Food Entrepreneurship Program Manager
CitySeed, New Haven, CT
CitySeed seeks a dynamic and driven Food Entrepreneurship Program Manager with food business experience to coordinate CitySeed Incubates, our food business incubation programming and services.
CitySeed’s Food Business Incubation programming is designed to help build a more equitable local food system in the New Haven area that supports economic development, community development, and sustainable agriculture. We aim to support small food business incubation in New Haven by providing training, resources, and licensed food preparation space for local food entrepreneurs. Our focus is on reducing barriers to food entrepreneurship among individuals from New Haven’s diverse communities, many of whom are refugees, immigrants and people of color, while promoting their cultural heritage and stories. This position reports to CitySeed’s Managing Director, and works closely with CitySeed’s Executive Director.
Kitchen Management, Member Business Intake and Recruitment
- Serve as the point-person for intake, onboarding and orientation of ventures who are interested in touring or renting CitySeed kitchens, including: ensuring timely responses to inquiries from prospective members, training new ventures on kitchen use, scheduling rentals, ensuring kitchen procedures are followed, monitoring kitchen sanitation, equipment servicing and supply stocks.
- Lead the recruitment of a robust pipeline of food businesses and ventures through events, outreach, communications, and community partnerships.
- Provide day-to-day management of CitySeed’s shared commercial kitchen, making sure workplace, food safety, sanitation, and COVID protocols are adhered to.
Wraparound Services & Member Engagement
- Manage the day-to-day planning and execution of the Food Business Accelerator program, 10-week accelerator program that is a joint-venture between CitySeed and Collab.
- Provide one-on-one advising to entrepreneurs in the CitySeed Incubates network by facilitating referrals and connections to our network of mentors.
- Create and maintain a listserv, online group, calendar or regular communication of opportunities, resources for the 150+ entrepreneurs in our network.
- Conduct surveys and data collection to monitor progress of the CitySeed Incubates venture network for program design, grant reports, and communications.
- Support planning and conduct workshops for food businesses throughout the year (e.g. financial skills, business planning, marketing, food procurement, procuring locally, etc.)
Ecosystem & Partnership Building
- Strengthen relationships with local community organizations, nonprofits and businesses in New Haven. Build relationships with food business mentors, and other incubators in the region.
- Represent CitySeed at relevant community events, meetings and conferences.
- Build relationships with retailers and markets for CitySeed Incubates ventures to sell their products.
- Maintain CitySeed’s relationship with the New Haven Health Department to coordinate licensing and inspections of the CitySeed commercial kitchen, and facilitate connections between new food businesses and the Health Department around licensing and other requirements.
- Create a comprehensive plan for CitySeed Incubates programming and wrap-around services.
- Support the development of a Business Plan and Financial Model for CitySeed Incubates and the shared use commercial kitchen, in partnership with a consultant, Executive Director and Managing Director.
- Research, advise on, and set up software systems for managing a shared-used commercial kitchen.
- Project management and reporting on the USDA LFPP Planning Grant to support the development of the shared-use commercial kitchen.
- Participate in New Haven Food Policy Council Meetings on behalf of CitySeed.
- Where appropriate, liaise with the City of New Haven’s Food System Policy Division and Economic Development Administration on key issues related to supporting New Haven food businesses and commercial kitchen operations.
- Monitor and compile resources to share our entrepreneur network, such as loans and grants, COVID-relief programs, small business support, etc.
Below are the qualifications that will be required to be successful in this role. CitySeed recognizes that experience and expertise come in many forms. If you have different experiences that you think make you a good fit for the role, please apply so we can learn more about you.
- A business background, such as: direct entrepreneurship experience, business ownership or experience working with early-stage ventures, entrepreneurs or small businesses. Food sector experience is preferred.
- Strong written communications skills including: writing and editing, creating pitch decks, writing proposals, and crafting outreach materials.
- Excellent interpersonal and stakeholder management skills, including: the ability to communicate clearly and effectively with entrepreneurs, colleagues, board members and community partners; and the ability to build and establish new relationships.
- Experience managing complex projects that require organization, attention to detail, and meeting deadlines.
- Entrepreneurial mindset
- Ability to take initiative, prioritize activities and work independently and collaboratively.
- Passion for community-level food systems work and a commitment to racial and economic justice.
- Flexibility, maturity and a sense of humor.
- An interest in being involved in higher-level organizational strategy and organizational growth.
- Experience with food manufacturing, kitchen operations, or related experience
- Basic understanding of Spanish and/or Arabic.
- Familiarity with New Haven’s food system and food businesses.
- Basic website and design experience or skills (Canva, Adobe Creative Suite, or similar).
- ServeSafe Food Managers Certification
- Start Date: On or before January 4, 2021
- Location: New Haven, CT
- This position is a full-time, one-year contract. There is strong potential to be hired on after a year, dependent on available grant funding. The salary range is $47,000 – $57,000, commensurate with experience.
- Benefits include vacation and holidays, parental leave, health care and a flexible work schedule.
- The Food Entrepreneurship Manager will be expected to work some evenings and weekends, to support events, programs, and kitchen rentals as needed.
To Apply: Please utilize this form.
Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis but are encouraged before December 15th. CitySeed is an Equal Opportunity Employer and is committed to creating a diverse, equitable, and inclusive environment for all employees and our community.
CitySeed is a dynamic, community-based nonprofit organization based in New Haven, Connecticut, whose mission is to engage the community in growing an equitable, local food system that promotes economic development, community development, and sustainable agriculture.
From its beginning, CitySeed has worked to address structural barriers to accessing local, healthy food while supporting the viability of farming in Connecticut and inclusive economic growth in the community.
Our values include:
- supporting community rights to access healthy and culturally-appropriate food and recognizing the know-how, celebration, and/or history that each community member brings to food and cooking;
- dismantling privilege, oppression, and racism in the food system;
- collaborating with community partners on food justice and inclusive growth projects and to leverage resources and programming to better serve the community at large.
For more about CitySeed and our mission visit our website: www.cityseed.org