We're Hiring: Director of Professional Development

Director of Professional Development

Status: Full time, Salaried, Exempt

Reports to:
Executive Director

This position does not include supervisory responsibilities.

Hours and Travel:
This position generally requires 40 hours/week, Monday-Friday, but requires additional hours in the first quarter leading up to and during the annual conference. MSSA offers flexibility for both remote and in-person work (based at MSSA’s office in St. Paul). In-person attendance is required at MSSA’s annual conference, regional fall conferences (approx. 3 days/year), and quarterly Board meetings (4 days/year). 

Compensation and Benefits:
$80,000 / annually. MSSA offers a comprehensive benefits package including Paid Time Off (160 hours first year, which can be used as it is accrued), Health/Dental and Life insurance, 403(b) plan, Short-Term Disability, and Long-Term Disability.
Organizational Information
The Minnesota Social Service Association (MSSA) is a nonprofit membership organization representing over   3,800 health and human service professionals across Minnesota. MSSA supports the health and human service field through education, advocacy, and member benefits. MSSA is committed to our core values of social responsibility, equity, and inclusion. For more information, visit us at www.mnssa.org.
Job Summary
The Director of Professional Development has primary responsibility for planning and managing the association’s virtual and in-person education conferences and events. MSSA’s Annual Training Conference and Expo offers educational sessions and networking opportunities to 3,500+ participants and 175+ sponsor organizations from across Minnesota. This position oversees all aspects of MSSA’s education program, including developing the annual conference budget, venue and vendor contracting, participant enrollment, program planning, coordinating graphic design and print materials, development of the education program in partnership with volunteers and key stakeholders, coordination and management of all volunteers and presenters, and all on-site logistics.

  1. Plan MSSA’s Annual Training Conference and Expo. Oversee and facilitate all aspects of conference and event planning including pre-planning, on-site execution, and post-event reporting. Manage venue selection and contracting to meet space and budget needs; establish and manage hotel room blocks for registrants, sponsors, staff, and volunteers; vendor/contract negotiation and contracting; coordination of graphic content, marketing, and program materials; education program development, audiovisual and room set up requirements; food and beverage. Oversee sponsor and participant registration, ordering and packaging/shipping of event materials; create on-site schedule and manage staff, contractors, and volunteers; and oversee conference move-in and move-out.
  2. Work with MSSA’s regional chapters to support and plan regional conferences.
  3. Support MSSA’s year-round trainings and events such as the Critical Conversations webinar series and the annual Public Policy Summit.
  4. Develop timelines and provide regular updates to effectively manage project plans to meet deadlines and ensure successful events.
  5. Determine the most effective means of delivery using meeting space, remote locations, or virtual options, including the RFP and selection process for mobile apps or virtual platforms used for remote delivery.
  6. Act as staff liaison to MSSA’s Conference and Education Committee by assisting with scheduling, logistics, material distribution, communications, meeting minutes, and surveys in collaboration with committee chairs.
  7. Be familiar with health and human service issues and trends; leverage committee member expertise to ensure the highest quality program content.
  8. Mange the call for presentation process, including the submission platform setup, website content, education review and selection process, and communication with submitters and selected speakers.
  9. Recruit local, regional, and national experts as keynote and breakout session speakers.
  10. Provide ongoing speaker support, including timelines and technical requirements onsite, presentation best practices, lodging and transportation requests, presentation material collection and distribution.
  11. Coordinate the creation and design of conference graphics, marketing, and educational materials both printed and digital.
  12. Develop and manage conference and programming budgets through post-event financial reconciliation of event invoices and conference registration and sponsorship income.
  13. Create and analyze pre-event and post-event reports, using participant evaluations, volunteer and staff feedback, and financial reports.
  14. Evaluate all education and conference events; report results to appropriate committees and/or Board of Directors.
  15. Use the iMIS database to oversee and track conference and event registration records to ensure data integrity.
  16. Apply for continuing education credits and monitor requirements to make sure educational offerings are applicable.
  17. Oversee and recruit volunteers to ensure adequate support during events.
  18. Work with the Executive Director, staff, and volunteer committees to develop strategic goals to support the training and professional development of association participants and identify metrics to measure success.
  19. Support the association’s strategic plan, goals, and objectives through additional responsibilities as assigned.
Required Skills and Experience
  • Proven commitment to MSSA’s core values.
  • Ability to plan conferences and events. Previous experience planning events with at least 1,000 participants is a plus.
  • Knowledgeable on current trends in the conference and meetings industry.
  • Strong negotiation skills with an understanding of contract terms and conditions.
  • Ability to develop and manage a budget as well as meet revenue goals.
  • Excellent organizational and project management skills including, the ability to simultaneously manage multiple projects, priorities, and timelines.
  • Ability to proactively manage change by anticipating needs or potential crises, assess situations, recommend solutions, and devise contingency plans.
  • Possesses the demeanor and ability to interact positively in an environment with concurrent deadlines, support requests, and longer hours leading up to and during the annual conference sometimes under pressure, while remaining adaptable, proactive, resourceful, and efficient with a high level of professionalism.
  • Ability to effectively learn and use technology, including web and mobile platforms, association management software, submission software, conference apps and virtual conference or webinar platforms. Previous experience using iMIS is a plus.
  • Innovative and resourceful; actively gathers information and seeks opportunities to improve.
  • Exceptional client service skills with the ability to establish and foster professional relationships.
  • Excellent communication skills, both written and verbal.
  • Ability to work effectively both individually and in a small-staff, team environment, as well as with volunteer committees.
  • Familiarity with Minnesota’s health and human service system or a desire to learn.
Application Procedure
Please send resume and cover letter to Beth Ringer at [email protected]. Interviews will be conducted on a rolling basis, and the position will be open until filled.
Finalist candidates will also be asked to submit two (2) professional references. 
BIPOC applicants are encouraged to apply.