Associate Vice President, Children and Recreation Services

Back to Join Our Team

Position: Associate Vice President, Children and Recreation Services
Location: 180 Argyle Ave, Ottawa, ON
Type: Full-time, preferred start date will be determined by Consulting Group "Odgers Berndtson”
Preferred start date: Monday, Oct 17, 2022
Closing date: Sunday, Sep 11, 2022


The YMCA-YWCA of the National Capital Region (a registered charity) is the the heart of our community, and a leading resource for housing programs, employment and newcomer services, child care, camp, and health, fitness & aquatics programs.

The YMCA-YWCA of the National Capital Region (Y) is at the centre of our community, helping people of all backgrounds, ages, and abilities live engaging more rewarding lives. A charity dedicated to the health of individuals, families, and communities, the Y is accessible to all, serving thousands of people in our region each year.

Our programs and services address significant social and health issues with initiatives tailored to local community needs. We work to build healthy communities and advocate for children, teens, and young adults, helping all to reach their potential and realize their goals.

Whether you’re looking to improve your fitness level, find high-quality licensed child care, camp experiences for your children, career opportunities, supportive housing, or assistance settling in your new country, we are here to help!

Mission and Values

Our five core values - caring, honesty, respect, responsibility, and inclusiveness – influence our actions and decisions and form the foundation of all Y programs.

Our Mission

The YMCA-YWCA of the National Capital Region is a charity, open to all, and dedicated to enriching our community and its individuals.

Our Vision

The YMCA-YWCA of the National Capital Region is a leader and valued partner in creating a vibrant and healthy community where everyone belongs and can reach their full potential


Board of Directors

The YMCA-YWCA of the National Capital Region is governed by a Board of Directors. This group of dedicated and committed volunteers is comprised of professionals who lend their expertise in providing vision, strategic leadership, policy directives, and stewardship for the association.

Diversity and Inclusiveness at the Y:

Inclusiveness is a part of our core values and we are committed to ensuring the diversity of the people and communities we serve as well as our staff. We welcome candidates from racialized groups, invisible minorities, Indigenous People, women, persons with disabilities, and persons who identify as 2SLGBTQ+.

What the Y Offers:

Our competitive wage and benefit package includes:

  • Free Y membership.
  • Discounted Y program fees (including health & fitness programs, child care, and camps)
  • Health and dental insurance
  • Development courses at no cost in several areas
  • 100% coverage for renewal of professional designations
  • Up to 27 vacation days per year, including two float days and one birthday vacation
  • Access to an Employee Assistance Program including free, immediate, confidential assistance and counselling for you and your family members for mental and physical health, and financial advice, among other 15 suites of services
  • Workplace employer matched pension plan
  • Extended Maternity leave benefits to all our staff for up to 6 more months after the year of leave.


The Associate Vice President (AVP) of Children and Recreation Services is a member of the Senior Executive Team, reporting to the President and CEO. They are responsible for overseeing the daily operations of multiple licensed childcare centres, camp and health, fitness, and aquatics locations, ranging from recruitment, hiring, program development, and overall participant satisfaction. The AVP will thoughtfully set and drive an early learning strategy with a focus on growth, innovation, technology, culture, and people leadership.

The AVP of Children and Recreation Services:

  • Resolves elevated participant concerns; conduct on-the-spot lessons learned to prevent them from reoccurring and monitor all oversight centre (s) appearance and ensure problems are resolved expeditiously
  • Ensures the Association’s standard operating procedures, participant service, programs and promotions are efficiently executed.
  • Overall establishes a fun, safe, healthy, and community-focused culture that delivers high participant satisfaction and achieves maximum financial performance.
  • Will be the lead for the new National Early Learning and Child Care Program.


Accountability and Decision Making

  • Achieving operational budgets related to the areas of responsibilities
  • Achieving, retention and programming quality targets
  • Creation and maintenance of a culture of service and team members which is consistently executing the service promise.
  • Ensuring plans and support systems are in place
  • Managing the capital and operating budgets related to the capital projects
  • Performance of all staff and consultants/contractors within the programs

Supervisory and Managerial Responsibilities

  • Responsible for coaching and supporting the Managers in the areas of responsibilities
  • Operate successfully in a team leadership role to enhance team performance and improve bottom-line Financial Performance
  • that all staff and volunteers within these programs receive training and direction according to Association policies, procedures and practices outlined in the People and Culture policies
  • Responsible for the development, implementation, and interpretation of all policies and guidelines affecting the operations for which he/she is responsible
  • Responsible for supervising the Managers

Financial and Budgetary Responsibilities

  • Responsible for providing leadership to Managers under his/her accountability for budget development and monitoring including revenue, expense, and capital program investment
  • Work cooperatively with Corporate Services, to support the sales for all centers, supports association and centre sales goals, and supports staff to reach those goals.
  • Responsible for regular budget monitoring, variance reporting, and achievement of revenue targets, and control of expenses to achieve or surpass targeted contributions

 What qualifications and abilities are we looking for?

The ideal candidate brings proven to experience managing operational teams in the areas of children's services and programs as well as experience working in fast-paced environments. They will have proven communications skills, and the ability to prioritize and manage multiple projects. The ideal candidate will be able to work in person from the YMCA office in downtown Ottawa.

Role Criteria

The essential and desirable criteria for the role includes:

  • The AVP must be able to recognize patterns of behaviour and interactions and be able to set a clear direction from complex and conflicting information
  • A focus of the AVP’s responsibilities relates to coaching and supporting Managers as well as providing leadership and change management skills related to the implementation of Association-wide initiatives
  • This position requires the highest level of innovation, creativity, and analysis related to the identification and resolution of problems as well as the development and implementation of solutions that lead to the achievement of the Association’s vision
  • Be a positive role model for the Association’s Mission, Vision, and Values
  • Provide leadership to the Association through managing complexity and planning/implementation of both strategic direction and tactical implementation

Required Experience

Key priorities for the position include:

  • Results-driven leader with 7+ years of experience in advanced program management
  • Extensive experience managing multiple sites and locations
  • Extensive knowledge in Licensed Child Care would be considered an asset
  • Extensive knowledge in budget development and monitoring including revenue, expense, and capital program investment
  • Proven ability to support, influence, and manage staff
  • Demonstrates ability to successfully envision and swiftly execute results-driven strategies from concept to implementation
  • Strong communication skills, both written and verbal
  • High emotional intelligence (i.e. self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, empathy, social skills)
  • Proven business acumen & strategic project management skills
  • A University degree or Master’s degree in a related field preferred
  • Must provide a current criminal record check as per the Association’s policy

Behavioural Competencies

  • Coaching and Development: Commits to assisting participants, volunteers, staff, and self in continuous learning and development.
  • Commitment to Organization Vision and Values: Demonstrates and promotes a personal understanding of and appreciation for the mission, vision, strategic outcomes, and values of the YMCA.
  • Communication: Communicates in a thorough, clear, and timely manner and supports information sharing and goal achievement across the Association.
  • Leadership: Motivates and inspires self and others to take action to achieve desired outcomes.
  • Problem Solving: Identifies an issue, gathers and processes relevant information, comes up with possible solutions, selects appropriate responses, and implements them.
  • Quality Focus: Ensures that success criteria for self, staff, and programs are set, reviewed, regularly surpassed to provide excellent service delivery.
  • Results Oriented: The ability to manage and lead to achieve and exceed identified goals.

Steps in the Selection Process

Announcing Your Wish to be Considered

If you wish to be considered for this position, please forward your resume and any other relevant application material to the Odgers Berndtson Partner or Consultant named in this document or through the process described within our How to Apply section. Rest assured, all your personal information will be kept in the strictest confidence.

Preparation of a List of Candidates for the Committee’s Review

Once we receive the resumes of those who express interest in the position, we compare them against our needs and also against the backgrounds of other candidates.

Interview with Odgers Berndtson

If your skills and background are commensurate with our criteria, we would reach out for an initial interview to further explore your interest and fit on your part, as well as for YMCA-YWCA of the National Capital Region.

After the Interview

We will let you know as soon as possible after the interview if we will be proceeding further, and we will also ask you about your interest. If both parties wish to proceed, we will ask you to begin gathering any information that might have an impact on your final decision, including the compensation package and your alignment with the organization.

The goal of gathering all of this information is to help you make an informed decision, as soon as possible, about the degree of your interest. In fairness to everyone, please do not go further if you think you are unlikely to accept the position should it be offered to you. If you have additional questions following our initial discussion, but your interest is tentative and you are still “exploring”, please let us know. We can help you acquire the additional information you need.

Interview with the Selection Committee

If there is a desire on both our parts to proceed further, we will ask you and the other short-listed candidates to attend an interview with the Selection Committee.  The YMCA-YWCA of the National Capital Region client plans to have at least one extensive interview with you on a scheduled day. A follow-up interview may be requested.

Steps Leading to an Offer

After you meet with the YMCA-YWCA of the National Capital Region Search Committee, we will advise you of their decision as soon as possible. If you are selected as a finalist candidate you may be asked back for another interview with the Committee. At this stage, we will conduct reference checks and, possibly, a psychometric test. If you are the preferred candidate, and the YMCA-YWCA of the National Capital Region is satisfied with the information received, you will be made a verbal offer of employment, during which time the terms and conditions of the offer will be discussed with you.

How to Apply

In order to apply, please submit a comprehensive CV along with a covering letter that sets out your interest in the role and encapsulates the aspects of your experience relevant to the required criteria.

The preferred method of application is online at:


PLACEMENT: Full-time, preferred start date will be determined by Consulting Group "Odgers Berndtson”

CLOSING DATE: Until the position filled

Your Personal Information

At Odgers Berndtson, we have always respected the privacy and the confidentiality of the personal information provided to us in context with our executive search assignments. This has been a fundamental value in building trust with our candidates and clients. We are committed to keeping your information secure and managing it in accordance with our legal responsibilities wherever we operate in the world, including the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act ("PIPEDA") in Canada.

For more information on your rights and to find out much more about how we process your personal data, a copy of our Privacy Policy is available for your review on our website.

By providing us with a copy of your resume and any subsequent personal information directly or from third parties on your behalf such as references, you understand that it has been furnished with your consent for the purpose of possible disclosure to our client, who has agreed to comply with our Privacy Policy. We will not disclose your personal information to clients without your prior knowledge and consent.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

YMCA-YWCA of the National Capital Region is an equal opportunity employer. In accordance with the Accessible Canada Act, 2019 and all applicable provincial accessibility standards, upon request, accommodation will be provided by both Odgers Berndtson and YMCA-YWCA of the National Capital Region throughout the recruitment, selection, and/or assessment process to applicants with disabilities.

Odgers Berndtson is deeply committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion in all the work that we do. As part of our efforts to better understand our ability to reach as broad a pool of candidates as possible for our searches, our DEI team would like to encourage you to take a moment and access our Self-Declaration Form.

 Contact Details

For a conversation in confidence, please contact:

Michael Williams, Partner

Sarah Piotrkowski, Consultant  

Back to Join Our Team