Director, Social Innovation

We have made it a priority to meet with, and hire from, a diverse pool of candidates - and we encourage those who identify as Black, Indigenous, or a Person of Color to apply, as we believe that a range of lived experiences, voices, and perspectives directly contribute to the success of our team.

Are you a possibility thinker with an entrepreneurial mindset?
Does the idea of building cross-sector collaborations for community impact excite you?
Do you think at a systems level about how to shift structures that are inequitable?
Do you approach your work with an anti-racist, equitable, and inclusive lens?
Is building trust and working collaboratively in your DNA?

If so, you might be the person we’re looking for!

About Pillar Nonprofit Network:

Pillar Nonprofit Network strengthens individuals, organizations and enterprises invested in positive community impact. We support more than 610 nonprofits, social enterprises and social innovators by sharing resources, exchanging knowledge and creating meaningful connections across the three pillars of nonprofit, business and government.

We believe that a connected network sparks collaboration and a willingness to lean on each other to help build an engaged, inclusive and vibrant community. 


Director, Social Innovation

Role & Responsibilities:

Position Overview

The Director of Social Innovation leads research and development for the organization and facilitates initiatives that are in the emerging, breakthrough and reorganization phases of growth (in the adaptive cycle).  The Director will facilitate place-based (local) program design, development and deployment strengthened by a network approach, with engagement in provincial, national and global networks. 


Organization and Systems Works
  • Co-design and participate in movement-led networks that employ culture change, market-based incentives and targeted policy to affect systems change and tackle our most complex problems and dysfunctional structures
  • Support effective and responsive communications with internal and external stakeholders
  • Support a climate of innovation for Pillar to develop and implement approaches to new and improved programs and services
  • Initiate, facilitate, and evaluate program development 
  • Work with subject experts to implement and measure United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs) in our organization, network, and community 
  • Monitor research, trends and practices across relevant sectors, impact and industries
  • Keep pace with social innovation best practices, related government policy and strategies to increase positive community impact across our networks
  • Inform team and community partners about advancements in critical areas of inquiry, research, development and dialogue (i.e. reconciliation, regeneration, equity and inclusion, wealth redistribution, transformational leadership, sustainability, ecosystem thinking, etc.)
  • Build new and connect to existing networks locally, provincially and nationally
  • Lead and support advocacy and government relations related to social enterprise, social finance and social innovation
  • Support resource and business development for new projects/programs connected to the Social Innovation portfolio by writing grant, sponsorship and consulting proposals.
  • Support network development through case studies, research and relationship-building
Support for Impact Consulting & VERGE Capital
  • Support the growth of Impact Consulting services, advising on strategic direction and business development activities
  • Regularly fulfill Impact Consulting projects related to social enterprise, social innovation & systems change
  • Support the growth of VERGE Capital, including the development of a new fund and maximizing reach across Southwestern Ontario
  • Work with VERGE Capital team to increase awareness and engagement of impact investors in Southwestern Ontario
Team Engagement and Culture Building
  • Provide supervision, guidance, support and feedback to members of the Social Innovation Cluster 
  • Keep the team connected: conducting pulse checks, reinforcing Pillar’s culture and values, and sparking wellness opportunities
  • Lead in accordance with our Team Alliance (please see below)
  • Advise on team engagement initiatives to foster culture and connection
  • Support organizational and change management 
Social Innovation Cluster
  • Direct strategy and accountabilities for the Social Innovation Cluster
  • Participate in regular Directors' meetings and contribute to the overall strategy and financial success of the organization 
  • Integrate Social Innovation Cluster programs and connections across organizations
  • Facilitate the planning, monitoring and delivery of program work plans and budgets
  • Delegate staff duties and conduct performance reviews 
  • Provide training and coaching as needed
  • Support the Cluster team in designing and developing programs
  • Reach revenue and impact targets related to each program and support team members in achieving goals
  • Professionalize our social innovation approaches, methodologies, training, and processes 
  • Support the knowledge translation of our efforts in collaboration with our team, network, community and collaborators
  • Conduct research and development activities for new and current program designs related to emerging approaches and community needs 

Job Skills, Knowledge, and Strengths

Required Qualifications

  • Practical knowledge of systems thinking and ecosystem building
  • An adept multi-tasker, able to hold many pieces at the same time and prioritize the urgent from the important
  • Demonstrated communication skills, including networking and relationship building with a diverse group of stakeholders
  • Detail and process-oriented, with proven program planning and management skills
  • Strong communication skills (both verbal and written)
  • Demonstrated self-starter with an entrepreneurial spirit
  • Active in the community and a passionate community developer
  • Action-oriented with a proven record of delivering results
  • Excellent project management skills with an ability to self-manage and coordinate people towards a deadline or an outlined process
  • Understanding of how social enterprise and social finance can be key levers of change, and knowledge of movement building

Preferred Knowledge and Skills

  • Proficiency in G-Suite (Google Apps), Microsoft Office, Basecamp or other project management platform
  • Knowledge of finance and/or social finance and (otherwise, willing to learn)
  • Knowledge of impact frameworks, including United Nation Sustainable Development Goals (otherwise, willing to learn)
  • Strong relationship management skills, with the ability to navigate relationships with, and centre, new voices

Desired Knowledge and Skills

  • Social enterprise and business planning experience is an asset
  • Abilirt to lean into your own lived experience as it relates to systems change

Contribution to an equitable, inclusive, and anti-oppressive workplace:

  • Demonstrates respect for people from all backgrounds
  • Looks for the voices present and missing from projects and organizations, and seeks to fill the gaps
  • Suspends judgment and challenges self and others to confront their assumptions and conscious and unconscious biases
  • Committed to learning anti-oppressive practices, taking action, and holding self and others accountable

Work environment

Work Terms

  • Hours: Full-time (37.5 hours per week)
    • Flexible hours, with occasional evening and weekend work required
  • Reports ​to:  Executive Director
  • Contract: Full time position
  • Access to Pillar's Learning & Development program, when possible
  • Based at Innovation Works (201 King Street)

Pillar’s Culture and Values

Pillar Nonprofit Network was voted one of London’s best places to work by London Inc. magazine!

Our staff-written Team Alliance includes commitments to:

  • Build Relationships with Intention
  • Foster Inclusion & Belonging
  • Promote Trust & Integrity
  • Say What Needs to be Heard
  • Nurture a Culture of Caring

Pillar is committed to diversity and encourages applications from people who are Indigenous, racialized, LGBT2Q+, women, persons with disabilities, and other overlooked and underestimated groups.

How to Apply:

  • Please submit resume and cover letter to by Monday, December 7th, 5:00pm EST. No applications received after the deadline will be considered.
  • Please reference "Director, Social Innovation" in the subject line of your email.

Please note: 

  • Pillar Nonprofit Network is an equal opportunity employer and encourages all people to consider applying if their skills meet the requirements of the position. 
  • Pillar will provide any requested accommodation to candidates throughout the recruitment process.
  • While we appreciate receiving all applications, only candidates selected for an interview will be contacted.  Resumes are not kept on file for future reference.

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