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City of Key West homeless shelter operating agreement to end September 30th, 2020

August 4, 2020

Key West, FL — The City of Key West has notified the Southernmost Homeless Assistance League (SHAL) that its contract to operate the city’s homeless shelter will end on September 30, 2020. Known as KOTS, the Keys Overnight Temporary Shelter is on property adjacent to the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office facilities on Stock Island. Until earlier this year, KOTS provided overnight shelter to up to 140 homeless adults, but expanded to 24-hour operations in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

SHAL, an IRS-recognized nonprofit, has operated KOTS under a month-to-month contract with the city for nearly nine years. According to SHAL Chairman Peter Dswonyk, “SHAL has proudly and effectively operated KOTS since it was asked to do so by the city in October 2011. While we are understandably disappointed with this action, we will of course support any decision made by the Key West City Commission.”

Dswonyk added, “Our directors and staff are working hard to prepare to turn over KOTS operations to a new, as yet unidentified, entity. We are committed to ensuring the smoothest possible transition with minimal impact to KOTS clients and everyone else in the community.”

To improve the quality of life for both homeless persons and other members of the community, SHAL provides its clients with shelter, outreach services to assist them along a path to self-sufficiency, and advocacy on behalf of the homeless in Monroe County. Prior to operating KOTS, SHAL served as the Continuum of Care (an entity required for federal funding) for Monroe County, coordinating services among and distributing funds to the many nonprofit entities supporting homeless persons in the community. SHAL’s directors are carefully examining its mission and capabilities to determine the organization’s future.

Contact: Peter Dswonyk

(305) 923-3689

Job Description – SHAL Executive Director

Southernmost Homeless Assistance League

Job Description 

Position Title:         City of Key West / SHAL Executive Director

Reports To:             SHAL Chair

Supervises:             All Staff


The Southernmost Homeless Assistance League (SHAL) Executive Director is responsible for the overall operation of SHAL, the emergency shelter and the outreach program. In this capacity, the Executive Director is responsible for managing, and regularly updating the SHAL Chair and Board of Directors, on the following job duties, including but not limited to:

Administrative Functions

  • Calendaring
  • Income, expense and budget management. The Budget is used to oversee and manage operation expenses in line with the approved budget. Proposed deviations to the budget are presented in advance for approval.
  • Grant writing, grant reports, and contracts management.
  • Development and implementation of a strategic plan
  • Quality and accuracy of all data, including Homeless Management Information System (HMIS). Data is managed in a timely fashion to effectively monitor operations to understand client needs and develop plans to assist clients.

Programming and Deliverables

  • Client development including transition into employment and housing.
  • Social and therapeutic programming is delivered to clients in an organized and systematic fashion that leverages community resources while addressing the needs of the clients.
  • Implementation and monitoring of all programming and reporting. The impact of the programming is monitored and adjusted on an ongoing basis to ensure increasing program value and client support.


  • Hires, develops and manages staff as necessary. Ensure staff development plans exist for all staff. A file with their resume, goals, and performance reviews is used to develop plans for their development.
  • Day-to-day oversight of case management function and Keys Overnight Temporary Shelter (KOTS) staffing.

Community Education and Community Liaison

  • Maintain and develop our relationship with the City of Key West by
  • Representation of SHAL on Monroe County Homeless Continuum of Care (CoC) and other organizations as appropriate.
  • Education of the community, in partnership with the Chair, about SHAL, on issues of homelessness and client needs.


  • Must have a 4 year college degree.
  • Must demonstrate strong oral and written communication and ability to use computer.
  • Must be capable of working well with others, being a team player and demonstrating a positive attitude.
  • Must meet all local, state and federal employment regulations, background check, pass pre-and post-employment physical/drug exams as required.
  • Must be capable of performing the essential job functions of this job with reasonable accommodations.
  • Must possess a valid Florida State driver’s license and have a vehicle for business use.