Executive Director

Open date: May 29, 2023 1PM

Close date: June 12, 2023 4PM

Organization overview:

Formed in 1972, the Uptown Waterloo Business Improvement Area (BIA) is a committee of the City of Waterloo’s Council responsible for the organization, physical improvement and economic development of the Uptown business area. As an independent, non-profit organization, we are led by a volunteer Board of Directors comprised of business and property owners, persons voted in by rate-paying member(s) and member(s) of Waterloo Council.

Job Description:

Reporting to the BIA Board of Directors, the Executive Director is responsible for the overall day-to day operations of the organization including developing, implementing, directing, evaluating and leading a broad range of programs and initiatives consistent with the strategic direction of the BIA and annual budget.


Strategy and Administration

  • Assist and provide leadership as it pertains to the planning and implementation of the BIA’s strategic plan every four years
  • Create and implement an annual operating plan that includes detailed metrics and provides regular updates throughout the year
  • Regularly review and update governance policies for Board approval and oversee implementation
    • Build and develop strategies and programs for the betterment of the Uptown Waterloo community
    • Produce an annual budget to assist the BIA in achieving goals and objectives as outlined in the strategic plan
    • Oversee the development and implementation of the BIA’s annual marketing and communications plan including social media planning
    • Manage the planning, implementation and evaluation of the BIA’s membership programs and initiatives
    • Direct, plan and execute on BIA related events and oversight on corporate partnerships
    • Ensure Uptown Waterloo beautification and place-making projects are planned and executed
    • Identify and put into action, opportunities to advocate on behalf of the BIA membership

Public Relations

  • Establish and maintain strong relationships with community organizations, local politicians, city officials and staff to help achieve the goals and objectives of the BIA
  • Meet quarterly with, and provide biannual BIA updates to, the City of Waterloo’s senior leadership team
  • Build strong relationships with the BIA membership
  • Leverage strong relationships with local media
  • Act as the main spokesperson for the BIA and answer inquiries from volunteers, media, public and the membership
  • Ensure the BIA provides regular membership communications related to pertinent information affecting Uptown
  • Collaborate with other BIAs in the Region to place-make and bring residents to the city cores
  • Ensure external communications to the public help achieve the goals and objectives of the BIA
  • Represent the BIA on relevant Boards, committees and at community events to enhance its profile
  • Liaise with the Ontario BIA Association and other business membership organizations e.g. Chambers of Commerce, Small Business Centres, Canadian Federation of Businesses, Retail Council of Canada, Tourism Industry Association of Canada etc.

Management and Governance

  • Oversee the management of the BIA office, including finances and day-to-day administration
  • Manage a yearly audit
  • Oversee BIA investments
  • Provide leadership, human resources, development and oversight of the BIA staffing team
  • Implement, evaluate and revise policies and procedures annually
  • Ensure all BIA committees are provided with staffing support to assist with the setting of agendas, minutes etc.

Board Support

  • Arrange Board meetings, assist with agenda setting and provide supporting documentation
  • Ensure Board minutes are provided in a timely fashion
  • Track Board member terms of reference
  • Ensure Board members sign an annual code of conduct and confidentially agreement
  • Provide regular reports and dashboards to the Board pertaining to the operating plan, organization, finances and other Uptown-related news
  • Coordinate relevant presentations for the Board to help keep them informed e.g. construction updates, Board governance training etc.


BIA staff members are expected to work during the hours that the office is open – generally 9:00 am to 4:30 pm, Monday to Friday, with some flexibility. At present the office staff are working on a hybrid model of home and office – a schedule is set up weekly to ensure office coverage. Hours may be irregular at busy times such as the run-up to an event launch or during an organizational audit. Staff may also be asked to attend events, conferences and networking events in the evenings or on the weekend. Lieu time may be accumulated for future use within the year, as noted in the BIA’s policies.


  • Post secondary education in a field of study relevant to the position with a minimum of five years’ experience with demonstrated effectiveness in managing an organization and staff, preferably in the charitable or not-for-profit sector; equivalent combinations of education and experience may be considered
  • Demonstrated experience working under the direction of a volunteer Board of Directors
  • Proven experience managing a budget
  • Strong non profit governance expertise including strategic planning
  • Knowledge and familiarity with Uptown Waterloo
  • Media and public relations competencies 
  • Desire and proven ability to build strong relationships in the community as well as with provincial and federal organizations

Skills and Attributes

  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • A visionary with proven skills to lead change and grow the BIA
  • Superior planning, leadership, management, collaboration and organizational skills
  • Sound knowledge of strategic, program, operational and marketing planning
  • Strong financial competence and budget management
  • Creative and active problem solver who is proactive and innovative
  • Experienced at government relations
  • Excellent research and analytical skills for developing and supplying information and for formulating policies and recommendations to the Board of Directors and committees
  • A proven relationship builder who can work effectively with business owners, elected officials and non-elected community leaders
  • Strong relationships with local media
  • Capacity to determine the needs of others including members and volunteers
  • Self-disciplined and a self-starter, undertaking work without supervision and capable of supervising and motivating others
  • Strategic thinker and situational analyst as it relates to trends, changes and evolving needs and practices
  • Guided by the highest level of integrity and honesty
  • Strong team builder and player
  • Ability to monitor the BIA’s activities in a field of complex municipal legislation
  • Familiarity and strong working knowledge of not-for-profit governance
  • Understanding of the role of place-making and it’s impact on community vibrancy
  • Ability to lead by example and aspire to best business practices and the highest ethical principles