Director of Finance (San Francisco)

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ACLU of Northern CA

Director of Finance (San Francisco)

The Opportunity

The ACLU of Northern California (ACLU NorCal) is hiring a Director of Finance who will be directly responsible for the organization’s financial systems and controls, which requires a hands-on approach especially as the organization continues to grow. Provides oversight for all aspects of the organizations’ accounting and financial reporting functions in support of the strategic plan. Provides the senior leadership team and Boards of Directors with vital information and analysis necessary to ensure the financial integrity and operational effectiveness of the ACLU Foundation of Northern California (the Foundation) and the ACLU of Northern California (the Union).

The Approach: 

ACLU NorCal Director of Finance will take initiative and engage in strategic goal-setting; listen well, and communicate clearly, seeking advice and feedback from others; values a collaborative approach to decision making; implements projects from start to finish; has experience leading teams, facilitates problem-solving, and has top-notch organizational skills and attention to detail.

The Position: 

The ideal leader is one who can provide education and training to staff and Boards in the areas of understanding financial processes, compliance, and upholding their fiduciary responsibilities. Ensures that financial statements are produced in accordance with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles for both the Foundation and the Union. They will be a leader who applies our organizational values and equity and inclusion principles to create effective processes and structures; develops and implements systems in manners that provide for equity and fair treatment.  This is a management position and is unrepresented.   

This position will be based out of our San Francisco office and will require regular travel to all of our offices-San Francisco, Sacramento, and Fresno.

About the Organization

The ACLU of Northern California is an affiliate of the American Civil Liberties Union a nationwide, non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to the defense and expansion of civil liberties and civil rights. The ACLU of Northern California (ACLU NorCal) is comprised of two distinct corporations, the ACLU Foundation of Northern California (501c3) and the ACLU of Northern California (501c4). The incumbent is a joint employee of both corporations. For most of the last century, it has been at the heart of many of the most major – and sometimes controversial – struggles for civil liberties and civil rights in our state. Our mission is to ensure that Constitutional rights don’t just exist on paper but are protected in practice. As we move into a new era and face dangerous policies that threaten our civil rights and civil liberties, we remain dedicated to confronting these issues and defending the progress we have made. We must use our decades of experience in impact litigation, legislative advocacy, and fearless organizing to fight these un-American policies and protect our most cherished rights and freedoms. We are the resistance. Join us.

Duties and Responsibilities:

Departmental & Organizational Leadership

  • Lead the Finance Team and provide management support to ensure adequate cross-coverage, equity, accountability, standardization of processes & procedures, professional growth, and cultivate a healthy and positive departmental culture;
  • Provides supervision to professional and support staff. This includes but is not limited to hiring, managing performance, disciplining, and recommending personnel actions such as promotions, transfers, and layoffs.
  • Provides back-up support and supervisory back-up for the Controller when they are out of the office;
  • In conjunction with the CFAO, identify opportunities for improvement/efficiency and implement solutions from start to finish, especially in light of our continued growth;
  • Use and apply technology and IT solutions, seek improvements and evaluate technology and software systems for use in financial management and finance processes org-wide;
  • Serve on the Senior Management Team and provide back-up coverage for the Finance decisions and functions of the CFAO;
  • Work closely with the CFAO to support the statewide collaboration with the other two California ACLU affiliates (Southern California and San Diego and Imperial Counties) and a new statewide organization (ACLU CA Action), including budgeting, financial processes, and systems;
  • Apply organizational values for equity and inclusion to management, decision-making, and all administrative systems;
  • Lead and carry out project planning and management as it relates to Finance, and in close collaboration as needed with HR Director, Director of Operations and Systems, and other functional leaders in the organization;
  • Work collaboratively with the senior management team, HR/Ops/IT, team members, and other colleagues;
  • Engage with the national ACLU on finance systems, procedures, or practices as needed
  • Engage in special projects as needed.


Financials, Budgets & Reporting

  • Manage the day-to-day financial needs of the organization;
  • In conjunction with the CFAO, prepare and administer the annual budget process and track decisions related to budgeting throughout the year;
  • Prepare financial statements for the Finance Committee, including analysis of major variances;
  • With the CFAO develop tools/reports/dashboard that will enhance the Boards’ ability to fulfill their fiduciary responsibilities;
  • Review budget to actual reports by department/project monthly and monitor progress, alerting the CFAO to any significant variances;
  • Support department directors and project budget holders in understanding their budgets and year to date reports, and respond to their questions;
  • Review bank and investment statements on a monthly basis and alert the CFAO to any variances;
  • Review and approve and Departmental invoices/contracts;
  • Maintain controls of the separation between the 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4) entities;
  • Manage and monitor the organizational cash flow, reserves, and forecasting;
  • Handle investment decision-making and management of investment portfolios, including short-term and long-term investments with input and oversight from the CFAO;
  • Serve as primary staff support for the Finance Committees of the Boards of each entity;
  • Manage banking relationships and account administration and set -up
  • Coordinate other financial duties as needed/assigned.

Controls, Compliance & Audit

  • Reviews Form 990 and comparable California tax filings to ensure the accuracy of the Union and Foundation’s tax returns;
  • In conjunction with the CFAO & Controller develop and maintain financial policies, procedures, and internal controls. Ensure organizational compliance;
  • Provide financial and compliance education to the organization and act as a resource for staff/budget holders, to ensure compliance with federal and state laws, regulations, accounting standards, and internal policies;
  • Oversee FPPC reporting & compliance and alert the CFAO to any compliance issues;
  • Support the CFAO and Director of Ops & Systems in risk management and managing & maintaining the organization’s insurance (non-health-related);
  • Serve as the primary staff support for the Audit & Compliance Committee. 

Job Requirements (Education, Experience and Skills/Competencies)

Education / Experience:

  • B.A. or equivalent experience.
  • Ten years of finance experience managing and administering complex finances. Experience includes effectively managing the finances of an organization with primary accountability for financial reporting, accounting, cash management, and financial planning (budget, strategic plan, operational efficiency, etc.) can be based in non-profits, for-profits, or government.
  • Minimum of 4 years of leadership experience, with a depth of experience in managing teams.
  • Experience creating effective policies, procedures, processes, systems, and structures.

Required Skills / Competencies:

  • Effective written and verbal communication skills
  • Demonstrated ability to work with diverse groups of staff and develop and implement systems in manners that provide for equity and fair treatment. ​​​
  • Strategic and solutions-oriented thinker. Can handle multiple projects at once, meet deadlines, and effectively manage time. Takes pride in high-quality work and has an exceptional level of attention to detail.
  • Thrives in a busy, bustling environment, and has the ability to easily balance being available to staff while staying focused to move other priorities forward.
  • Strong analytical abilities and proven accomplishment in a position requiring independent planning and efficient utilization of resources.
  • Excellent project management skills-seeing projects/initiatives through from start to finish.
  • Excellent judgment, tact, and diplomacy.
  • A strong sense of accountability.
  • Excellent organizational skills.
  • Values strong working relationships, collaboration, and supporting a healthy team so that they can thrive and can do so effectively while working remotely.

Preferred Skills / Competencies:

  • CPA or Master’s degree in a relevant field such as finance or public administration.
  • Financial management and investment strategies for non-profit organizations.
  • Knowledge of generally accepted accounting practices, principles, and methods.
  • Experience with the build-out and implementation of financial software and financial management practices
  • Experience with Quickbooks

Technical Skills:

  • Comfort with learning and using computer applications, including finance and accounting platforms.
  • Highly proficient in Microsoft Office 365 Suite, especially Outlook, SharePoint, Word, and Excel.

Must be available for some evening & weekend responsibilities


A competitive salary is commensurate with experience. Excellent benefits include four weeks paid vacation in addition to 14 office holidays; medical, vision, and dental insurance for staff members, their dependents and spouse or domestic partner; life and long-term disability insurance; and, 401(k) plan with employer match. Starting annual salary range is:  $141,386.25 – 157,931.45

To Apply

Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.  Applications must include (1) a cover letter explaining why you are interested in this position, working for the ACLU, and the ways in which you satisfy the qualifications specified above, (2) resume. If your candidacy advances to the final round, you will be asked to provide a list of four references, including one a direct supervisor and one a direct supervisee (please indicate your relationship to each reference). Applicants concurrently applying to any other position with the ACLU should state what other position they are applying for in the cover letter.

Please submit your application in PDF form here:

The ACLU-NC is committed to providing reasonable accommodation to individuals with disabilities. If you are a qualified individual with a disability and need assistance applying online, please e-mail  If you are selected for an interview, you will receive additional information regarding how to request an accommodation for the interview process.

The ACLU of Northern California advances equity and inclusion in the workplace by providing equal employment opportunity to support a work environment free from discrimination on the basis of race, religious creed, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, marital status, sex, gender, gender identity, gender expression, age (over 40), sexual orientation, military and veteran status, arrest or conviction record, and any other basis prohibited by law. The organization also provides reasonable accommodations for qualified applicants and employees with disabilities. This equal employment opportunity policy applies to all aspects of employment, including recruitment, selection, advancement, training, problem resolution, and separation from employment. Through this policy, the ACLU-NC strives to establish and maintain an equitable and accessible work environment that is supportive and free from discrimination.

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