Incoming CEO to oversee the implementation of the FIA’s strategic plan and its brand re-positioning efforts.

Incoming CEO to oversee the implementation of the FIA’s strategic plan and its brand re-positioning efforts.

Outgoing FIA CEO Rob Edwards.

Fundraising Institute Australia chief executive Rob Edwards is stepping down after six-and-a-half years in the role, with the organisation beginning a search for his replacement.

The peak fundraising body has appointed specialist nonprofit recruitment firm NGO Recruitment to manage the recruitment process. It is encouraging applications from across industries, including from people who may not have previously worked in the fundraising and philanthropy sectors.

Since his appointment to the role in 2011, Edwards has been the catalyst for a number of initiatives to turn the organisation around both financially and strategically. These included implementing a wide range of new sustainable services and overseeing the introduction of the new FIA code.

In a statement, Edwards said that it is “a really exciting and transformational time” for the FIA, as the organisation enters a new phase of growth and opportunity.

“Our professional development courses are world-class, our new code has been well received, and our relationships with government, regulators, the ACNC and with other sector organisations are well established,” Edwards said.

“In short, the foundations are all now in place for a talented leader to take over the reins and make a real difference.”

The hunt is on

With Edwards moving on, the FIA is searching for a new CEO who will take the organisation to the next level and bring about further change in the fundraising sector.

Working closely with the board, the incoming CEO will be tasked with implementing the FIA’s 2020 strategic vision to advance Australia’s fundraising standards, which will include overseeing the repositioning of the organisation’s brand.

The FIA recently appointed March One Fundraising to assist with its rebranding efforts, which are expected to be completed ahead of the organisation’s annual membership renewal campaign in late 2018.

“The new CEO will be the main driver of this initiative and will need to make sure that this shift towards self-regulation is accepted by the sector,” Edwards said.

FIA chair-elect James Garland said the organisation is “in such a great place thanks to the terrific work done by Rob Edwards and the team”.

“Now we’re looking for someone with the right skills and determination to help us achieve a number of bold goals over the next few years. We’re looking for someone to help raise the profile of the fundraising profession and the associated professional identity of fundraising,” Garland said.

“And we’re looking for someone who can lead from the front, who can deliver this message publicly, who can bring people along for the ride and who can inspire engagement with practitioners and a whole range of stakeholders.

“It’s rare to find an opportunity to truly shape and cement such an important profession. This won’t be a maintenance job. This is a role of architecture, building and promotion in an industry worth some $12 billion of revenue here in Australia.”

Garland said the successful candidate can come from any industry association, fundraising body or member-driven business.

“We’re really interested in their ability to lead not just the team, but also to champion the profession and the practitioners within it,” he said.

“So whether you’ve been involved in fundraising and philanthropy before or not is irrelevant. We really want the right person for their skills, drive and to take the organisation to the next level.”

To find out more about the role and how to apply, please contact Richard Green, Director, NGO Recruitment on (02) 8243 0570.


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