National Performance Network > Field News > President and CEO Position Announcement
National Performance Network,
including the Visual Artists Network

President and CEO Position Announcement
National Performance Network,
including the Visual Artists Network

Posted: Tuesday, October 20th, 2015 at 3:05 pm in Field News, Job Announcements, News

The governing board of the National Performance Network, including the Visual Artists Network (NPN/VAN), seeks applications for the position of President and CEO. The successful applicant will assume the staff leadership of a nationwide organization with a strong record of leadership and success. The board is open to applicants with a wide variety of experience; however, all applicants must demonstrate their ability to effectively manage the Network. In addition, all applicants are expected to share the values of equity, diversity, social justice, and inclusion that are infused into all aspects of NPN/VAN work.

The Role. The successful applicant will be a policy activist, a national and international spokesperson, and a person capable of navigating and cultivating substantial resources for NPN/VAN. The individual must be intrigued by the future, networked to change agents, and have the ability to orchestrate the policy perspectives of a diverse national group into a coherent set of programs and initiatives. The individual needs to be capable of evolving a strong vision for the Network and must have the ability to serve as a change agent who can help realize that vision. The NPN/VAN President and CEO is a leader who is responsible for the overall health and vitality of the organization, which includes the maintenance and advancement of the network of arts organizations with proactive programs at the local, national, and international levels.

Management Responsibilities. The successful applicant must have the ability to manage a budget of approximately $3 million and manage an on-site staff of 13 and a remote consulting staff of 3. The President and CEO works with a nationwide membership that is concentrated among 72 partner organizations. In addition, the President and CEO also oversees the programmatic aspects of the Network. NPN/VAN already has in place a strong administrative and management system. Thus, while the President and CEO needs to evaluate, supervise, and adjust the existing system and is responsible for the effective overall management of the organization, many of the day-to-day management responsibilities are assigned to other senior staff.

Travel. This position requires extensive travel. In some years, the President and CEO may be away from the office 50% or more of the time. The purpose of such travel is to stay in close contact with Network partners, help shape the national cultural policy dialogue, and identify and cultivate resources and programmatic opportunities for NPN/VAN.

Qualities Sought. Although the successful candidate must demonstrate an ability to manage the organization, the primary quality sought in the position of President and CEO is the ability to position NPN/VAN and its spirit in regional, national, and international leadership circles, both inside and outside of the arts. Qualities that need to be demonstrated in order to succeed in this work are:

  • An ability to effectively design and manage complex programs that harness the collaborative and creative energies of the partner organizations, board, and staff.
  • An ability to successfully lead a diverse staff, board, and body of partners.
  • An ability to understand how cultural policy is made and executed and where in the process entities such as NPN/VAN can intervene to influence such policy.
  • An ability to effectively analyze complex writings, data, and organizations and create opportunities to advance the values and initiatives of NPN/VAN.
  • An ability to communicate effectively in both oral and written forms.
  • An ability to work effectively and with cultural competency with a wide variety of individuals in a way that recruits them to the NPN/VAN cause.
  • An understanding of how to maintain and expand NPN/VAN’s funding from private foundations and other institutional sources.
  • An ability to research, structure, and launch new revenue-development projects.

Nontraditional Applicants. The search committee will consider applications from a variety of fields, provided they can demonstrate competence and vision that align with the Network’s needs and aspirations.

Minimum Qualifications. The minimum qualifications for this position are:

  • Degree from a four-year accredited institution of higher education or the equivalent
  • Meaningful experience in the arts and/or creative industries
  • Five years of management experience
  • High-level written and oral communication skills

Location. The organization is based in New Orleans.

NPN/VAN The National Performance Network, including the Visual Artists Network, is a national network that supports artists in the creation and touring of contemporary performing and visual arts. As a network, NPN/VAN links over 72 diverse partner organizations across the country and the constituents they serve. The 30-year-old organization has a long history of activism on behalf of leading performing arts and visual arts activities. A full overview of NPN/VAN can be found at:

Compensation. The salary range for this position is $125,000 to $130,000. The position includes full health and dental benefits. A relocation allowance is to be determined.

Application Deadline. The deadline date for applications is December 1, 2015. To be considered by the search committee, all materials must be received by the search manager no later than 5:00 p.m. Mountain Time on December 1, 2015.

Questions. Questions about this search and clarification regarding the qualities sought can be directed to NPN/VAN Search Manager Laurel Sherman at

How to Apply. To apply for this position, applicants should send a cover letter that details how they meet all or most of the items listed in the “qualities sought” section of this position announcement. In the cover letter, applicants also should address any significant strengths they would bring to enacting the Mission, Values, and Vision of the organization. Also, please send a writing sample that illustrates the ability to engage in critical thinking and analysis and a detailed, current professional resume. These materials should be sent via email. No paper applications will be accepted. Please send application materials to:

Laurel Sherman, NPN/VAN Search Manager


Download or print a PDF of this announcement here.

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