A private foundation seeks an energetic, experienced, innovative, and collaborative leader to fill the position of Founding Executive Director (ED) for an extraordinary cultural sanctuary and multidisciplinary creative hub which is now being created in Long Beach. The space will serve a diverse community and will host modern and contemporary art, immersive experiential art, and community programming with an art, health, wellness and social good focus and one that will serve local needs with healthy fresh food, drinks, and a meditative garden.
The ED will lead a small staff and play a hands-on role in running the organization including operations, budgeting, programming, admissions, and visitor services. Duties will also include overseeing marketing, support of creative talent, human resources and fundraising/grant writing, in addition to supervising buildings and grounds, events, finance, membership, part-time staff and volunteers.
Along with the Founder, the ED will be responsible for creating and guiding the organization by helping to develop its mission, strategic goals, and all operational needs as well as developing programming and community relationships. This includes collaborating with artists, individuals, and nonprofits serving local community, local businesses, community members and patrons to ensure that the organization is sustained as a valuable asset within Long Beach and the greater Los Angeles community.
In fulfilling their role as ED, the selected candidate will gain the opportunity to create a new category of organization that leverages paid visitation to its experiential art program (for which art will be acquired or commissioned) in order to support other programming designed to measurably improve the health and wellbeing of its patrons. The ED will build the reputation of the organization as a warm and welcoming space using an innovative national model that combines art and culture, health and wellness, and social egalitarianism to engage and revitalize our community. Leveraging this reputation and seed funding including art acquisitions provided by the Founder, the ED will create a self-sustaining operational model and if successful, explore opportunities for such projects in other cities.
Working in close consultation with the Founder and a team of consultants, the Executive Director will first focus on the following tasks concurrently:
- Understanding the planning and strategy work that has been completed to date;
- Identify, prioritize, and engage the different communities that will make up the diverse audience of our Center, as well as at partner cultural institutions and non-profits;
- Develop metrics on what constitutes success, create tangible objectives and deadlines and put plans in place to track those metrics and progress toward;
- Finalize the overall strategy, the budget, and operational plans to execute the strategy;
- Plan and run many pre-opening events that will engage various audiences, partners and collaborators, while evaluating audience interest and operational plans;
- Assist in the renovation of the physical space including its design and implementation;
- Finalize the opening program and opening plans;
- Assemble a highly motivated team to run the organization;
- Support and advise the Founder on the purchase and commission of experiential art.
Working in close consultation with the Founder, the ED will oversee the teams that design, market, and implement the strategies they co-create and:
- Continue the engagement with community members, partners, and collaborators established during pre-opening and continue to build relationships with that community while finding new partners and collaborators;
- Ensure the overall success of a diverse and complex array of engaging, innovative programs and events that illuminate art, artists, and exhibitions at the Center in the context of health, wellness and social good with a focus on community engagement;
- Ensure that the team understands the attributes of the collection and exhibits, the operations of the Center, and various essential relationships with partners;
- Oversee the development of plans and strategies that advance the vision of and drive attendance at the Center through its public and educational programming in addition to overseeing budgets for all programming, projects, and initiatives;
- Oversee digital engagement (social media, mobile, augmented reality, gamification, etc.) and actively engage the different audiences in the online space through the personal use of blogging, social media and commenting while motivating and training the staff to likewise engage the audience on behalf of the Center;
- Oversee all marketing and communications for exhibitions, health and wellness, and public programming;
- Oversee all ticketing for exhibitions, health and wellness, and public programming with your teams, including setting revenue and attendance goals and oversee the tracking of budgets to actual;
- Manage the daily operations with close attention to quality, budgets and reach;
- Oversee retail, food service, and other ancillary operations to ensure quality and revenue goals are being met;
- Expand and continually diversify attendance through the innovative use of traditional, new and experimental modes of communication, public speaking, facilitation, blogging, social media and other forms of engaged communication;
- Work closely with the contracted finance team to ensure the budget and projections are on track and provide explanations regarding exceptions;
- Track essential attendance and engagement metrics, including metrics of visitor satisfaction for various programs to gauge which are most effective in engaging first time and repeat visitors of various profiles;
- Present to the Founder a quarterly report and presentation on operations, attendance and engagement, other tracking metrics, key objectives reached, overall progress and new opportunities as well as lessons learned and operational adjustments.
Qualifications and Experience
A successful candidate for the ED position will have a career path that includes leading a public-facing nonprofit (museum, cultural center, or performing arts center) or in a hospitality organization of similar size and scale.
They will have experience in creating and managing budgets, hiring and mentoring staff, and organizing data and generating reports. They will be able to maintain and operate a facility and develop and oversee the development of programs.
The ideal candidate will be intellectually curious and have a demonstrated commitment to serving others. They will be a collaborator with excellent communications skills and demonstrate a high level of emotional intelligence and empathy. They will be self-aware, self-confident, self-motivated, and willing to work with the Founder to further the development of the organization.
They will possess a love and working knowledge of contemporary art along with experience organizing and managing a high number of complex events.
The candidate will be mission-driven yet humble, organized yet flexible with a healthy level of caring, and able to work with diverse groups to develop programs and activities aligned with the goals of the organization.
They must possess the ability to work with individuals from a wide variety of ethnic, cultural, and economic backgrounds.
The ED will strive to build a team that reflects the diversity of Long Beach and the Southern California region and is attentive to social and racial justice issues in contemporary society.
The candidate must be able to work weekends, holidays, and special events as necessary and must be highly proficient in technology and software solutions including knowledge of admissions, POS, and online ticketing systems, and must be highly skilled in using Microsoft Office Suite.
A cover letter and résumé must accompany all applications.