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Early Head Start Director


We Love What Makes You Unique

Your perspective fuels our mission-driven work at United Way of Greater New Haven. We are committed to building a team that is inclusive across race, gender, age, religion, identity, and lived experience. As an organization, we are committed to addressing systemic racism and injustice in our community, our partnerships, and our practices. 

Who We Are Looking For

Are you committed to supporting infants and toddlers, their families, and the programs that serve them? Do you have deep knowledge of Early Head Start and/or Head Start requirements, and want to help community partners successfully incorporate Early Head Start services and systems into their early care and education programs? Do you have leadership and relationship-building skills and experience with connecting programs and services so they work more effectively?  Do you have a strong track record of working with the programmatic, financial, and data-related aspects of federal programs? If so, our Early Head Director position may be perfect for you.

What You Are Great At

  • You are a strong Early Head Start/Head Start (EHS/HS) professional who has led a team. You are deeply familiar with the EHS/HS regulations and performance standards. You have experience supervising and supporting other staff to implement the various components of EHS/HS, and know how to monitor and support programs to ensure program quality.
  • You are a detail-oriented planner who creates and thrives within systems. You relish creating and working to improve processes and systems and have experience in developing and running initiatives and programs related to early childhood. You know how to manage the details and logistics, while at the same time seeing how things connect to create a bigger whole.
  • You are a strong communicator. You can convey your message clearly in writing and orally to a variety of audiences, including board members, partner staff, and parents.
  • You’re a team player. The Early Head Director will report to the Vice President of Education and will work closely with other members of the Community Impact Team as well as external partners. While you are confident in your abilities and knowledge, you approach your work from a place of humility.


What You Will Do

  • Ensure that Head Start Performance Standards are well‐known and supported and implemented across the program partners.
  • Support and monitor EHS partners to ensure compliance with all Head Start and Early Head Start mandates, applicable laws, and regulations and assure that standards are being fully met.
  • Conduct on-site visits to programs and plan and facilitate regular meetings with partners.
  • Review documentation and data, including working within the program’s online database work closely with the VP of Education to staff the UWGNH EHS Board Committee.
  • Supervise EHS staff and consultants.
  • Manage all aspects of the EHS Policy Council, and Meet with the finance staff on a regular basis to review and revise the budget as necessary in addition to monitoring the budget as it relates to actual spending of Early Head Start funds.
  • Work with local partners to expand services and supports available to EHS families
  • Lead an annual self-assessment process for the program and develop annual plans for improvement; ensure that a community needs assessment is conducted as required.
  • Recommend and implement changes as needed in program design, administration procedures, etc. as they affect program performance.
  • Prepare and submit for approval necessary programmatic reports, forms, etc. as required by Federal, state, and local regulations.
  • Establish and maintain partnerships with funding sources, other state and local agencies, organizations, groups, etc. as they relate to programmatic activities.
  • Plan and coordinate shared governance training for Policy Council and Board of Directors as required.
  • Plan, coordinate, develop, and implement annual refunding application.


What You Need

  • Minimum of a Bachelor’s degree in early childhood development or other relevant field.
  • Three to five years’ experience as a Head Start/Early Head Start Director of a small program, or significant senior management experience within a large Head Start/Early Head Start program.
  • Substantive knowledge about the early childhood landscape in Connecticut and Early Head Start/Head Start.
  • Strong written and oral communication skills.
  • A successful track record in setting priorities, and keen analytical, organizational, and problem-solving skills which support and enable sound decision making.
  • Excellent relationship building skills with an ability to prioritize, negotiate, and work with a variety of internal and external stakeholders.
  • Experience working with government grants a plus.
  • Experience in grant writing and managing budgets.
  • Proficient with MS Office365 and demonstrated comfort in learning new software/ online tools as needed.
  • Ability to work with diverse staff and volunteers.
  • Personal qualities of integrity, credibility, and dedication to the mission of UWGNH. 
  • Valid driver's license and reliable transportation required.


About United Way

United Way of Greater New Haven brings people and organizations together to create solutions to Greater New Haven’s most pressing challenges in the areas of Education, Health, and Financial Stability grounded in racial and social justice. We tackle issues that cannot be solved by any one group working alone. We operate according to these organizational values.

In accordance with organizational policies, this position requires a criminal background check as a condition of employment.

United Way staff are currently working hybrid, with at least two days per week in our office in New Haven.  This is a full-time position; the salary range for this position is $85,000 - $90,000.

United Way is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Don’t check off every box in the requirements listed above? Please apply anyway! Studies have shown that marginalized communities - such as women, LGBTQ+ and people of color - are less likely to apply to jobs unless they meet every single qualification. United Way of Greater New Haven is dedicated to building an inclusive, diverse, equitable, and accessible workplace that fosters a sense of belonging – so if you’re excited about this role but your past experience doesn’t align perfectly with every qualification in the job description, we encourage you to still consider submitting an application. You may be just the right candidate for this role or another one of our openings!


To Apply: Careers | United Way of Greater New Haven (

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