Chief Financial Officer

Texas Trees Foundation
Published
October 29, 2021
Location
Dallas, Texas
Category
Job Type

Description

THE ORGANIZATION

Vision
The Texas Trees Foundation (the Foundation) has a vision for Dallas, North Texas, and the surrounding area and is dedicated to serving as a catalyst in its development. It is a community comprised of beautiful, well-maintained parks; shady, tree-lined streets and boulevards; hiking, biking, and nature trails; and other outdoor amenities that combine to form a living and working environment that enhances the economic value of its commercial areas and neighborhoods. It is a community that nurtures the health, safety, and quality of life of all its citizens who actively participate in building and sustaining its “urban forest.”

History
The Texas Trees Foundation, formerly the Dallas Parks Foundation, was established in 1982 by business leaders Robert Decherd and Trammell Crow as a 501(c)3 organization dedicated to supporting Dallas parks. In 1987, the Dallas Parks Foundation merged with Dallas Junior League Treescape/Dallas Inc. and became known as the Dallas Trees and Parks Foundation. In doing so, the organization gained an even greater ability to impact urban landscape projects by building on Treescape's successful history of attracting and utilizing volunteers and in-kind donations of services and products to implement programs cost-effectively. In 2003, the organization was renamed the Texas Trees Foundation to expand the scope of work beyond Dallas to mitigate environmental challenges through the use of trees and green infrastructure.

The Texas Trees Foundation is a data-driven non-profit that implements research-based plans that educate and mobilize the public to activate the social, economic, environmental, and health benefits that trees and urban forestry provide for a better quality of life. In 2015, the Foundation published The State of the Dallas Urban Forest Report, a compilation of three studies that provides an empirical framework for working with the city and other partners to strategically advance the practice of urban forestry in Dallas. In addition, in 2017, the organization collaborated with the Georgia Institute of Technology to create the Dallas Urban Heat Island Mitigation Study, a year-long examination of the impact and implications of air temperatures at the neighborhood level that has informed the organization’s efforts for strategic plantings to grow the tree canopy. This research was a catalyst for the City of Dallas Comprehensive Environmental Action Plan and has resulted in several projects that drive the Foundation’s activities to mitigate environmental challenges.

Texas Trees Foundation, partnering with the City of Dallas, achieved major milestone in 2021 when the City of Dallas approved its first-ever Urban Forest Master Plan, a strategic and cohesive agenda for managing trees and guiding reforestation efforts in the decades to come. By recognizing that the 14.7 million trees in Dallas are a natural resource valued at over $9 billion in benefits to the ecosystem and replacement cost, city leaders demonstrated a commitment to making trees an environmental priority.

Today, with the generous support from philanthropic and government funding, and volunteer support, the Foundation is actively nurturing and expanding a healthy urban forest to improve the quality of life for North Texas residents and create a “green infrastructure” that provides a cooler, cleaner, greener place to live, work and play.

Current Projects

TXU Energy Urban Tree Farm & Education Center
Located on the Richland campus of Dallas College, the TXU Energy Urban Tree Farm and Education Center is one of Texas’ largest-known urban tree farms. The four-acre tree farm features state-of-the-art production and irrigation technology and produces approximately 1,500 ten-gallon trees per planting season. Trees grown onsite are planted throughout North Texas for a variety of projects and programs.

Southwestern Medical District Streetscape Project
A visionary, therapeutic, multi-million-dollar landscape redesign project to transform the Harry Hines corridor in the Southwestern Medical District into a vibrant, connected, and safe multi-modal linear parkway with a 10-acre park at the intersection of Harry Hines and Inwood.

Branching Out – Reforesting Your Neighborhood Park
The Foundation works together with the Dallas Parks and Recreation Department and other partners to strategically plant and replace trees in city parks that are lost during severe weather events.

Cool Schools
A project designed to connect students and teachers to nature by planting trees and creating fun and engaging outdoor experiential learning areas. These spaces cultivate knowledge and awareness of the natural environment, create healthier school campuses by increasing tree canopy providing shade for outdoor activities, and improving air quality for students and teachers alike. Curriculum is provided and is TEKS aligned and STEM-focused.

NeighborWoods Program
The NeighborWoods program includes a variety of community projects and plantings in collaboration with individuals and organizations that provide multiple benefits to the community at large including increasing the overall tree canopy, enhancing the beauty of public spaces, providing shaded areas for recreational use, and bringing communities together through teamwork and environmental stewardship.

Governance and Finances
All activities of the Foundation are conducted with integrity and the highest ethical standards under the direction of its Board of Trustees. The Board serves in an advisory capacity and develops, reviews, and approves all strategic planning, budgets, and operational policies of the organization. The Board currently consists of eight members, four of whom serve on the Executive Committee. Currently, the organization has a staff of 16, a $6 million annual operating budget, and is in solid financial health.

THE OPPORTUNITY

Role
Texas Trees Foundation seeks a strategic and effective Chief Financial Officer (CFO) to partner with the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) in all matters of finance and administration. In addition to supporting the Foundation’s future growth, the CFO will contribute to the development of the organization’s vision and mission, allowing the Foundation to continue its track record of financial success while laying the groundwork for sustainable evolution.

Responsibilities
Reporting to the President & CEO, theCFO will be responsible for the total financial health of the Foundation. He/she will provide accounting, budgetary, operational, and programmatic support for the organization’s myriad projects and activities. Specific responsibilities include the following:

Business Operations
• Plan, direct, and manage all accounting functions.
• Oversee all financial data critical for accurate financial statement and tax reporting.
• Design and implement financial statement and tax return controls and ensure that
controls are operating effectively and efficiently in support of core organizational
objectives.
• Evaluate the effectiveness of accounting software and other applications/software
that impact the financial operations of the Foundation.
• Establish and monitor business performance metrics for operations and
development.
• Develop process improvements and enhancements based on an understanding of
business processes.
• Collaborate with other department leaders to understand operational needs and
develop initiatives to support organizational growth.
• Develop and maintain accounting/financial operations policies and procedures and
provide recommendations for change and improvement as required.
• Maintain the chart of accounts and monitor changes in the Foundation and its
subsidiaries and affiliates that could impact the chart of accounts and related
systems.
• Coordinate and lead cross-functional strategies/initiatives to ensure transparency
and alignment among financial, development, and all operations departments.
• Manage loss prevention and risk management functions for the Foundation.
• Review and approve all contracts and ensure proper recording in books according
to GAAS.

Management & Governance
• Manage the Senior Accounting Manager.
• Work with leadership in owning and driving various strategic initiatives and projects.
• Provide financial reports to the Board of Directors, Finance Committee, and
President & CEO.

THE IDEAL CANDIDATE

Leadership
• A minimum of ten years of senior-level financial management experience either in a
nonprofit or for-profit organization.
• Experience establishing a strategic plan and roadmap to implement and execute new
initiatives.
• Capability to lead a team through change.
• Proven track record to lead and influence others.
• Demonstrated ability to work with efficiency, diplomacy, and flexibility as part of a
team.

Experience
• General accounting and financial reporting procedures in accordance with all
applicable state, GAAP, and federal funding circulars.
• Insurance and loss prevention.
• Payroll reporting and processing of payroll taxes.
• General office software and accounting software packages.
• Familiarity with human resources management, benefits administration, and
information technology is a plus.

Education
Bachelor's degree from an accredited institution required; Master's degree in finance, accounting or related field preferred

Skills & Knowledge
• Strong financial and analytical background with a focus on skills that facilitate
decision-making.
• Experience establishing a strategic plan and roadmap to implement and execute
new initiatives.
• Knowledge of risk management, internal controls, and due diligence.
• Ability to communicate complex financial concepts to partners with a diverse set of
backgrounds, including leadership, program staff, grantees, and other Foundation
operational resources.
• Proven track record in leading and influencing others and experience working on
teams with diverse cultural and professional backgrounds.
• Knowledge of business principles and processes with the ability to navigate complex
environments.
• Critical thinking acumen, excellent communication skills, and a facility for
articulating a vision.
• Ability to educate, influence, and lead cross-functional teams and provide proactive
collaboration, strategic thinking, and innovative solutions.
• Project management and negotiation skills.

Personal Characteristics
• A creative, thoughtful, servant leader with a solutions orientation and the ability to
identify new ways of working to increase operational efficiencies.
• An individual who can work across a diverse set of disciplines, bridging a wide range
of expertise, with a demonstrated ability to work with agility, efficiency, and
diplomacy in a dynamic environment.
• A highly ethical person who exercises sound judgment in both day-to-day decisions
and strategic issues.
• A self-motivated, resourceful, and reliable manager.
• Interfaces easily and effectively with staff, other senior management personnel, and
funding sources

Application Instructions

Texas Trees Foundation has retained Pena Search to conduct the Chief Financial Officer search on its behalf.  Please submit resume and cover letter to dianne@penasearch.com

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