Organization: Make-A-Wish, Massachusetts & Rhode Island

Location: Boston, MA

Express Interest


Make-A-Wish® Massachusetts and Rhode Island grants wishes for children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength, and joy. According to information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 500 children in Massachusetts and Rhode Island are newly diagnosed with life-threatening medical conditions each year. Our vision is to grant wishes for every medically eligible child annually. We invite you to learn more about our organization by exploring the links above and below.

Make-A-Wish® Massachusetts and Rhode Island seeks a Chief Operating Officer to oversee and direct a broad range of functions under the umbrella of central operations.

In this position, the Chief Operating Officer will be responsible for further enhancing, directing and maintaining strong oversight of all central operating areas:  finance, human resources, office administration, and MIS.

This includes HR and administration, lease/contract maintenance, MIS, oversight of financial operations in three offices and overall financial oversight.  Additionally, the COO will be responsible for the development of recruitment, retention and recognition programs/strategies for staff in partnership with the senior management team.  The COO serves as a key leader in the audit, annual budget prep and compliance process as well as HR and recruitment.

Reporting to the Chief Executive Officer, the COO will also serve as a member of the senior management team. This is a full-time position located in Boston, MA. For more information on Make-A-Wish® Massachusetts and Rhode Island, please visit

Role and Responsibilities:

This position is responsible for leadership and management of the following areas: finance, budget planning, MIS, HR, and office operations for three offices.  This position works closely with the CEO to maintain a solid business infrastructure that supports the work of fulfilling the Make-A-Wish mission of granting wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. The COO is a member of the senior management team.

The COO for Make-A-Wish Massachusetts and Rhode Island will be accountable for but not limited to the following key responsibilities:

Finance and Operations

  • Oversee financial operations, projections, annual budgeting process, and audits – maintaining a strong record of budgetary accuracy, clarity, timely reporting, and rapid response to all financial issues;
  • Direct/ oversee internal financial statement preparation, and all external financial reporting and filings, including but not limited to government and MAWA financial reporting;
  • Provide leadership and management oversight to ensure the establishment of effective financial systems and control;
  • Oversee operations of the organization, including maintenance of the office, managing relationships with partners/vendors, establishing and directing operational goals, processes and policies. Maintain and strengthen operational and administrative systems to ensure the smooth running of day-to-day operations;
  • Leads and maintains the organization’s strong focus on internal controls;
  • Stays alert to opportunities for cost reduction and cost efficiencies and make recommendations for change where appropriate;
  • Tracks lease schedules for three offices and oversee lease negotiations;
  • Office Relocation: Oversee move efforts, when required with support from operations / finance staff; and
  • Serves as a liaison to Audit and Investment committees and contact to investment advisors for the organization.

Human Resources        

  • Managing human resources policies and procedures (creation/updating, and implementation of policies that promote company culture and vision), staying up-to-date with evolving human resource law, and overseeing the execution of all HR tasks;
  • Work with CEO and hiring managers to recruit and retain high-caliber talent, responsible for hiring process for key roles identified;
  • Administers the organization’s employee benefits program.
  • With Director of Strategic Initiatives collaborate on onboarding system for new employees, partnering with managers and other staff;
  • Ensures the organization is in compliance with all Federal and local employment laws and related National policies;
  • Promote a culture of high performance and continuous improvement that values learning and a commitment to quality;
  • Mentor and develop operations and finance staff using a supportive and collaborative approach: assign accountabilities, set objectives, establish priorities, and monitor and evaluate results;
  • As a member of the senior team, leads and works to foster teamwork and collaboration throughout the organization; and
  • Perpetuate an overall organizational culture that is inquisitive, caring, and fun.

Information Technology

  • Oversee and execute IT system design and implementation (per National approval), including ongoing assessment of existing platforms and services, research of ever-evolving software, and maintenance of current systems. Direct the development of policies, systems and resources to address these needs and assure efficient, productive IT support;
  • Oversees staff contact with IT consultants and make recommendations for any changes and upgrades of equipment and policies;
  • Develops IT and equipment plan for consideration during budget planning;
  • Ensure that operations staff are problem solving and supporting staff members’ technical issues with a focus on resolution; and
  • Partner with team members on Make-A-Wish® America technology implementation initiatives, as needed.

Organizational Planning and Leadership

  • Serve as a thought partner to the CEO on areas related to operations and finance, working closely to solidify vision and positioning, and maintaining effective lines of communication;
  • Represent the organization externally, as necessary, particularly in technology, finance, and lease negotiations;
  • Superior management skills with the ability to influence and engage direct and indirect reports and peers, including strong mentoring and coaching experience to a team with diverse levels of expertise; and
  • Solutions and results-oriented.


The position calls for a versatile senior staff leader with integrity, an understanding of the non-profit sector, excellent financial acumen and strong communication and interpersonal skills.  The successful candidate is an individual who enjoys working in a fast-paced, results-oriented and mission/team-focused environment.

  • Bachelor of Arts or Science Degree required. Master’s Degree preferred;
  • Minimum of ten years’ experience in financial and operations roles required; previous non-profit or customer service experience desired;
  • Supervisory/ Management experience required;
  • Familiarity with nonprofit finance and accounting regulations;
  • Must be computer literate (Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel); Financial Edge experience desired;
  • Strong team collaborator and team focused contributor; creative problem-solver who is a detail-oriented professional with excellent writing, organizational and interpersonal skills;
  • Ability to prioritize and manage multiple responsibilities;
  • Excellent communication and customer service skills. Ability to interact with diverse groups and work successfully in a fast-paced, collaborative, team-oriented organization is essential;
  • Must be willing to work evening and weekend hours as needed; and
  • A sense of humor will be appreciated.

Compensation & Benefits:

Salary is competitive and commensurate with experience.


Make-A-Wish has engaged Koya Leadership Partners to help in this hire. Please submit a compelling cover letter and resume to Liz Lombard and Turner Delano here.

Make-A-Wish is an equal opportunity employer and strongly encourages applications from people of color, persons with disabilities, women, and LGBT applicants.

About Koya Leadership Partners:

Koya Leadership Partners is a national retained executive search and human capital consulting firm that works exclusively with mission-driven organizations, institutions of higher education and social enterprises. We deliver measurable results, finding exceptionally talented people who truly fit the unique culture of our client organizations and ensuring that organizations have the resources and strategies to support them. For more information, visit