Executive Director

The HEAL Project

Half Moon Bay, California

Job Type Permanent
Salary Details 115,000-120,000
Required Experience 2 - 6 years

Position: Executive Director 

Compensation: $115,000- $120,000 Note: This position is also available as a 4 day/ week position at a prorated salary.  

Role structure: Hybrid, with presence in the The HEAL Project’s office in Half Moon Bay, CA required at least 3 days per week

Direct reports: 5 program managers and administrative managers

About us: 

The HEAL Project (THP) teaches San Mateo County elementary school children  where their food comes from and why it matters via unique, hands-on, education programs in school classrooms and on-site gardens and at the San Mateo County School Farm. Our programs cultivate healthy lifestyle habits in students while inspiring environmental and agricultural awareness through a comprehensive, interactive curriculum.  To learn more about our history, mission, vision, values, and theory of change, visit www.thehealproject.org.

Current Fiscal Year Budget: $850,000

Full Staff Composition: 12 full-time and part-time staff and 1 independent contractor, totalling 7 full time equivalents 

Where we are today:

The HEAL Project's experienced staff is focused on devoting organizational resources to the highest need public schools.  We are finding new ways to deepen our impact on our students in collaboration with the coastside's rich fabric of youth service providers. During the 23/24 school year, we served more than 4,200 students with our hands-on health and ecoliteracy lessons.

As The HEAL Project enters our next stage of growth, we seek an experienced Executive Director who will help us continue to grow revenue and raise our profile in San Mateo County at large. In recent years our leadership team established cohesive program guidelines, built substantial relationships with Cabrillo Unified School District and key donors and funding entities, and more than doubled the organization's budget and number of students served. We look forward to finding The HEAL Project's next Executive Director to continue building on this strong foundation.

We encourage candidates of all backgrounds to apply. We are committed to a diverse work culture that represents the diversity of the community we serve.

Our Ideal Candidate

We are seeking a seasoned leader with strong interpersonal skills and a demonstrated track record of success in fundraising, leading teams, and moving the mission forward.  We also value a shared passion for gardening, cooking, youth education, and conservation work.  



  • Ignite and spread passion for our mission with organizational stakeholders: staff, board, volunteers, and donors- encouraging them to invite others to learn about, participate in, and support the organization’s work.
  • Contribute to building a cohesive sense of culture for all stakeholders, creating a sense of belonging and community that is welcoming and inclusive.
  • Represent The HEAL Project in the community at large, including participating in key Coastside and San Mateo County networking opportunities, cultivating relationships with elected officials, and working closely with Cabrillo Unified School District leadership.

Board Partnership

  • Nurture partnerships with the Board of Directors, and provide each board member with the resources, information, and training necessary to be organizational ambassadors.
  • Actively engage with key Board committees to meet shared goals.

Vision and Strategy

  • In partnership with the board and staff, align the organization around a compelling vision for the future that aligns with our mission and Theory of Change.
  • In partnership with staff, develop goals, strategies, and tactics in the form of annual plans to serve as a roadmap for the organization’s activities and provide accountability.

Management and Personnel Development

  • Build, lead and retain an effective and diverse staff dedicated to the mission and with the skills necessary to be successful in their work.
  • Provide regular opportunities for reciprocal feedback with staff.
  • Ensure that each staff person is equipped with a professional development plan.
  • Establish effective protocols for meetings, workflow, and decision making. 
  • Lead, manage, and oversee the annual professional review cycle.


  • Work with Program Managers to ensure that each program fits with The HEAL Project’s mission and Theory of Change.
  • Ensure effective systems for program evaluation and regularly evaluate the program portfolio, ever mindful of the need to adapt to the needs of our students and larger community. 

Growing Organizational Resources

  • Serve as The HEAL Project’s chief fundraiser, including working with the Board, Communications Manager, and Associate Director to oversee 3 annual fundraisers, and create an annual fund development plan document.
  • Work with the Board and Associate Director to identify and develop donor prospects and carry out an effective donor retention strategy.
  • Work with the Associate Director to create a plan for pursuing grant funding, and grant reporting and evaluation. 

Financial Management 

  • Work with Associate Director, Business Operations Manager, and contract accountant to ensure robust and accurate recording of financial transactions.
  • Work with Associate Director and manager level staff to create the organization's annual budget.
  • Work with the Associate Director to communicate financial information clearly and succinctly to staff and board.  

Essential Qualifications:

  • 3-5 years of experience in a director level position, with previous executive experience preferred  
  • Experience managing and supporting staff and working with a board of directors
  • Demonstrated experience in creating and implementing a strategic plan
  • Strong financial literacy 
  • Demonstrated donor development experience including asking for and receiving gifts of at least $5,000
  • Excellent communication and presentation skills 
  • Bachelor’s degree, or equivalent work experience 

Additional Preferred Qualifications:

  • 5-7 years of director level experience
  • Advanced degree
  • Spanish-language fluency is a plus!
  • Advanced degree strongly preferred

Basic Eligibility:

  • Be a citizen, national, or lawful permanent resident of the United States
  • Test negative for Tuberculosis.
  • Pass fingerprinting & DOJ background check to work with children.

Travel Requirements

The HEAL Project staff are individually responsible for transportation to and from job sites, as well as occasional trips to our main office and other school sites. Travel reimbursement will be provided for travel outside of coastside sites.

Note: No relocation compensation is provided for this role. 

Typical Mental & Physical Demands

Requires prolonged physical activity with bending, stooping, lifting and stretching; eye-hand coordination and manual dexterity sufficient to operate garden tools, a keyboard, photocopier, and other office equipment. Requires range of hearing and eyesight which permits one to communicate with students as well as maintain data records. Ability to lift 30lbs. Flexibility to adapt to a changing environment is needed as well.


Benefits include medical, vision, and dental insurance, holiday pay, paid time off, and a pretax 401k plan.  This position is also available as a 4 day/ week position at a prorated salary. 


Email brief cover letter and resume to EDsearch@thehealproject.org.  Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.  Position is open until filled.  We regret that we may not be able to respond to every application.  

Interview Process

Selected applicants will be contacted for an initial 45 minute Zoom interview.  Successful interviewees will be invited to interview in person with staff and board members and will be asked to prepare a brief presentation.  

The HEAL Project is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer. Equal opportunity is given to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, age, disability, marital status, or status as a covered veteran, in accordance with applicable federal, state and local laws.

When you apply, please indicate that you are responding to the posting on Conservation Job Board.

Category Admin & Leadership