THE OPPORTUNITY – PRESIDENT OF THE ISLAMIC SEMINARY OF AMERICA (TISA)
The Islamic Seminary of America (TISA) is a relatively new institution dedicated to educating and nurturing those who aspire to be scholars, Imams, Chaplains, youth leaders and non-profit managers.
As an independent graduate institution for Islamic leadership education, TISA aims to prepare the next generation of Islamic pacesetters in North America.
TISA’s student body, faculty, staff and board are intentionally diverse, in recognition of the founding ethos of the community surrounding Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) and the current multicultural mosaic that is Islam in North America.
Given the above, TISA seeks a bold and inspirational leader who is prepared to:
- Provide imagination and inspiration in developing educational programs consistent with the emerging needs of the dynamic and diverse Muslim-American community and the broader North American population.
- Engage in innovative resourcing for funding and philanthropy through personal contacts and the current digital environment, ensuring continued sustainability and growth.
- Strengthen our faculty and administration with compassionate leadership, prophetic values and audacious foresight.
- Be a compelling public intellectual who embodies and articulates the mission, messages and values of TISA, while serving as the principal voice for the Seminary in the public arena.
Our Vision: Our vision is a world constantly bettered by religious scholarship and ethical leadership. The Islamic Seminary of America, an Islamic Seminary Foundation institution, aspires to be a lighthouse of knowledge and faith devoted to equipping North American-based leaders and serving as an authoritative voice for a balanced Islam.
Our Mission: Our mission is to be the world’s preeminent community of scholars where generations of religious scholars and ethical leaders pursue the highest levels of knowledge, research and training, rooted in the Qur’an and Sunnah, and integrating the rich traditions of classical Islamic knowledge with Western academic scholarship.
How We Are Unique: Unlike many other seminaries that train Muslim leadership, TISA has been developed, governed, and managed by a group of people who:
- Take the idea of “text and context” seriously, by emphasizing that one must have a sophisticated, deep, and nuanced working knowledge of our sacred texts coupled with the ability to understand and operate effectively in various local contexts while applying necessary “people skills.”
- Believe that a verified level of Arabic proficiency must be required for our upcoming religious leadership as a key to maintaining our deep spiritual roots on this continent.
- Are more reflective of the broad cultural and religious diversity of the men and women who make up the Muslim community in North America.
- Represent decades of experience in developing, governing and running inclusive Islamic centers and other non-profit institutions with an emphasis on professional development and clinical skill acquisition as needed.
- Have decades of experience in higher education as faculty and administration with a focus on quality, accessibility, inclusiveness and curriculum development.
Programs Offered: TISA offers three degree programs – MA in Islamic Studies, MA in Non-Profit Management, and a MDiv degree with a concentration in Islamic Leadership and a concentration in Islamic Chaplaincy. In addition, TISA provides certificate programs and focused educational programs such its Youth Mental Health First Aid training initiative and a Personal and Organizational Development certificate.
Looking Ahead: Aspirations for the future include: applying for accreditation through the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges; establishing a permanent residential campus in Dallas-Forth Worth, TX; establishing a robust endowment, and pairing with seminaries from other faith traditions in combating religious illiteracy in North America.
- The President will have proven successful in institution-building within a relevant organizational context.
- The President will have passion around TISA commitments and will possess an eagerness for sustainable, community-responsive growth, and for enabling the success of the students, faculty, staff, and members of the Board of Directors and Advisory Board.
- The President will build trust, uniting and inspiring the TISA community around a compelling vision and direction. The President will be a generous listener, relationship builder, and effective communicator.
- The President will engage and guide the students, faculty, staff, board, and community towards a vision, goals, and priorities that reflect and enhance the unique potential of North America in general and the Muslim-American community in particular.
- The President will lead the institution to increase and diversify resources, including philanthropic support, tuition and earned revenues.
- The President will have a proven record of resource growth and collaboration development, as well as the ability to attract and connect people of all kinds to TISA.
- The President will be a vibrant public intellectual and the face of TISA. The President will embody and articulate the mission and messages of TISA commitments. The President will be a great storyteller, communicator, and spokesperson.
- The president will have proven organization leadership and financial expertise.
- The President will listen actively, build trust, and empower high performance and collaboration.
- The President will be skilled in leading change, change management and conflict resolution.
- The president will be knowledgeable about online education and technology.
- The President will value and build on the positive aspects of TISA and will make decisions and change as necessary to enhance viability and excellence.
- The President will create space for the development and implementation of a new and viable models for Islamic leadership education. By leveraging TISA’s assets and passion, collaborative partnerships, new ideas and strategic risk-taking, the President will be a catalyst for creating a new and viable Islamic leadership education that will ensure TISA’s strength vibrancy, and impact for coming generations.
- The President will be culturally competent regarding the world’s peoples, religious landscapes, theological education, and higher education.
- The President will have a strong, relevant track record, demonstrable passion for TISA, its uniqueness and its potential.
The President will have personal assets that include:
- High self-awareness, emotional intelligence, self-confidence and humility.
- A compelling, approachable personality and listening skills that engender trust, openness, and creativity.
- Cultural competence and inclusiveness.
- Courage, innovative and entrepreneurial abilities, proven organizational leadership, decisionmaking and conflict-resolution skills.
- Ability to set goals and plans, as well as the ability to hold the entire organization accountable.
- Willingness to “roll up sleeves” and be hands-on when appropriate.
- A high level of energy and a can-do, resilient approach.
The President reports to the Islamic Seminary Foundation Board of Directors and leads the faculty and staff (currently less than 10 people). Direct reports include the leaders of Academic Affairs, Finance and Administration, Recruitment and Admission, Communication and Marketing, and Advancement.
TISA is conveniently located in Serene Plaza / Comerica Bank Building in Richardson, Texas, with easy access to various parts of the Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW) metroplex. The address is: 811 S. Expressway Suite 200, 2nd Floor, Richardson, TX, 75080. DFW has a large and vibrant Muslim community with scores of Islamic centers, schools and other non-profit organizations.
- A master’s degree, with a doctorate preferred. The degree should be in Islamic Studies, Chaplaincy, Comparative Religion, Ministry or a related field. Candidates with an MBA or JD are also eligible to apply.
- Work Authorization: Candidates must be legally authorized to work in the United States.
To apply or suggest a prospective candidate, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Applications must include a cover letter, resume and salary requirements.