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Vice President for Programs

Location:Baltimore, MD
Benefits:Excellent Benefit Package Offered
Employment Type:Full Time

If you are passionate about transforming communities with a mission-driven organization, then we have the opportunity for you!

LIRS is seeking a dynamic, innovative and creative leader to provide vision, expertise and strategic direction to our Programs teams including foster care, family reunification and services for migrants, refugees and asylum seekers. This role reports directly to the President and CEO.

To be a successful candidate for this position, you will have experience in creating strategies and programs to advance and grow initiatives in addition to experience working with private partners and federal agencies in the immigration space. You will be able to demonstrate a high level of internal and external collaboration and the ability to leverage new and existing relationships to increase awareness, funding and advocacy. You will bring a network of relevant current connections and be able to strategically enhance it for the advancement of LIRS's objectives and goals.

In conjunction with directors, you will create program plans so that migrants and refugees are protected, empowered and embraced; develop and enhance services for unaccompanied minors and other constituencies, and collaborate with leadership and departments across the organization to ensure that advocacy for migrants and refugees is integrated into the organization's programmatic work.

The VP of Progrms oversees a staff of approximately 40 through two direct reports: the Director for Refugee and Migrant Services, and the Director for Children and Family Services.


Duties:Key Accountabilities:


  • Provide leadership, vision and strategic direction including creating innovative programs, new applications for existing programs and securing and diversifying private and government revenue streams to support the services we provide to migrants, immigrants, refugees, asylum seekers and unaccompanied minors.
  • Support directors and development staff in crafting funding proposals and guiding directors in their oversight of program design and expenditures.
  • Create a department budget and regularly monitor expenses to ensure alignment with the yearly approved spending plan.
  • Represent LIRS programs internally and externally and leverage relationships including with funders, coalitions, affiliates, NGO's, communities, advocacy groups, and government agencies such as the State Department's Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration, Health and Human Services' Office of Refugee Resettlement and Refugee Council USA. Speak and write on issues as a subject matter expert at conferences and for the media.
  • Contribute to the advancement of LIRS's advocacy priorities, build LIRS's credibility on key issue areas, and serve as a resource for advocacy department.
  • Negotiate MOUs, teaming agreements, partnerships and contracts.
  • Provide direction in development of outcome-based program management systems, guiding directors in establishing and developing key indicators and performance measures to evaluate the quality, efficiency and impact of LIRS programs.
  • Establish departmental standards for staff and service partners and ensure systems are in place to hold them accountable. Ensure LIRS principles and standards for effective service delivery and partnerships are incorporated into policies and procedures for LIRS staff and in agreements with partners and affiliates.
  • Participate in all Leadership Team, Management Council, and Board of Directors meetings. Lead initiatives to advance the strategic plan.


  • Minimum of a Bachelor's degree, graduate degree in a relevant field strongly preferred.
  • At least 10 years of senior management experience, ideally in an organization that delivers program services through partners.
  • Experience leading and managing complex programs in the field of national refugee and/or immigration services. Experience at the local community level desired.
  • Comprehensive understanding of immigration and refugee laws and practices, including their role in providing services that promote protection, stabilization, and integration. Proven use of this knowledge and experience to contribute to advocacy strategies.
  • Established and demonstrated record of collaborating and dealing with high level officials at the Department of State, Department of Health and Human Services and other federal agencies.
  • Results orientation with strong conceptual visioning and strategic skills supported by the ability to analyze emerging trends.
  • Strong manager with collaborative leadership style and demonstrated skills promoting innovative thinking. The ability to leverage the talent of others and act as a visible and accessible leader.
  • Extensive experience in the full cycle of non-profit planning, monitoring, evaluation, and reporting that fosters organizational and network learning and innovation.
  • Thorough understanding of federal regulatory requirements and compliance related to programs and services.
  • Demonstrated successful track record in the development and implementation of innovative, responsive and fundable programs.
  • Superior written and oral communication skills to effectively educate and influence diverse audiences, both internal and external.
  • Deep commitment to LIRS's mission and core values and ability to model those values in relationships with colleagues and partners.
  • Proven track record of effectively managing and instituting accountability and discipline among staff members and creating professional and high performing teams.
  • Ability to travel, up to 25% nationally. May include occasional international travel.
Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service (LIRS) is a national faith-based organization with an 80-year history, a budget of over $55 million per year, and over 80 headquarters staff. Widely recognized for our expertise in implementing federal programs on behalf of refugees and migrants in the United States,LIRS resettles refugees, reunites children with their families or provides loving homes for them, conducts policy advocacy, and advances the protection and rights of vulnerable migrants.

Headquartered in the beautiful Inner Harbor of downtown Baltimore we provide services nationwide through a network of affiliates.

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