Louisiana Association of Educators

Louisiana Association of Educators

Executive Director

Based in Baton Rouge, LA


The history of the Louisiana Association of Educators is as eclectic as the state in which it was founded. An association born from the dedication and passion of thousands of Louisiana’s hardworking public school professionals, LAE’s roots are compelling and significant, not only to association members, but to the ever-changing landscape of the state’s public school system.

The professional advocacy association known today as the LAE looked quite different 40 years ago. In the 70’s, Louisiana’s educator advocacy groups were segregated – the Louisiana Education Association’s membership consisted of predominantly African American members, and the Louisiana Teachers Association’s members were predominantly Caucasian. Governor Edwin Edwards encouraged a merger, saying it would give educators more power with lawmakers as well as the general public. In 1977, the two groups merged to create the Louisiana Association of Educators. A bold new voice for educators had emerged; a voice fighting for fair treatment of both black and white educators in Louisiana. Lawrence Narcisse took the reigns as the first president of the LAE. Shortly after the merger, the association held its first and largest joint rally at the Louisiana State Capitol in support of educator pay increases.

As the LAE continues to head further into the 21st century, it continues to change, evolving with the landscape of the Louisiana’s public schools. And members continue to push their mission – to organize and empower educators, strengthen the education profession all while creating great public schools for every child in Louisiana.

The Executive Director is the Association’s chief administrative officer and management agent who leads a staff in coordination with the LAE President to insure implementation of the full scope of policies, procedures, and programs approved and adopted by the LAE Board of Directors. In collaboration with the President and Officers, the Executive Director develops and manages an annual organizational budget and is accountable to the Board for the long term financial and fiscal health and sustainability of the Association.


  • Institutional Leadership – exercise inclusive and decisive leadership to advance the mission and vision of LAE in accordance with state and federal laws and regulations.
  • Long Range Planning – maintain focus on the strategic goals and priorities established by systematic and strategic planning processes.
  • Organizational Effectiveness and Accountability – implement the policies, services and programs of the LAE and drive for continuous improvement utilizing data and measurement to ensure effectiveness and efficiency of LAE program and services.
  • Public Education Advocacy – champion public education in Louisiana, including building collaborative relationships between LAE and external stakeholders in order to shape the highest professional standards for education policy.
  • Staff Relations – serve as chief of staff and provide leadership for staff commitment to Association policy; assign staff resources to programs and projects as necessary; coordinate, direct and evaluate the work of LAE employees, delegating supervision to other management employees as appropriate; support high standards for work on behalf of LAE members; and build effective relationships with management and staff unions. Create a culture of transparency and communication throughout the organization and address internal and external challenges to protect business interest. Ensure that programs and services reflect the diversity of the region and the communities served.

Corporate Management – advise and facilitate the development of the LAE budget; administer and monitor the budget; oversee compliance with legal and regulatory requirements; evaluate and manage risk; and ensure the proper management of all property owned and leased by the Association.

Key Organizational Opportunities and Challenges:

  • LAE has an opportunity to develop a strategic plan that aligns programs, action plans and resources with members’ professional needs. The Executive Director will be expected to exercise global perspective and utilize sound judgment in leading strategic planning and execution across the organization to accomplish this goal.
  • LAE has an opportunity to work in unity with the elected officers and Board to provide visionary leadership to engage its members as empowered activists and association leaders.
  • LAE has an opportunity to maintain organizing as a priority to grow LAE membership. There is widespread support for organizing. The challenge is to harness and build on the energy of grassroots initiatives, energize the locals, give voice, autonomy and support to new leaders.
  • LAE has an opportunity to increase the strength of its brand to encourage action and build external relationships to influence legislation that results in pro-education policies. The Executive Director must lead in developing member understanding and capacity to engage in political action. He/she must set the tone from the top through personal behaviors that directly and indirectly establish and maintain effective relationships and partnerships with other educational, labor and business organizations, and with the governor, state legislature, and other elected and appointed government officials and their staffs.
  • Similar to many other organizations the LAE faces the challenge of loss of institutional knowledge and continuously seeking preventative measure to ensure that valuable knowledge is retained.

To be considered for this position, the applicant must be prepared to share and validate a record of personal achievements in the following competency areas.

Strategic Planning and Execution
Documented experience in leading organization-wide efforts in planning, implementation, process improvements, innovation, financial management and building high performing work teams. A record of executive leadership in strategic planning that required significant organizational change, including experience utilizing reliable methods to ensure accountability and timeliness in the execution of strategic goals and objectives. An individual who possesses the ability to juggle multiple projects with clear priorities and to easily articulate the connections between the big picture and specific action plans and timetables. An excellent communicator who is skilled at articulating with motivational clarity, the progression from big picture vision and goals, to responsibility and accountability for specific action plans and timelines.

Interpersonal Effectiveness
An effective communicator who has excelled in building successful relationships. Has an established record of fostering teamwork and consensus, effectively managing conflict, provoking creative problem-solving and risk taking, and is inclusive of diverse individual and cultural perspectives. Proven evidence of success in achieving desired outcomes when leading organizational innovation and change; a courageous leader who has shown organizational savvy and flexibility in confronting and adapting to challenging and changing political/organizational realities. Capable and willing to voice respectful and effective dissent when and where appropriate.

Business Knowledge
Possess a record of long-term financial planning, managing finances and resources, and providing accurate information and guidance to governing boards. Has a record of creating fiscal soundness, sustainability, and resource stewardship and has the ability to manage and promote new technology, tools, and business practices to enhance the Association’s interests. A record of using judgement to guide transformative decisions in challenging and uncertain times. Utilize data to make well informed choices that produce desired outcomes, perceives the implication of decisions. Accomplished cultural change of accountability among staff by defining roles and responsibilities to ensure organizational goals are met.

Member Focus
A leader who values public education and is focused on member needs. Someone who believes in member engagement, trust, and loyalty, and who is committed to fostering strong relationships of LAE and its members. An experienced leader who has successfully demonstrated the ability to implement high quality programs and services that brings value to members. An influential leader who understands membership and is able to expand market share, has effectively led innovative strategies, programs, initiatives, and policies designed to attract and increase new membership. Has the ability to create collaborative relationships and partnerships with local, county and state governments as well as community groups and organizations.


  • Master’s Degree from an accredited college or university required.
  • A minimum of 3- 5 years of middle or senior management experience.
  • Background in labor advocacy and collective bargaining experience desired.
  • Experience working in a member-based organization, reporting to and advising an elected board of directors desired.

LAE is prepared to offer a generous and competitive salary and benefits package consistent with experience, skills and demonstrated abilities.

To be considered for this position, please provide the following:

  • A current résumé reflecting qualifications for this position
  • A Letter of Application which specifically addresses how accomplishments in your career have prepared you to meet the challenges and opportunities presented in this position.

All materials must be sent electronically to the following:

Margolies and Potterton, Union Search, LLC.


For all questions regarding this search, including confidential inquiries, please contact:

Debra Schwoch-Swoboda (East Coast)  |   Jim Potterton (West Coast)                       
 Debra4654@gmail.com   |   jpotterton@sbcglobal.net
(414) 217-5160 (Eastern time zone)   |   (831) 332-9324 (Pacific time zone)    

APPLICATION DEADLINE: August 28, 2020 at 5:00 pm (EST).

Louisiana Association of Educators is deeply committed to diversity and inclusion in its hiring practices. We are an affirmative action, equal opportunity employer. Women and people of color are encouraged to apply.

WHEN APPLYING: Be sure to indicate that you saw this information at UNIONJOBS.COM.