Executive Director

Our Story

We believe that academic success is a key driver of equity and social justice. Established in 2017 as a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, the Diamond Educational Excellence Partnership (DEEP) is a unique organization. We are a place-based collaborative of over 40 partner organizations and community leaders, committed to improving educational outcomes in the Diamond neighborhoods of southeastern San Diego. Our work is concentrated in four of the Diamond’s elementary schools: Chollas-Mead, Encanto, Johnson, and Webster, which collectively serve about 1,200 students in grades PK-3 annually. DEEP’s team of five staff members are the collaborative’s backbone, working in close partnership with other nonprofit organizations, volunteers, and community members to provide dynamic, data-based programs to support academic success.

Our theory of change is based on three strategic priorities:

  1. Before children enter school: preparing for kindergarten. Strengthening the capacity of caregivers of young children to provide enriching early learning and healthy development experiences. Programs include 1,000 Books Before Kinder, Workshops for Families, Workshops for Childcare Providers, and Early Years Music.
  2. During the school day: reading by 3rd Grade. Supporting schools to ensure that children have access to high-quality in-school literacy instruction and social-emotional support.Programs include a Principals’ and Literacy Coaches’ Learning Community, Teacher Professional Development, Support for Children Experiencing Chronic Absenteeism, and Early Childhood Mental Health Support.
  3. After school: learning beyond the classroom. Offering children extended learning opportunities that expand upon strong in-school teaching and learning. Programs include Soaring Readers After-School Literacy Support, Super Tuesdays & Thursdays After-School Enrichment, and Summer Readers – Future Leaders.

For more information, please visit: https://deepsd.org/

Leadership & Culture

DEEP is led by a highly engaged and supportive Board of ten Directors, helping to carry the work forward while encouraging innovative growth and providing the Executive Director space for autonomy. The new Executive Director will join an energized and dedicated team and will be embraced by DEEP’s dynamic community partners, which include the California Reading & Literature Project, Words Alive, San Diego Council on Literacy, the San Diego Public Library, the San Diego Children’s Choir, Home Start and many, many others. DEEP has an incredible reputation and track record of impact in the community, and our program partners are eager to continue our long history of collaboration and innovation.

Benefits & Features

  • Salary: $120,000 – $135,000
  • 401(k)
  • Employee Health Reimbursement Plan
  • 15 – 25 paid days off, based upon years with the organization
  • 5 paid sick days
  • 9 paid holidays


This is a hybrid role, with office space at the Jacobs Center for Neighborhood Innovation located at 404 Euclid Avenue, San Diego, CA 92114, in the heart of the vibrant Diamond community.

Position Summary

With the upcoming retirement of our beloved, longtime Executive Director, Gina Gianzero, the Board has retained a professional search partner to identify our next outstanding Executive Director. Reporting directly to the DEEP Board and managing an $850,000 annual budget, our new ED will assume overall responsibility for organizational success. In true collective impact fashion, this is a highly collaborative role, partnering with the Board of Directors, staff, and a wide array of cross-sector community partners, including the San Diego Unified School District, to execute DEEP’s Theory of Change. The Executive Director will be instrumental in driving DEEP’s future growth, fostering a culture of collaboration while developing and implementing innovative strategies to expand programs, diversify funding, and strengthen partnerships to truly drive systemic change in our community. This is an excellent opportunity for a dynamic, empathetic, relationship-oriented leader to take the organization to new heights.

Duties and Responsibilities

Board Governance and Strategic Planning

  • Collaborate with the Board of Directors in all areas of strategic planning, including organizational growth and change management.
  • Develop, implement, and manage DEEP’s annual operational plans, budgets, and strategic plan.
  • Provide vision and oversight for all goals, objectives, and activities.
  • Support the DEEP Board of Directors with effective governance practices, including the growth and retention of board members.
  • Produce and disseminate materials in a timely manner prior to board meetings.

Fundraising and Business Development  

  • Develop authentic cross-sector relationships and partnerships that enhance and support DEEP’s programs and strategy.
  • Create and execute a comprehensive development plan that positions DEEP to receive larger multi-year gifts, grants, and contracts.
  • Build loyal and long-term relationships with key donors, sponsors, and program partners.
  • Use innovative strategies to leverage existing resources that align with DEEP’s goals, objectives, and activities.

Advocacy and Program Management

  • Be a visible, trusted visionary and influential leader in the community.
  • Serve as the advocate and spokesperson for DEEP and the community it serves.
  • Provide thought partnership on issue areas related to DEEP’s strategic priorities.
  • Frequently visit DEEP programs and partner sites, to connect and build relationships with partners, staff, students, and families.
  • Maintain accountability: monitor program developments and quality standards, using data as a decision maker and implementing continuous improvement within all programs and activities.
  • Empower and engage DEEP partners and staff to be active thought partners, generating ideas together, and allowing them to be the experts in their respective focus areas.
  • Keep the Board of Directors, staff, partners, students, and families informed on the organization’s goals, strategies, and developments.

 Operational Leadership

  • Partner with the board’s finance committee to ensure fiscal discipline, financial integrity, and internal controls are maintained.
  • Guide the development of performance management and reporting systems to measure outcomes on both a quantitative and qualitative basis.
  • Develop and administer an effective performance management system for all employees including annual goal setting and performance evaluations.
  • Develop and implement comprehensive staff recruitment, engagement, and retention strategies.
  • Take a genuine interest in the happiness and well-being of DEEP staff, partners, students, and families; create opportunities for professional development and enrichment for these key stakeholders.

Background Profile

  • Solid understanding of the collective impact framework.
  • Strong cultural competency and personal connection to the community DEEP serves.
  • Demonstrated executive leadership and management experience, encompassing areas such as strategy development, innovation, team development, and organizational growth.
  • A successful track record in growing and diversifying funding sources such as individual giving, events, grants, contracts, and other partnerships.
  • Exceptionally well-developed communication skills including the ability to connect with and inspire a wide range of partners and stakeholders.
  • Superb people skills: a relationship-based leader who puts people at the heart of every decision; a politically savvy bridge builder.
  • Exhibits a high level of emotional intelligence, demonstrating empathy and reflective listening skills; willing and able to have difficult conversations when required.

COVID-19 Vaccination Policy

This position requires an on-site presence at San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD) school sites. Therefore, the most current SDUSD vaccination policy is required for this position.

For more information or to apply, please contact:

Tia Anzellotti, Director, Blair Search Partners
1855 First Avenue, Suite 300, San Diego, CA 92101