VAW Jobs

Women's Habitat of Etobicoke- Executive Director

Executive Director

Women’s Habitat of Etobicoke

The Organization

Women’s Habitat of Etobicoke is a community-based, feminist organization providing vital support to self-identified women* and their dependents who are survivors of violence and poverty. Founded in 1978, the 25-bed emergency shelter and the outreach centre, established in 2006, offers a safe place to rebuild lives and a suite of services including group and individual counselling, parenting support and housing assistance.


For the new Executive Director, this is a wonderful opportunity to lead a well-regarded, innovative organization with an excellent reputation in providing care and support to women and families during some of the most difficult times in their lives. As the need for support and services continues to grow, Women’s Habitat has the opportunity to not only grow its own impact within the diverse community it serves, but to continue to contribute to the success and impact of the sector. Women’s Habitat has a current complement of over 40 staff, and a budget of approximately $2.1 million.

Reporting to the Board of Directors through the President, the Executive Director is the key senior leader of Women’s Habitat, guiding day-to-day management decisions and developing and implementing strategy and plans in alignment with the organization’s mission, vision, core values and beliefs. She** supports the governance mandate of the Board, and ensures that appropriate accountability, transparency and risk management practices are in place. She has overall responsibility for the quality of programs and clinical services, and for the allocation of both financial and human resources, including staff and volunteer. Ensuring effective communication of Women’s Habitat’s mission and strategy with all stakeholders, she builds successful and productive relationships with funders, donors, the broader community and with partners in the system.

In assuming this leadership position, the new Executive Director will want to focus on the following priority areas in the near to mid-term:

  • Demonstrate commitment to feminist, anti-racist and anti-oppressive (ARAO) principles, and model an organizational culture that embodies these core values and builds internal cohesiveness.
  • Build relationships and trust with the senior management team and staff across the organization, fostering a culture of care and accountability.
  • As a trusted and credible leader, gain the confidence of and manage external and internal relationships with a diverse group of stakeholders, partners and networks.
  • Ensure ongoing financial sustainability through core government funding, the United Way, and the growth of philanthropic donations and support, with corresponding reporting rigour.
  • Work closely with the Board, staff and other key stakeholders in the development and implementation of the new strategic plan, and integration of theory of change framework into services and programs.
  • Prepare for collective bargaining with CUPE in 2022.
  • Support the development and growth of new and innovative initiatives, such as housing programs and ReelReal Men, among others.
  • Ensure internal resources (structure, tools, systems, people, policies, metrics) adapt to support its growth, efficiency and capacity to serve.
  • Provide effective support through an open and transparent relationship to a volunteer Board in its governance and fiduciary role.

Candidate Qualifications

The ideal candidate brings the requisite leadership capability, management experience and emotional sensibility to lead Women’s Habitat in the development, communication and implementation of strategy and plans to achieve the organization’s mission and goals. Whether from the sectors of gender-based violence, interval/transitional housing or broader social service delivery, the successful candidate will be expected to demonstrate:

  • Senior organizational leadership experience of relevant scale, ideally within a unionized environment.
  • Knowledge of and ability to action feminist, anti-racist, anti-oppressive principles.
  • Knowledge normally acquired through a post-graduate degree in social work and/or through social services management experience in a similar not-for-profit setting; counseling or clinical management experience is an asset.
  • Entrepreneurial spirit and business savvy with demonstrated ability to identify new program and services opportunities and secure funding from new and existing sources.
  • A collaborative team player and team builder with ability to establish an inclusive, meritocratic organizational culture as well as to unite and lead the management team to operationalize culture.
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills, with the ability to build positive and effective working relations at all levels, inside and outside the organization.
  • Strong empathy and the judgement, critical thinking and relationship management skills essential when working with people in difficult circumstances.
  • Knowledge of labour-related legislation, collective bargaining, and HR policies and procedures; experience in mediating union issues.
  • Demonstrated financial management and budgeting skills, maintaining a transparent understanding of costs and/or funding gaps in administering programs and services.
  • Understanding of good governance principles and can appropriately support a volunteer Board.
  • Effective problem solver who can identify and analyze issues, and select most suitable solutions.
  • Persuasive communication/presentation and diplomacy skills to act on behalf of the organization to further strengthen the visibility and reputation of Women's Habitat within the community; comfortable giving speeches and dealing with media.
  • Solid writing skills and attention to detail in preparing and/or reviewing proposals, reports and financial data.
  • Ability to communicate in a language other than English an asset.


If you are interested in being considered for this meaningful opportunity, please submit your expression of interest (cover letter and current resume) to Chris Sawyer at / 416-640-4312.

*Women’s Habitat of Etobicoke uses the words “woman” or “women” to refer to all individuals who identify as women including Ciswomen, Transwomen, non-binary and genderqueer people. Women’s Habitat recognizes the fluidity of gender identities expressions, and that this list is by no means exhaustive, and is subject to change.

**This role carries a bona fide occupational qualification requiring this individual to self-identify as female.

Women’s Habitat is committed to the development of a staff team that reflects the diversity of the communities we serve. Applications from Aboriginal Women, Women of Colour, Lesbian, Bi-sexual and Trans-identified women are strongly encouraged. Should you wish to self-identify on an anonymous, non-attributable basis as part of this recruitment process, you are invited to do here:

Women’s Habitat is committed to providing courteous and inclusive services in a manner that respects the dignity and independence of persons with disabilities and promotes the principles of integration and equal opportunity. If you require accommodation in order to participate as a candidate in the hiring process, please communicate your needs to the recruitment team.