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Job Category: Executive Director
Reference #: 1589 Executive Director
Job Title: Executive Director
Hiring Organization: Cook County Juvenile Temporary Detention Center
Salary Range: Negotiable based on experience
Closing Date: 08/04/2010
Job Location: Illinois
Description: The Cook County Juvenile Temporary Detention Center (JTDC) provides safe and temporary secure housing for youth between the ages of 10 and 16 with pending legal action in the Cook County Courts in addition to youth who are transferred from Juvenile Court jurisdiction to Criminal Court. The JTDC is dedicated to providing its youth with leadership, structured care, and supervision through a balanced approach of creative programming and services that teach responsibility, accountability, and sensitivity. Each member of the JTDC staff is actively encouraged and supported in pursuit of creative participation, personal well-being, and professional development.

Cook County is currently accepting letters of interest for the Executive Director position at the JTDC facility located in Chicago, IL. Under the Supervision of the Chief Judge of the Cook County Circuit Court, the Executive Director is responsible for the administration, supervision and daily operations of the JTDC facility, the largest juvenile detention center in the country.

This position is accountable for administrative oversight that emphasizes current and best practice in the fundamental areas of classification, health care, agency and community access, programs, training, environmental, resident discipline and safety. The Executive Director is responsible for providing the residents and staff with a safe, secure and caring environment with programs and structure that enhance personal/professional development and improve opportunity for success.

Key Responsibilities & Duties

Note: This list is not exhaustive and the responsibilities do not appear in a priority order. This administrative position must be responsive to additional responsibilities as assigned by the Chief Judge of the Cook County Circuit Court.

• Oversees operations that must comply with all statutory, judicial, and state regulations and compliance with nationally recognized minimum standards of best practice for juvenile detention.
• Administers sweeping reform efforts at the JTDC resulting from a federal lawsuit (Doe v. Cook County et al., 99 C 3945).
• Manages a $45 million dollar annual budget and over 600 personnel; prepares and presents an annual budget request to the Chief Judge of the Cook County Circuit Court.
• Develops job specifications to ensure that quality employees are hired consistent with the JTDC vision, missions, and goals; develops and oversees all high level recruitment and hiring strategies.
• Assists with negotiating contracts for collective bargaining units (AFSCME and Teamsters Local 714).
• Develops, approves, and monitors all management work schedules to ensure accountability for a 24/7 daily operation.
• Plans and convenes all JTDC Leadership Team meetings and discussions around strategic planning processes, policy and procedure development and reviews, program scheduling, and other related matters.
• Directs the development of all management information systems to be employed and the critical analysis of the operation, programs, and services.
• Participates in numerous executive level meetings related to the court, community agencies, and community which contribute to the JTDC vision, mission and goals.
• Evaluates the work performance and work load assignment of all subordinate staff.
• Initiates corrective actions (where necessary) proportionate to non-compliance and or performance issues and mediates disputes that promotes reconciliation and professional growth and development.
• Provides constructive feedback to all staff that promotes support/understanding of the JTDC mission, goals, and new initiatives. Leads by example and establishes an environment that promotes Professionalism-Accountability-Communication-Teamwork (PACT).
• Represents the JTDC at local, state, and national forums to promote awareness.

Cook County offers outstanding benefits, including:

• Medical Insurance • Dental Insurance • Vision Insurance • Basic Term Life Insurance • Pension Plan and Deferred Compensation Program • Competitive Salaries • Employee Assistance Program


The Executive Director is an administrator with two or more levels of professional staff under his/her administrative direction or management who will lead the Cook County JTDC facility. The individual employed in the capacity of Executive Director shall provide evidence of completion of:

• A Masters Degree from an accredited college or university in criminal justice, social services, psychology or related field AND at least five (5) years employment in youth detention, corrections, or community residential services with at least three (3) of those years at a senior management or administrative level; OR
• A Bachelors Degree from an accredited college or university in criminal justice, social services, psychology or related field AND at least seven (7) years employment in youth detention, corrections, or community residential services with at least five (5) of those years at a senior management or administrative level and two (2) of those years requiring direct and continuous supervision of juvenile offenders.
• An approved leadership course of study/training related to youth in juvenile confinement completed within one (1) year of employment.
• Professional affiliation with leading national organization(s) that promote “best” juvenile confinement practices (e.g. National Juvenile Detention Association, National Association of Juvenile Corrections Agencies, American Correctional Association, Council for Juvenile Corrections Administrators).

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

• A comprehensive knowledge of nationally recognized minimum standards of practice (American Bar Association-Juvenile Justice Standards; American Correctional Association-Standards for Juvenile Detention Facilities; Council for Juvenile Correctional Administrators-Performance Based Standards for Youth Corrections and Detention Facilities; National Commission on Correctional Health Care-Standards for Health Care in Juvenile Confinement Facilities).
• A comprehensive knowledge of “best practices” in critical operational areas of juvenile confinement facilities (e.g. classification, programs, training, safety, use of restraints, use of isolation).
• A comprehensive knowledge of research related to juvenile confinement (e.g. Study of Conditions of Confinement: Juvenile Detention and Corrections Facilities; Desktop Guide to Good Juvenile Detention Practice).
• A comprehensive knowledge of juvenile confinement management practices with emphasis on adequate conditions of confinement and “helpful” programs.
• Knowledge of juvenile justice reform efforts (e.g. AECF Juvenile Detention Alternative Initiative) that emphasize a system of alternatives and appropriately limits the use of juvenile confinement environments.
• Knowledge of statutes, ordinances, court rules, legislation, regulation, litigation, and policy that impacts on the operation of a juvenile confinement facility.
• Knowledge of management practices that promote and embrace professionalism and a culture of caring.
• Knowledge of supervisory techniques and practices that promote accountability, communication and teamwork on the part of all staff.
• Ability to lead and manage a large staff under challenging circumstances and to provide guidance and clear direction to staff as needed.
• Ability to develop sound training models and strategy that enhance the professional growth and development of all staff.
• Ability to work cooperatively and collaborate with all agencies/stakeholders that may impact the operation of a juvenile confinement facility (e.g. Courts, Cook County Board of Commissioners, states attorney, public defender, law enforcement, education, health/mental health, advocates, community and faith-based leaders).
• Ability to develop short and long-term strategic work plans that promote the professional and operational growth of the juvenile confinement facility.
• Ability to manage the development and implementation of budgetary and fiscal strategies that promote cost-effective approaches in the operation of the juvenile confinement facility.
• Skill in the interpretation of laws, ordinances, and regulations that ensure operational compliance of the juvenile confinement facility.
• Skills that demonstrate leadership, creativity, flexibility and the recognition that the environment of a juvenile confinement facility must be prepared to adapt.
• Skills and ability to be proactive and demonstrate a capacity to advocate for “good” juvenile justice policy and operational principles and practice applicable to juvenile confinement.
• Ability to make quick, critical decisions and effectively manage any crisis that may impact the 24/7 operation of a juvenile confinement facility.

Selected Candidate Must

• Be a citizen of the United States.
• Be a resident of Cook County and the State of Illinois within 90 days of date of hire.
• Pass a pre-employment drug screen and background check including but not limited to LEADS, CANTS, and professional references.
• Meet additional minimum requirements for eligibility established by the Administrative Office of the Illinois Courts (AOIC).
• Pass required and nationally recognized written examination(s) for direct care and supervisory positions.

Special Instructions: To express interest in this position, please submit a resume and letter of interest addressed to Earl Dunlap, Transitional Administrator for the Cook County Juvenile Temporary Detention Center, via email to: ethel.perry@personified.com. Questions may be directed to Ethel Perry at the preceding email address or via phone at 312-433-7116.
Additional Online Information:
Contact Information: Chicago, Illinois United States

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