The Omaha Symphony, one of the finest professional ensembles in the Midwest and resident orchestra at Omaha’s highly acclaimed Holland Performing Arts Center, invites applications and nominations for the position of President and Chief Executive Officer, available in the summer of 2018.
With the mission “to enrich people’s lives through the exhilarating experience of live orchestral music,” the Omaha Symphony offers six distinct concert series and a wide array of education and community engagement programs, run-out concerts, tours, and special events for thousands of people of all ages throughout the region. The Orchestra’s series of MasterWorks, Symphony Pops, Symphony Rocks, Movies, and Family Concerts are performed in the 1,965-seat concert hall of the Holland Performing Arts Center, an architectural and acoustic marvel in the heart of downtown.
Each season, the Omaha Symphony reaches more than 30,000 students throughout the state and region with an innovative and nationally recognized music education curriculum designed for pre-school through high school. The Orchestra partners with social service agencies, arts groups, and academic organizations, including Boys Town, El Museo Latino, Omaha Salvation Army Kroc Center, Omaha Area Youth Orchestras, Omaha Conservatory of Music, Creighton University, UNO, Temple Israel, and the Joslyn Art Museum.
The Omaha Symphony has a 20-member Board of Directors that includes top corporate and community leaders. The annual operating budget is $8.2 million, and the endowment currently exceeds $25 million. A staff of 24 full- and part-time employees manages the Orchestra’s activities. The Omaha Symphony partners with Omaha Performing Arts for certain financial, administrative, and box office functions. The Omaha Symphony performs a 38-week season. Its 70 members include a core of 42 full-time musicians and 28 part-time musicians, all of whom work under a collective bargaining agreement. Thomas Wilkins, who has been Music Director of the Omaha Symphony since 2005, announced that he will step down at the end of the 2020-21 Season, when he will become Music Director Emeritus.
The next President & CEO will join the Omaha Symphony as the Orchestra prepares to celebrate its centennial in 2021. S/he will have the opportunity to chart a course for the Omaha Symphony as it begins a second century of engaging audiences of all ages with concerts, education programs, and community activities in Omaha and throughout the state of Nebraska. S/he will join an organization with a Board that provides excellent leadership and stewardship in a community that values its arts and cultural organizations. S/he will provide leadership as the Omaha Symphony recruits its next music director. S/he will be able to build from a strong financial base to reach a new and greater level of artistic achievement, audience excitement, and philanthropic support.
The President & CEO will join a thriving arts, cultural, and business community in a city that consistently ranks among the very best places in the country to live, work, and play.
The President and Chief Executive Officer provides the leadership, vision, and impetus that enable the Omaha Symphony to fulfill its mission and achieve its goals for artistic excellence, sustainability, and community engagement. S/he manages the human and material resources of the Omaha Symphony Association to ensure the overall financial health and strength of the organization.
The President & CEO is responsible and accountable for all areas and aspects of the Orchestra’s operations, including: strategic planning; artistic administration; fundraising; marketing; public relations; education; concert production; media; orchestra relations; finance management; human resources; administration; and community engagement.
The President & CEO is the visible representative, articulate spokesperson, and passionate advocate for the Omaha Symphony throughout the community. S/he cultivates, nurtures, and sustains positive and productive relationships with the philanthropic community; arts and cultural organizations; educational institutions; government agencies; and other community organizations.
The President takes a leadership role in fundraising, including donor identification, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship of gifts. S/he provides guidance and support to the fundraising efforts of the Board. S/he provides leadership and oversight to a high caliber professional staff. S/he fosters an environment that allows orchestra musicians, conductors, and guest artists to do their best work. S/he ensures that programming and performances are designed to attract a broad and diverse audience, expand the Omaha Symphony’s patron base, and provide an excellent concert-going experience.
The President & CEO is an active and visible participant in the life of the Omaha community. S/he interacts with and motivates multiple external stakeholders and constituencies and works collaboratively with leaders of area arts and cultural organizations. S/he expands the leadership role and reputation of the Omaha Symphony throughout the region.
The ideal candidate will be a visionary not-for-profit leader with successful experience as a senior executive in the performing arts and a strong working knowledge of music and orchestras. S/he will have the proven ability to set an institutional agenda, build consensus, and lead a diverse constituency to achieve organizational goals and objectives. S/he will be a passionate advocate for symphony orchestras and the music they play. S/he will be able to speak and write persuasively about the value and importance of the Omaha Symphony.
The successful candidate will have a proven track record for effective annual and endowment fundraising. S/he will be a disciplined financial manager with a record for achieving positive financial results. S/he will have the demonstrated ability to build an organization’s brand, increase audience, and develop customer loyalty. S/he will be creative and entrepreneurial in pursuing new revenue opportunities to support organizational growth and development.
The successful candidate will have the demonstrated ability to work effectively with a music director, orchestra musicians, and other creative and performing artists to achieve artistic goals. S/he will have the proven ability to negotiate and work with professional musicians in a collective bargaining environment. S/he will understand the impact of financial and operating decisions on artistic development. S/he will have the musical knowledge needed to lead the organization in achieving its long-term goals for artistic expansion and pursuit of artistic excellence.
The successful candidate will be a person of integrity, high energy, and good humor who respects and encourages those qualities in others. S/he will be creative, curious, and persistent. S/he will have experience that demonstrates strong interpersonal skills and the ability to work effectively with multiple constituencies. The successful candidate will be able to manage multiple deadlines and competing priorities. S/he will have an abiding respect for those who give their time, energy, and resources to support the Omaha Symphony.
Compensation, including benefits, is competitive and commensurate with qualifications and experience.
Please prepare a cover letter that describes your specific interest in the Omaha Symphony and outlines your qualifications for the position. Please submit with a resume, salary history or requirements, and contact information for at least three professional references. Electronic submissions are requested. All applications will be treated as confidential and references will not be contacted without the candidate’s knowledge and agreement.
Please send materials to:
Omaha Symphony – President & CEO
c/o Catherine French Group
2500 Q Street NW, Suite 623
Washington, DC 20007
Please submit material in Adobe PDF or Microsoft Word format The Omaha Symphony Association is an equal opportunity employer.