Executive Vice President

Great Plains Institute
Organization Summary

A nonpartisan, nonprofit organization, the Great Plains Institute (GPI) is transforming the energy system to benefit the economy and environment. Increased demand for GPI’s unique blend of energy expertise and consensus-derived solutions has driven organizational and programmatic growth. With headquarters in Minnesota, GPI’s operations are national in scope while retaining a core competency in the Midcontinent region. GPI is powered by more than 50 professionals and is supported by some of the nation’s most respected philanthropies. 


The following values inform the way we work both inside and outside of GPI. It is important to us to be trusted, inclusive, equitable, and transformative:   


Trusted. We base our approach and actions on trust, mutual respect, and accountability. 

Inclusive. We achieve impact through inclusive and deliberate collaboration with a diversity of interests. 

Equitable. We strive for equity in our approach and outcomes. 

Transformative. We are a bold and passionate catalyst for change. 

Posting Date
Closing Date
Location in MN
work remotely
Job type

Salary range: $175K-$205K, commensurate with experience. Benefits include a health plan, 401(k) retirement plan, LTD, STD, life, vision, dental, FSA/HSA, paid time off, professional development allowance, and a communication stipend. 


Full Time

Primary Duties

Leadership and Strategy 

  • Serve as a critical strategic partner to the CEO, including oversight and coordination of strategy across all programs. 
  • Work with the CEO and CFO to ensure that all functions at GPI align with GPI’s vision, mission, values, strategic priorities, and policies. 
  • Lead and coordinate GPI’s annual and multi-year strategy review and development. 
  • Represent GPI and its programmatic work in both public and private settings, including when the CEO is unavailable. 
  • Lead a discrete portfolio of high-impact program work if/when that makes sense given their background, expertise, and interests. 
  • Provide continuity in the event of turnover in senior staff, including the CEO. 

Board-Management Relations 

  • Present to the Board of Directors and its committees as requested by the CEO and board chair. 

Management and Staff Development 

  • Provide leadership for all program, Communications, Development, and Research staff, and work with the CFO to establish internal policies and practices that lead to accountability and excellence in all GPI does. 
  • Serve as a member of the Executive Team, made up of the CEO, CFO, and EVP, and as a primary liaison between the program VPs and the Executive Team. 
  • Help ensure that GPI’s culture continues to attract a wide diversity of talent and that we have policies and cultural norms that foster greater diversity, equity, and inclusion. 
  • Promote a culture of high performance, respectful candor, and continuous improvement that values learning and a commitment to excellence. 
  • Work with the CFO, CEO, VPs, and others to continue to build a strong organizational culture that is rated highly by GPI colleagues. 
  • Mentor and develop staff using a supportive and collaborative approach. 

Implementation of GPI’s Strategy 

  • Work with the CFO and CEO to establish and execute organizational priorities within GPI’s adopted strategy. 
  • Convene the VPs around program strategy, finding synergies across the teams, identifying adjustments in strategic direction as needed, etc. 
  • Troubleshoot and provide strategic direction to address departmental and organizational challenges. 
  • In consultation with the VPs and CEO, make decisions regarding the overall program strategy. 
  • Oversee Development, Communications, and Research to ensure that they are well integrated across GPI and serving GPI’s mission and strategy. 
  • Work with CFO to monitor staff workloads and resource needs across programs and Communications, Development, and Research functions to ensure that they have the resources they need, staff resources are efficiently utilized, project needs are met, and problems in staffing are addressed in a timely manner. Recommend to CEO staff reassignments or other changes as warranted. 
  • Take the lead, working with the CFO, CEO, and VPs, to develop and implement key performance indicators at the enterprise and program level as part of an organization-wide plan for project evaluation, including identification of project best practices, success stories, and lessons learned

The EVP will need to reflect GPI’s core values and have a passion for its mission. The ideal candidate will also possess the following professional and personal abilities, attributes, and experiences: 

  1. Proven track record: Proven experience in an executive role. Evidence of exceeding goals and the ability to consistently make good decisions through a combination of analysis, wisdom, experience, and judgment; the ability to balance the ambitions of GPI’s work with the realities of a budget and individual workloads; and problem-solving, project management, and creative resourcefulness. 
  2. Strategic vision and agility: The ability to think strategically, maintain internal and external situational awareness of the environment in which GPI is operating, anticipate future needs, trends, and consequences, and incorporate them into GPI’s strategy and organizational planning and execution. 
  3. Empathetic servant leadership: Exceptional capacity for managing and leading people; a team-builder who has experience in helping organizations achieve impact; ability to connect with colleagues both on an individual level and in large groups; capacity to enforce accountability, develop and empower high-performing leaders, cultivate entrepreneurship, and learn the strengths and weaknesses of the team to put people in a position to succeed. 
  4. Action orientation: Has a bias toward action, well-informed by consultation and good communication; ability to act and react as necessary, even if limited information is available; not afraid to confront conflict when it arises, and able to stand behind decisions (even unpopular ones) as long as relevant others have had the opportunity to offer input and get their questions answered. 
  5. General management: Understanding of, and broad experience in, managing complex professional organizations, including strategic planning, budgeting, program development, communications, fundraising, research, impact measurement, and staff development and succession planning. 
  6. Communication skills, including high emotional intelligence: Excellent verbal, written, analytical, problem-solving, and public speaking skills; ability to effectively present information to staff colleagues, funders (and potential funders), board members, and public groups; ability to effectively communicate with a wide variety of individuals both internally and externally with a high degree of diplomacy and emotional intelligence; ability to stand in for the CEO when they are unavailable and represent GPI in a professional manner; and able to keep privileged information confidential. 
  7. Relevant educational background & experience: Undergraduate degree and a broad understanding of the clean energy and climate field required (advanced degree in relevant field or comparable experience preferred). 
  8. Previous experience: Ten-plus years of experience in energy and management and demonstrated experience in the broad range of energy topics covered by GPI’s program portfolio (Carbon Management, Communities, Energy Systems, Renewable Energy, and Transportation & Fuels). The ideal candidate would know something about GPI, the way GPI works, and the role GPI plays in the clean energy and climate space. 
  9. Other job functions: Performs other duties as are obvious or assigned. The above position description is intended to describe the general content, identify the essential job functions, and set forth the requirements for the performance of the position. It is not to be construed as an exhaustive statement of job functions or requirements. The employee may be required to perform other job-related duties as requested. Position responsibilities are subject to change over time to accommodate changing organizational needs
How to Apply

Required application materials include a resume and one-page cover letter. Applications will be considered on a rolling basis.      

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