Executive Director

Hours: Full time, with events some nights and weekends

Rate: Negotiable

Application Deadline: Rolling; interviews will not begin until early February

The Executive Director defines and drives the vision of the MAH -- one of the most inclusive, vibrant and enthusiastic cultural organizations in the country. Our mission is to ignite shared experiences and unexpected connections. You will be working with other resourceful, hard working, imaginative and open people who are committed to creating a cultural hub that welcomes everyone in our community. We produce hundreds of events, exhibits, school tours, festivals and forums a year -- both here at the museum and around Santa Cruz County. As an inclusive, energizing place that ignites our community through creativity and culture, the MAH has redefined the community partnership model.

Organizational Profile

For more than 20 years the MAH has been an important cultural center in Santa Cruz. With an annual budget of more than $2 million, the MAH engages more than 2,000 local artists, storytellers, and community organizations to co-produce exciting art and history exhibits, educational programs, historical archives, cultural festivals and workshops each year. This is a thriving organization that engages more than 150,000 visitors a year, a FTE staff of thirty-five, over 250 volunteers, and a 22 member board of trustees. In 2017 the MAH added Abbott Square to our downtown plaza. This free outdoor public space features six mini-restaurants, two bars, performance areas, open seating, and a family-focused secret garden.

Experience and Qualities

The new executive director of the MAH will lead a dedicated staff and board who are committed to our continued growth and success. Your demonstrated leadership experience is important, as is a dedication to community involvement. With all of our growth and success, we’re eager to work with a new executive director to develop a vision for the 2020s. Please consider these guidelines in thinking about whether or not to apply. They describe the job well, but we’re open to non-traditional candidates with drive, commitment and unique experience. Leadership, inspiration, enthusiasm and vision are all essential to the role. The successful candidate will demonstrate seasoned, senior-level experience in management, community building and fundraising.

  • Management: mentor, manage, inspire and evaluate direct reports, provide organizational leadership and foster a collaborative, creative work environment. Candidates should bring a minimum of five years of management experience at an organization with a staff of twenty or more.
  • Fundraising: develop new funding streams and methods to support a vast array of community-focused programming and involvement; oversee and manage a portfolio of major donors; oversee grant writing. Candidates should demonstrate an ability to lead fundraising efforts in support of a two million dollar annual budget
  • Community Building: act as lead liaison with elected officials, non-profits, sponsors and local businesses. Candidates should bring demonstrated experience in community organizing
  • Strategic Thinking: define and implement a compelling vision for the MAH; work closely with the board to develop strategy and address high-level organizational issues
  • Commitment to Embracing Diversity: build on our welcoming and multicultural approach to community bridging
  • Public Engagement: act as lead MAH advocate in compelling written and spoken presentations; experience in the development and execution of exhibits
  • A core belief in the MAH mission

The MAH is an equal opportunity employer committed to involving and empowering people of all backgrounds. Women and people of color are encouraged to apply.

Ready to Apply?

To be considered for an interview, please click "Apply Now" to be redirected to ZipRecruiter and submit the following materials:

  • Cover Letter
  • Resume/CV
  • Answer the following questions: (please limit your answers to 150 words)

1. Describe a courageous action you took, or program you created, relative to community work. What would you repeat or change?

2. Given the MAH’s current mission and recent growth how would you go about crafting a five-year vision? If possible, include real-life applications from your work.

3. Community leadership often requires managing diverse and divergent perspectives from stakeholders. Please describe a specific initiative in which you successfully balanced divergent interests.

Apply Now