President & CEO

Website States’ 4-H International Exchange Programs

About States’ 4-H International Exchange Programs

In the fall of 1971, 4-H State Leaders Dwight Palmer (WA) and Maurice Johnson (ID) were approached with an opportunity to implement a youth exchange program between 4-H youth and young people from Japan. That year, 179 delegates from the Labo Foundation in Japan came to stay with volunteer host families in Washington and Idaho.

States’ 4-H International Exchange Programs is a non-profit organization headquartered in Bellevue, WA. We work with 4-H Youth Development Centers of Cooperative Extension in the US and a network of international partners around the world to conduct cultural immersion and exchange programs. Since 1972, our exchanges have impacted over 64,000 youth and their families in 43 countries on 6 continents!

As one of the pioneers of international youth exchange, we continue to empower today’s youth to be future global leaders equipped with respect, mutual understanding and the global perspectives and cross-cultural competencies needed to address global issues. As the world has become smaller and once vast distances are now easily bridged by technology, the States’ 4-H mission is more relevant than ever: Enhancing world understanding and global citizenship through high-quality 4-H international cultural immersion and exchange programs for 4-H aged youth.

States’ 4-H is governed by a Board of Directors composed of 4-H Extension professionals across the US. The 4-H National Headquarters at NIFA has authorized States’ 4-H to use the 4-H name and emblem. States’ 4-H is granted full listing by the Council for Standards on International Educational Travel (CSIET) and is designated by the US Department of State as a sponsor of J-1 Secondary Student exchange programs.

 We Value:

· Multiple perspectives

· Global connections

· Tolerance

· Respect for others

· Diversity

· Innovation

· Cultural understanding

· Learning by doing

· Engaged citizenship

Summary of the President & CEO Position

The CEO of States’ 4-H International is responsible for providing overall leadership and strategic direction to the organization and its programs in achieving its mission of enhancing world understanding and global citizenship through impactful 4-H international cultural immersion and exchange programs for 4-H youth. The longtime CEO, Yoko Kawaguchi, who has led States’ 4-H International for 25 years will remain as a consultant until the end of 2024 to ease the transition.

The ideal candidate will have a diverse skill set including financial management, operations management, program management, marketing, human resources, board relations, and external relationship management. The CEO is expected to manage an efficient and mission-driven organization that is compliant with government regulations governing student exchange programs, conforms with best practices in risk management for youth exchange programs, and provides quality international youth exchange experiences at a reasonable cost.

 Opportunities for Impact

Strategy Development

  • Collaborate with the Board of Directors to develop and implement a strategic plan that aligns with the organization’s mission, vision, and values, and ensures the long-term sustainability of the organization.
  • Assess and ensure that the financial plans, staffing needs, and priorities are aligned with States’ 4-H’s core mission.

Operations Management

  • Oversee and develop policies and procedures for effective and efficient operations.
  • Ensure staff are provided with appropriate support systems, technology, and resources.
  • Manage and implement the facilities and equipment that promote productivity and facilitate work.
  • Handle office administration, contracting, legal compliance, and risk management matters.

Financial Management

  • Develop and manage the organization’s budget, ensuring financial sustainability through the setting of an appropriate level of program fees and effective expense management.
  • Set up and maintain adequate cost controls, accountability, and compliance with all legal and regulatory requirements.
  • Work with outside accounting professionals to prepare and review annual financial statements, tax filings (Form 990), audits (as required) and other important financial reports and filings.

Program Management

  • Work with program managers and oversee all program operations to ensure successful outcomes.
  • Develop documents addressing the risk management and liability (i.e. terms and conditions, liability release form, contracts between International Partners and S4-H).
  • Negotiate agreement terms and fees with International Partners.
  • Collaborate with the Board to develop contracts between USA partners and S4-H.
  • Review and quality control of all program materials (i.e. coordinator/delegates handbooks, application forms, flier, dates, etc.)
  • Set up a budget for all programs, and cost control. Review all program invoices for accuracy.
  • Review and quality control of the organization’s J-1 Visa Designation and CSIET listing applications.

Performance Management

  • Develop position descriptions and performance review guidelines, set compensation/benefits and employee policies consistent with federal and state requirements.
  • Set compensation/benefits for all staff and independent contractors except for own (which shall be established by the Board Chair) in accordance with approved annual budgets, consistent with market and internal equity.
  • Annually administer a review of staff performance.
  • Recruit, hire, train, develop, supervise, retain, support and motivate States’ 4-H’s high-performance staff to ensure smooth operations.


  • Expand diversity of revenue where appropriate.
  • Network and build partnerships in new markets, establishing relationships with key players and government officials/community leaders at each expansion site.
  • Cultivate and develop strong business relationships with current States’ 4-H partners and government officials.
  • Formulate and execute comprehensive marketing and branding that positions States’ 4-H as a leading organization in facilitating international exchange among 4-H youth in the U.S.

Board of Directors

  • Cultivate a strong and transparent working relationship with the Board and ensure open communication about the measurement of financial, programmatic, and impact performances against stated milestones and goals.
  • Help build a diverse and inclusive board representative that is highly engaged and willing to leverage.
  • Educate board regarding Japanese business negotiation and lead business negotiation with International partners, especially with Labo and Lex.
  • Prepare board meeting agendas and Annual Report summarizing progress on plans and program results, recommend policies, and support Board chair in leading the board meetings.


This role is open to candidates across all U.S. states. 5% travel is required, with all necessary business travel expenses covered by the organization.


This is a full-time executive position with a salary range of $125,000 – $170,000. States’ 4-H International Exchange Programs offers an excellent benefits plan including a 401(k) plan with a 3% match and a $6,000 allowance for medical premiums/costs in lieu of a group medical plan.

Personal and Professional Attributes

  • The CEO should be a visionary and a strategic leader who can work effectively in a multicultural environment
  • The successful candidate will be able to engage and convene others in a process of exploration and dialogue
  • The CEO needs to be an interdisciplinary and creative thinker who can be innovative as well as pragmatic
  • This person will be an open-minded, confident professional who enjoys exploring issues while also recognizing that ownership of ideas is less important than the result of the collaborative effort. The CEO will be an enabler and facilitator who will have the strength of character and conviction to work with a strong, engaged Board that is dedicated to the mission of States’ 4-H
  • Strong written and oral communication skills are critical to ensure that the CEO will be effective, passionate and persuasive in presenting States’ 4-H and its mission to various organizations/4-H in the U.S. and abroad
  • Successful candidates will have strong strategic planning, interpersonal skills, organizational, administrative, and financial management skills. The CEO will be comfortable in a hands-on role and willing to do the essential tasks required to meet the goals of States’ 4-H
  • Strong commitment to youth development and the organization’s mission and goals
  • Commitment to the organization’s stability, longevity, and future
  • Extensive international experience
  • Bi-lingual and bi-cultural (preferred)
  • Action-oriented, entrepreneurial, adaptable, and innovative approach to business planning
  • Ability to engage and work effectively in collaboration with diverse groups of people and cultures
  • Passion, idealism, integrity, positive attitude, mission-driven, and self-directed

Application Process

The preferred application deadline is April 15, 2024. Please submit a resume and answer the application questions in lieu of a cover letter.

Once the new CEO begins, they will enter into a 90-probationary period to allow for regular check-ins, coaching, and performance assessment.

Referrals: If you know someone who is perfect for this role, tell us about them!

So you know what to expect, here are the steps of the interview process should you move forward:

  • Phone Screen with the NRG Consulting Group team. You’ll hear from us about the status of your application by May 5.
  • Submit a Work Sample.
  • Zoom Interview with a Board member.. These interviews will begin May 6th
  • In-person meeting with the Board of Directors. Location TBD the week of May 20th.

This search is being led by NRG Consulting Group. Please reach out to [email protected] with any questions.