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Executive Director of Recode

Executive Director of Recode at Recode

Job Posted: Oct 11, 2016



Portland, OR None
Web: Recode


Job Description


Title: Executive Director

Reports to: Recode Board of Directors
Hours: from 0.6 FTE to full-time (to be discussed)
Compensation: $48,000-$65,000 full-time equivalent, depending on experience


Recode was founded in 2007 by residents at Tryon Life Community Farm (outside of Portland, Oregon) who wanted to use graywater to water their orchard. When told that water conservation of this sort was illegal, they started the Recode project. Recode volunteers led the coalitions that successfully advocated for the legalization of graywater reuse in Oregon in 2008 and for greater legal options for composting toilets in 2012. Recode has been generously supported by a few foundations since 2012.

In 2015, Recode filed paperwork as an Oregon nonprofit organization, developed a strategic plan, and secured fiscal sponsorship from the Oregon Environmental Council (OEC). Recode’s mission is to ensure access to and accelerate adoption of sustainable building and development practices. Throughout 2015 and the first 2/3 of 2016 Recode largely operated with one part-time staff person, supported by a board of three.

In September 2016, Recode was awarded support from a national foundation to develop solutions pathways for sustainable water infrastructure. This solutions pathways project is a three-year project in partnership with the International Living Future Institute (ILFI), and the scope of this project is the tri-state West Coast: California, Oregon, and Washington. The goals of this project are to: (1) develop solution pathways that enable early adopters, the building and infrastructure industry, and other practitioners to better navigate the range of regulatory challenges to adoption of sustainable wastewater treatment systems, at any scale of development, from individual
residential to entire neighborhoods; (2) work with pilot projects that showcase sustainable wastewater treatment systems (which could include composting toilets, graywater reuse, or various strategies for onsite wastewater treatment and reuse) so as to develop solutions pathways, where such pathways are currently unclear or blocked by legal barriers; (3) build support for public policy changes that enable more decentralized, affordable, next-generation water infrastructure; and (4) synthesize the learning of these efforts to promote and enable systemic innovation toward more decentralized water infrastructure.
We seek an Executive Director that can speak to Recode’s vision of “legalizing sustainability,” lead this newly formed nonprofit, further develop strategic partnerships, and guide the three-year solutions pathways project. We are excited by Recode’s potential and hope you will be as well. We seek a director who has experience in the water infrastructure area of sustainable design, green building, and ecodistrict development and a proven ability to support the development and implementation of innovative water infrastructure projects.

If you have experience in this field, but don’t want to take on the E.D. position, please let us know if you would be interested in working for Recode on implementing the solutions pathways project.


Organizational Leadership
• Implement (and/or develop proposals for revisions to) Recode’s initial strategic plan, which defines Recode’s mission and goals
• Develop projects and seek opportunities to further Recode’s mission and goals
• Speak about the work of Recode at public events and be the public face of the organization

Project Implementation

• Oversee and be part of the implementation of Recode’s funded project commitments, specifically the solution pathways project described above


• Maintain current funding relationships and write grant and progress reports
• Seek new sources of support; meet with foundation officers and other potential funders


• Develop and maintain collaborative relationships with individuals and organizations, including agencies, for-profits, and nonprofits, that are working in the social ecosystem of sustainable design, green building, and ecodistrict development

Nonprofit Management

• Plan and track budgets
• Hire and manage employees and contractors
• Coordinate with fiscal sponsor
• Collaborate with board of directors


• Knowledge of sustainable design, green building, and zoning, as related to water infrastructure
• Networks of relationships in fields related to Recode’s work, including 1-2 plausible candidates for Recode’s Board
• Ability to represent Recode in clear and compelling language, spoken and written
• Strong organizational skills
• Working knowledge of policy or code issues related to water quality and water management
• Experience working in a nonprofit setting with a mission-driven staff and board
• Background in environmental science, engineering, law and/or advocacy


Compensation is negotiable. We provide health and dental insurance for employees and family and paid sick leave. Vacation policy is negotiable.


Recode is grateful to OEC for attractive office space in historic Old Town Portland, as well as for accounting, administrative services, assistance with fundraising, and other benefits. OEC has been ranked among the top ten in Oregon Business magazine’s “Best Nonprofits to Work For” list for several years running. This is a collaborative, family-friendly workplace. Hours are flexible and laughter is frequent.


No calls, please. The position will be open until filled, and we will begin reviewing applications October 25th. Send cover letter and resume via email to Recode Board Chair Melanie Mindlin with subject line: “Recode Executive Director.” Recode is an equal opportunity employer. Women, people of color, people with disabilities, and LGBTQ candidates are encouraged to apply.


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