Job Announcement-Executive Director

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Executive Director

Job Announcement

Thorncroft Equestrian Center (a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization), located in Malvern, PA, is one of the oldest therapeutic equestrian centers in the United States. We specialize in riding instruction for children and adults with mental, emotional and physical disabilities. We also provide lessons for able-bodied beginner through intermediate dressage and hunter-jumper riders. We have an active scholarship program for students who may benefit from but are not able to afford the programs offered by Thorncroft.


As we enter our 51st year of service to the community, our mission is to develop the physical and emotional well-being of all people regardless of their individual challenges. We are committed to personal growth and education in an equestrian environment of respect, love and inclusion. Thorncroft delivers a multitude of riding programs and educational opportunities to 350 riders a week, utilizing more than 30 horses, the assistance of 24 instructors, over 150 volunteers and 2 indoor arenas on 70 acres of open space.

Position Summary

The Executive Director must have an understanding of and passion for the goals and mission of Thorncroft, and for the population it serves. The ability to shepherd the organization through periods of change while keeping a strategic eye on the importance of responding to the physical and emotional well-being of all people regardless of their individual challenges is essential. The Executive Director will be a collaborative leader who cultivates trust and accountability within Thorncroft’s staff.

There are a wide range of responsibilities, including: developing and monitoring program activities, raising funds for the farm’s operation, managing the farm’s infrastructure and horses, and oversight of a $1.5 million budget while attracting clients for Thorncroft’s programs. Thorncroft’s leader will possess a results-oriented work attitude, interpersonal and networking skills and an innovative approach to program development. This position reports to the Board of Directors and leads a talented group of full and part time staff.


The duties for this role include but are not limited to:

 I. Leadership and Management

  • In cooperation with the Board of Directors, establish the strategic direction of the Farm by setting objectives and defining the means of their attainment.
  • Promote Thorncroft and its programs through active participation in local, state, regional, national and international organizations.
  • Manage the front office staff and supervise key positions including the Development Associate, Barn Manager and Farm Manager.

II. Resource Development

  • Establish or maintain relationships with donors and potential funders, while increasing and diversifying new revenue sources.
  • Direct the development and execution of an annual fundraising budget and marketing/communications plan.
  • Ensure that fund-raising records are retained. Manage the Farm’s resources according to all applicable laws and regulations for not-for-profit organizations.

III. Fiscal Oversight

  • Develop and manage Thorncroft’s annual operating and capital budgets.
  • Work with the staff accountant to prepare monthly financial reports, including timely and accurate analysis of the budget-to-actuals for the Board of Directors.
  • Provide advice and counsel to the Board of Directors for all fiduciary matters, including financial liability reviews.
  • Oversee preparation for periodic reviews of the farm including the annual financial audit, insurance analysis, and continued accreditation by PATH (Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship) International program.

IV. Community Relations

  • Ensure Thorncroft’s visibility through media channels, speaking engagements and participation in associations and clubs, and promote the riding programs to area schools, physical therapy organizations, and local companies.

V. Administrative

  • Work with the Board to define annual goals for the Farm and Executive Director. Periodically review and update of Thorncroft’s Policy and Procedures related to employees and farm operations.
  • Monitor the staffing needs of Thorncroft and manage the hiring process for all open positions.
  • Rework organizational flow chart and define staff responsibilities. Implement annual performance reviews.
  • Negotiate and oversee all contracts and projects.
  • Ensure that the Farm’s facilities, programs and services are maintained at a high level of quality and are consistent with state, local and federal regulations.

VI. Operations/Assets

  • Work with the Barn Manager to ensure that the herd is healthy and sustainable, and that all safety procedures are followed.
  • Work with the Farm Manager to ensure that all buildings, farm equipment and fields are properly maintained, meet code and safety requirements, and that there are effective programs for the ongoing regular maintenance needs of the Farm and for capital improvements.


  • The ideal candidate will have a bachelor’s degree, a minimum of five years of experience as an organizational leader.
  • Brings a results-oriented work attitude, interpersonal and networking skills and an innovative approach to program development.
  • Equine management experience is strongly desired.
  • Experience with capital campaigns, donor development and major gift solicitation. Experience with grant writing and event management is desirable.
  • Familiarity and established relationships with local, regional and/or national funding sources is highly desirable.
  • Demonstrated ability to attract and retain staff and to develop and maintain an effective team environment.
  • Strong interpersonal skills including demonstrated ability to build, foster, and maintain positive relationships with a variety of constituents including riders, families, volunteers and community stakeholders.
  • Experience with program evaluations.
  • Strong written and oral communication skills to express the mission and goals of Thorncroft with clarity, passion, and persuasion to represent the organization to its various constituents. 
  • Experience working with people who have cognitive, emotional and/or physical disabilities/challenges is beneficial.
  • Experience working in a therapeutic riding environment preferred; PATH International certification desired.
  • Must be available for evening and weekend events.


Salary offered will be commensurate with candidate’s skills and experience. The benefits package includes health and dental.


Qualified applicants should send their resume and cover letter to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. All applications will be kept confidential by the search committee.  Thorncroft is an equal opportunity employer.  We celebrate diversity and are committed to creating an inclusive environment for all employees.