Case Commons seeking VP Eng / CTO in New York

April 30, 2010 Sean Beckett

At Pivotal Labs, one of the services we provide is bootstrapping startups, including helping them interview and hire. Pivotal Labs and our clients place a strong emphasis on Agile development and its many aspects: Pair Programming, Test-Driven Development, rapid iterations, and frequent refactoring.

Here is a job posting from Case Commons, a current Pivotal client looking for a VP of Engineering or CTO in New York.

Case Commons’ mission is to transform public sector human services through technology. Case Commons enables workers serving the most vulnerable families and children to be more effective and efficient via new software tools. Casebook™, Case Commons’ marquee technology, is a collaborative, family-centered case management system that leverages the capabilities inherent in social networking technology for the public sector child welfare segment. A growing number of policymakers believe that Casebook™ can be a citizen portal for government services, including health, education and human services. Case Commons is funded by the $2.5 billion Annie E. Casey Foundation, which has spent 20 years pursuing human services system reform; since 2007, AECF has been building Casebook™ in partnership with Tipping Point Partners.


  • You will lead the engineering team building Casebook™, reporting to the Chief Operating Officer
  • You will assume a leadership position, revolutionizing technology for people serving less advantaged children and families, with high visibility among government, foundation, venture capital, and business leaders
  • You will work with a unique team that consists of proven domain leaders, successful entrepreneurs who have helped transform other technology market segments, and software developers from Pivotal Labs, the top Ruby on Rails software development consultancy in the world
  • Salaried position in a non-profit organization located in New York City
  • Significant travel – up to 50% of time


  • You have the passion and skills to succeed in a startup: tenacious, self-directed, flexible, strategic but can turn on a dime, able to inspire others and to be inspired
  • You go the extra mile
  • You spent 10 years in information technology, preferably in application development, application management, and operations within a Fortune 500 company or government organization
  • Optional but especially valuable would be experience with government software for human services, such as for AFCARS, IV-E eligibility, and SACWIS
  • You have rolled out software to several thousand users within a large organization
  • You have 3-5 years of managing small engineering teams (< 25)
  • You have delivered software on time and within budget
  • You are a student of organizations, familiar with the team structures and processes necessary to handle the full lifecycle of enterprise software (conceptualization, estimation, design, development, piloting, training, deployment, maintenance, customer support, release management, reporting and tracking, sunsetting and migration)
  • You have managed vendors for software development, web hosting, and security
  • You are familiar with best practices for securing web applications including but not limited to OWASP, security scanning, secure network design
  • Your prior work involved sensitive customer data, such as financial information, transactions, HIPAA data, credit cards, or personal health information
  • You use and appreciate consumer Internet software, including Facebook, Twitter, Google, YouTube and other “Web 2.0” applications
  • You have personal or professional Web application projects in Ruby on Rails, LAMP or similar technology stacks
  • You are expert in agile development processes, and want to transform software development processes within governments and large organizations
  • You like people and enjoy sharing your knowledge: able to translate engineering needs and challenges into plain English verbally and in writing
  • You care about people and their success: strong inter-personal and team skills, with active listening abilities and instincts
  • You have made mistakes part of your process and know how to create a culture that identifies and surfaces problems early
  • You have common sense, limitless curiosity, terrific taste, and an appreciation for the absurd
  • You are passionate about our mission

Case Commons and Tipping Point Partners. Tipping Point Partners has worked on Casebook™ since 2007, leading product development and business functions. Tipping Point is responsible for building the Case Commons team.

Tipping Point builds and renovates Internet-based startups using innovative approaches to solving business model challenges. We look for opportunities to create new businesses that have significant social and/or cultural importance in markets that are ripe for disruption, both for-profit and not. Since 2005, Tipping Point Partners’ unique approach to startups has included co-founding, interim management, strategic deal making, financing, investing and strategy, generally all at the same time. Our portfolio has included IGA Worldwide, FashionGPS, Mobile Commons, Cookstr, Rapid Ratings and many others. We achieve the highest and best use for our companies with an agnostic approach to capital sources and huge doses of sweat equity to accelerate development, extend runway and amplify opportunities.

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