For over 50 years, Earthjustice has protected the environment and advocated for the rights of all living beings by using the power of the law to fight for justice and ensure a sustainable future for our planet. The time is now for Earthjustice to influence the transition to a clean economy and address the imperatives of climate change and biodiversity.
For this, Earthjustice seeks a skilled and visionary Chief Financial Officer (CFO) to join its leadership team and drive financial strategy to support its impact and growth.
The next CFO, internally known as Vice President of Finance, has a unique opportunity to join an exceptional organization at a pivotal moment with new potential for the mission and movement.
As an accomplished thought leader and partner, the CFO will join a highly skilled and committed senior leadership team focused on finding the best practices and financial options to move Earthjustice’s work forward.
This leadership role is critically important and transformative. As Earthjustice continues to evolve, grow and deliver critical support to protect the environment and people’s health, the CFO will optimize diverse revenue streams; ensure fiscal efficacy, accuracy and reporting; and enhance systems and collaboration across the 560-person organization.
With an operational budget of over $150mm and board-designated endowment of $250mm, continued growth in resources, the level of complexity and urgent opportunities demand the talents of an experienced financial leader to bring sophisticated vision and innovation.
Earthjustice is the nation’s largest, oldest, and most active public interest environmental law organization. Its staff of over 560—including over 200 litigators—wields the power of law and the strength of partnership to protect public health, address environmental injustice, defend irreplaceable ecosystems, and transition the US economy to 100% clean energy while working to protect people and the planet from climate change. Earthjustice partners with thousands of groups, tribes, individuals, and communities to address the environmental crises of our time.
Earthjustice is here because the Earth needs a good lawyer.
In the past year, Earthjustice has achieved watershed victories in long-running fights to stop drilling in the Western Arctic, block massive oil and gas lease sales on public lands and coasts, keep the Tongass Forest off limits to logging, ban the neurotoxin chlorpyrifos, retire polluting coal- fired power plants in the U.S. and abroad, prevent mining in the Boundary Waters, and restore Endangered Species Act protections for wolves and Clean Water Act protections for streams and wetlands nationwide. They also achieved cutting- edge, precedent-setting wins to build off-shore wind, to replace gas with zero emissions heat pumps in buildings, to enforce vanguard state climate laws, to compel regulatory reforms that enable clean energy to outcompete fossil fuels, to block construction of new gas-fired power plants, and to stop cryptocurrency miners from re-starting shuttered coal plants. (Source).
A workplace anchored in justice, partnership, diversity, equity, and inclusion, Earthjustice’s culture is built on respect, empathy and active learning.
Earthjustice prioritizes equity in hiring practices, staff development, financial practices and advancement. Earthjustice’s culture of inclusion promotes agency, comfort, humor and joy and is a work atmosphere in which employees thrive and grow. It is a place where satisfaction is high and attrition is very low. These priorities and values are also reflected in the organization’s board members who insist on and safeguard the highest standards of good governance.
The organization is well positioned to capitalize on the current opportunity to create a new clean
energy economy and stabilize the climate. Both the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) and the Infrastructure Investments and Jobs Act (IIJA) boost clean energy development, dramatically reduce U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, accelerate the electrification of buildings and transportation, and invest in communities overburdened by pollution. With organizational strategy and growth, Earthjustice’s position as the powerhouse in environmental litigation, advocacy, and movement building meets this moment.
The CFO to lead in this time of escalation and demand will be an experienced, adaptive leader with passion for the mission of environmental justice. Reporting to the Senior Vice President for Operations, Andrew Jackson, the CFO will be a valued strategist and thought partner to the President and high-functioning executive leadership team, the highly collaborative operations leadership team, and a motivated and effective financial team.
The CFO will play a pivotal role as fiduciary and steward of Earthjustice’s financial resources by providing strong, strategic, operational leadership that ensures the organization’s long-term financial sustainability, effectiveness, and impact.
With deep experience managing complex revenue streams, the CFO will build the organization’s finances of the future through forward-looking expertise formed by experience from the leading edge of philanthropy, operational excellence, and mission accomplishment.
Vision and Leadership
- Bring clear analysis and strategy to all financial operations and fully implement a comprehensive financial strategy aligned with Earthjustice’s mission and goals.
- Advise the President, SVP of Operations, and leadership teams on financial planning, forecasting and risk management.
- With gravitas, creativity, and insight, identify potential and missing opportunities to broaden Earthjustice’s financial health and expansion.
- Drive long-term financial planning and forecasting with focus on the horizon to enable informed decision-making and resource allocation.
- Interpret, communicate, and bring understanding of financial strategy to all constituencies.
Financial Operations Management
- Assess, build, scale, and enhance financial systems, structures, and capacity in alignment with growth, emerging needs, complexity, and change.
- Establish policies and strong internal controls to safeguard assets, mitigate risks, and ensure compliance with applicable regulations.
- Seek input and lead innovation to develop processes that integrate and accelerate functions in the broader organization.
- Execute plans with clarity, engage stakeholders, and project excellence.
- Bring knowledge of philanthropy and complicated giving vehicles.
Investment and Treasury Management
- Bring expertise to Earthjustice’s investment portfolio and support the Board of Trustee’s (Board) Investment Committee ensuring prudent long- and short-term investment strategies and risk management aligned with Earthjustice’s core values.
- With skillset, strategy, and a pioneering view, marry ESG with sound fiscal stewardship.
- Oversee cash flow management, liquidity planning, banking relationships and debt management with ability to navigate unpredictability and uncertainty.
- Serve as assistant treasurer (a Board-designated officer of the corporation) and as fiduciary of staff retirement funds.
- Provide the Finance Committee of the Board’s financial strategies, forecasting and reporting.
- Support the Board’s Audit Committee with leadership of the audit process and sophisticated systems of internal controls.
- Nurture, champion, and develop the finance team through collaboration and mentorship.
- Actively create a respectful and inclusive work environment.
- Create and model continuous learning and improvement and foster a culture of excellence, innovation, and responsiveness.
- Demonstrate exceptional emotional intelligence to lead with empathy and a commitment to effective and durable conflict resolution.
- Bring clarity and decisive leadership focused on priorities, process, and results.
- Advocate and lead by example, connecting with all levels of the organization and rolling up sleeves in partnership to complete projects and address needs.
- Work across all areas and collaborate closely with the leaders and staff of development, human resources, programs, and operations to align financial goals with priorities.
- Be a true partner to all Earthjustice operations by providing financial expertise and simplifying, not overcomplicating processes.
- Confidently and diplomatically, lead, engage, and collaborate with members and committees of the Board.
- Build relationships and trust with partners and client organizations.
- Identify and evaluate opportunities to maximize resources through partnerships, collaborations, and innovative financing models.
The CFO’s internal title is Vice President of Finance Reports to: The Senior Vice President for Operations
- Executive Leadership Team
- Board of Trustees
- Operations Leadership Team
- Budget Advisory Team
- Senior Management Team
Leads a team of *17, through four direct reports:
- Associate Vice President of Financial Planning
- Director of Finance Systems and Operations
- Investment and Treasury Manager
*A new procurement function is anticipated to be part of the finance team.
The CFO will be a compelling senior leader and advanced practitioner with a depth of financial leadership experience in a similarly complex and/ or larger organization.
Essential assets include:
- Exceptional executive functioning with steady self- awareness, intentional diplomacy, and maturity.
- High emotional intelligence with ability to adapt to a continually evolving environment and find common ground among diverse perspectives and stakeholders.
- Experience leading a diverse team with understanding of the impact of one’s behavior.
- Deep cultural competence reflecting humility and true desire for ongoing learning about different cultures, backgrounds, and orientations.
- Experience integrating cultural competencies in leadership practices to build and strengthen Earthjustice’s inclusive workplace and builds.
- Confidence and humility to press forward with certainty and pause with humility when you must learn more.
- Strong work ethic with high personal and professional standards of transparency and accountability.
- Authentic passion for the mission and work of Earthjustice.
- Ability and interest in operating at both strategic and hands-on levels.
- A balance of self-confidence and humility to build consensus, make tough decisions and thrive.
- Demonstrated ability to exhibit high levels of transparency, self-awareness, and vulnerability.
- High integrity, someone who is both trusted and trustworthy.
- Active listener who is comfortable with conflict in the pursuit of excellence
Professional experience must include:
- Bachelor’s degree in finance, accounting, or related field. MBA, CPA, or CMA preferred.
- Proven experience as a CFO or senior financial executive, ideally within the nonprofit sector.
- Twenty or more years of progressive experience in finance and accounting leadership with oversight of budget, analysis, risk management and reporting for a complex organization.
- At least ten years of experience at the leadership level with experience supervising staff members and developing and motivating high performing teams.
Salary & Benefits
Location and Compensation
Earthjustice is headquartered in San Francisco with offices in Anchorage, Bozeman, Chicago, Denver, Honolulu, Houston, Juneau, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans, New York City, Philadelphia, Seattle, Tallahassee, and Washington, D.C.
Ideally the CFO will lead at headquarters in San Francisco where they will have effective and frequent collaborations with senior leadership and work closely with most of the finance team. For exceptionally skilled candidates, remote work with frequent ability to travel may be considered.
This position offers a competitive salary and includes a comprehensive benefits package.
Compensation is based on experience and location with expected starting salary range of:
$298,400 – $331,600 for the San Francisco based candidate.
For other locations or remote, the starting salary range is $253,700 – $315,100
San Francisco and New York City salary ranges are the same.