We are currently hiring for the role of Executive Director!

Job Description: Executive Director

Reports To: Mission Science Workshop Advisory Board

“ If I had influence with the good fairy ... I should ask that her gift to each child in the world be a sense of wonder so indestructible that it would last throughout life, as an unfailing antidote against boredom and disenchantments of later years, the sterile preoccupation with things that are artificial, the alienation from our sources of strength.” Rachel Carson


“ I tinker, therefore I am.” Dan Sudran

The mission of San Francisco’s Mission Science Workshop (MSW) is to provide holistic experiences that inspire children to become lifelong explorers, experimenters, builders, and creators. For 29 years, MSW’s hands-on science activities have helped children from our communities gain confidence and grow academically, while developing a genuine interest in the world around them.


MSW operates two bilingual community centers--in San Francisco’s Mission and Excelsior neighborhoods--that provide hands-on science enrichment activities to underserved San Francisco youth from low-income communities, their schools, and families. These centers provide guided curriculum and project-based activities in an unrestricted environment where children and families can tinker, explore, create, and follow their curiosity. MSW recognizes the limited capacity of most schools to truly convey the wonder of science and our team of educators currently serves 41 public schools and dozens of community-based organizations throughout San Francisco. We serve as many as 200 youth daily and annually impact approximately 12,000 individual students and their families.


Prior to COVID, MSW provided in-person science enrichment programs to Title 1 SFUSD classrooms, and after-school and weekend programming to students and families at both Workshop Sites. Since SFUSD suspended in-person learning, MSW has provided interactive virtual programs to SFUSD classrooms during the school day, after-school programs with community organization partners, and science resource kits for families of MSW students in underserved communities. MSW is following SFUSD’s plans for re-opening its in-person programs. MSW is a fiscally-sponsored project of Community Initiatives and has an annual operating budget of approximately $850,000. 


Position Summary: The Executive Director has the chief responsibility for promoting and sustaining the vision of Mission Science Workshop.

Responsibilities include:


Program - Ensuring programs are developed and implemented in alignment with organization goals. Maintaining relationships with programmatic and professional partners. Hiring, evaluating, and managing staff.


Administration - Coordinating with Community Initiatives in finance/accounting, insurance, and HR & payroll. Managing administration of program budgets and tracking finances; collecting data, reporting to funders; overseeing internal MSW organization systems.


Development - Overseeing all fundraising activities including grant development for government entities and foundations; donor outreach and engagement, annual campaigns, fundraising events; corporate and professional sponsorships, and special projects.


Communications - Promote visibility and credibility of the organization through outreach, partner development, community outreach, regular newsletters, press, and web presence.


Partnerships/Stakeholders - MSW has formal and informal partnerships with a range of organizations including: SFUSD administrators, schools, and teachers; SF School Board members and District Supervisors; the SF Department of Children, Youth and Families; community organizations and leaders; corporate and professional partners; science institutions; and program participants and their families. Represent MSW as a founding member of state-wide Science Workshops and the Global Alliance for Community Science Workshops.


The ideal candidate should be genuinely intrigued by various branches of science. They will have a commitment to social justice and a keen understanding of equity issues related to educational opportunities; a vital sense of curiosity and a passion for lifelong learning; and cultural humility in regards to learning from and responding to the children and communities served by MSW. This person should have experience in science practice and/or study, and it is vital that they have experience and passion for community-based education and pedagogy – specifically related to communities that are underrepresented in STEM and with limited access to educational opportunities.


The candidate will manage a team of 5-6 staff and will work closely with MSW Founder, Daniel Sudran, who serves as an advisor. The candidate must be highly organized and have excellent management and communication skills. They should have a resilient nature and be able to persevere through long-term or challenging projects and situations. They should be flexible and able to adapt quickly – especially with regard to the ever-changing learning environment around COVID. 

Required Qualifications:


● Demonstrated commitment to MSW’s vision and philosophy for fostering a love of science.

● Experience managing educational programs in underserved communities, addressing equity and social justice issues, working in science fields and education initiatives.

● Experience working with racially, linguistically, and ethnically diverse constituencies.

● Experience in development and working with funders.

● Experience managing a comprehensive budget with multiple funding sources.

● Experience recruiting, training, and supervising staff.

● Understanding of Next Generation Science Standards in K-8th grade education, as well as informal community-based education.

● Demonstrated ability to identify and pursue opportunities to collaborate with a range of organizations.

● Ability to think creatively and strategically about the broad goals of MSW, while remaining focused on the detail-oriented work and required follow-through.

● Project management experience from idea creation, development, and implementation, including planning, logistics, and financing.

● Ability and willingness to travel as needed to Workshop Sites and schools in San Francisco, and occasionally to partner Community Science Workshops around California. 

● Highly organized and able to work under pressure, prioritize multiple assignments, and consistently meet deadlines.

● Minimum 7 years’ relevant work experience.

● Bachelor's degree or relevant work experience.


Desired Qualifications:


● Relevant post-baccalaureate education including, but not limited to: science, social, or education master's degree training, credential in education or other field or teaching experience.

● Spanish language proficiency.




Annual salary starts at $82,000 with generous employee benefits, including comprehensive health, dental, and vision benefits, as guided by MSW’s fiscal sponsor, Community Initiatives.


Mission Science Workshop



Community Initiatives



Please send your cover letter and resume to outreach@missionscienceworkshop.org

Applications are due by midnight March 21, 2021.

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Workshop Locations:

Mission Site  map

3750 18th St,

San Francisco, CA 94114

(415) 621-1240

Excelsior Site map

4458 Mission St,

San Francisco, CA 94112

(415) 594-9165