Festival of the Arts Announces Executive Director Search

Festival of the Arts Announces Executive Director Search

The annual community event, known simply as ‘Festival,’ is searching for a part-time Executive Director.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.,  The Festival of the Arts Board of Directors announces the search for a part-time Executive Director (see below job description). The evolution from an all- volunteer run event to bringing in a paid position was made to provide festival with consistent leadership from year to year, as it nears its 50-year anniversary and ushers in its next half century and beyond of serving the West Michigan community.

This new structure will modify the role of Festival Co-Chairs. As a valuable part of Festival tradition, they will continue to play a significant role. Beginning in 2019, Co-Chairs will be recognized each term as honorary community leaders to help elevate the awareness of Festival year-round. Along with the Executive Director and the many volunteers involved in Festival of the Arts, they will be vital to the continued growth and success of this long-standing, community-focused organization.

If you are you are interested in applying for the position send resume by December 15 to info@festivalgr.org or mail to Festival of the Arts, PO Box 68440, Grand Rapids, MI 49516. 

Job Description is as follows.

Job Title:  Executive Director

Reports to:  Board of Directors

Core  Values

We believe in the value of the arts in our community; Festival provides many different arts experiences and cultural opportunities that promote excellence, cross-cultural understanding and strong community. The very existence of Festival encourages volunteers, participants and visitors to make the arts central to the lives of everyone in our community.

We believe in inclusiveness and diversity by welcoming all to take part in and enjoy the community spirit within Festival of the Arts. Special effort is made to assist people with disabilities throughout the Festival grounds.

We recognize and appreciate the value of the personal and professional expertise of volunteers, whose efforts year-round encourage and develop arts experiences at Festival.

We present a variety of arts experiences, which support area arts organizations, and encourage new artists and performers.

We treasure the tradition and sense of community ownership of Festival. At the same time, we recognize the need for change and improvement, as long as the core values of the event are retained. Each year, new activities and performers are added, to keep the event fresh and up-to- date. Each year, new volunteers are sought, to ensure the future of Festival. And each year, we strive to empower new and alternative forms of artistic expression by including them in the Festival of the Arts.


General Summary

The primary focus of the Executive Director is fund development and building collaborative relationships within the community. Additionally, the Executive Director will provide direction and continuity for the Festival Operations Committee and event Honorary Chairman, and support to the Board of Directors.

General Responsibilities:

Leadership and Management

  Work collaboratively with the Board to determine annual and long-term resource development objectives. Create and manage strategic and detailed plans that meet set objectives.

  Assist in board and volunteer development, inform and support the board and the board committees to carry out their governance functions.

  Oversee Festival of the Arts events and provide oversight, support, training, and direction to each year’s Operations Committee and honorary chairman. Provide continuity for the event and committees.

  Create and provide monthly financial reports on fund development and overall organization activities.

  Oversee the direct mail process and communication calendar to ensure best practices are being met or exceeded.

  General office management including oversight of all accounting, deposits, payables, website updates, etc.

  Assist the finance committee with the preparation of the annual budget.

Fundraising and Communications

  Recruit and renew fund-development committee members, both board and community, and ensure they have appropriate tools, training and support to be effective and efficient in their work on the organization’s behalf.

  Develop and cultivate relationships with individual and corporate major donors.

  See that the board is kept fully informed on the condition of the organization and all important factors influencing  its decisions.

  Ensure effective utilization of the donor database, including the efficiency of donor acknowledgment letters and the creation of accurate reports.

  Write, edit and review all major proposals/grants, monitor proposal deadlines, and provide oversight for proposal follow-up reports.

  Oversee all aspects of the fundraising events. As a member of the Underwriting Committee assist in creation of all goals and the annual review of how all events work into the overall development plan and strategy.

  Establish sound working relationships and cooperative arrangements with community groups and organizations.

  Serve as Festival’s primary spokesperson; create effective external communications about the organization and its  mission, priorities, importance, programs, and activities.

  Enhance Festival’s image as an organization and event by being active and visible in the community and by working closely with other professional, civic and private organizations.


  Provide leadership in developing program, organizational and financial plans with the board and volunteers, and carry out plans and policies authorized by the board.

  Assist the board chairman in strategic planning to ensure that Festival can successfully fulfill its Mission into the future.

  Assist the board in the translation of strategic plans into actions.

  Create and maintain a climate which attracts, keeps, and motivates a diverse organization

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