Vice President of Youth Development

The community’s call for increasing youth programs is one our YMCA is uniquely positioned to answer. Join our team and lead these efforts!
Job Description

The Vice President of Youth Development is responsible for supporting the work of the Y, a leading nonprofit in West Michigan committed to strengthening community through youth development, healthy living, and social responsibility. The Vice President of Youth Development will have overall strategic and operational responsibility for all programs in the areas including, but not limited to: School-Age Child Care, Kid Zone, Resident and Day Camp, Preschool/Early Learning Child Care, Food Service Program, and Community Outreach programming.  

This position will enthusiastically represent the Y by displaying a positive attitude, maintaining a high level of energy and commitment to quality throughout all aspects of the job. Key delivery areas include; staff development, school district and community partnerships, fiscal management, ensure/monitor licensed status, program/enrollment growth, marketing and communication, process improvement and developing a culture of philanthropy to support Youth Development and Community Outreach programs. In addition, this position will lead the efforts to develop teams and to sustain a vibrant cause-driven culture that increases engagement and performance of all staff, while leading to the Association being recognized as an Employer of Choice. This will require modeling the core values of caring, honesty, respect, responsibility, and inclusion. 

About Licensed Childcare: As the largest Childcare provider in West Michigan, we provide licensed Infant/Toddler, Preschool, Early Head Start, Great Start Readiness, School Age, School Break Camp, and Summer Day Camp across the Greater Grand Rapids area. Our programs serve youth ages 6 weeks through 12 years across 34 locations.  

About YMCA Camp Manitou-Lin: YMCA Camp Manitou-Lin has over 100 years of camping experience and is located on 160 acres on beautiful Barlow Lake in Middleville, Michigan. Camp Manitou-Lin offers Summer Day Camp and Resident Camp, Teen Leadership Camp, Family Camp, a variety of Specialty Camps, and Outdoor Education Programming. 

About Community Outreach: Our Community Outreach department is a fully grant-funded operation that provides YMCA programs and services beyond the walls of the YMCA. Programs include Adult and Youth Nutrition Education, Adult Community Group Fitness, the operation of the YMCA Veggie Van in both Muskegon and Grand Rapids, Greenhouse and Garden programs, Teaching Kitchen, HealthyU, Healthy Corner Stores, Loop After School Programs, Summer Teen Leadership Academy, Youth in Government, and more.  

About Food Service: The Food Service Department includes a commercial kitchen located within the David D. Hunting YMCA and at YMCA Camp Manitou-Lin. The Food Service team provides healthy, fresh meals to children in our Youth Development programs year round, and is federally funded via CACFP.  

About KidZone: Six branches of the YMCA of Greater Grand Rapids offer KidZone, a safe and fun environment where youth are under the guidance of Y staff while their guardians enjoy the Y facility. KidZone welcomes ages 2 months to 10 years and is free for YMCA members. 


The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. 

Bachelor's degree in Business, Early Childhood Education/Education, Human Services, or Social Services or other related field; Minimum of ten years of progressive professional experience in Youth Development programs, Education programs in a YMCA, school district, or other not-for-profit agency; Experience in staff development, staff supervision and development, quality assurance and implementation, and fiscal management and budgeting; Experience in developing and scaling child development curriculum, pedagogy and programs to multiple sites; Proven ability to maintain tight control of confidential material and information; Demonstrated ability to manage employees at multiple locations including budget oversight, team development and performance management; Experience and knowledge of state and local licensing and accreditation agencies; Excellent communication skills both written and oral; Ability to communicate with all levels of staff and volunteers; CPR and First Aid certifications may be required. 


The work environment and physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Ability to read and interpret documents such as operating and maintenance instructions, and procedure manuals. 
  • Ability to write routine reports and correspondence. 
  • Ability to speak effectively over the phone and in person with customers, board members, and employees. 
  • Ability to calculate figures and amounts such as discounts, interest, commissions, proportions, and percentages. 
  • Ability to apply common sense understanding to carry out instructions furnished in written, oral, or diagram form. 
  • Ability to deal with problems involving several concrete variables in standardized situations.
  • Ability  to walk, stand, and sit (including on the floor) for long periods of time.
  • Must be able to lift and carry food and supplies weighing up to 20 pounds.
  • Ability  to stand or sit while maintaining alertness for several hours at a time.
  • Position may require bending, leaning, kneeling, and walking.
  • Ability  to speak concisely and effectively communicate.
Essential Functions

· Responsible for the overall operations of Licensed Childcare, Kid Zone, Camp Manitou-Lin, Food Service, and Community Outreach programming.

· Develop, monitor, and maintain the operational budget while achieving programmatic goals. Ensure fiscal leadership and responsibility for all program areas. 

· Enhance and implement the Youth Development, Community Outreach, and Food Service department’s vision & strategic goals. 

· Ensure operational growth through program expansion, program participant recruitment and retention, pricing strategies, new site development, collaborations, opportunities, and recommend strategies for their impact and sustainability to executive leadership. 

· Establish strategic relationships with internal and external stakeholders to achieve common goals and support the expansion of youth development and community outreach programs; represent the YMCA and the youth development team with outside groups, funders, and community partners.

· Attract, develop, coach, and retain a diverse, high-performance team, empowering them to elevate their level of responsibility, span of control, and performance to create an internal leadership pipeline.

· Review and appraise the effectiveness of supervised personnel in assigned accountabilities and make appropriate training recommendations or staff changes where necessary.

· Work with staff to develop systems to ensure consistent, high-quality programs.

· Provide leadership in the development of inter-team communication and cohesiveness, sustaining culture and supporting staff during organizational change and growth.

· Provide leadership in the continued development, enhancement, and implementation of


· Ensure compliance with all regulatory, licensing, grant, and Y standards.

· Collaborate with the Marketing Department to ensure a comprehensive marketing and communication plan is in place for program promotion and to communicate community benefit.

· Closely collaborate with YMCA branches and departments to deliver on all program goals. 

Performs any other functions necessary for the smooth and efficient operation of the YMCA of Greater Grand Rapids. 

Cause-Driven Leadership Competencies

Functional Expertise

· Has the functional and technical knowledge and skills to do the job at a high level of accomplishment.

· Uses best practices, guidelines, and industry standards as a framework to improve performance.

Critical Thinking & Decision Making

· Recognizes own biases and suspends judgmental thinking.

· Responds to challenges with possible solutions in a timely manner.

Communication & Influence

· Interprets messages and body language effectively.

· Listens with the intent to understand the perspective of others by using appropriate communication methods, including open-ended questions.

· Responds to the individual needs of the other person.