Chief Executive Officer

Posted: Mar 06, 2014
Oncology Nursing Society

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania


The Oncology Nursing Society (ONS) is a professional organization of over 35,000 registered nurses and other healthcare providers. It has as its Mission to promote excellence in patient care, education, research, and administration in oncology nursing. ONS members are a diverse group of professionals who represent a variety of professional roles, practice settings, and subspecialty practice areas. Registered nurses, including staff nurses, advanced practice nurses, case managers, educators, researchers, and consultants, and other healthcare professionals, benefit from membership. The Society offers information and opportunities for nurses at all levels, in all practice settings, and in all subspecialties.


ONS traces its origin to the first National Cancer Nursing Conference, supported by the American Nurses Association and the American Cancer Society (ACS) in 1973. Following this conference, a small group of oncology nurses met to discuss the need for a national organization to support their profession. Since its official incorporation in 1975, ONS has become a national and international leader in cancer care. It has grown to include 231 chapters and 27 special interest groups. It provides information and education to nurses around the world. In addition, the Society plays an active role in advocacy and education for nurses providing care for cancer patients at the local, state, national, and international levels.


  • Full subscriptions to the Clinical Journal of Oncology Nursing, Oncology Nursing Forum and ONS Connect
  • Networking opportunities through local chapters, special interest groups and national and international conferences
  • Access to local, regional and national continuing education, as well as online learning opportunities
  • Access to www.ons.org, including member-only access to searchable, full-text articles from Clinical Journal of Oncology Nursing and Oncology Nursing Forum
  • Mentoring and Affinity Programs


Knowledge Pillar

ONS is utilized as the primary source for educa­tion for all nurses providing care to people with cancer, regardless of setting.


  • Improve dissemination of oncology knowledge to strategic audiences (e.g., chapters, nursing programs, employers, regions of the world).
  • Provide access to opportunities for lifelong learning in oncology nursing.
  • Increase use of ONS educational products by generalists and other specialty nurses.
  • Become the provider of oncology specialized knowledge for advanced practice nurses.
  • Offer products and services to facilitate nurs­ing’s adaptation to changing roles and trends in the healthcare system (e.g., electronic health record, genetics, risk reduction, early detec­tion).

Leadership Pillar

Through ONS involvement, members become leaders and effective cancer care advocates in their workplace, community, and the Society.


  • Design programs and processes to support inte­grated leadership development opportunities.
  • Increase the effectiveness and influence of the Society’s advocacy voice.
  • Enhance ONS’s involvement in educating in­ternational leaders to promote evidence-based cancer care.

Quality Pillar

ONS supports the development, dissemination, and evaluation of patient-centered interventions and their contribution to high-quality cancer care.


  • Collaborate with external quality environment stakeholders.
  • Develop a culture of quality in daily practice among nurses caring for patients with cancer or at risk for cancer.
  • Advocate for research funding to improve qual­ity cancer care.

Technology Pillar

Nurses caring for people with cancer recognize ONS as a leader in leveraging technology and use it to collaborate and learn.


  • Create opportunities via technology to share ONS clinical knowledge and tools (e.g., apps, scales, portal).
  • Analyze emerging technologies and implement those that enhance collaboration, learning, and organizational operations.
  • Enhance the oncology nurse community expe­rience with ONS technologies (e.g., website, social media, portals, apps)


The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) serves as the chief executive of the Oncology Nursing Society (ONS) and acts in conjunction with Board leadership as a public representative to external stakeholders and organizations and health policy advocacy related to oncology nursing and cancer patient care. The CEO works with the Board of Directors to create strategies that ensure the organization’s future success and that the Society fulfills its mission. The CEO is accountable to the Board of Directors for the management of the association and implementation of strategies within the overall limits defined by its mission, strategic plans, and annual operating budget as approved by the Board of Directors. The CEO oversees a staff of 130 professionals and four corporations, including the Oncology Nursing Society, ONS Foundation, Oncology Nursing Certification Corporation and ONS:Edge.


Society Responsibilities

  • Ensures the Society fulfills its mission and vision in a manner consistent with its core values.
  • Maintains effective formal and information relationships with other individuals and organizations, both private and public, to enhance the position of the organization.
  • Serves as the Society’s primary figure for corporate support and partnerships, representing the organization’s interests to nonmember constituencies in a positive and professional manner.
  • Oversees Society lobbying and other legislative and regulatory activities and serves as a representative in government affairs.
  • Promotes members’ satisfaction by ensuring that their interests are represented in decision-making consistent with the Society’s core mission, vision, and values.

Operational Responsibilities

  • Ensures a productive, respectful, and safe work environment for employees. Maintains a commitment to environmentally friendly workplace practices.
  • Provides enterprise-wide leadership to recruitment and retention efforts to achieve a high level of employee engagement, marketplace competitiveness, customer service excellence, and targeted financial performance.
  • Serves as the CEO of the ONS affiliates: the ONS Foundation, Oncology Nursing Certification Corporation (ONCC), and ONS:Edge.
  • Oversees the financial performance of ONS and its affiliates, identifying areas for cost reduction, increased efficiencies, and operating income growth. Communicates financial health and recommendations for change effectively to the Board and ONS staff.
  • Leads the organization to prudently manage its resources within budgetary guidelines.
  • Drives internal mechanisms to achieve strategic initiatives within a data-driven culture.
  • Ensures effective communication with the organization’s legal counsel, accountants, and investment managers regarding new issues and other factors influencing the organization.
  • Ensures quality of ONS operations. Sees that a process improvement plan is in place and is ongoing.

Board Responsibilities

  • Effectively communicates important factors influencing the organization to the Board of Directors and member volunteer leadership. 
  • Coordinates work of the ONS Board of Directors in partnership with the Board President and Executive Committee.
  • Facilitates lines of communication among the Board of Directors, the organization’s staff and volunteer leadership, staff members, and members at large.
  • Recommends policies and programs that are consistent with accepted relevant standards to effectively position the organization and the specialty of oncology nursing for the future. Ensures that all such policy and program decisions are executed.    
  • Ensures regular review of the strategic plan and reports progress to the Board of Directors. 


Demonstrated Leadership

  • Demonstrated track record of success, proven senior level management and leadership experience. Financial/business acumen within an organization of similar scale and complexity. National association leadership is preferred.
  • Outstanding leadership skills, credibility and integrity.


  • Performs effectively as an advocate and spokesperson for the organization and the specialty of oncology nursing.
  • Represents the organization in a positive and professional manner.
  • Champions the mission, vision, and values of the organization.
  • Demonstrates an in-depth understanding of the organization’s core products and services.

 Building Trust

  • Makes and meets commitments that contribute to addressing the interests, needs, and concerns of others.
  • Identifies and communicates shared interests, goals, and differences among stakeholders, as appropriate.
  • Uses a win-win approach to resolving conflicts and conducting negotiations.
  • Demonstrates consistency in honesty and keeping commitments.
  • Remains open to others' ideas and opinions, even when they conflict with the CEO’s own.
  • Shares information with others openly, freely, and in a timely manner as appropriate to achieve mutual goals and objectives.


  • Presents information, analysis, ideas, and positions in a clear and convincing manner.
  • Demonstrates a willingness to share ideas and perspectives and encourages others to do the same.
  • Is skilled at written and verbal communication.

Change Management

  • Embraces change and responds with innovative strategies for current and future issues.
  • Demonstrates support for innovation and for organizational changes needed to improve organizational effectiveness.
  • Facilitates the implementation and acceptance of change within the workplace.

 Decision Making

  • Uses effective approaches for choosing a course of action or developing appropriate solutions.
  • Takes action that is consistent with available facts, constraints, and probable consequences.
  • Modifies decisions based on new information when appropriate and takes responsibility for decisions.
  • Understands the impact and implications of decisions and provides feedback on outcomes.
  • Includes others in the decision-making process as warranted to help make the most appropriate decisions and to gain buy-in.

 Executive Presence

  • Confidently guides the organization and inspires people into action.
  • Demonstrates ability to remain calm and keep composure during adversity.
  • Makes tough decisions for the best interest of the organization.
  • Displays authenticity of personality and defers personal recognition in the pursuit of the mission of the organization.


  • Works cooperatively with others to identify innovative solutions.
  • Encourages others to seek opportunities for different and innovative approaches to addressing problems and opportunities.
  • Inspires others to think creatively to encourage an atmosphere of innovation.

Interpersonal Skills

  • Treats others with respect and demonstrates consistency and fairness.
  • Considers and responds appropriately to the needs, feelings, and capabilities of individuals in different situations.
  • Provides timely and honest feedback in a constructive and nonthreatening way.
  • Listens well to others and provides feedback on what was heard.

Relationship Building

  • Demonstrates interpersonal competencies in relationship building.
  • Ability to build an effective working partnership with the Board of Directors, the Board President, the Executive Committee, and direct reports.
  • Ability to network and build partnerships internally and externally.

Talent Management

  • Supports employee efforts to achieve personal development and organizational goals.
  • Deals firmly and promptly with organizational performance problems by working with staff to diagnose problems, develop solutions, and monitor progress while keeping upper-level management informed.
  • Cultivates ongoing recognition and rewards program based on a good understanding of employee needs.
  • Uses appropriate methods and a flexible interpersonal style to help others develop their capabilities.

Valuing and Leveraging Diversity

  • Values diversity as exhibited in hiring choices, assignments made, teams formed, and interaction with others.
  • Shows respect for people regardless of race, gender, disability, lifestyle, religious beliefs, sexual orientation, or viewpoint.
  • Leads and manages an inclusive workplace that maximizes the talents of each employee to achieve sound organizational results.
  • Fosters an environment in which people who are culturally diverse can work together cooperatively and effectively to achieve organizational goals.


  • Thinks ahead and plans strategically for the future.
  • Communicates a clear, vivid, and relevant description or picture of where the organization should be in the future.
  • Expresses the vision in a way that resonates with others as demonstrated by their words and actions.
  • Builds a shared vision with others.
  • Influences others to translate vision to action.

Healthcare Experience

  • An understanding of healthcare in U.S. is highly desirable. Experience and knowledge of oncology is a plus.


  • Master’s degree required, preferably in nursing or business management.
  • Certified Association Executive (CAE) a plus.


Please send applications or nominations to: Jacki.Thompson@kornferry.com 


Korn/Ferry shall provide equal employment opportunity to all qualified candidates, and will refer candidates without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, disability, veteran status or any other legally protected basis. Korn/Ferry shall comply with all applicable laws, rules and regulations in the performance of duties pursuant to this Agreement, including but not limited to, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and state and local anti-discrimination laws to the extent applicable.

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