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Director of Programs

Arts Midwest is seeking a Director of Programs to direct and implement a portfolio of regional arts programs, including Arts Midwest World Fest, We the Many, GIG Fund, and other programs to be developed.

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Download Job Description

We are committed to maintaining a workforce that is diverse across many lines of difference. We strongly encourage people of color, indigenous people, veterans, and people with disabilities to apply for this position.


Application Instructions

Please submit your letter of interest, resume, and professional references via our online application by June 2, 2022.


Job Summary

Classification Full-time, fully remote
Work Location Must reside in one of Arts Midwest’s regional states (IL, IN, IA, MI, MN, ND, OH, SD, or WI) or in a Native Nation that shares this geography. We will not consider remote applicants outside these states.
Department Programs
Reports to Vice President
FLSA Exempt
Salary $80,000 annually, plus a comprehensive benefits package that includes medical, dental, retirement, and other programs

About the Position

Arts Midwest is seeking a Director of Programs to direct and implement a portfolio of regional arts programs, including Arts Midwest World Fest, We the Many, GIG Fund, and other programs to be developed. This role thrives on taking initiative and directing projects; overseeing multiple programs, supervising 3-4 team members; building relationships; and collaborating with internal and external partners. They work alongside the Director of Community Support and are part of both program and cross-organizational teams that share leadership to achieve project and organizational outcomes. This work seeks to advance the vision, goals, and impact of the organization and is rooted in Arts Midwest’s commitment to equity, integrity, and learning.

About Arts Midwest

Arts Midwest believes that creativity has the power to inspire and unite humanity. Based in Minneapolis, Arts Midwest supports, informs, and celebrates creative organizations and communities throughout the nine-state region of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin, and the Native nations that share these geographies. We are one of six United States Regional Arts Organizations, a national collective of six place-based nonprofit arts service organizations committed to strengthening America’s infrastructure by increasing access to creativity for all Americans.

About You

We are excited about applicants with experience building and leading teams, developing programs, and leading change. We think you would be a great fit for this role if you know how to create a supportive work environment for multiple direct reports through open communication, constructive feedback, and coaching. You should have experience with program design, development, and impact assessment, which is demonstrated through at least five years in nonprofit, community-based, or equity-centered programming. You should also bring experience leading a team through significant change with clear and open communication.


Responsibilities and Accountabilities

Planning & Setting Vision

  • Create measurable annual and long term goals and strategies for program areas that are bold, visionary, and in alignment with the organization’s strategic direction.
  • Works with President & CEO, Vice President, funders, SAAs, and partners to develop and implement national, regional and state programs.

Program Operation

  • Directs all components of programming, ensuring that activities meet the stated requirements of the funder and embrace best practices.
  • Interacts with program constituents in escalated cases to answer questions and provide technical assistance.
  • Conducts site visits to program partner sites.
  • Ensures operational alignment of all programs and identifies opportunities to increase impact through shared resource development.
  • Works with evaluators to set, monitor, and report on program impacts. Use data from those efforts to modify program plans and activities.

Team Leadership & Supervision

  • Provides leadership, decision-making, and general guidance to staff and direct reports. Sets goals and objectives and monitors performance. Develops job descriptions. Encourages employee growth and development.
  • Collaborates with management team on staffing plan necessary to achieve program outcomes.

Organizational Integration

  • Works with Vice President to develop budgets across programs and grants. Manages budgets to minimal variance.
  • Approves expenditures for amounts that are within the budget and within the authorized approval limits of the job.
  • Negotiates with vendors and works to ensure the most cost-effective alternatives are identified when planning expenditures.
  • Oversees departmental compliance with finance procedures.
  • Collaborates with development on proposals and reports, ensuring that the team receives accurate and timely information on activities. Serves as lead reviewer for proposals, reports, and budgets.
  • Sets program-specific communications goals and strategy. Supports storytelling and communications activities as needed, including providing quotes for announces, approving major program campaigns, and reviewing metrics.
  • Embraces and uses organization’s technology tools and systems.
  • Collaborate with IT and other function areas to identify systems and training needs.

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Access

  • Grow personal intercultural competence. Continually develop intercultural competency and seek opportunities for all staff to continue to make change together.

Organizational Culture

  • Work collaboratively across the organization—communicating courteously and professionally and maintaining working relationships with others.
  • Actively participates in staff meetings.
  • Represent the organization nationally, regionally, and locally, in the community, with funders and stakeholders, as applicable


Core Competencies and Committments

  • Adaptability: willingness to embrace change, test new ideas, and learn new ways of working.
  • Collaboration: eagerness to share resources and work with others toward organizational goals.
  • Fluency with technology: understanding that much of our work occurs in digital systems, which require ongoing learning.
  • Our values and mission: understand and embrace our values and mission, in particular how they reflect our commitment to equity, diversity, inclusion and accessibility.
  • Sharing power: takes on leadership and followership roles.


Technical Competencies: Knowledge, Skills, Experience, and Abilities

  • At least five years of experience with program design, development, and impact assessment in nonprofit, community-based, or equity-centered programming.
  • Ability to make decisions and solve problems.
  • Experience building and supporting a team with multiple direct reports.
  • Ability to organize time and anticipate, plan, and manage multiple priorities with deadlines.
  • Ability to maintain confidentiality when dealing with sensitive or private information.
  • Ability to represent the organization with a variety of stakeholders.
  • Ability to negotiate contracts and terms of agreements and manage external vendor relationships.
  • Evaluative skills to review, analyze, and make recommendations around programmatic efforts.
  • Financial skills sufficient to develop, understand, and/or interpret budgets, financial reports, and audits. Knowledge of general accounting concepts and practices.
  • Verbal communication skills and an ability to present information to a variety of audiences. Reading comprehension skills sufficient to understand varied narrative and financial documents.
  • Knowledge of and ability to operate standard office hardware and software, including customer relationship management systems and web-based software programs.


Physical and Mental Requirements

Physical effort is light, with lifting or carrying limited to 25 pounds intermittently. Work includes making presentations in front of groups. There is pressure associated with project or activity deadlines. Work will require extended use of a computer keyboard and monitor. Work is performed in a fast-paced environment, where interruptions are frequent. All requirements are subject to modification to reasonably accommodate individuals with disabilities. 


Working Conditions

Work may be performed remotely or in a group office environment. If working remotely, employee will coordinate with Arts Midwest’s IT function to create a remote work setup.