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Executive Director, 2-1-1

United Way
Chicago, IL
  • Posted: March 12, 2023
  • Full-Time

For the first time, 5M+ residents of Cook County, IL will have access to a vital service and online portal help them find and navigate health and human service supports without relying on 911. More than 97% of the US population has access to 211, but not in the metro-Chicago region. This new initiative is a collaboration between United Way of Metro Chicago, local government, philanthropic funders and numerous community partners. Join a high-performing team to build and lead this critical program!


Similar to 911, 211 is a nationally recognized, easy to remember phone number that quickly and effectively connects people in need with resources. The purpose of 211 is to connect individuals who need help with the right human services and community resources in their local community. The 211 service is widely available across the country and will soon be available in the City of Chicago and Cook County.

211 Metro Chicago is seeking an innovative individual passionate about serving others to develop and lead a team in ensuring that Chicago's 211 excels in the delivery of information and referral services to the 5M+ residents of Cook County. The Executive Director will be responsible for ensuring that 211 provides a positive experience for individuals, non-profit organizations and government agencies and is a valued partner to stakeholders throughout the county and state. This position reports to the Vice President, Initiatives & Public Programming (IPP).

  • Design and execute a strategy for developing a best-in-class human services contact center including a staffing plan, developing critical programs and processes, and securing and managing contracts and agreements with funders, non-profit organizations, and government agencies.
  • Serve as a key advisor to the Vice President, IPP and 211 in identifying and developing strategies for enhancing and expanding the 211 service.
  • Hire and manage the 211 team, ensuring high performance standards are met
  • Development and maintenance of key regional relationships, including serving as a liaison with local lead agency representatives; leading the regional advisory committees within each region; working with 211 center leaders outside of the Cook County geographic footprint; and identifying regional partners to facilitate the management and growth of 211.
  • Oversee and ensure execution of contractual agreements for 211 Metro Chicago's fee-for-service agreements including those with the City of Chicago and Cook County.
  • Provide oversight and guidance to ensure 211 Metro Chicago priorities are met within established budgetary and time parameters.
  • Responsible for overall performance of 211 Metro Chicago service provision agreements. This includes oversight of 211's quality assurance plan and working with internal staff and vendors to ensure 211 meets key performance indicators.
  • Serve as a public spokesperson for 211 Metro Chicago and a representative of the United Way of Metro Chicago at community events, public meetings, conferences and other external opportunities.
  • Develop center policies and procedures including a state-of-art quality assurance and customer feedback protocol to ensure service levels are continuously met
  • Produce and collaborate with United Way staff to create presentations, proposals and a variety of programmatic reports.
  • Collaborate with United Way staff and community partners to identify and pursue funding opportunities to support new projects and to help ensure sustainability of 211.
  • Develop and maintain key relationships for advancing 211, including with 311, 911, and Emergency Management.
  • Work closely with the Vice President, IPP to integrate 211 into the United Way of Metro Chicago's investment portfolio and overall strategies.

  • Excellent communication skills: able to communicate effectively with diverse groups and individuals, both orally and through written material.
  • Strong leadership and management skills and experience managing a team of at least 10 individual contributors.
  • Proven ability to manage several competing priorities and meet deadlines in a fast-paced environment.
  • Ability to establish effective working relationships with staff, vendors, and volunteers. A team player capable and willing to support all aspects and jobs required for successful implementation of the service.
  • Experience leading cross functional teams and cross-organizational teams.
  • Strong organizational skills and attention to detail.
  • Ability and willingness to travel regionally and within the City of Chicago & Cook County.

  • At least 5 years of experience directing or managing [K1] a contact center in a rapidly changing environment, preference for contact center experience within the social services or government sectors and strong preference for experience with another 211 program.
  • At least 3 years' experience managing a high-performing team.
  • Proven ability to design and implement effective programs.
  • Ability to quickly learn and achieve proficiency with new technology systems and processes.
  • Experience managing a $3M+ annual budget.
  • Demonstrated complex project management experience.
  • Deep understanding of the human services and social service delivery system is a plus.

  • Guided by a clear set of Core Values and Behaviors - Humble, Hungry, Mission Driven and People Smart, you will join an impressive group of individuals and contribute your diverse set of experiences, skills, and characteristics to the organization
  • Accepts guidance and responds well to feedback
  • Displays maturity, good judgment, enthusiasm, and personal motivation
  • Strong interpersonal skills including the ability to anticipate workload and effectively cultivate and leverage relationships with colleagues to meet deadlines
  • Collaborative entrepreneurial spirit, ability to multi-task and prioritize concurrent projects and day-to-day tasks within a high production and fast-paced environment.
  • Demonstrated commitment to serving others, social justice, and equity.


Executive Director, 211


Vice President, Initiatives & Public Programming (IPP)


Chicago, IL




Full-Time, Exempt

  • Medical, Dental and Vision
  • Life and AD&D Insurance
  • Disability Leave
  • Paid Parental Leave
  • Paid Family Leave
  • Employee Assistance Program

  • 401k Plan
  • Paid Time Off including Personal Time, Sick Time & Paid Holidays

Do you want to be a part of the inaugural leadership team for the highly anticipated 211 Metro Chicago and Cook County?

Join the United Way team as we build the premier 211 in the country.


Diverse candidates are encouraged to apply. Candidates must officially apply through our website with a cover letter and resume along with two writing samples that best demonstrate their recent work.

The responsibilities listed above are intended to describe the general nature and scope of work required in the role. The above is not intended to be an exhaustive list of all responsibilities and duties required. The incumbent may asked to perform other duties as assigned.

We believe the term "diversity" incorporates all the characteristics that make us both alike and unique: our backgrounds, cultures, nationalities, lifestyles, identities, gender, points of view, approaches to solving problems, ways of working, and views of personal and career success.

It is the intent of United Way to follow both the letter and the spirit of local, state and federal laws governing Equal Opportunity Employment as those laws exist today and as they may change in the future.

[K1]I dropped this to 5 years... I think 10 is kind of excessive for this level

United Way


Chicago, IL
60604 USA