ESC Interim Executive Director Services

ESC's Interim Executive Director Service

Is your organization facing a leadership gap? Concerned about continuity of services, communication between board and staff teams and other challenges to your nonprofit’s viability?

ESC offers the Chicago area’s first and only pool of highly experienced and trained Interim Executive Directors. ESC’s nationally-recognized Interim Executive Director Service began in 2006 from a recognition that turnover at the top in many nonprofits was increasing across all sectors and that this trend was likely to continue through 2015 and beyond.

ESC’s Interim Executive Director Service makes it easy for nonprofits to engage a highly qualified executive on a temporary basis while the Board takes the time required to conduct a proper and thorough executive search. Consisting of more than 30 nonprofit executives, each one is experienced and exceptionally qualified to serve in this capacity.


Each has at least five years at the highest level of management as an executive director and completed an advanced training program.Under the service, ESC will refer two to three carefully selected interim candidates to a nonprofit client for interviews and selection.


Terms of the interim engagement, including hours and compensation, are negotiated directly between the nonprofit and the selected candidate. The average interim placement lasts from six to nine months, but some can extend more than a year if the organization requires it.

Interim Executive Director Services

Often, ESC will recommend an organization hire an Interim Executive Director when there is a temporary leadership gap. An Interim Executive Director is appropriate when the organization has:

  • An unanticipated departure of the Executive Director

  • The departure of a founding or long-time leader

  • No identified or prepared successor

  • A desire for stability and guidance while the Board directs attention to finding the right new Executive Director


The benefits of hiring an Interim Executive Director are:

  • Provide steady, unifying, effective leadership during a transition – ESC IEDs are nonprofit leaders with extensive experience in nonprofit management. ESC carefully screens and provides training to prepare Interim EDs for potential challenges.

  • Ensure appropriate time to select the right new Executive Director-Searching for the right new leader takes time. An Interim ED helps to ensure uninterrupted workflow of the organization and staff management

  • Gain fresh perspective and experienced leadership-An ESC Interim ED offers your organization an unbiased view and brings expertise in problem solving. An Interim ED helps ensure that the staff and Board are prepared for new permanent leadership.

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