The American School Counselor Association (ASCA) seeks a dynamic Executive Director with strong leadership skills and a commitment to ASCA’s vision to be the foundation that expands the image and influence of school counselors through advocacy, leadership, collaboration and systemic change.
The American School Counselor Association (ASCA) supports school counselors' efforts to help students focus on academic, career and social/emotional development so they achieve success in school and are prepared to lead fulfilling lives as responsible members of society. With a membership of nearly 37,000 school counseling professionals from around the world, ASCA provides professional development, publications and other resources, research and advocacy to school counselors around the globe.
Founded in 1952, ASCA works to ensure it meets the needs of all school counselors, regardless of setting, experience level or needs. ASCA’s mission is to represent school counselors and promote professionalism and ethical practices. ASCA empowers school counselors with the knowledge, skills, linkages and resources to promote student success in the school, the home, the community and the world.
Since its formation, ASCA has helped establish a unified identity for school counselors by developing a framework for a data-informed school counseling program and other tools to support the profession. Essential programs and services include:
Resources: ASCA provides a range of publications to its members, such as the bi-monthly ASCA School Counselor magazine, online Professional School Counseling journal as well as toolkits and implementation guides. ASCA also maintains a robust website and the School Counselor Education and Networking Environment, a social networking platform that draws thousands of visitors each day.
ASCA National Model and RAMP: The ASCA National Model, a framework for a data- informed school counseling programs, is the foundation for the school counseling profession. The Recognized ASCA Model Program (RAMP) acknowledges schools that have implemented The ASCA National Model
School Counselor of the Year raises the profile and awareness of the profession, with former First Lady, Michelle Obama, hosting the celebration at the White House from 2015 to 2017 and serving as the featured guest in the 2018 ceremony. Dr. Jill Biden was the featured guest in
Professional Standards: ASCA establishes the basis for professional behavior through legal and ethical standards, professional competencies, student standards and other foundational documents.
Training and Professional Development: ASCA promotes life-long learning and continual growth through a wide range of professional development, including webinars, online courses, site-based training and ASCA’s annual conference, which attracts more than 3,500 attendees.
Headquartered in Alexandria, VA, ASCA is governed by a nine-member Board of Directors and follows the Carver Policy Governance model. The organization has an annual budget of $7M, funded primarily through program services, and employs 11 staff. ASCA’s current Executive Director, Dr. Richard Wong, will be retiring in Fall, 2020, after 20 years of service to the organization. For more information, please visit www.schoolcounselor.org.
Reporting to the ASCA Board of Directors, the Executive Director provides overall leadership to the organization, managing the staff’s efforts to implement the programs, services and other activities that result in the organization’s fulfillment of Board-defined priorities and policies.
Leadership Outlook and Near-Term Priorities
The Executive Director provides leadership both inside and outside the organization, continually increasing ASCA’s impact on education and the school counseling profession.
As ASCA looks to the future, the Board has identified the following strategic directions as part of the three- to five-year vision:
Further develop ASCA’s brand as the “home” or go-to source for school counselors that sets the standards in the field.
Preserve and advance ASCA’s work to build the school counselor identity as an essential role in education and the school counselor voice at the national, state, local and district levels in influencing the impact school counselors have on development of the whole student.
Provide research- and evidence-based school counseling programs and initiatives that improve student outcomes within the three domains of academic achievement, career planning and social/emotional learning.
Strengthen ASCA’s focus on equity, access, diversity, inclusion and cultural competence throughout its membership and in its leadership.
Continue to build external relationships with legislators and policy-makers, administrators and other educators to broaden ASCA’s reach.
The new Executive Director’s priorities for the first 12-18 months include:
School Counseling Profession & Membership: Learning and understanding the different roles and culture across the association and how they contribute to ASCA – including the robust membership and different needs across the school counseling profession, and blending these needs to support school counselors in best serving their communities.
Partnerships & External Relationships: Strengthening relationships with ASCA’s partners and other organizations in the field of education across the country; engaging stakeholders in conversations to educate individuals and groups about school counselors and their role in the education system.
Culture & Governance: Building strong relationships with staff and board; understanding and implementing the Carver Policy Governance model to ensure optimal effectiveness among board and staff members.
Current Issues & Initiatives: Identifying and determining key priorities for the association to focus on, such as COVID-19’s impact on the education system, new initiatives in process, key activities for 2021,etc.
The Executive Director will provide leadership to the organization and manage its day-to-day operations. Primary responsibilities include:
Seek innovative, effective ways to implement activities that drive the association toward the vision and outcomes set by the board.
Provide national leadership for school counselors and promote public understanding and appreciation of school counselors as educators.
Represent ASCA and act as a spokesperson for the organization.
Facilitate partnerships with stakeholders across all levels.
Oversee the day-to-day administration of the organization.
Manage the operating budget and ensure compliance.
Oversee all aspects of staffing, including recruitment, training, retention and evaluation.
Foster an effective relationship with the Board and the three standing committees to develop, implement and evaluate progress toward policies, programs and strategic and long-term plans for ASCA.
Empower the Board to fulfill its obligation of accountability for the organization’s achievement of outcomes, per the Carver Policy Governance model, by monitoring the organization’s progress and providing board members with timely, effective information and reports that support the Board’s ability to measure achievement of outcomes.
Experience and Attributes
Candidates for this position will share a commitment to ASCA’s mission and core values and will bring a variety of experiences and attributes to the organization, including:
Passion for, knowledge of and willingness to learn about school counseling and its role in the education profession.
Experience managing non-profit organizations, especially national associations; history of success leading an association in the education field a a plus.
Motivation and energy to preserve and support the framework ASCA has established to be a leader in school counseling.
Strategic vision, willingness to embrace a 360-degree view of school counseling and forward-thinking mindset to grow an organization/profession.
Charisma, strong public speaking and listening skills and effective communications skills.
Ability to serve as the face of an organization.
Excellent interpersonal skills to forge relationships with leadership in key stakeholder organizations as well as public officials and to collaborate with key constituencies to advance the organization’s work.
Financial acumen to develop and carry out an association budget.
Analytical, operational and organizational skills.
Ability to attract, inspire, trust and value staff.
Commitment to advocating for diversity, equity, inclusion and across an organization.
Ability to navigate adversity and make decisions effectively and ethically; persistence to face obstacles with integrity and transparency, giving members and the board “unrestrained confidence in the leadership” through creativity and ability to think outside the box.
Willingness to explore new initiatives, ability to generate innovation and foster an environment that encourages innovation from members, staff and other stakeholders.
Master’s degree required.
To apply, upload resume, cover letter and salary requirements by clicking here. For other inquiries, contact Adrienne O’Rourke at Adrienne.ORourke@marcumllp.com. Resume reviews begin immediately.
Equal Opportunity Employer
ASCA provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment and prohibits discrimination and harassment of any type without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, disability status, genetics, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local laws.
About Raffa – Marcum’s Nonprofit & Social Sector Group
On behalf of ASCA, Raffa – Marcum’s Nonprofit & Social Sector Group is working with the Board of Directors to advance the executive search. Founded in 1984 and now merged with Marcum, Raffa is a mission-driven national firm seeking to do more for nonprofits and socially conscious companies like ASCA. Learn about our work at http://marcumllp.com/industries/nonprofit-social-sector
About American School Counselor Association
The American School Counselor Association supports school counselors' efforts to help students focus on academic, career and social/emotional development so they achieve success in school and are prepared to lead fulfilling lives as responsible members of society. ASCA provides professional development, publications and other resources, research and advocacy to more than 36,000 professional school counselors around the globe. ASCA administers the Recognized ASCA Model Program (RAMP), the School Counselor of the Year Awards and publishes the ASCA National Model. Download a fact sheet about ASCA.