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Chief Financial Officer

Alaska SeaLife Center

Finance Staff

Contact: Todd Allen, Lead Recruiter
Address: 301 Railway Ave, Seward AK 99664
Phone: (907) 743-1200
The Alaska SeaLife Center is the only facility in Alaska that combines a public aquarium with marine research, education, and wildlife response. While primarily dedicated to marine research and education, the Center is the only permanent marine mammal rescue and rehabilitation facility in the state.

Job Summary

Date Posted:   3 months ago Closing Date:   December 31, 2019
Location:   Seward, AK Salary: $95,000.00 - $120,000.00 Exempt; salary
Status:   Full time
Benefits:   The Alaska SeaLife Center offers a competitive benefits package.
How to Apply:   To apply, email your credentials to *Applicants please be advised that the search process for this position is being extended for internal purposes. Applications will now be accepted through December 31, 2019, with a target selection date of February 2020. All applications will be kept through the final hiring process. For questions, contact Todd Allen, lead recruiter, at Communications will be treated with confidence, and resumes will be accepted until position is filled. Resume reviews begin immediately.

Job Description

The Position: Chief Financial Officer

The Alaska SeaLife Center (ASLC) seeks an experienced and collaborative leader to serve as its Chief Financial Officer (CFO). The CFO is responsible for the overall management, planning, implementation, and evaluation of the fiscal, grants management and budgetary operations of the Alaska SeaLife Center. The CFO touches every department, ensuring clear accountability and communications throughout the organization with a focus on facilitating the ASLC’s strategic vision and maximizing financial opportunities.  The CFO is also responsible for overseeing all activities related to ASLC’s fiscal agent role with the North Pacific Research Board and the Alaska Ocean Observing System.


The Organization

Located in the city of Seward, the Alaska SeaLife Center opened its doors in 1998. The 501(c)(3) nonprofit agency was incorporated in 1990 with a corporate name of Seward Association for the Advancement Marine Science (SAAMS). The ASLC is the only facility in Alaska that combines a public aquarium with marine research, education and wildlife response.

The ASLC manages assets valued in excess of $40M dollars, with revenues collected from a combination of admissions, grants and donations. With an annual operating budget of $8M dollars, and a core staff of 80 year-round employees, the ASLC is dedicated to marine research and education, and is the only permanent marine mammal rescue and rehabilitation facility in Alaska. The mission of the Alaska SeaLife Center is to generate and share scientific knowledge, promoting understanding and stewardship of Alaska’s marine ecosystems.



  • Science Program: ASLC’s Science Program is committed to understanding the role of marine mammals, birds and fish in the arctic and subarctic marine ecosystems, and to generating scientific knowledge relevant to resource management and policy. Science projects focus on Alaska marine life and environments but reach globally with international collaborations.
  • Wildlife Response Program: The Alaska SeaLife Center is the only institution authorized under federal permits to rescue and rehabilitate stranded marine mammals in Alaska. The main goal of this program is to learn from stranded animals to better understand wild populations, and the impacts from changing environmental conditions and maintaining capacity to respond to natural or manmade disasters.
  • Education Program: The Alaska SeaLife Center serves as a window into the world of marine science providing visitors with exhibits and programs designed to foster ocean literacy and stewardship. ASLC education programs connect people of all ages to Alaska’s marine ecosystems in meaningful ways, offering year-round programs online and on site for students and teachers to engage with ASLC scientists and researchers. 


Strategic Priorities

The Alaska SeaLife Center is currently operating under a 2019-2024 strategic plan. The incoming CFO will have the opportunity and obligation to be part of the leadership team executing the plan. Long-term strategic priorities include:

  • Leadership: Become a respected nonprofit organization with sound governance and reputation for achieving success.
  • Sustainability:  Build a sustainable organization with a predictable mix of funding, while operating efficiently.
  • Partnerships: Become a partner of choice for organizations that will help us achieve our mission.
  • Engagement: Instill a passion for the Alaska SeaLife Center in stakeholders especially within Alaska and Seward.


The Alaska SeaLife Center Opportunity

The incoming CFO will lead a team of experienced accounting and grants management staff, who will look to the CFO for collaboration, mentoring and leadership. The CFO will be part of the Alaska SeaLife Center’s senior management team with the opportunity to develop and implement the ASLC’s strategic initiatives.  

The ideal candidate demonstrates the ability to work independently while creating a positive and supportive work culture within the department. They will not just embrace the Alaska SeaLife Center’s scientific and educational mission but demonstrate a love of financial analysis and the ability communicate the organization’s fiscal condition when requested.

The Alaska SeaLife Center offers a work environment unlike any other in Alaska. As part of the ASLC team you will have the opportunity to be directly involved in the ASLC’s mission, whether it’s volunteering to provide care to an orphaned marine mammal or simply spending break time wandering the Center’s exhibits.


Key Priorities and Responsibilities

The CFO has an opportunity to lead by fostering a values-based collaborative environment between the departments. The ideal candidate will seize the opportunity to help ASLC maintain sustainability by working with the senior management team on strategic plan implementation and maximizing financial opportunities.

Short-term priorities for the incoming CFO include demonstrating proficiency with ASLC financial systems and producing predictable, regular financial reporting on deadline.

In addition to safeguarding ASLC assets, the CFO establishes, maintains and implements policies and procedures necessary for sound fiscal management, grants management, and internal control in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles.

Along with overseeing the organization’s financial operations, the incoming CFO will lead a five-person team that manages functions in finance and accounting as well as grants management.

The CFO will manage and provide oversight of specific responsibilities including, but not limited to, the following areas:

  • Manage the development of the annual operating and capital budget, while working with departmental directors in preparing their individual program budgets.
  • Maintain a fund accounting system that allows for comparison of budget to actual for revenue and expenses and grant funds in real time.
  • Prepare and present timely and accurate fiscal reports for management purposes, and for distribution to the City of Seward, other government agencies, funding agencies, accreditation organizations, and the Board of Directors.
  • Oversee annual financial statement and federal single audits for the Alaska SeaLife Center, the North Pacific Research Board (NPRB) and the Alaska Ocean Observing System (AOOS). 
  • Oversee preparation of the ASLC annual Form 990 & 990-T tax returns, annual Negotiated Indirect Cost Rate Proposal, and annual worker’s compensation audit.
  • Attend senior management team meetings and Board of Directors meetings and serve as staff liaison to the Finance Committee of the Board of Directors.
  • Supervise personnel matters within the Finance Department.  Assign and review work, establish schedules, set deadlines, and delegate authority.
  • Set staff performance standards.  Prepare annual performance evaluations.  Make personnel related recommendations to the President and CEO.
  • Ensure all Finance personnel are properly trained and equipped for their assigned tasks and conduct or arrange for training as necessary to carry out the Department’s objectives.


Qualifications of the Ideal Candidate

While no one candidate will embody all the qualifications enumerated below, the ideal candidate will possess many of the following professional and personal abilities, attributes, and experiences:

  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience in finance, accounting or related field. CPA, MBA or other Master’s degree is a plus.
  • 10 years experience in fiscal administration with 7+ years at a supervisory level or the equivalent.
  • Strong skills and experience in accounting, budgeting, financial analysis, advanced Microsoft Excel functions and computerized accounting systems.
  • Experience with non-profit accounting, federal grant compliance, enterprise resource planning (ERP) accounting systems, Microsoft Dynamics SL (SOLOMON), FRx Reporting, and relational databases is preferred.  
  • Advanced skills in organization, attention to detail, and oral and written communications.
  • Ability to work independently, set own priorities and manage competing deadlines.
  • Demonstrates ability to work with diverse individuals and present information clearly to non-financial groups.
  • Ability to maintain confidentiality and to interact effectively with staff, senior management and outside organizations demonstrating a high degree of emotional intelligence.
  • Uses financial analysis, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills to analyze data and develop meaningful solutions to specific problems. 
  • Fosters good relations with visitors, volunteers, community leaders, contractors, and fellow staff members by promoting positive attitudes, good will, cooperation, and providing high standards of service.

The Alaska SeaLife Center/Seward Association for the Advancement of Marine Science (SAAMS) is an equal opportunity employer. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, gender identity, national origin, age, religion, creed, disability, veteran's status, sexual orientation, or any other characteristic protected by law, when the reasonable demands of the position do not require distinction of the aforementioned items.

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