Full Time

Executive Director, Jewish Federation of Greater Des Moines

Jewish Federation of Greater Des Moines 33158 Ute Ave., Waukee IA


The Jewish Federation of Greater Des Moines's (“the Federation”) Executive Director is ultimately accountable for the successful achievement of the Federation's vision and mission. Reporting to the Board of Directors, this person is responsible for the development, supervision, and administration of all aspects of the operating and capital budgets of the Federation. The Executive Director has the authority and overall responsibility for fundraising, for developing new leadership, and for the proper management of all personnel and operations including all processes, systems, and procedures of the Federation and staff. The Executive Director of the Federation also serves as the Executive Director of the Des Moines Jewish Foundation with responsibilities akin to those of the Federation. Given this, the Executive Director is significantly involved with most Foundation solicitation. The ideal candidate will have conceptual, strategic, and tactical ability, and, be able to work on multiple projects. This leader will be a visible, involved member of the community. Above all, this person will have a true passion for the Federation's mission with the strategic, analytical thinking, and team-building skills necessary to lead into a strong future and address the needs of the local and world Jewish community.



The Federation's mission is to enrich Jewish living through connection, education, and compassion. The Federation coordinates and supports the efforts of a diverse number of organizations and synagogues as well as offers a wide range of programs and services that address the needs of the Jewish community, both in the United States and abroad. The leadership includes a Board of Directors and professional staff who guide the organization, oversee initiatives, and ensure that fiscal responsibilities are upheld. The Federation is at the core of the Greater Des Moines community, which includes cities in Central Iowa. The diverse efforts of individual organizations are coordinated, while central fundraising is budgeted and allocated to fund priority community needs. The heart of the mission is to serve the local and world Jewish community’s diverse needs and interests.




From early childhood through 12th grade, the Federation supports high quality education. Gan Shalom Pre-School, Beit Sefer Shalom, and Engman Camp Shalom help build a sense of Jewish identity and enable youth of all faiths to enjoy learning in a nurturing environment.



Jewish Family Services provides critical support to growing families, recent Jewish immigrants, and senior citizens by offering emergency resources, social programs, and helping vulnerable community members stay connected, healthy, and secure in their homes.



The Federation serves as the voice of the Jewish community, thanks to the Jewish Community Relations Commission. By communicating through the Jewish Press and other tools, the Commission supports Jews here at home and in Israel. Community building is also supported through Partnership2Gether and our Israeli sister city, Akko.



The Iowa Jewish Historical Society and Iowa Holocaust Memorial preserves our Jewish heritage, memorializes the destruction of the European Jewish community in the Holocaust, and recognizes the survivors that immigrated to Iowa.

The pillars support the Jewish community in Greater Des Moines and Jewish communities in Israel and around the world by strategic cooperation with committees, synagogues, and organizations. The Federation serves as an effective voice representing Jewish interests with combined strength. It has an overriding purpose of building and maintaining a strong Jewish community. The Federation is the central fundraising, planning, and human resource
development organization of the Jewish community. It serves to maintain and strengthen cooperation and understanding between the Jewish community and the general community. The Federation is at the heart of Jewish life in the Greater Des Moines area providing social services and connecting Jews locally and abroad. To learn more about the Federation, please visit www.jewishdesmoines.org.


The capital of Iowa, Des Moines is a great place to live. The metropolitan area, with more than 600,000 residents, maintains family culture. Des Moines's strong job market, low cost of living and entertainment options have attracted and created a diverse society. The surrounding suburbs are really growing and are known for top-notch schools and clean, safe neighborhoods. Rated #4, on the list of Best Places to Live in the United States - by U.S. News and World Report, Des Moines is a place where residents deeply care about their community. It is a place where work/life balance can be achieved, where education is unmatched, and award-winning arts and entertainment are accessible. In Greater Des Moines, it is easy to live life without compromise: affordable living, vibrant downtown amenities, welcoming suburbs, world-class education, and minimum commute times. Residents of Des Moines are well-educated. The cost of living in Des Moines is lower than the national average and housing prices in Des Moines proper are well below the national median.


1. FUND DEVELOPMENT: Initiates and executes fresh, strategic fundraising plans.


a. Identifies strategies and contributors for Jewish Tzedakah and cultivation of Campaign volunteers;
b. Provides guidance and support to the Board and Campaign Committees for resource identification and development in support of the Federation;
c. Communicates, promotes and strengthens Board and committee understanding about local, national, and global needs to be met through the Campaign funds;
d. Takes responsibility for the staffing of the Foundation, supervising the accounting, maintaining the by-laws, tax status, grants and Board activities related to Foundation campaigns and solicitations; and
e. Develops awareness of the Foundation as one of the primary priorities of the Jewish community.

2. STRATEGIC PLANNING: Oversees all central planning efforts of the Federation.


a. Develops and updates strategic and long term plans identifying changes that are likely to occur in the community and prepares the Federation to meet the challenges and opportunities of change;
b. Provides leadership in the planning process to determine the future social, cultural and educational needs of the Jewish community as well as the financial resources that will be necessary to meet those needs;
c. Identifies trends impacting the health and sustainability of the Federation and takes appropriate action to address any issues;
d. Maintains and manages the Federation budget, along with regular and routine reporting to the Board on the results and status of those activities; and
e. Create a young leadership program.

3. GOVERNANCE: Serves as the liaison between the Board and the committees to fulfill and exceed the requirements and directives of the Board.


a. Acts as primary liaison and contact with the committees and affiliates of the Federation; attends the majority of committee and appropriate sub-committee meetings;
b. Actively informs the Board about the available resources to, and the financial status of, the Federation as well as financial trends, potential problems, and opportunities that may affect financial status;
c. Oversees leadership-training opportunities for volunteers to become more knowledgeable about, and skillful in, serving the Federation and the community, as well as to assure continuity in leadership; and
d. Assists Board officers and committee chairs in the identification and selection of individuals for specific service as officers, Board, and committee volunteers.


4. OPERATIONS AND MANAGEMENT: Oversees the performance of all staff and work output of the Federation to include employment, performance, evaluation, separation, and all other related personnel activity, in consultation with the Executive Committee and in accordance with the Federation's bylaws.


a. Defines position duties and responsibilities for all employees of the Federation;
b. Delegates direct supervisory authority and responsibility as appropriate; and
c. Keeps the staff informed of Board actions that affect personnel policies and/or practices and job descriptions.


5. COMMUNITY OUTREACH: Works cooperatively with the rabbis, congregational leadership, and others involved with the welfare of the Jewish community.


a. Fosters communication and relationships in the Jewish community and advances understanding of Federation activities and Jewish community service in the general community;
b. Develops strong relationships on behalf of the Federation with regional, national, and global agencies that are involved in Jewish community services and Israel advocacy; and
c. Collaborates with· people and organizations working toward the welfare of the general greater Des Moines community, including other voluntary health, welfare, educational, religious, and cultural organizations, general community central organizations and central community planning bodies.


  • Deep understanding of the values held by the Federation and the Jewish community.
  • Commitment to enrich and improve the quality of Jewish life in Des Moines, in Israel, and around the world.
  • Minimum of three years of experience successfully leading others.
  • Sensitivity and commitment to diversity and inclusion.
  • Exemplary interpersonal, oral, relationship, and written communication skills.
  • Knowledge of organizational management and governance.
  • Demonstrated track record of significant impact on a program or entity.
  • Ability to organize an effective young leadership program.


Jewish Federation of Greater Des Moines
33158 Ute Avenue
Waukee, Iowa 50263


Michael Wolnerman
President of the Federation Board of Directors


Hannah Rogers
President Elect of the Federation Board of Directors

Qualifications: 3-5 years of experience.