MRAC is Growing & Hiring: Program Director

Title: Program Director
Reports To: Executive Director
Percent Time: 100%
Status: Full-time, exempt, eligible for benefits
Salary: $65,000 annually
Location: Fully remote, with potential for in-person activities in the Twin Cities Metro.
Deadline: Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis through June 30, 2021.

MRAC welcomes qualified 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. Individuals who are Black, Indigenous, People of Color, People with Disabilities, and/or Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, Asexual/Agender, Two-Spirit (LGBTQIA2+) are encouraged to apply.

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 that 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. 

Position Summary: The Program Director position is responsible for carrying out grant programs and services from beginning to end to constituents in the 7-county metropolitan area including the development, delivery, reporting and evaluation. Specific program accountability will be determined depending on constituent and/or organizational needs; and may include special projects or one-time initiatives. 

We are looking for someone that can learn quickly, has strong administrative skills, values relationship building, and is adaptable in a learning and changing environment. Strong candidates can work independently and work collaboratively with staff to develop strategies to advance equity in the grant process.


  • Implementation of annual grant programs for applicant groups in the 7-county metropolitan area (70%)
    • Program Directors work as a team on all MRAC grant programs and services.  This includes, but is not limited to:
      • Providing grant workshops to inform constituents about grant opportunities. 
      • Providing one-to-one grant services 
      • Review applications for eligibility and completeness
      • Assist in panel recruitment
      • Co-Lead panelist orientation sessions with Panel Manager
      • Panel facilitation and support
      • Improving programs as needed
      • Ongoing review of program guidelines
      • Program outreach and engagement
    • Provide support to other Program Directors as needed
    • Maintain spreadsheet, calendar and database for project tracking and management.
    • Develop, plan and lead engagement events and activities for applicants and potential applicants.
  • Advocacy (5)%
    • 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.
  • 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 the staff team.
      • Prepare grant round activity reports for staff and board of directors
      • Overall program evaluation
  • Meetings and thought partnership  (15)%
    • Participate in weekly staff meetings. 
    • Participate in weekly Program Director meetings. 
    • Participate in monthly board meetings. 
    • Participate in strategic planning meetings, and development of work plan to implement biennial plan and strategies.

Our Culture: The MRAC board and staff is made up of artists, arts and cultural leaders, and community members that are committed to developing an organizational culture and practices that promote equity and accessibility in our funding system. We do this through a highly collaborative process that requires every staff member to contribute to the analysis and strategic direction of our work, as well as carrying out the programmatic and administrative responsibilities of the daily work. We operate within a culture of trust, respect and critical discourse that keeps us evolving and relevant to the changing needs of our community.    

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

  • At least five years of program or organizational management experience in an arts, nonprofit, academic or business environment;
  • 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;
  • Project management – ability to see a project through from beginning to end; 
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills;
  • Comfortable facilitating groups; 
  • 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 constituent service and relations are essential;
  • Experience managing a budget, with ability to interpret written and financial information, and analyze data to support conclusions and;
  • Ability to read a high volume of materials.

Preferred Skills, Knowledge and Ability

  • Knowledge of, or experience in a variety of artistic disciplines.
  • Experience in developing and presenting training.
  • Prior experience serving on a grants panel or administering grant programs.
  • Computer experience with Excel, Foundant, Filemaker Pro, Powerpoint, Word, WordPress, Acrobat, Google email, and calendars.
  • Experience in managing budgets between $680,000 and $1,500,000.

Employee Benefits: We value our employees and care about  their well-being as part of the overall health of the organization. 

  • $65,000 salary;
  • Employer-provided iMac, MacBook, and related technology;
  • Reimbursement for working-from-home expenses, including monthly phone, internet, and utilities;
  • 90% subsidized medical and dental insurance monthly premiums for the employee; 65% subsidized medical and dental insurance premiums for dependents;
  • 403b Retirement Savings Plan with a 10% match;
  • Flexible Savings Accounts for dependent care and health;
  • Life, ADD, and LTD insurance – 100% subsidized monthly premiums;
  • Flexible work from home practices;
  • Paid family and medical leave;
  • Paid holidays, Vacation, Earned Sick and Safe Time, and Personal Time Off;
  • A professional development annual allowance;
  • An outreach annual allowance to attend constituent events.

To apply: Interested candidates should send a cover letter, resume, and contact information and three professional references to Director of Administration Becky Franklin at

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis through June 30, 2021. Interviews will take place in July. A decision and offer will be made July 30, 2021.


Skip to content
%d bloggers like this: