CNM Equity Workshops are discounted throughout 2022! Learn more and register today!

Retrieving Independence

Director of Program Engagement

Retrieving Independence


Job Summary

Retrieving Independence is a growing nonprofit with a multi-faceted mission to harness the power of the human-animal bond to rehabilitate inmates, engage a strong community of volunteers, and give people living with mental, emotional, and physical disabilities greater independence through the training and provision of service dogs. RI's values are love, dignity, and change. If this mission and these values resonate with you, and you love both people and pups, read on!

The Director of Program Engagement is responsible for the successful management of client and volunteer engagement with Retrieving Independence’s Program. This includes the operational management of the volunteer program and the service dog client’s entire journey with the organization. Management of these two important stakeholders at RI requires accurate and detailed recording keeping; annual and monthly scheduling; effective and compassionate communication; collaboration with relevant staff and team members, and timely follow-up.

Job Responsibilities

Client Case Management

  • Serve as the point of contact for service dog clients as they begin their journey with Retrieving Independence, communicating with compassion, kindness, and sensitivity
  • Manage post-care including monthly communication and obtaining required reports, coordinating follow-up training, and final release at one-year
  • Support where needed, including checking with clients on bonding and progression with their dog and ensuring PAT/skill tests are given to each client during team training

Volunteer Training Program Management

  • Lead the daily operations of the volunteer training program:
    1. Ensure all active volunteers are up to date on required training
    2. Lead new volunteer orientation to include creation and distribution of volunteer handbook and delivery of online training
    3. Coordinate volunteer schedules/availability with organizational needs

Operations, Scheduling, and Administration

  • Maintain and/or oversee records for:
    1. Clients, including matching information, training, and post-care information upholding privacy and confidentiality throughout
    2. Volunteers, including oversight of furlough documentation in Kindful; scheduling options in Better Impact
  • Create and maintain an annual, monthly, and weekly schedule that includes:
    1. Preparation, scheduling, coordination, planning, and execution of Team Training for RI clients, working with relevant staff and external support to create a comprehensive program and materials
    2. Manage the furlough schedule of each dog to maximize time outside the prison
    3. Schedule volunteer orientation dates, volunteer training dates, coordinate dog schedules/vet visits/grooming

Collaboration and Participation in Organizational Processes

  • Work with CEO to assist clients with fundraising campaigns, contracts, and fees due
  • Work closely with the Director of Volunteer Training to ensure a successful volunteer strategy is in place to complement the training work within the prison program 
  • Adhere to all ADI guidelines regarding both client and volunteer engagement


Education: College degree (BS/BA). 

Experience: Minimum of 5 years of related experience in program and service delivery, with a demonstrated ability for strong communication and ability to work across teams to ensure an excellent client outcome. Experience of working with vulnerable populations, volunteers, or in case management and/or experience of working with dogs is preferred, but not required.

Other: Proficient with MS Office software, including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook. Experience with additional platforms such as DocuSign and Kindful is preferred but not required.

Additional Information


This position reports to the CEO/President.
Salary range is $45,000-$50,000 DOE.
This is a full-time position with flexible hours and remote work options available.
Some Saturday availability is required, and some functions of the position require occasional presence at RI’s headquarters, located at the Honey Alexander Center in downtown Nashville.

How to Apply

Submit a brief statement of interest, and upload your cover letter and résumé here

Questions? Email for more information.


  • Date Posted: April 21, 2022
  • Type: Full-Time
  • Job Function: Programs and Service Delivery
  • Service Area: Animal Welfare
  • Start Date: 05/02/2022
  • Salary Range: $45,000-$50,000 DOE
  • Working Hours: 40hrs/wk, flexible schedule