Charles Wright Academy (CWA), located on a beautiful, wooded 107-acre campus, serves students in preschool through 12th grade. The only coeducational independent preschool-12 school in Tacoma, Washington, CWA provides challenging, college preparatory academics that prepare students to thrive in college and in life. Equally important is a wide array of experiential education, artistic, athletic, and service opportunities that promote students’ social-emotional development and provide avenues by which they discover and pursue their passions. Close, respectful, and trusting relationships between faculty and students result in an environment in which all community members embrace both the hard work and the joy inherent in the journey of intellectual and personal growth.
Charles Wright Mission Statement: To inspire active, joyful learning while nurturing and challenging our students to develop the character, creativity, and skills to successfully navigate the future with confidence.
This full-time, year-round Director of Finance position is multi-faceted. The ideal candidate will be able to both develop and implement a strategic vision that fosters the financial sustainability of the school while also tactically managing the school’s financial resources to meet short and long-range goals. The ideal candidate will be capable, effective, and enthusiastic about overseeing all aspects of the Finance Department of Charles Wright Academy including the development and management of an annual $17 million non-profit organization operating budget and a $38 million endowment.
Core Responsibilities include the following:
Trustee Engagement and Budget Planning/Approval: Communicate regularly with the Finance Chair and Head of School to prepare for meetings with the Finance Committee and the Board of Trustees. Responsible for the collaborative development of the annual operating budget, creating multi-year forecasts, and other relevant reports.
Strategic Partnership: Collaborate with the Head of School, Senior Leadership, and Board of Trustees to secure and deploy financial resources to fulfill the school’s strategic priorities. Participate in the development of school strategy, providing recommendations, financial analysis, projections, and other data to inform the process.
Financial Oversight: Maintain financial controls, fixed asset ledgers, capital acquisitions, depreciation, and disposals. In collaboration with the Endowment Committee and outside advisers, oversee the school’s endowment and investment portfolios to ensure accurate reporting and donor intent is being met.
Business Operations: Lead the organization and management of the Business Office including accounting, accounts payable, accounts receivable (tuition and fees), cash management, purchasing, budgeting, and financial reporting. In collaboration with the Director of Operations and HR, assist and participate in matters of human resources, payroll, employee relations, benefit contributions, and retirement plan administration.
Collaboration with other Departments: Work with the Director of Enrollment Management to generate financial reports for enrollment and retention, serve on the Financial Aid Committee to analyze applicant needs, and assist in the management of financial aid administration. Work closely with the Director of Development to maintain appropriate records for donations and pledges.
Audit and Regulatory Compliance: Work with the school’s independent auditors and prepare the necessary documentation for a successful completion of the audit. File the appropriate tax returns, and other regulatory filings on time and with precision. Ensure that all financial policies are in compliance with local, state and federal regulations. Along with other departments, oversee the completion of financial data into related annual surveys, including NAIS, NWAIS, and DASL.
Supporting a Positive School Community: Model and foster high ethical standards, integrity, and respect for colleagues, alumni, parents, and students in the conduct of the school’s business. Understand and contribute to the positive culture and climate of the school and the wider educational environment. Manage, mentor, and develop staff, providing consistent, constructive and timely feedback.
Ongoing Professional Engagement: Remain current with business management trends and cultivate professional standards and development.
Other Duties as Assigned: As special projects arise, or other needs are identified, all members of the Charles Wright community are expected to take on other duties as assigned by the Head of School.
Salary is commensurate with experience. Charles Wright offers a generous benefits package including medical/dental/vision, life and long-term disability, paid-time off and participation in a retirement plan, including an employer contribution once you meet eligibility, as well as partial tuition remission.
Experience and Education:
10 years or more of leadership in accounting, finance, operations or general business management, preferably in an independent school or non-profit organization.
Bachelor’s Degree in accounting, finance, business management, or related area of study, CPA and/or advanced degree in finance or accounting preferred.
Excellent written and verbal communication and presentation skills.
Proven track record of organization improvement and change management.
Ability to adapt to a hands-on, detail oriented, fast paced work environment.
Advanced skills needed in critical thinking, data analysis, spreadsheet software, and proficiency with accounting and financial systems.
Strong experience with database management systems. Proven ability to streamline database system efficiencies is a major plus.
Ability and desire to support school wide efforts in diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB).
Broad-based operations and project management experience with strong organizational skills and ability to manage multiple projects.
An enthusiastic, authentic, and collaborative working style is essential.
All Charles Wright employees must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by the first day of work in accordance with the State’s mandate. Additionally, the school requires all student-facing employees to be fully boosted. Proof of MMR vaccination or a titer test is also required. Accommodations due to medical or religious reasons may be requested for the COVID-19 vaccination and will follow the school’s policy and the iterative process.
Employment is contingent on the successful completion of a national background screening and fingerprinting process.
Charles Wright Academy is an Equal Opportunity Employer: M/F/V/D.