Jobs: Chief Financial Officer

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National Headquarters, New York

Department:  Finance and Operations

Location: New York, NY

Reports to:  Chief Operating Officer

FLSA Status: Exempt/Full-time

Union Status: N/A


The Chief Financial Officer will play a critical role in the overall strategic management of the Lambda Legal, setting the financial strategy for its roughly $20 million operating budget while also designing and delivering effective financial systems. As Lambda Legal embarks upon its next phase of growth and development, the CFO will serve as a true strategic partner to organizational leaders, providing strong and accurate financial guidance to guide decisions, and will lead long-term financial forecasting, budgeting and strategy-setting.

As a key member of the leadership team, the CFO will report to the Chief Operating Officer and will manage a team of three. The CFO will also be accountable to the board's finance and audit committee.


Lambda Legal is a national organization committed to achieving full recognition of the civil rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and everyone living with HIV through impact litigation, education and public policy work. Since 1973, Lambda Legal has used impact litigation and other advocacy tools to decriminalize same-sex relationships; challenge discrimination against LGBTQ people and people living with HIV in the workplace, in the home, in schools, in health care, and in the military; and protect LGBTQ families, including by winning and defending marriage equality. Clients are not charged for legal representation or advocacy and Lambda Legal receives no government funding. Headquartered in New York City, Lambda Legal has regional offices in Los Angeles, Chicago, Atlanta, Dallas, and Washington, D.C.

We believe that serving the full breadth of the LGBTQ and HIV communities requires cultural competency and enthusiasm for diversity of all kinds. To be successful, we must approach our work with an understanding that discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity is not the only obstacle to achieving full formal and lived equality for LGBTQ people and everyone living with HIV; rather, we recognize the intersectional nature of discrimination, specifically including biases based on race, religion, national origin, gender, disability, education, and class. In light of this reality, we prioritize awareness and proactive commitment to counteracting these biases and their compounding effects. 


Organizational Leadership

• Serve as a thought partner and member of Lambda Legal leadership, setting organizational strategy, mentoring staff, and providing oversight

• As a member of the organization's leadership team, promote Lambda Legal's values and culture, building policies and procedures that advance equity and inclusion

• Effectively communicate and present critical financial matters to the CEO and COO, the Finance Committee of the Board of Directors and the full Board of Trustees as well as to key external stakeholders (e.g., funders, lenders, authorizers)

• Manage and develop a team, including a controller, senior analyst, and staff accountant, ensuring that all staff is coached, developed, and well positioned to achieve their goals

Strategic Financial Analysis and Planning

• Set financial strategy and lead long-term financial forecasting and budgeting for Lambda Legal's ~$20M operating budget

• Oversee and lead annual budgeting and planning process in conjunction with the COO; review and administer all financial plans and budgets; monitor progress and changes and keep leadership team abreast of the organization's financial status

• Plan and coordinate budgeting and cost containment activities; determining all the participants and clearly defining their input and role

• Recognize and anticipate opportunities and challenges as they relate to financial systems and operations; generate ideas, strategies, and solutions to drive impact

• Address short- and long-term organizational financial challenges, evaluating and advising on the financial impact of long-range plans and the introduction of new programs and strategies

• Align annual budgets and long-term financial plans to with key strategic goals

• Coordinates with the Board Treasurer as manager and custodian of investments and other assets of the organization

• Design and implement a cash management system, evaluating the need for obtaining credit or investing surpluses

Team Development and Management

• Recruit, supervise, and retain a diverse team of financial professionals, serving as an organization-wide model for strong people management and professional development

• Promote a team-oriented culture of high performance and continuous improvement that values a commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion; encourage ongoing education and professional development

• Create a culture of service excellence; supporting the finance team to work in partnership with staff across the organization to understand budgeting and reporting, as needed

• Supervise accounting team to ensure the integrity and reliability of all accounting functions, including receipts, disbursements, purchasing, payroll, general ledger, bank reconciliation, cash flow management, and audit preparation

Systems and Process Design

• Oversee and optimize use of enterprise-wide financial software that enables improved organization-wide planning, efficiency and decision making

• Review financial systems and processes and recommend enhancements that will enable team leaders to more easily understand the benefits and costs of potential strategic and operational decisions

• Develop systems to guarantee accuracy and compliance of accounting and reporting, as well as leading the financial affairs

• Uncommon in accordance with the Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) and City, State and Federal government regulations

• Ensure effective internal controls and compliance with GAAP and applicable federal, state and local regulatory laws and rules for financial and tax reporting and optimization.

Financial Management and Oversight

• Oversee all fiscal and fiduciary responsibilities for the organization, in conjunction with the Board of Trustees and the Finance and Audit Committees of the Board

• Manage teams responsible for all operational finance activities, including accounting, forecasting, treasury, grants management, real estate management, securing, structuring and managing borrowing activities, lender relationships, and financial-related strategic planning and legal work

• Oversee the annual audit process; liaise with external auditors and the Audit Committee of the Board of Directors

• Directs the finance group's delivery of timely, accurate and GAAP-compliant financial and management reporting

• Play a leadership role in overseeing audit, development and implementation of policy and procedures and maintenance of internal controls function

• Oversee business relationships with banks and other financial institutions


Skills & Competencies:

• At least 5 years' experience of increasing responsibility, working as CFO, Director of Finance or senior financial position in a complex organization or equivalent, preferably in an organization that has multiple departments and similar financial make-up

• Experience in a senior financial-management role, partnering with executive staff, resulting in the development and implementation of creative financial management strategies

• Significant experience in or knowledge of nonprofit accounting, including sophisticated fund and grant accounting, compliance, and reporting

• Experience working with information technology staff of consultants to manage finance and accounting software packages

• Strong attention to detail– must be driven and have a desire to research and resolve variances

• Excellent critical thinking and problem-solving skills

• Excellent written, organization, time management, and verbal communication skills

• Ability to work on multiple priorities simultaneously, adapt to a changing environment, and manage deadlines

• Strong collaboration skills, with a track record of working effectively with colleagues at all levels of the organization

• Experience managing unionized staff is a plus


The health and well-being of our employees and their loved ones are of the utmost importance to us.  During the Pandemic, we have chosen to close our offices.  Our employees are all working from home, and only visit the office voluntarily, only if absolutely necessary.   We follow CDC and Department of Health guidelines to ensure the safety of employees who occasionally need to work from the office.   We have an employee task force that is continually evaluating and assessing when we can re-open.  At this time, we do not foresee re-opening our office in the next several months.


Salary and benefits will be competitive and commensurate with experience.  Competitive benefits package is provided, including medical, dental, life insurance, short and long-term disability insurance, employer contributions and match to 403(b)-retirement account, and substantial vacation.


Applications will be accepted until position is filled.

To apply for this position please click here and follow the online application process.

No calls please. Due to the high volume of applications, Lambda Legal cannot return phone calls about the position and cannot notify all applicants of status.

Lambda Legal is committed to further building and maintaining a staff that reflects the full range of LGBTQ, HIV-affected and allied communities, and is an equal opportunity employer. People of color, transgender and gender-diverse people, women, people with abilities in multiple languages, immigrants, people living with disabilities, and individuals living with HIV are encouraged to apply.