Commonwealth of Kentucky

Deputy Executive Director, KY Innovation (Cabinet for Economic Development)

Company Description

KY Innovation is a fast-paced agency working to transform Kentucky’s startup ecosystem. We operate within the Secretary’s Office in the KY Cabinet for Economic Development and are chiefly responsible for the Commonwealth’s innovation and entrepreneurship agenda, including: regional innovation hubs to support startups, university commercialization and technology transfer, capital formation and investment in early stage ventures, accelerator and pitch competition management, SBIR/STTR grant funding, corporate and public partner engagement (including a multi-faceted partnership with MIT), and related programs and overall strategy for supporting a healthy entrepreneurial ecosystem in Kentucky.

Job Details

Through effective execution of wide-ranging and multi-faceted duties, this position supports the efforts of the Director in carrying out the duties of the office. In particular, the deputy will work as the leader of the statewide network of innovation clusters which represent key constituencies and leaders of local ecosystems. The candidate must be capable of mentoring and coaching regional ecosystem leaders. Internal to the office, the deputy will help drive project and program success as a “player-coach,” actively engaged in both oversight and program execution.
The position is full-time and reports to the Executive Director. As with all roles in our lean organization, it is cross-functional meaning that the responsibilities of the role will require you to work across the organization and externally across a wide array of stakeholders.
Critical Success Personal Attributes and Strengths:
• Credible experience as a leader of innovation-driven enterprise(s).
• Successful track record as an entrepreneur.
• Clear ability to lead people and manage programs.
• Must be detail-oriented and able to manage a wide array of mission-critical tasks simultaneously.
• Keen ability to work independently, show initiative, and take ownership.
• Natural problem solver with a bias to action.
• Excellent judgment, poise, and professionalism; able to represent KY Innovation and the Executive Director to external partners.
• Able to re-prioritize tasks and support teams based on frequently changing needs and move forward even when faced with ambiguity.
• Appreciates and enjoys bringing a high level of detail to tasks.
• Prefers to collaborate with others rather than working alone, natural relationship builder.
• Drive to see what is coming around the next corner and plan for what-ifs.
• Natural communicator.
Essential Duites & Responsibilities:
Program Management:
• Oversee a team of highly-skilled professionals who are managing diverse programs.
• Provide oversight and guidance to a distributed workforce made up of partners, contractor and vendors operating statewide to support entrepreneurs and innovators.
• Develop and track budgets and ensure program performance and compliance.
• Track legislative activity and engage with policy-makers as needed.
• Maintain knowledge and awareness with respect to relevant programs and developments at the federal level and among state peer and aspirant groups.
• Travel to statewide events to represent KY Innovation and contribute as a conduit to KY Innovation programs, resources and partners.
• Be a megaphone for founders, entrepreneurs and innovators in Kentucky.
• Work successfully across multiple Cabinet departments to ensure collaboration.
• Contribute to web/social media strategy and create associated content.
Events and Program Support:
• Attend events and provide presentations to stakeholders and constituencies as needed.
• Meet with program leaders across the state regularly to provide coaching and oversight.
• Meet with federal program officers to maintain an understanding of relevant federal programs and to strategically plan for grant seeking.
Education/Experience: Bachelor’s Degree is required, MBA or equivalent experience is preferred. The ideal candidate will have strong qualifications in:
• Written and verbal communication skills.
• Project management.
• Leadership experience.
• The ability to work independently and with others.
• The ability to work with multiple partners at all levels.
Location: Frankfort, KY. Other Travel will be required in order to be onsite regularly in KY Innovation regional cluster offices for meeting with partners and clients. Remote work will be encouraged regularly in these shared office space locations.

*Upon appointment, employees in this class may be required to maintain a valid driver’s license and required to drive a licensed vehicle. This status may be necessary for the length of time in this class. If this is necessary, it will be listed in the specific position description for that position. Applicants and employees in this job title may be required to submit a drug screening test and background check. Applicants and employees in positions which perform job duties that may require contact with offenders in the custody or supervision of the Department of Corrections or with youth in the care, custody, or supervision of the Department of Juvenile Justice must meet qualifications pursuant to the federal Prison Rape Elimination Act, 28 C.F.R.115.17 and 115.317.
The Commonwealth of Kentucky does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information or veteran status. Reasonable accommodations are provided upon request.

  • August 26, 2019
  • 24-24-48


After reviewing the "Job Details" section on this page, please submit the brief form below. Upon your submission, you will immediately be given the option to complete a one-way video interview using a smartphone, tablet or computer with camera capabilities. You will also receive an email containing a link to navigate back to the one-way video interview, should you wish to complete the interview later.

We look forward to learning more about you--thank you for your interest in serving the Commonwealth!

(Contact if you believe you have already completed an applicable one-way video interview.)

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