for this complex and often unpredictable disease.
Canada remains at the forefront of MS research around the world. Through generous contributions from donors, corporate sponsors, and fervent fundraisers, MS Canada has invested over $212 million dollars in research since its inception in 1948. This investment has led to significant results for people affected by MS. More specifically, MS Canada funded studies have gone the distance in areas such as imaging, diagnosis, genetics, tissue repair, rehabilitation, and disease-modifying therapies. With each passing year research continues to reveal new knowledge around the cause of MS, as well as the mechanism by which MS impacts the central nervous system.
Although much progress has been made, many questions regarding MS remain unanswered. As a result, Canadian researchers with diverse scientific backgrounds and expertise are turning their attention to MS and working together to uncover important knowledge and develop treatments that will effectively manage symptoms and slow progression.
To ensure that momentum in MS research continues, MS Canada administers an annual research competition that provides support for researchers whether they are in the early stages of graduate school or conducting research as an independent investigator.
Funding researchers across the academic and clinical spectrum enables education and training for the next generation of MS leaders, while reinforcing their passion for the field.
In addition to supporting research, MS Canada engages young researchers in education and training programs, mentorship initiatives, and networking opportunities that aim to stimulate interest in MS research and encourage collaboration amongst the future generation of MS experts.
Philanthropy at MS Canada
In 2021, MS Canada raised over $45 million through a diverse fundraising portfolio of events, major gifts, and other fundraising initiatives.
Every year tens of thousands of dedicated individuals, companies, and foundations in communities across Canada come together to create positive change.
The core support of MS Canada comes from individuals and communities. Volunteer led community-based events, individual giving, and third-party partner events make up the majority of funds raised.
MS Canada recognizes the contributions to our work that come from communities across the country and have implemented a Community Engagement model that supports continued connection and collaboration toward our mission. MS Canada receives less than 9% of its revenues from the government.
Community at MS Canada
MS Canada implemented a Community Engagement model in 2019 and continues to support and empower community involvement in making change.
The Community team is comprised of three functionally focused Directors who support the Community Engagement team, the Community Fundraising team and the Community Programs team. There are also four geographically focused Senior Directors who lead regional portfolios (the West, the Prairies, Central/Ontario, and Atlantic regions.) The core purpose is to develop strategies that result in strengthening community hubs and networks, and increasing presence while building partnerships that drive revenue and strengthen programs.
In addition, Leadership Volunteers lead community-based initiatives in fundraising, advocacy, public awareness, research, and programs. Leadership Volunteers act as important connections to grassroots community-based support for our mission and vision.
The objectives of the Community portfolio in 2023 are:
- Launch community hubs to empower the MS community to take collective action.
- Grow Community Fundraising.
- Modernize programs to meet the diverse needs of the MS Community.
- Strengthen volunteer engagement.
Additional Information & Resources
For more information, please visit https://mscanada.ca/
Regional representation and strategy execution
- Provides strategic leadership over the Ontario regional portfolio including advising on, planning for, and evaluating proactive approaches to increasing networks and revenue generation.
- Acts as the regional spokesperson, executes the organization’s strategy in the region and champions the region’s priorities in strategy development across the organization.
- Acts as a seasoned adviser on complex community problems, novel initiatives, and decisions.
- Facilitates activities in the region for organizational leaders and other departments.
- Thinks beyond the confines of traditional ways of doing things to recognize opportunities and find new and better approaches.
- In partnership with the philanthropy team, develops and cultivates an active pipeline of corporate partners, sponsorships, major donors, and other opportunities in the region to secure revenue for the organization’s mission.
- Collaborates and shares accountability with the fund development team for fundraising events, donor relationships, partner relationships, and other fundraising opportunities and initiatives in the region.
- Deepens community and MS community member engagement and outreach and stewards a portfolio of high-value community leaders, fundraisers and volunteers.
- Effectively and appropriately interacts with others to build relationships, influence others, and facilitate the sharing of ideas and information.
- Cultivates and embodies a culture that views uncertainty as an opportunity and supports change and innovation.
- Values and encourages diverse perspectives to achieve impact.
External and internal relations
- Builds and maintains relationships externally to advance impact in volunteerism, fundraising, regional partnerships, awareness, and advocacy.
- Builds and maintains relationships internally, fostering a culture that supports intra-departmental relationships throughout the organization to break down silos and barriers.
- Collaborates with organization leaders to align regional goals with enterprise objectives.
- Takes a planful approach to influencing others by identifying interests, common goals, and potential barriers.
- Identifies, engages and collaborates with diverse local, regional, community, public and private sector partners and decisionmakers to educate, inspire and influence policies and other outcomes.
- Markets and promotes all aspects of MS Canada’s mission, including public awareness campaigns and social action activities as per organizational goals and priorities.
- Educates partners about the diversity of our MS community.
Qualifications & Competencies
- Approximately 7 years of progressive experience in community engagement and/or development, business development or philanthropy in the not-for-profit sector.
- Proven strategic leadership abilities, working with senior-level executives and others to drive business goals, plans, and execution.
- Excellent relationship building and communications skills, working with community members in a cooperative and supportive manner to achieve shared goals.
- Skilled in engaging and collaborating with diverse local, regional, community, public and private sector partners and decisionmakers to educate, inspire and influence policies and other outcomes.
- Experienced in leading public awareness campaigns and social action activities, communicating mission in a variety of environments.
- A track record of creative problem solving and implementing innovative approaches.
- French language is an asset for this position.
KCI Search + Talent has been retained to conduct this search on behalf of MS Canada. For more information about this exciting opportunity, please contact Mia Gardiner, Senior Consultant, Search + Talent by email at MSCanada@kcitalent.com.
All applications and inquiries will be kept in strict confidence.
Interested candidates should submit their resume and a cover letter by August 25th, 2023 to the above email address.
The hiring salary range for this position is $111,500 to $120,000 based on experience.
To view full position brief, please visit www.kcitalent.com
The MS Canada is dedicated to encouraging a supportive and inclusive culture amongst the whole workforce where people from all backgrounds can thrive.
This position at MS Canada will require a criminal background check. This position is also a position of trust. The incumbent will be required to complete the screening process including completion of a credit and/or education verification check in compliance with the National Screening Measures Policy.
Our aim is to ensure that all employees, volunteers, and those interested in joining our team are given equal opportunity and that our organization is representative of all sections of society. We encourage all qualified applicants to apply.MS Canada is an equal opportunity employer and adheres to fair employment practices. In accordance with the Ontario Human Rights Code and the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005, accommodation will be provided in all parts of the hiring process, as required. Applicants are encouraged to make their needs for accommodation known as early on as possible during the application process.