Executive Director/Chief Executive Officer

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Executive Director/Chief Executive Officer

Date Posted December 1, 2017
Job Type Regular
Hours Per Week 40
PAVIR Job ID ADM1802.18
Salary Range DOE


The Palo Alto Veterans Institute for Research (PAVIR) is seeking an Executive Director/Chief Executive Officer (ED/CEO).  The ED/CEO provides overall institutional leadership and direction, and oversees the administration of programs and services provided by PAVIR.  The ED/CEO also protects the organization’s financial assets while ensuring compliance with board directives and applicable grantor, federal, and state requirements, and serves as an authorized representative of the Board of Directors in all matters. This is a regular, full time, exempt position.

PAVIR’s core business is the administration and support of awards for research and education activities conducted at Veterans Affairs Palo Alto Veterans Health Care System (VAPAHCS). The range of research activities is broad, and includes special emphasis on biomedical, health services, rehabilitation engineering, mental health, traumatic brain injury and geriatric research endeavors. Many PAVIR investigators are internationally renowned recipients of prestigious scientific awards, hold dual appointments at VAPAHCS and Stanford University, and possess a sustained track record of successful competition for peer-reviewed research funding from NIH, DOD, health agencies, and foundations.

PAVIR has a friendly, close-knit, and supportive environment. The organization is poised to meet new challenges and capitalize on new opportunities on sound financial footing, with an exceedingly strong and diverse team of investigators, an excellent administrative team, and a hospitable VA facility with leadership both appreciative and supportive of research and academic medicine.

Reporting to the Board of Directors, the ED/CEO is responsible for the effective leadership, management and financial health of PAVIR. The chief executive will be expected to embrace PAVIR’s core values and its mission, to maintain strong relationships with its affiliates, Principal Investigators, and sister institutions, and to build on currently successful strategies and programs.


Strategic Planning and Leadership:

  • Works closely with the VA research leadership and the Board of Directors on the organization’s vision and strategic plan.
  • Provides leadership in the implementation of the organization’s goals and plans and continually refines and improves operations while meeting measurable goals and objectives.
  • Continuously monitors developments in the non-profit medical research arena, researching successful programs to introduce new ideas to advance PAVIR’s programs and financial health.

Financial Management:

  • Provides leadership and direction for the organization’s ongoing financial sustainability.
  • Monitors, directs, and evaluates the fiscal performance of PAVIR to assure quality service within PAVIR’s financial means.
  • Directs the development of the annual operating budgets for PAVIR and monitors the receipt and expenditure of funds to assure fiscal responsibility.
  • Supervises the business affairs of PAVIR to assure that its funds are expended appropriately and effectively through a strong system of internal controls.
  • Represents PAVIR in business negotiations; executes business agreements/arrangements on behalf of PAVIR.


  • Develops strategies and successfully designs and implements activities that support targeted growth.
  • Works closely with principal investigators (PIs) and their staff to ensure they are provided with appropriate support systems and responsive, quality service in the areas of grant preparation, project accounting, human resources, purchasing and related administrative functions.
  • Promotes an open communication system at all levels and is able to develop and maintain a strong management team.
  • Organizes the administrative functions of the organization, delegates duties, and establishes formal means of accountability for subordinates.
  • Ensures that a solid and meaningful system of policies and procedures exist to guide the day-to-day operations of PAVIR.
  • Ensures that appropriate decision-making procedures exist in the organization.
  • Oversees special projects and performs other duties as needed to fulfill the goals and objectives of the organization.

Personnel Management:

  • Oversees effective and sound personnel procedures to keep the organization in compliance with applicable laws/regulations.
  • Manages, mentors, and supervises direct reports, providing ongoing support and feedback, and formally evaluating performance at least annually; addresses performance issues in a timely manner.

Board Relations:

  • Provides leadership, support, and information to facilitate board members’ efforts to develop policy, assure sound financial practices, increase revenue, and improve governance and decision-making.
  • Communicates regularly to the Board regarding achievement of strategic plan objectives, financial status of the organization, updates on current initiatives/activities, and other issues relevant to the Board.
  • Seeks and provides advice and direction in conjunction with Board requirements/needs.
  • Implements Board approved policies, program goals and objectives.
  • Orients new Board members.

External Relations:

  • Develops and maintains strong supportive working relationships with investigators, sponsors, and partners, especially at VA Palo Alto Health Care System (VAPAHCS), Stanford University, and the National Association of Veterans’ Research and Education Foundations (NAVREF).
  • Establishes and cultivates collaborative and strategic partnerships between the organization and its affiliates, with charitable and other organizations, and with regulatory agencies.
  • Stays abreast of industry/market needs and shifts; recommends and implements modifications to meet changing needs; manages government relations.

Other Duties:

  • Performs other duties that may be necessary and in the best interests of PAVIR.



  • Required: Bachelor’s degree (or equivalent combination of education and experience)
  • Desired: Master’s degree


  • Required: At least five years of successful management level experience in a non-profit organization with annual revenues of at least $10 million; relevant and up-to-date knowledge of research administration.
  • Desired: A record of successful fundraising/development initiatives

 Knowledge / Skills / Abilities:

Strategic Planning and Leadership:

  • Visionary leader with experience directing an evolving organization in adapting to market forces to best benefit the organization.
  • Demonstrated visioning and strategic planning skills.
  • Ability to lead, influence, inspire and motivate individuals and teams, including staff, the Board, academicians, and partners.
  • Team builder who has experience in maintaining excellent working relationships across institutional boundaries.
  • Capacity to enforce accountability, experience in implementing and fostering “lean,” ability to engage employees in a participatory management under a hierarchy.

Planning and Organization:

  • Ability to translate the vision and strategy into an operational plan from big institutional goals to departmental and individual targets.
  • Demonstrated track record of setting and meeting goals in a “lean” environment with a focus on transparency.
  • Strong decision-making, organizational, planning and implementation skills.
  • Ability to set priorities, analyze, and resolve problems.

Financial Management:

  • Experience in setting overarching goals for the development and management of financial plans, forecasts, and budgets.
  • Experience in reporting financial results to different audiences.
  • Serve as the POC for institutional audits.

Personnel Management:

  • Demonstrated experience attracting, managing, developing, evaluating, and retaining staff.
  • Ability to engage, lead, mentor, and motivate individuals and teams.

Interpersonal Skills/Communication:

  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills and a respectful, collaborative, effective approach to building alliances to strengthen the organization.
  • Relationship builder who can comfortably connect with organizational and external partners.

 Environmental Conditions / Physical Demands:

  • Physical: Frequently sit for long periods of time to perform computer-based tasks and meet with customers. Occasionally stand / walk around the office or VA campus.  Occasionally lift / carry / push / pull objects that weigh up to 10 lbs.
  • Environmental: Office environment and equipment.

PAVIR engages in nonprofit medical research and works with sponsors and the Veterans Affairs Palo Alto Health Care System (VAPAHCS) in administering funds for conducting research to find new and improved ways to combat human disease and help people with disabilities.  Please refer to our website for additional information: www.pavir.org.

PAVIR is pleased to be an Equal Opportunity Employer for Minorities, Females, Protected Veterans, and Qualified Individuals with a Disability.  If you need special assistance or an accommodation to apply for a posted position, please contact jobs@pavir.org – Human Resources department.

As a condition of employment, all PAVIR employees are required to receive an approved Without Compensation (WOC) appointment with VAPAHCS and complete a background check.


  • Medical Insurance
  • Dental Insurance
  • Vision Insurance
  • Life Insurance – paid by PAVIR
  • Long-term Disability Insurance – paid by PAVIR
  • Short-term Disability Insurance – paid by PAVIR
  • Flexible Spending Account
  • Vacation
  • Sick Leave
  • Ten paid Holidays
  • 401(k) Retirement Plan with Company Match and Profit Share
  • Employee Assistance Program
  • Commuter Benefits
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The Palo Alto Veterans Institute for Research (PAVIR) is an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.

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By selecting the checkbox below, I am certifying all the information I have provided with my application is true and complete to the best of my knowledge. I understand that all PAVIR employees must complete a “Without Compensation” (WOC) appointment through the VA Research Administration office, which includes fingerprinting, a background check, training, and verification of my education background (including licensure if required for the position I am applying for).

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