12 days old

Chief Operating Officer

Farm Sanctuary
New York, New York
  • Job Type
  • Job Status
    Full Time

Position location: New York, New York or Los Angeles, California (preferred, other locations will be selectively considered)


Farm Sanctuary

Chief Operating Officer

New York, New York or Los Angeles, California

(preferred, other locations will be selectively considered)


The first farm sanctuary in the world, Farm Sanctuary was founded in 1986 to combat the abuses of factory farming and encourage a new awareness and understanding about farm animals. Today, Farm Sanctuary is one of the nation’s largest and most effective farm animal rescue and protection organizations. Farm Sanctuary has rescued thousands of animals and cared for them at its sanctuaries in New York and California. At Farm Sanctuary, these animals are considered friends, not food. The organization educates millions of people about the animals’ plight and the effects of factory farming on our health and environment. Farm Sanctuary advocates for laws and policies to prevent suffering and promote compassion, and it reaches out to legislators and businesses to bring about institutional reforms.


In an ideal world, there would be no need for Farm Sanctuary as it exists today. There would be no factory farms or stockyards. Cows, pigs, chickens, turkeys, and sheep would be free to roam in their pastures, sleep in the sun, scratch at the earth, and enjoy life. Animals in today’s industrialized farms are treated like commodities. They are crowded into warehouses, confined so tightly that they cannot easily walk or even turn around. They are de-beaked, de-toed, and their tails are docked without anesthetic. Their bones break because their bodies have been manipulated to grow so fast that they can’t support their own weight. Factory farm animals are denied fresh air, sun, wholesome food, room to move, and the freedom to exhibit their natural behaviors. This rampant abuse of millions of animals every day is largely invisible to the public. Farm Sanctuary has a vision of a world where vegan eating is fun and easy and where people are aware of the cruelties of factory farming.


Farm Sanctuary remains committed to ending cruelty to farm animals and promoting compassionate vegan living through rescue, education, and advocacy efforts.


Farm Sanctuary’s sizeable, dedicated base of support, inclusive of high-profile ambassadors and advocates, largely underwrites the organization’s critical work and has facilitated organizational growth. The Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director (CEO-ED) and Chief Development Officer, both newly appointed to the organization, are prioritizing ongoing enhancement of the development program, while also emphasizing the strategic integration of complementary communications functions. Other near-term priorities for the organization include the following: crafting a new strategic agenda to guide the organization over the next several years; enhancing educational and other strategic initiatives, including a new focus on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion; expanding advocacy efforts; and integrating more of a focus on program evaluation to measure impact.


As the operational needs of Farm Sanctuary continue to grow and the sustainability of sanctuaries remain a costly endeavor, the organization’s core administrative functions must also continue to evolve in a strategic, systematized way, replete with best practices commensurate for a best-in-class organization. Given the high stakes of advancing Farm Sanctuary’s mission, the organization must ensure that administrative functions fully support and in no way encumber delivery of programs in a dynamic environment.


Amid a favorable backdrop of preeminence in the field, new organizational energy, and forward-looking investment, Farm Sanctuary seeks candidates for the newly configured role of Chief Operating Officer (COO). The COO provides leadership, vision, and oversight for Farm Sanctuary’s human resources, information technology, and general operations functions, ensuring a dynamic, evolving infrastructure and corresponding strategies in order to meet current and future needs, including supporting continued growth of the organization. The COO also coordinates and monitors long-term organizational strategic planning and enterprise-wide annual operating plans. Reporting to the CEO-ED, the COO supervises two direct reports (Director of Human Resources and Volunteer Programs, Director of Information Technology) and an overall team of seven. As an active participant in organization-wide analysis and planning, s/he will be a strategic partner to the CEO-ED, senior leadership team, and Board of Directors in leading the organization into the future.


Required qualifications and experience:

- Dedication to the mission and goals of Farm Sanctuary. Candidates for this position should be motivated by the ethical underpinnings of the animal rights movement.

- Bachelor’s degree required.

- Minimum of 12 years of experience in progressively responsible administrative leadership roles, with a thorough understanding of business-process improvement and operations management, with proven administrative, managerial, problem-solving, and planning experience within a complex nonprofit environment. Experience serving a nonprofit organization with diverse program offerings.

- Demonstrated success as a manager able to lead and support a diverse administrative team, while also being willing to roll up her/his sleeves. A track record of recruiting, developing, motivating, and retaining an experienced, talented staff.

- Ability to think strategically and holistically about the interplay among operations, business processes, human resources, and institutional planning; to extract and analyze data to make effective, efficient decisions about strategy and process; to set challenging and attainable goals, establish priorities, and work with and inspire others to high levels of creative performance in support of Farm Sanctuary’s mission; and to lead and navigate during a time of change, implementing best practices and promptly addressing problems and other issues as necessary.

- A broad understanding of human resources, inclusive of recruitment, training, performance and talent management, employee relations, compensation and benefits management, and compliance. The capacity to provide strategic human resources guidance on an organization-wide level to help bring solutions to business needs and enhance organizational effectiveness.

- Strong familiarity with information and technology systems and ensuring the security thereof. Experience in implementing information systems or new technologies and effectively adjusting business processes and organizational culture to maximize the outcome of technology investments in terms of efficiency, analysis, reporting, and controls.

- Experience in proactively identifying and addressing organizational risks related to strategy, operations, or compliance.


Farm Sanctuary has retained Diversified Search to assist in this confidential search process. Inquiries, nominations, and applications (current resumes and cover letters) should be directed electronically to:


Gerard F. Cattie, Jr.

Managing Director

Diversified Search

The Chrysler Building, 405 Lexington Avenue, 49th Floor, New York, NY 10174

gerard.cattie@divsearch.com | 212.542.2587



Posted: 2019-08-07 Expires: 2019-09-06

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Chief Operating Officer

Farm Sanctuary
New York, New York

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