The Executive Director is the chief executive of the Historical Society of Washington D.C. and reports to the Board of Trustees. S/he is responsible for the development, execution, and management of the Historical Society’s strategic goals as approved by the Board. Overall responsibilities include development/fundraising, external and community relations, marketing, business planning, and financial, operational, and administrative management. The Executive Director is the face of the Historical Society to its local, regional, and national communities, and leads efforts to identify, cultivate, and steward major donors, corporate sponsors and government funding resources.
Vision and Strategic Leadership
The Executive Director works with the Board, staff, and key stakeholders to ensure that the organization's vision and programs remain relevant and responsive to the changing landscape of the diverse community it serves. S/he develops, in collaboration with Board leadership, a strategic plan for building a strong financial foundation and for growing programs and services.
Institutional Growth and Advancement
The Executive Director is the chief spokesperson for the Historical Society, represents its interests to the public, and embraces a leadership role in the Washington, D.C. cultural community. S/he leads fundraising, development, memberships, cultivation of partnerships and grant-seeking. In addition, the Executive Director:
Secures financial support from corporations, foundations and individuals; maintains relationships with major donors, leads grant-seeking efforts, including research, proposal writing and reporting. Works closely with the Board of Trustees to identify new resources and partnerships to increase capital and annual fund donations, sponsorships, memberships and grant awards. Plans and executes major fundraising events, oversees development of campaign communications.
Develops and executes a comprehensive public awareness program to create a measurable increase in visitors to the DC History Center and participation in its programs.
Develops an effective strategy, in collaboration with Board leadership, to recruit new Board members. Acts as staff to the Board, creating effective presentations and overseeing the Board calendar, records, and agenda while maintaining effective relationships with all Board members.
Acts as a nonpartisan public voice on matters in which the organization has a significant interest.
Financial, Operational, and Administrative Management
The Executive Director oversees all day-to-day activities, through direct and second-level management:
Applies sound financial practices, including realistic budgeting, prudent management of financial resources, and strategic employment of assets.
Effectively manages and motivates full- and part-time staff, consultants, contractors, and volunteers within a productive and positive work environment. Reporting to the Executive Committee of the Board, the Executive Director is responsible for all human resources functions, including recruitment, employment, compensation/ benefits, and employee relations.
Forges effective external relationships with cultural and collections partners, and with Events D.C., city officials, and Apple representatives at the corporate and local levels, to ensure productive use of the physical space, preservation of its historical value and maintenance of an inclusive and welcoming environment.
Oversees development of programs, exhibits, retail, and media/communications.
Negotiates contracts and agreements, prepares official correspondence, and executes legal documents as authorized by the Board leadership.
TRAITS AND CHARACTERISTICS
The Executive Director will be a results-oriented leader who will move the organization forward by developing major new financial resources, improving efficiency of operations, and increasing community awareness. S/he will have a passion for sharing the culture, history, and diversity of the city, and will be a visible presence in the Washington, D.C. community. The successful candidate will bring exceptional organizational and persuasive communication skills to articulate compelling messages for support, and will generate enthusiasm and commitment among current stakeholders as well as new audiences. S/he will be an effective collaborator with all levels of Board, staff, volunteers, donors, members, community leaders, government officials, and partners.
Minimum 7-10 years of senior level experience in development and nonprofit management, with proven track record in fundraising, including corporate, foundation and individual donations and grant awards, and in organizational and financial management.
Collaborative style in managing teams, including dedicated specialists and professionals as well as volunteers, and in working with boards of directors, stakeholders, sponsors, and partners.
Strong verbal and written communications skills required as well as comfort with public speaking and media interviews. Skilled in networking at all levels, including government and corporate officials, and the full range of DC communities.
Proficient in all typical computer applications and equipment (MS Office) and understanding of new and emerging technologies is expected.
Additional Salary Information: Competitive compensation and benefits package is offered; central downtown location easily accessible by all Metro lines.
About Historical Society of Washington, D.C.
The Historical Society of Washington, D.C. is a community-supported educational and research organization, 501(c) (3) that collects, interprets, and shares the local history of our nation's capital in order to promote a sense of identity, place and pride, and to preserve this heritage for future generations. Founded in 1894, it serves a diverse audience from its new DC History Center, co-located with an Apple flagship store in the beautifully restored Carnegie Library at Mount Vernon Square. There the public has access to the Kiplinger Research Library, three exhibit galleries, and the DC History Center Store.
The Kiplinger Research Library’s extensive collections document more than 200 years of Washington history, and serve the interested public and school groups of all ages. The collections form the basis of public programs and workshops, such as teacher training, house histories, and graphic design inspirations, as well as the content of the exhibits. The Historical Society also publishes Washington History magazine, the only publication dedicated to new research in local history.