Chief Operating Officer - True Colors United

  • Grossman Heinz
  • New York, NY, USA
  • Sep 12, 2019
Full time Nonprofit-Social Services

Job Description

Position Announcement

Chief Operating Officer

True Colors United

New York, NY



Position Overview

True Colors United is seeking an empathetic and strategic Chief Operating Officer (COO) to help lead the organization into their second decade of expansion.

In the United States, 4.2 million youth experience homelessness each year, with LGBTQ youth 120% more likely to experience homelessness than their non-LGBTQ peers. True Colors United is committed to changing that.

The COO will lead all internal operations and is responsible for growing and nurturing a human-centered, equitable, and inclusive culture among a group of diverse, talented individuals. The COO will develop and implement effective and efficient systems to increase the productivity of the organization while fueling the creative and collaborative spark that drives True Colors United.

The ideal candidate will be an exceptional communicator with leadership experience managing the systems and processes of organizations, a passion for mentoring staff and deep commitment to True Colors United’s mission.

The COO will have a strong learning orientation, including the ability to learn from mistakes, the desire to continuously improve and grow and the capacity to foster this with staff across the organization.

This is a fantastic opportunity for a leader with strong operational and people management skills and a proven track record of flexibility and problem-solving to join a high-growth, high-impact, well-respected, mission-driven organization.


Organization Overview

Cofounded by Cyndi Lauper, True Colors United implements innovative solutions to youth homelessness that focus on the unique experiences of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning young people.

True Colors United implements innovative solutions to youth homelessness that focus on the unique experiences of LGBTQ young people. Through a broad continuum of training & education, youth collaboration, and advocacy programs, True Colors Fund is creating a world where all young people can be their true selves.

Communities and youth homelessness service providers want to be safe and welcoming for LGBTQ youth, but often don’t have the knowledge or resources to do so – creating barriers for these youth to get the support they need. True Colors United fills that space by offering free training and resources on how to meet the needs of LGBTQ youth experiencing homelessness. In addition, it advocates in government and media to help ensure critical funding and services for all youth and creates opportunities for youth who have experienced homelessness to be key leaders in the effort to end the problem.

True Colors United has offices in New York, NY and Washington, DC.

Key Responsibilities

  • Work in partnership with the Executive Director & CEO to implement True Colors United’s strategic vision and the processes and systems to achieve it
  • Lead and manage the organization's human resources, finance, technology, and legal functions
  • Coordinate the organization’s annual strategic planning and budgeting process
  • Manage and oversee the organization’s project management system
  • Provide strong day-to-day internal leadership, support an open-door policy and environment and actively build a culture that values vulnerability, courage, creativity, and equity
  • Oversee operations of New York City headquarters and Washington, D.C. satellite office and ensure a strong and connected team
  • Upgrade human resources operations including training, development, compensation and benefits, employee relations, performance evaluation, and recruiting
  • Improve upon the existing accounting system to enable strategic budgeting and ensure quick access to financial information; lead the annual audit process for the organization.
  • Analyze the current technology infrastructure and scope out the next level of information technology and financial systems to support growth
  • Collaborate with attorneys to ensure that True Colors United meets all of its legal obligations and manages risk responsibly
  • Oversee the operational aspects of fundraising, including financial reporting for grant proposals and systems for reporting, measuring, and supporting revenue generation
  • Liaison with the national Board of Directors and serve on the finance/audit/investment committee

Key Qualifications

Candidates could come from a range of backgrounds, but experience in a leadership role in a values-driven organization and a thorough understanding of human resources, finance and technology infrastructure are a must. A demonstrated commitment to True Colors United core values of equity, empathy, collaboration, creativity and community is also essential.

In addition, some or all of these qualifications would be great to see in the ideal candidate’s background:

  • 7 to 10 years of people, culture, and operations leadership experience, with experience driving equitable practices across an organization
  • High level of business acumen including successful financial management; the ability to balance the delivery of programs against the realities of a budget
  • High emotional intelligence and experience being emotionally supportive to staff during stressful or difficult periods
  • Ability to think strategically, anticipate future consequences and trends, and incorporate them into the organizational plan
  • Exceptional capacity for managing, supporting, and leading people
  • Experience in scaling up organizations and working in a fast-paced environment
  • Demonstrated ability to create and foster an equitable, inclusive culture and work environment
  • Broad experience with a range of business functions and systems, including strategic development and planning, budgeting, business analysis, information systems, and marketing
  • Familiarity with Salesforce and Google Suite
  • Solid educational background (undergraduate degree; MBA or similar advanced degree highly desired) or equivalent work experience (10 years or more)


This position will be based out of True Colors United’s New York City office.

To Apply

To apply, submit a cover letter and resume online at The cover letter should be concise, compelling, and include why you would like to work for True Colors United and your salary requirements. Only applications submitted through this website will be considered. Applications will be considered on a rolling basis.

True Colors United is an Equal Opportunity Employer. They strongly encourage people of color, people of diverse gender identities, women, and people with lived experiences of homelessness to apply.