IEEE - Executive Director & COO

Req Number: AF533
Location: Piscataway, NJ, United States
Posted: 4/25/2022
Category: Government/Not-For-Profit : Education
Job Type: Permanent


With more than 400,000 members worldwide, IEEE inspires a global community to innovate for a better tomorrow through its highly cited publications, conferences, technology standards, and professional and educational activities. More than 60% of IEEE’s members are from outside of the United States. As IEEE’s membership continues to grow internationally, IEEE has expanded its global presence and engagement by opening offices in key geographic locations around the world. IEEE’s Operations Center is located in Piscataway, New Jersey. Its corporate offices are in New York City, with other US offices in Washington, DC, and Los Alamitos, California. International officers are in Vienna Austria; Beijing and Shenzhen, China; Bangalore, India; Tokyo, Japan; and Singapore. IEEE is an Internal Revenue Code 501(c) (3) not-for-profit corporation organized under the laws of the State of New York, USA.

IEEE members are technical professionals united by a common desire to continuously learn, interact, collaborate, and innovate. They are at the forefront of life sciences and biomedical engineering, robotics, artificial intelligence, machine learning, photonics, computers, software, hardware and chip design, microwave theory, aeronautics, the Internet of Things, cellular communications, power and energy, remote sensing, and cybersecurity, among other cutting-edge technologies. The mission of IEEE members advances technology for the benefit of humanity around the world.

IEEE membership has long been composed of engineers and technologists, scientists, and allied professionals in mathematics, technical communications, education, management, law, and policy

Mission Statement
IEEE's core purpose is to foster technological innovation and excellence for the benefit of humanity.

Vision Statement
IEEE will be essential to the global technical community and to technical professionals everywhere and be universally recognized for the contributions of technology and of technical professionals in improving global conditions.


Core values are the essential and enduring principles that guide IEEE. The following list of core values reflects what is truly important to the organization:

  • Trust: being a trusted and unbiased source of technical information, and forums, for technical dialog and collaboration.
  • Growth and nurturing: encouraging education as a fundamental activity of engineers, scientists, and technologists at all levels and at all times; ensuring a pipeline of students to preserve the profession.
  • Global community building: cultivating active, vibrant, and honest exchange among cross-disciplinary and interdisciplinary global communities of technical professionals.
  • Partnership: promoting a culture of respect for the employee and volunteer, valuing contributions at all levels of the organization, investing in training and development to enhance capabilities, empowering individuals to make a positive difference, and building a membership organization based on a strong volunteer-staff partnership to serve the profession.
  • Service to humanity: leveraging science, technology, and engineering to benefit human welfare; promoting public awareness and understanding of the engineering profession.
  • Integrity in action: fostering a professional climate in which engineers and scientists continue to be respected for their exemplary ethical behavior and volunteerism.

Strategic Plan

IEEE developed a Strategic Plan to lead the organization through 2025.

The key goals include:

  • Drive global innovation through broad collaboration and the sharing of knowledge.
  • Enhance public understanding of engineering and technology and pursue standards for their practical application.
  • Be a trusted source of educational services and resources to support life-long learning.
  • Provide opportunities for career and professional development.
  • Inspire a worldwide audience by building communities that advance technical interests, inform public policy, and expand knowledge for the benefit of humanity.


IEEE works to build consensus through the development of new standards, professional codes of conduct, conferences, and position statements. IEEE serves as an international source of information to governments and to society-at-large about the social responsibilities and ethical implications of technology. Key initiatives include the Global Public Policy Initiative; the IEEE Standards Association Industry Connections program; Sustainable Development; the IEEE Smart Grid and  IEEE Smart Village; the IEEE Tech Ethics program; and the Global Initiative for Ethical Considerations in the Design of Autonomous Systems to create practical guidance regarding the development of autonomous and intelligent technologies.

IEEE Diversity Statement

IEEE’s mission to foster technological innovation and excellence to benefit humanity requires the talents and perspectives of people with different personal, cultural, and disciplinary backgrounds. IEEE is committed to advancing diversity in the technical profession, and to promoting an inclusive and equitable culture that welcomes, engages, and rewards all who contribute to the field, without regard to race, religion, gender, disability, age, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.


The IEEE story illustrates the development and expansion of the electrical and communications industries. In 1884, as these professions began to grow, a group of technical professionals met and formed the American Institute of Electrical Engineers (AIEE). Early AIEE leaders included industry giants such as Thomas Edison, and Alexander Graham Bell, and Norvin Green. In 1912, the Institute of Radio Engineers (IRE) formed, focused on the growing field of radio and electronics. It brought its own international community together through standards development, publications, and conferences.

These two professional societies grew as advances occurred in their respective fields. Over the years, the interests of their members increasingly overlapped. In 1963, the AIEE and IRE merged to become today’s IEEE. However, the strong commitment to advance technology for the benefit of humanity remains consistent. This mission has guided IEEE and its predecessor societies since the early days of their formations.


The IEEE Board of Directors is composed of the IEEE President, IEEE President-elect, and IEEE Past President; the Vice Presidents and Presidents of the six major boards; the Secretary; the Treasurer; 10 Region Directors; and 10 Division Directors. All Board members are elected by IEEE membership. The Board also includes the Director Emeritus.

The IEEE professional staff consists of approximately 1,100 employees.

Membership and Technical Communities

IEEE has a complementary regional and technical structure with organizational units based on geography and technical focus, giving IEEE members an opportunity to connect with other members locally as well as globally based on their technical field of interest. Members unite geographically within 10 IEEE Regions across the globe. They also connect through technical Societies and Councils based on their field of interest.

IEEE manages a separate organizational unit, IEEE-USA, which recommends policies and implements programs specifically intended to benefit the members, the profession, and the public in the United States.


To provide collaborative platforms and networking opportunities for tomorrow’s innovators and authors, IEEE sponsors more than 1,800 annual conferences and events worldwide, curating cutting-edge content for all of the technical fields of interest within IEEE.  


IEEE publishes the leading journals, transactions, letters, and magazines in electrical engineering, computing, biotechnology, telecommunications, power and energy, and dozens of other technologies. In addition, IEEE publishes more than 1,200 leading-edge conference proceedings every year, which are recognized by academia and industry worldwide as the most vital collection of consolidated published papers in electrical engineering, computer science, and related fields.


With an active portfolio of nearly 1,300 standards and projects under development, the IEEE Standards Association is a leading developer of industry standards in a broad range of technologies that drive the functionality, capabilities, and interoperability of a wide range of products and services, transforming how people live, work, and communicate. For example, the IEEE 802 Standard comprises a family of global networking standards that cover the physical layer specifications of technologies from Ethernet to wireless. If innovation is the catalyst for technological advancement, standards are the catalysts that enable innovation. 


IEEE is a leader in engineering and technology education, providing resources for pre-university, university, and continuing professional education. IEEE offers innovative STEM and university education and recognition programs for students and their teachers, facilitates the accreditation of engineering programs at the university level, and offers ongoing continuing professional education for practitioners and engineering faculty through platforms
such as the IEEE Learning Network (ILN).


Since IEEE is committed to advancing technology for the benefit of humanity, humanitarian and philanthropic opportunities bring together the wide range of IEEE programs that aim to improve the human condition through technology. across the globe. The strength and reach of the IEEE network impact many individuals worldwide.

As the philanthropic partner of IEEE, the IEEE Foundation inspires the generosity of donors to enable IEEE programs that improve access to technology, enhance technological literacy, and support technical education and the IEEE professional community. The IEEE Foundation is a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organization in the US.


>See information about IEEE financials and statistics



The Executive Director, Chief Operating Officer will oversee the general business and affairs of IEEE and exercise duties of care and loyalty. S/he will achieve the goals and objectives of IEEE and lead the IEEE professional staff.

Specifically, the Executive Director & COO’s duties include but are not limited to:

Board and Volunteer Relations:  

  • Reports to the Board of Directors through the President with whom he/she works closely and collaboratively.
  • In collaboration with the senior professional staff, achieves the goals and objectives as defined and approved by the Board of Directors.
  • Contributes actively to the development of IEEE’s strategy and strategic plan.
  • Develops and implement a business plan that operationalizes the strategic plan.
  • Engages and advises with volunteer leadership to achieve established goals.
  • Fosters a collaborative environment between professional staff, volunteers, and members.

Business Development and Operational Success:

  • In collaboration with the senior professional staff, identifies and proposes new business development ideas to the Board of Directors.
  • Implements business development objectives approved by the Board.
  • Provides guidance and input into the development of the annual budget in collaboration with the Board along with any projections for consideration and discussion.
  • Meets IEEE annual budget and projected financial performance.
  • Grows the IEEE business, including, but not limited to, membership, current revenue streams and new sources of revenue, addressing the needs of industrial, academic, and government customers.

Professional Staff Leadership and Day-to-Day Operations:

  • Provides vision and leadership for the professional staff; sets performance goals; facilitates professional development and growth.
  • Establishes parameters and policies relative to the management of the day-to-day business operations, including but not limited to successful budget management.
  • Provides leadership and guidance in promoting and supporting efficient and effective operations across the organization.

External Relations:

  • Cultivates strong working relationships and partnerships with external organizations with related or complementary missions and operations.
  • Serves as a principal spokesperson for IEEE in cooperation and collaboration with the President.
  • Supports and maintains effective, collaborative, and positive relationship with external stakeholders and interested parties in collaboration with the President and Board.
  • Provides an accountable example for positive public visibility, brand integrity and organizational reputation on behalf of IEEE, the Board, the President, and the entire IEEE community.


The successful candidate has 15 years of experience in senior leadership of a complex global organization with multiple product and service lines and diverse organizational units. S/he possesses exceptional leadership, organizational management, financial and business acumen, and communications and interpersonal skills. A track record for forging trusting relationships, a sense of innovation and creativity, excellent judgment, and the ability to motivate and engage both volunteers and staff are required. S/he is a dynamic and energetic leader with the passion and skills to drive forward the leading global technical society.

Specific qualifications will include the following:

  • Proven ability to effectively lead and manage a complex global organization with diverse products and services, large-scale diverse revenue streams, and a large global professional staff.
  • Outstanding “people skills” and a history of working effectively with individuals from diverse backgrounds, cultures, and points of view.
  • Experience building collaborative and trusting working relationships with a diverse board, to effectively implement the organization’s mission and strategy.
  • A proven track record for team building in a complex, multi-layered organization.  Success in attracting, developing, motivating, and retaining a world-class, results-oriented staff.
  • Effective at anticipating and leading organizational change.
  • A mature leader who realizes and embraces the importance of the roles and contributions of the volunteers. S/he can comfortably “lead from behind.”  A compelling leader with a personal demeanor that engenders respect. This person understands the power of leading by example in building consensus and support.
  • A creative leader, adept at developing new ideas and approaches to partnerships and relationships that advance the organization’s mission.  Persuasive, with an ability to attract and build successful partnerships with internal and external constituents, in both for profit and nonprofit arenas.
  • An excellent communicator and motivator. Strong consensus building and influence skills.
  • A thought leader who is passionate about the idea of enhancing technical understanding and knowledge for the betterment of humanity.  An intellectual with the capacity to work effectively and successfully with the engineering and technical community.


Bachelor’s degree required. An advanced degree will be considered a plus. Must have earned at least one technical degree.

Other requirements

  • In compliance with U.S. federal law, the successful candidate hired for the Executive Director & COO role will be required to verify identity and eligibility to work in the United States and to complete the required employment eligibility verification upon hire. 
  • As defined in IEEE Policies, individuals currently serving on an IEEE board or committee are not eligible to apply.


A competitive compensation package will be made available to the qualified candidate.


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.