Urban Juncture Foundation Director of Small Business Incubator (Boxville) Chicago, IL · Full time

Boxville®, is an award-winning container-based business accelerator that provides community enterprises highly accessible platforms for growth while transforming the 51st Street retail corridor. Boxville® comprises several box-based enterprises, a Summer Market that also presents many “pop-up” enterprises, and a growing set of community-building activities, including Boxville® Community Day, the Bronzeville Fit (B-Fit) health & wellness program, and our annual Open House Chicago celebration. It has grown from one 20 foot shipping container in 2014 to twenty-two containers in 2023.

Description

Black businesses were the economic driver of Bronzeville’s ‘Black Metropolis’ era.  As Director of Small Business Incubator (Boxville®), you’ll be a key leader in reestablishing local commerce as the vibrant heart of our 21st century community.


Boxville® is part of the Build Bronzeville effort, a unique collaboration between Urban Juncture Foundation and Urban Juncture, Inc., social enterprise startups focused on neighborhood-driven community revitalization.  Build Bronzeville employs local, deeply-rooted culture and commerce to revitalize the CTA Green Line transit hubs on the 51st and 43rd Street retail corridors. Now celebrating its 20th year of service, Build Bronzeville is anticipating rapid growth over the next 3-5 years as it leverages broadened support to advance its Boxville®, Bronzeville Cookin’ and The Forum platforms.


Urban Juncture Foundation seeks a full-time director who will work with a small team of colleagues to lead the Build Bronzeville effort at Boxville®:

  • Identifying, recruiting, and developing a dynamic set of box partners and pop-up venders, with a particular focus on the hospitality, wellness, and maker segments of our community and a commitment to building strong networks within Boxville® and Build Bronzeville.
  • Developing compelling events to celebrate community commerce and culture, activate 51st Street and attract patrons.  This includes leading our Summer Markets and Open House Chicago efforts, stewarding existing community, corporate, philanthropic, and public sector partnerships, facilitating storytelling and media engagement, and developing new events and partnerships.
  • Advancing Boxville® as an enterprise.  This includes developing and executing Boxville® plans, managing financials, leading site maintenance and improvement, and working with the City of Chicago to develop appropriate approaches to licensing and permitting.  


The Director of Small Business Incubator at Boxville® will be based at the Bronzeville Incubator and will work closely with other Build Bronzeville leaders to advance our community revitalization objectives.  A strong candidate will have several key skills and attributes:


  • Rooted in Chicago's South Side communities, with strong connections to the small business networks in Bronzeville & beyond
  • Self starter, collaborative, flexible, detail-oriented
  • Able to work effectively with people from a range of backgrounds and with diverse styles 
  • Strong project management skills; able to prioritize and handle multiple tasks and projects
  • Excellent interpersonal, organizational and communications skills 
  • Minimum of 15 years professional experience in business enterprises
  • Entrepreneurial mindset and understanding of operating small businesses
  • Sound judgment; values driven 


Work is performed in an office environment as well as outdoors and requires the ability to operate standard office equipment and move outdoor furniture.  Must have the ability to sit and stand for prolonged periods of time and walk short distances.  Must be able to lift up to 35 pounds at times.  The scope of the position requires occasional evening and weekend work.


Salary

$70,000 - $75,000 per year