AUCD Executive Director Job Profile

Posted: Friday, April 24, 2020

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AUCD Executive Director
Job Packet [pdf]

AUCD Executive Director
Plain Language Job Profile

About AUCD:

The Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD) is a membership organization that supports and promotes a national network of university-based interdisciplinary programs. The network members consist of

  • 67 University Centers for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD), receiving core funding from the Office on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (OIDD)
  • 52 Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities (LEND) programs, receiving core funding from the Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB)
  • 14 Intellectual and Developmental Disability Research Centers (IDDRC), receiving core funding from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute for Child Health and Development (NICHD)

This national network is located in every U.S. state and territory and part of local universities or medical centers. These programs serve as a bridge between the university or medical center and the community, bringing together the resources of both to achieve meaningful change.

AUCD supports this national network through:

  • Leadership on major social problems affecting all people living with developmental or other disabilities or special health needs
  • Advocacy with Congress and Executive branch agencies that fund and regulate programs used by people with disabilities
  • Network and partnerships with other national organizations to advance the national agenda
  • Communication within the network and with other groups by collecting, organizing, and disseminating data on network activities and accomplishments
  • Technical assistance on a broad range of topics

What Does AUCD Do?

Through its members, AUCD is a resource for local, state, national and international agencies, organizations, and policymakers concerned about people living with developmental and other disabilities and their families. Members engage in a range of interdisciplinary activities including:

  • Exemplary services for children, adults, and families Academic training
  • Basic and applied research
  • Training and technical assistance to schools, communities, and all levels of government 
  • Policy advocacy
  • Program evaluation
  • Dissemination of best practices and new information

Vision, Mission, and Values:


AUCD envisions a future in which all people, including those living with developmental and other disabilities, are fully included, participating members of their communities. We see equitable access to supports and services that reflect the preferences and values of diverse communities and that lead to self-determination, independence, productivity, and a healthy and satisfying quality of life.


AUCD's mission is to advance policies and practices that improve the health, education, social, and economic well-being of all people with developmental and other disabilities, their families, and their communities by supporting our members in research, education, health, and service activities that achieve our vision.


AUCD and its member organizations value:

  • the participation of people with disabilities, family members, trainees, staff, and faculty in their programs, governance, and leadership
  • the broad cultural and linguistic diversity in our nation, its territories, and tribal communities diversity that is inclusive of race, ethnicity, culture, age, disability, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation and socio-economic status
  • the self-determination of people with disabilities individual and family-centered care
  • cultural and linguistic competence in our services and supports, training activities, research, and communication efforts
  • the recognition of interdependence and mutual reliance of all individuals within the contexts of their communities
  • the view of disability as a natural part of the human experience across all ages, cultures, and identities

Executive Director Job Profile:

Apply for the position:

Reporting directly to the Board of Directors and under the supervision of the Board President, the Executive Director serves as the chief executive officer of Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD or Association). AUCD is an incorporated Non-For-Profit entity.

Executive Director Job Profile:

The Executive Director's primary responsibilities include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Provide visionary leadership for the Association and manage its day-to-day operations of programs as well as staff supervision and development
  • Oversee all finances and ensure ongoing fiscal stability of the organization Provide information, reports and counsel to the AUCD Board
  • Provide input into the AUCD Board's decision-making and policy development processes that take into account the needs of Association's member entities and constituents, the vision and mission of the network, the congressional mandates and opportunities, and Association growth
  • Guide the public policy team in lobbying and policy advocacy
  • Build and maintain strategic external relationships with partners, funders and network members


Executive Director key responsibilities include the following:

  • Work closely with the Board to provide vision and direction for the Association, translate that vision into mission results, and foster a culture that is member-focused and promotes the values of transparency, accountability, work excellence, growth, diversity, and inclusion
  • Champion the mission of the Association and serve as its chief spokesperson; communicating the AUCD mission and vision to a wide variety of audiences and constituents
  • Carry out the strategic vision of the organization by:
    • growing diverse and skilled leaders who promote and model diversity, equity, and inclusion
    • conducting and applying research and sharing research
    • advancing policies and practices that improve the lives of people with disabilities
  • Maintain a visible leadership position for the Association through proactive external relations on mission-related topics
  • Cultivate and manage relationships with:
    • Congress and all federal agencies that support the work of the network and its members
    • National consumer, advocacy, and professional organizations
    • Private sector partners and international entities
  • Support the growth and development of AUCD members through:
  • Successful policy advocacy that increases resources made available to network members through appropriations and new funding opportunities (both public and private)
  • Closely monitoring legislative priorities including the reauthorization of the Developmental Disabilities Act, Autism CARES, and other related legislation that impacts the network and the broader disability community
    • Multi-modal communications, meetings/conferences, and sharing relevant information, especially on disability-related developments in policy, research, evidence-based practices, health care, and related fields
    • Understand member needs to develop programs and initiatives that foster new opportunities that enhance their role and ability to meet the interests and needs of people with disabilities and their families, and accountability for congressional mandates
  • Secure the financial future and fiscal integrity of the Association by:
  • Maintaining a continuous understanding of the Association's financial position and ensure fiscalresponsibility and security, operating within the budget approved by the Board
    • Providing proactive, strategic leadership for the Association's resource development
    • Seeking increased appropriations for network member programs
  • Oversee the day-to-day operations and programs to ensure that AUCD maintains its status as a well-managed, highly respected organization
    • Ensure human resource capacity to meet current and future interests and needs by hiring, supervising, and supporting the development of the AUCD staff
    • Establish a culture that motivates exemplary individual growth and teamwork among staff and as a positive and productive organization
    • Guide the development of the organizational structure, methods, systems, and controls that support current interests and needs that provide the capacity for growth
    • Demonstrate internal organizational leadership and administrative skills, including but not limited to: (a) fostering teamwork and collaboration across Association programs, (b) budget planning and financial control, (c) cross-cultural communication, (d) ensuring the accessibility of the Associations' programs and activities to diverse audiences and constituents, (e) maintaining visible and effective public relations, (f) Board resource and program development, (g) oversee the supervision of Association technical assistance directors, and (h) support the Board of Directors in its governance role and foster its on- going development; keep it fully informed


  • Experience and training in disability, health, or social science fields
  • Experience with budgeting, fiscal planning, strategic planning, and managing growth Subject matter knowledge about the field of disabilities and broader disability related issues including civil rights, policy, practice, research, and advocacy
  • Experience in directing and managing large government-funded projects and supervision of principal investigators. At the national level, this includes grants and cooperative agreements
  • Strong leadership, management, and communications skills
  • Ability to work effectively with diverse groups both internally and externally
  • Must demonstrate external leadership, including experience in external, public and government relations, as well as disability and civil rights organizations
  • An advanced degree (terminal degree preferred) or equivalent years' experience Lived experience with disability or as a family member of someone with a disability
  • Knowledge of the AUCD network
  • Knowledge and experience working with and on behalf of diverse communities


AUCD provides a family-friendly work environment; a competitive salary based on education and experience; generous health, dental, disability, life insurance, and retirement benefits; vacation, sick and personal days, and paid holidays. This position provides a unique opportunity to exercise your expertise, creativity, and initiative in a fast-paced yet relaxed office atmosphere. AUCD is committed to an inclusive culture that values all types of diversity, and as such, has experience accommodating a wide range of disability and related workplace needs.

Requested Application Materials:

Please submit the following materials and apply here:

  • Cover Letter (200 words)
  • Resume
  • Statement of Leadership and Management Philosophy (500 words): After reviewing the attached materials and reviewing AUCD's website (, please share your leadership and management philosophy.
  • 3 professional references (contact info including phone and email) Please direct all questions to [email protected]

Review Process:

The search process period is active until the position is filled.

AUCD is an equal opportunity employer.
Individuals from diverse cultures and persons with disabilities are encouraged to apply.

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, veteran status,or genetic information.

AUCD and Flexability are committed to providing access, equal opportunity, and reasonable accommodations for individuals. To request accommodations or alternative access to materials, please contact the Flexability team at [email protected] or call 415-231-4790