President and Chief Executive Officer

Clarke Schools for Hearing and Speech
May 14, 2020
Phildelphia, PA
Job Type
Contact Name (not public)
Karen Katsanos


Clarke Schools for Hearing and Speech (Clarke) is a leader in providing children who are deaf or hard of hearing with the listening, learning and spoken language skills they need to succeed. Children served by Clarke use cochlear implants and hearing aids to maximize their access to sound, and our specially trained teachers, audiologists and speech-language pathologists help them develop skills to maximize their learning.

Founded in 1867, Clarke serves more than 1,000 children and families annually who benefit from programs and services at five locations: Boston, Jacksonville, New York City, Northampton and Philadelphia. Clarke impacts the lives of children and adults through educational and early childhood programs, hearing services, mainstream services, research, curriculum development and the teachers and professionals trained by Clarke who take their special skills to all parts of the world.

Today, the possibilities for children who are deaf and hard of hearing are greater than ever before; most children can develop listening and spoken language skills on par with hearing peers and thrive in a mainstream school setting as early as kindergarten. Clarke is deeply committed to its work with families and professionals to ensure that every child has the chance to reach their full potential. For additional information, please visit:

The Role

The President and CEO will report directly to Clarke’s Board of Trustees, an elected group of volunteer members with connections to the hearing loss community and an unwavering commitment to Clarke’s mission. This person is responsible for Clarke’s continued success, including working with the Program Directors (who oversee the operations and services offered through five locations) for operational excellence and program impact, overseeing fundraising efforts to ensure Clarke’s long-term sustainability and maintaining and extending Clarke’s standing in the field of education for children who are deaf or hard of hearing.

This position can be geographically located near any Clarke site with a preference towards the Northeast. The position is available due to the self-initiated, planned retirement of our current President and CEO.

The President and CEO is an experienced leader who gracefully combines practical know-how with visionary leadership and partners proactively and productively with the Board, the organization’s decentralized leadership team and key external constituents.

Expectations for and aspects of this role:

Provide leadership that will allow Program Directors and staff to execute their best work.
In partnership with our Chief Development Officer, build and lead a focused, proactive, sustainable fundraising effort that supports existing and new programs while developing additional financial support for the broad base of Clarke services.
Bring the business discipline and operational expertise necessary to secure Clarke’s long-term sustainability, including implementing organization-wide systems to increase operating efficiency, setting organizational goals, actively measuring results and maintaining accountability.
Guide coalitions, lobbying and other activities related to maximizing public funding.
Oversee Clarke’s five-year strategic plan focused on building a solid foundation to support future organization-wide growth. Specifically:
Move toward program standardization and alignment of child/family needs and offerings.
Align the Clarke culture, operations and infrastructure to foster internal and external collaboration and efficiency.
Serve the Clarke community and the world through data, research, innovation and communication.
Build toward sustainable funding.
Become the employer of choice among institutions serving those who are deaf or hard of hearing using listening and spoken language.
Strengthen the Clarke community and network of alumni.
Articulate and reinforce, both internally and externally, the Clarke story including a compelling long-term vision that engages and motivates the entire organization, its supporters and other stakeholders.
Serve as a trusted voice in the broader field of education of those who are deaf or hard of hearing and find common ground with other organizations serving children who are deaf or hard of hearing.

The Person

The successful President and CEO candidate should bring:
A passion for Clarke’s mission as well as empathy for the challenges faced by those it serves.
A target of 10 to 15 years of applicable experience in an executive leadership role at a medium to large, highly regulated, multi-faceted and multi-state organization.
Clear success in fundraising/sales/business development and garnering significant support and funding for major projects.
Proven experience as a leader of a successful, major change initiative, particularly one based upon the design/deployment of an innovative technology/delivery solution.
Success in having brought new methodologies and infrastructure upgrades to advance an organization’s mission will be highly valued.
The presence, demeanor, intellect and bearing necessary to effectively communicate a compelling vision, assemble support and spark enthusiasm for ideas. Able to lead complex initiatives to successful outcomes.
Significant leadership experience with demonstrated success in strategic thinking, planning, implementation and operational excellence in the organizations they have led.
Demonstrated ability to develop and nurture relationships across philanthropy, corporate partnerships and a broad field of tacitly competitive educational service providers.
A belief in the power of teamwork and the demonstrated ability to identify, hire, grow and develop strong team members.
Graduate degree preferred.


The right person for this role will exhibit the following characteristics:
Enjoy being an active, engaged community builder and provide a steady presence in the daily life of the organization. This is the foundation for strong, supportive relationships with staff that will promote a sense of community, while building a highly engaged culture.
Exhibit a collaborative leadership style supported by a pragmatic decision-making approach. Possess an openness that genuinely invites and respects the perspectives and views of others. Successfully partner and support the staff.
Has the confidence and perspective to serve as a solid sounding board and business partner to the leadership team and the Board.
A high emotional intelligence and an even keeled demeanor combined with the ability to manage change and complex decisions.
A collaborator who encourages ideas and is inclusive of the wide range of resources in the organization to solve problems.
Sets a high bar for performance and models positive behavior for all to see.
Creative thinker with the ability to ‘look over the horizon’ and anticipate emerging factors that could impact Clarke.


Clarke Schools does not discriminate on the basis of sex in admission, administration of its educational programs or activities or employment. Clarke Schools is required by Title IX and its implementing regulations at 34 C.F.R. Part 106 not to discriminate on the basis of sex in admission, administration of its educational programs or activities or employment. The Chief Human Resource Officer, Karen Katsanos, MA, MBA, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, 45 Round Hill Road, Northampton, MA 01060, telephone number 413-582-1155, has been designated as the employee responsible for coordinating Clarke Schools efforts to comply with and carry out its responsibilities under Title IX. Inquiries concerning the application of Title IX and its implementing regulations at 34 C.F.R. Part 106 to Clarke Schools may be referred to Karen Katsanos or to the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights, at 400 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, DC 20202-1100, telephone number 800-421-3481


How To Apply

Procedure for Candidacy

Please submit resume and cover letter with online application at:

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