MRAC Job Opportunity: Program Director


The Metropolitan Regional Arts Council is hiring a full-time Program Director.

Application Deadline: February 24, 2020
Reports To: Executive Director
Job Type: Full Time, exempt, eligible for benefits
Salary: $55,000

MRAC welcomes current qualified employees and applicants to apply for this position regardless of their race, color, religion, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, marital status, national origin, status as a documented alien, or status as a qualified individual with a disability or protected veteran.

Organization Summary:

The MRAC is a nonprofit organization serving formal and informal groups with annual arts programming expenses of less than $400,000, and artists in Anoka, Carver, Dakota, Hennepin, Ramsey, Scott and Washington counties. The MRAC is one of eleven regional arts councils throughout the state of Minnesota. The regional arts councils are funded by an appropriation from the Minnesota Legislature, the Legacy Amendment Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund, and by The McKnight Foundation.

MRAC’s mission is to increase access to the arts in 7-county metropolitan area communities by providing information, organizational support and grants. It is MRAC’s vision that artists, arts organizations and arts activities thrive; that art is integrated into the fabric and identity of every community; and that public value of the arts is understood, acknowledged and acted upon by community members, leaders and policy makers. The organization’s goals are to:

  • Provide grant applicants and other constituents with clear, thorough, prompt and respectful service and assistance
  • Maintain transparent decision-making processes and accessible public information
  • Serve constituents with programs and services that reflect MRAC’s mission and achieve its vision

Position Summary:

The primary purpose of the Program Director position is to develop, deliver and evaluate programs and services designed to provide project grant support to constituent arts organizations in the 7-county metropolitan area. Specific program accountability will be determined depending on constituent and/or organizational needs; and may include special projects or one-time initiatives.


  1. Primary assigned annual grant programs for applicant groups in the 7 county metropolitan area (70%)
    This role will be responsible for the first round of Arts Project Support in FY21, and then assigned annual programs will shift within the Program Director team.

    • Plan, program, deliver, administer and evaluate services to assigned annual program and accountability areas.  This includes, but is not limited to:
      • Improving programs as needed
      • Ongoing review of program guidelines
      • Program outreach
      • Organize and teach Application Workshops
      • Provide one-on-one grant writing assistance and feedback
      • Review applications for eligibility and completeness
      • Assist in panel recruitment
      • Lead panelist orientation sessions
      • Panel facilitation and support
      • Coordinate Board Panel Liaison reading selections and provide support to board members throughout the panel process.
    • Provide support to other Program Directors, by reviewing grant applications and facilitating panel meetings.
    • Plan, forecast and manage expenses within program budgets.
    • Maintain spreadsheet, calendar and database for project tracking and management.
    • Develop, plan and lead engagement events and activities for applicants and potential applicants.
  2. Advocacy (10)%
    • Participate in opportunities to promote the arts and artists to students, the general public, public officials, legislators, and others as deemed important and necessary
    • Possess and expand personal and organizational knowledge of small arts organizations, community groups, and individual artists involved in or interested in initiating arts programming throughout the 7-county metro region, specifically those groups who are constituents of the director’s specific geographic and programmatic accountability areas.
    • Identify and nurture relationships with constituents. Be available to constituents within their own communities as well as through office-based services.
    • Facilitate connections between community resources and constituents that will enhance constituent knowledge, experience, growth, leadership and/or capacity.
  3. Planning/Evaluation (10)%
    • Engage in planning and evaluation activities on behalf of MRAC to ensure that programs and services continue to serve the needs of constituents.
    • Assist constituents in fully utilizing MRAC’s programs and services.
      • Understand the developmental, organizational and programmatic needs of constituent groups and artists to ensure MRAC’s programs and services are relevant and effective.
      • Work as part of a staff team to ensure that MRAC programs and service areas are well planned, organized and implemented to achieve MRAC’s mandate, mission, and organizational goals.
      • Communicate to staff in regards to the trends and issues of the field to help guide MRAC’s grant-making policies and procedures.
    • Prepare and present preliminary and final grant round activity reports for MRAC staff and board of directors including presenting at board meetings.  Review final funding recommendations for each grant fund before board approval with Executive Director.
      • Prepare grant round activity reports for staff and board of directors
      • Prepare funder report
      • Overall program evaluation
  4. Other Related Duties as Assigned  (10)%
    • Participate in and assist facilitating IDEA (Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, Accessibility) meetings and other ad hoc committees as assigned.
    • Participate in strategic planning meetings, and development of work plan to implement strategic plan.
    • Provide backup to receptionist to answer phones.
    • Participate in weekly staff meetings.

Qualifications: MRAC is seeking candidates that are committed to a culture of inclusion, diversity, equity and accessibility (IDEA) and that understands the complexities of intersectional identities and needs.

Required Skills, Knowledge and Ability

  • Bachelor’s degree and at least three years program or organizational management experience in an arts, nonprofit, academic or business environment, or an equivalent combination of education and/or experience to total seven years.
  • Paid or volunteer experience in three or more of the following areas: finance and operations, development, strategic planning, audience development, arts education, arts production or presentation, communications, volunteer management, and/or board relations.
  • Computer proficiency, including use of email, database, spreadsheet, presentation, word processing, calendaring, google research, and web page applications.
  • Ability to effectively communicate both verbal and written thoughts, ideas, and facts. Writes and presents information in a clear, concise and accurate way.
  • Ability to be facilitative, not proscriptive, in style – nimble in working with groups of many styles at various stages of development.
  • Experience working with diverse communities. Demonstrated respect for cultural inclusion, commitment to racial equity, the ability to be objective and supportive, a strong commitment to client service and relations are essential.
  • Experience managing a budget, with ability to interpret written and financial information, and analyze data to support conclusions.
  • Ability to read high volume of materials.

Preferred Skills, Knowledge and Ability

  • Courses or advanced degree in business, arts administration, arts education, nonprofit or grants management.
  • Knowledge of, or experience in a variety of artistic disciplines.
  • Experience in developing and presenting training.
  • Project management skills.
  • Prior experience serving on a grants panel or administering grant programs.
  • Computer experience with Excel, Foundant, Filemaker Pro, Keynote, Word, WordPress, Acrobat, Google email, research and calendar.
  • Experience in managing budgets between $680,000 and $1,500,000.

To apply:

Interested candidates should send a cover letter, resume and contact information for three professional references to Becky Franklin, at by February 24, 2020.

The position will remain open until filled. *Note: all finalists will be required to undergo a successful background screening prior to being hired.

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