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Director, Mission (12 Month Contract)

The Heart and Stroke Foundation

Life. We don’t want you to miss it.

That’s why Heart & Stroke leads the fight against heart disease and stroke. Powered by donors and volunteers, we fund life-saving research and help Canadians lead healthier lives.

Heart & Stroke is a health charity active in communities across the country. We are sustained by the commitment and generosity of more than 30,000 volunteers and more than 1 million donors.


The opportunity

The Director, Mission provides strategic leadership and management for the effective planning and implementation of mission initiatives in Alberta and NWT in alignment with Heart & Stroke organizational goals. The role is responsible for mission stakeholder/government relations, health promotion, advocacy, health systems improvement, patient engagement and support, health impact and research. The Director will provide collaborative leadership and coaching to the Alberta mission team and be an active participant on the Alberta senior leadership team and national mission team.


Key responsibilities

Plans and implements mission initiatives 

  • Leads the development and implementation of the Alberta mission plan and budget in alignment with national priorities
  • Participates on the Alberta senior leadership team and applies a collaborative integrated approach to planning
  • Considers and promotes health equity for all mission initiatives
  • Provides oversight to Alberta mission initiatives including but not limited to stakeholder/government relations, health promotion, advocacy, health systems improvement, patient engagement and support, health impact and research
  • Participates on the national mission team and in the development of the national mission plan and priorities
  • Provides oversight to the provincial planning and implementation of national mission initiatives
  • Coaches team members to utilize a project management approach to planning
  • Improves initiatives continuously though the use of evaluation results to course correct, innovate, assess risk and increase impact
  • Reports on progress using qualitative and quantitative results including producing written reports and verbal presentations

Engages stakeholder to achieve mission priorities  

  • Develops effective relationships to achieve mission initiatives within and outside the Foundation
  • Demonstrates astute judgement in all relationship management
  • Develops and maintains effective relationships and communication with government and health systems leaders to assist in achieving mission goals and promote funding opportunities
  • Liaises with health professionals, health institutions, academic institutions, the research community and industry, to promote Heart & Stroke priorities
  • Fosters volunteer engagement and inclusion of volunteers in programs and processes to enhance capacity and impact
  • Engages patients and people with lived experience in mission activities and initiatives to enhance recovery
  • Provides executive support to volunteer advisories

Advocates for health

  • Provides oversight to health advocacy initiatives in Alberta and NWT
  • Provides oversight to health systems change in Alberta & NWT
  • Works with partner organizations to develop common advocacy positions and strategies, providing strategic advice and influencing the priorities, strategies and tone of advocacy coalitions
  • Collaborates with the Alberta CEO to engage and equip the Alberta Board for advocacy
  • Collaborates with the Policy, Advocacy and Engagement team to activate provincial and national opportunities for advocacy
  • Participates on the national Government Relations Working Group
  • Collaborates with Communications to amplify advocacy
  • Acts as a key spokesperson

Leads Alberta research and health impact

  • Develops and maintains strong relationships and profile with the Alberta CCVD research community and key institutional research partners
  • Synthesizes environmental scans and SWOT analysis
  • Provides oversight and advertisement to stakeholder engagement plans
  • Collaborates, explores and innovates to achieve impact
  • Provides oversight to the implementation of national research requirements and priorities in Alberta and NWT
  • Provides oversight to the development and tracking of the Alberta Research budget allocation
  • Provides executive support to the Alberta Research Advisory Committee
  • Facilitates the transfer of knowledge on impact for fundraising in collaboration with Development and Communications teams
  • Provides input and support to Development to assist in preparing proposal sand presenting to stakeholders

Leads to achieve success

  • Leads the development of a highly effective team
  • Role models organizational values
  • Collaborates to foster effective integrated team work
  • Aligns plans with organizational goals
  • Coaches for success and policy compliance
  • Develops performance goals collaboratively and provides on-going performance feedback to motivate success
  • Ensures accurate administration of employee related and confidential info
  • Participates in performance management and recruitment and recommends the hiring and termination of mission employees
  • Facilitates annual development planning and encourages professional growth
  • Facilitates team building
  • Works in a collaborative manner with functional areas, teams and stakeholders
  • Provides support, representation and leadership, as appropriate to influence change and impact
  • Acts as a spokesperson to inspire mission support




  • Graduate degree with preference given to candidates with a graduate degree in health science, health policy or health administration
  • Professional accreditation an asset


  • A minimum of 10 years leadership experience
  • Experience leading in a setting where health promotion, advocacy, knowledge translation and health systems improvement are a focus
  • Experience working with health care institutions, academic institutes and community groups
  • Experience with CCVD prevention and the federal, provincial, regional and municipal governments and their roles in promoting health
  • Experience in the nonprofit sector preferred


  • Leadership and Strategy
    • Strong leadership skills with proven ability to coach and mentor staff and build empowered, accountable and results-oriented teams
    • High ethical standards and uncompromising sense of integrity
    • Demonstrated success record in fostering, supporting and implementing change
    • Demonstrated problem-solving and project-management skills.
    • Strong negotiation skills with ability to negotiate new alliances and partnerships
    • Ability to delegate effectively and empower others by giving them responsibility and holding them accountable for results
    • Solid analytical and critical thinking capabilities to quickly implement actions to maximize results
    • Consensus-builder with the ability to make tough, independent decisions, when necessary
    • Demonstrated ability to facilitate teamwork, collaboration and partnership
    • Comfortable in the role of leader as well as functioning as an active contributing team player
    • Positive track-record in building and maintaining effective relationships with senior executives, managers, staff and various internal and external stakeholders
    • Results oriented; navigating priorities and progressing on initiatives, deadlines, and targets
    • Ability to function as a contributing and collaborative member of the Senior Leadership Team
  • Context and Commitment
    • Understanding of the health care delivery system and the federal, provincial and municipal governments and their roles in the health system
    • Understanding of the scientific research community including the processes of biomedical, clinical, health services and behavioral research and institutional training programs
    • Understanding of health promotion including population and community health strategies, emergency response and the needs of patients and caregivers
    • Understanding of the non-profit/charitable sector and the role of volunteers in that sector
    • Passion, alignment, and commitment to the vision and mission of the Foundation
    • Ability to analyze, understand and operate within provincial networks and systems
  • Interpersonal Skills
    • Ability to work collaboratively with a wide range of stakeholders, both tactfully and diplomatically
    • Possesses sophisticated and mature relationship management skills.
    • Team player - ability to establish and maintain effective and positive relationships internally and a strong orientation to customer service
    • Innovative and independent thinker. Comfortable working with senior business, community, health and government leaders
  • Communication Skills
    • Excellent public speaking skills and media presence
    • Excellent communications skills, both written and oral, with the ability to effectively and passionately present the vision, mission and messages of the Foundation
    • Ability to maintain effective communication channels internally staff and volunteers and externally with government officials, coalitions, agencies, associations, Philanthropic and corporate supporters
    • Diplomatic and effective negotiator who works systematically towards “win-win” solutions on all internal and external matters.
    • Consultative and open management and communication style that fosters teamwork and a respectful, positive work environment
  • Business Acumen
    • Politically astute; credible and confident; consistently maintains high ethical standards
    • Strategic and business planning skills and ability to apply financial/business acumen knowledge to operational plans
    • Understanding of a broad range of business and revenue generation strategies, theories, and practices
    • Financial management skills to plan, prepare and administer budgets
    • Ability to be innovative in achieving the maximum impact with limited resources
    • Proven ability to handle demanding and challenging opportunities
    • Direct knowledge of the Alberta business and political environment an asset
    • “Doer” attitude - someone who takes a high degree of initiative. Is a goal-oriented achiever with high standards for performance
    • Strong planning, organizing, budgeting and administration skills with the ability to translate new concepts into actionable plans
    • Strong computer skills using various office software
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