Boston Court Pasadena→ Pasadena, California, United States
About the Opportunity
Boston Court Pasadena in Pasadena, California seeks its next Executive Director to partner with Artistic Director Jessica Kubzansky in leading a company that American Theatre magazine described as a “small but powerful theatre in Pasadena [that] has become a national new-play force.” Marking its 20th Anniversary in 2023, Boston Court is an intimate performing arts center that has much to celebrate: a history of adventurous, boundary-breaking theatre productions; richly eclectic music programming featuring some of the most exciting contemporary artists, rotating visual art, and a state of the art and welcoming home situated in one of southern California’s most diverse and desirable cities.
Like most arts organizations, Boston Court suspended in-person performances for over a year in the height of the pandemic, offering live and recorded virtual programming in music, theatre, and engagement, and leaning into work that could be accomplished virtually, such as deepening their new play development programs. The company also spent significant time investing in anti-racist training for board and staff and developing a thoughtful and exciting strategic plan. The resulting plan reinvigorated the company’s mission, vision and values and articulates a strategy for the next three to five years that will set the stage for Boston Court to invest deeply in its mission, act on its values, and deepen its role as central to the cultural life of Pasadena, the San Gabriel Valley, and the Greater Los Angeles region.
In order to accomplish these goals, Boston Court is committed to developing the strategies required to grow company resources – in staff and in required revenue – to a level reflective of the actual need to fulfill the mission. The next Executive Director will be the leader of this initiative, and join Kubzansky as a partner in guiding the board and staff in implementing the plan while also providing leadership in support of the immediate needs of the organization. The ideal candidate will share the passion and the vision for the future of Boston Court, be excited by the opportunity to advance a respected small organization to the next level, and will bring the skills and experience necessary to build the financial foundation to support the vision in the coming years.
About Boston Court Pasadena
Boston Court Pasadena is located on the unceded lands of the Tongva, Gabrielino, and Kizh peoples, specifically the lands of the Hahamog’na band of the Tongva tribe. The company honors and uplifts these still-enduring communities and is grateful for their stewardship of these lands. Boston Court sees this land acknowledgment as a starting point for their commitment to deeper engagement with local indigenous communities.
Boston Court Pasadena opened its doors in 2003 after philanthropist Z. Clark Branson decided to give back to the Pasadena community that fostered his love of the arts from a young age. Branson built a state-of-the-art facility that includes a 99-seat Main Stage and a 70-seat flexible space. A non-profit entity (The Theatre at Boston Court d/b/a Boston Court Pasadena) was created and charged with maintaining the facility as well as programming and funding its operations.
In an average pre-Covid year, Boston Court produced a season of more than 100 exciting performances in theatre and music, including an Emerging Artists Series and a New Play Reading Festival. It also showcases rotating visual art exhibits that complement the themes generated by the music and theatre programming.
BOSTON COURT PASADENA’S MISSION/VISSION/VALUES
Boston Court creates and nurtures innovative, boundary-pushing art that invokes the power of collective imagination to illuminate our common humanity.
Expanding our capacity for empathy and change.
We make boundary-breaking, never-before-seen art that you can’t find anywhere else in Southern California. We embrace out-of-the-box thinking and seek to share deeply inventive and original creations that may redefine the form.
We lead with warmth, humor, and snacks*. We honor the unique, quirky individuality of all the people we have the privilege of being in community with. We want everyone to feel at home and creatively completely free to play.
We seek to create unexpected and meaningful connections between people and artforms. We want you to resonate deeply with a story totally different from your own, to feel empathy for someone you never thought you could, to meet new cultures and be intrigued with what you find there. We want to make art that builds bridges, and that demonstrates that art is for everyone, most especially you.
We believe that working together makes better communities and better art. We believe that everyone, no matter their positionality, has value and great ideas. We celebrate and lean into our differences because many perspectives are so much richer than a single perspective, and it results in vibrantly complex art.
We believe in the power of relationships inside and outside our walls. We believe arts institutions have an obligation to be essential civic partners. We strive to be a vital hub to our neighbors, and to build authentic and mutually meaningful partnerships.
We endeavor to be actively anti-racist and fight for change within our industry and our community. We will not tolerate discrimination, harassment, microaggressions, or any other form of oppressive behavior at our institution, and we will hold those who commit that behavior accountable. We will be proactive in ensuring all lived experiences are honored and celebrated, and if we fall short we will listen and adjust.
OUR ARTISTIC ETHOS
We’re passionate about the heightened, the lyrical, the never-seen-before, the boundary-breaking. We’re drawn to art that excavates the depth of human existence or dances in and out of ineffable wonder. We fall for the imaginative, the impossible, the incandescent. We love the absurd. We swoon for the cerebral. We bow down to heartbreak and humor, especially when we don’t see them coming. Show us the magic of what’s real and the tangibility of what’s ethereal.
Learn more about our anti-racism commitments here.
Boston Court Announces 20th Anniversary Season.
Meet the staff at Boston Court Pasadena.
More information about Boston Court Pasadena can be found here.
ABOUT PASADENA, CALIFORNIA
Less than 20 minutes from downtown Los Angeles, Pasadena is a rich and vibrant arts and cultural community and is home to a wide array of not-for-profit organizations. In addition to arts and cultural institutions like Boston Court, Pasadena is home to the Rose Bowl, California Institute of Technology (Caltech), and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Despite being within a short public transit ride or drive to LA’s cultural hub, it maintains a small-town feel, with easy access to the mountains (5 minutes) or the beach (45 minutes), charming historic neighborhoods, and a lively old town with great restaurants and shops. From Altadena in the north to Alhambra in the South, the San Gabriel Valley is a culturally rich and extremely diverse area, welcoming people from a wide array of backgrounds.
Some useful links to learn more:
Visit the city of Pasadena website.
Music and theater in Pasadena.
In the top ten healthiest places to live in the U.S., and other rankings.\
The Executive Director reports to the Board of Directors and works in close partnership with the Artistic Director as co-leaders of the institution. Supervising three direct reports (Development Manager, Marketing & Communications Manager, and General Manager), the Executive Director’s primary responsibilities will be in the following areas:
Organizational Leadership & Strategic Vision
- In partnership with the Artistic Director serve as the executive leadership of Boston Court Pasadena, collaborating on a stewardship model for the company that centers the art and programs of the company, while building organizational capacity and sustainability through a commitment to artistic innovation and excellence; equity, inclusion, access and anti-racism; financial health; and attention to community connection.
- In collaboration with the Board of Directors, the Artistic Director and the company’s management team, align annual business strategies with the company goals as articulated in the strategic plan.
- Engage and mentor the Development and Marketing leaders, with active participation in revenue-generating strategies and activities, leading the staff to hit their annual revenue goals.
- Work closely with the General Manager to track and support facilities, technical and operational needs and challenges; stay abreast of finance/accounting activities and reports; and ensure excellence of audience and community experiences.
- Lead company communication practices that ensure that key stakeholders in all areas of the organization – staff, board and others – are well-versed in annual operations plans and long-term goals progress.
Resource Development & Board Engagement
- Develop and lead annual and multi-year plans for revenue streams that will achieve financial growth as articulated in the strategic plan, including:
- In the next two to three years, grow revenue levels to match the current costs of producing a season in keeping with the robust programming of Boston Court pre-pandemic
- Develop a revenue generating strategy that not only keeps pace with actual costs, but provides growth opportunities for expanding programming and community engagement activities
- Maintain direct personal engagement in major gift cultivation and solicitation for annual funds as well as capital needs and reserves
- Take an active role in marketing and branding strategy and activities with the marketing and communications manager in support of sales and rental revenues, as well as messaging and branding clarity in support of contributed income and community awareness.
- With board leadership, work to deepen engagement of the board, creating opportunities to grow into an even stronger and more impactful group in support of the work of Boston Court Pasadena. Collaborate with board leadership to assess and further develop current board capacities (included but not limited to financial capacity, community engagement, anti-racism practice, and audience ambassadorship).
Culture and Community
- In partnership with the Artistic Director and the Board of Directors, oversee and model Boston Court’s mission, vision and values in all artistic, engagement, and community programming operations and relationships.
- Co-lead an organizational culture that prizes collaboration, innovation, mutual respect, and creative problem solving—all while centering the artistic quality and financial responsibility needed to support these values.
- Represent Boston Court Pasadena as a civic leader, maintaining and building relationships with other leaders from the arts, cultural and education organizations, government and business sectors of the city, in line with Boston Court Pasadena’s role as a significant cultural asset in Pasadena and the strategic goal of deeper engagement with the local community.
- Provide leadership for scaffolding the necessary conversations, training, and evaluation of progress to ensure that company goals around diversity, equity, inclusion and anti-racism are kept in focus in the midst of multiple priorities.
Skills and experience:
- The ability and desire to work in a collaborative partnership with a co-executive leader; and the ability to engage in productive problem solving as a team while also being a decisive leader in areas of direct responsibility.
- A successful track record developing and growing revenue streams through fundraising and relationship development initiatives that connect patrons to the mission of the organization, expanding lasting connections with engaged supporters eager to invest in Boston Court Pasadena.
- Demonstrated leadership skills in leading a larger team who carry distinct areas of expertise and responsibility, while fostering collaboration among all staff members needed to effectively and efficiently fulfill the organization’s needs.
- Strong non-profit financial literacy, with the ability to lead budget creation, understand forecasting models, and ensure accuracy of tracking and reporting.
- Understanding of the unique and eclectic model of programming at Boston Court, as a producing organization, a presenter, and a community resource and venue.
- A demonstrated commitment to and fluency with equity, diversity, inclusion, access and anti-racism work, and a dedication to staying abreast of best practices around creating equity and access and applying them to the work of running an arts institution.
- Experience in or demonstrated understanding of the position of an executive in a non-profit organization, reporting to a Board of Directors holding the organization in trust for the community.
- Experience managing competing priorities in complex, often fast-paced settings.
- Strong and persuasive communication skills, with the authenticity to effectively inspire excitement for Boston Court Pasadena across a range of constituents, from board and staff to audiences and the larger community (arts/business/government/education).
- Knowledge of and experience in the greater Los Angeles area would be a significant asset to bring to the position.
Qualities and Characteristics:
- Has a genuine love for new work, innovative art makers, building meaningful relationships in community, and pushing artistic boundaries.
- Passionate about bringing innovative ideas to capacity building, with out-of-the-box thinking for ways to strategically grow the institution and be an effective ambassador of the organization.
- Has an appreciation for the legacy of Boston Court Pasadena, and its unique place in the arts ecology of the city.
- Organized and attentive to deadlines and immediate needs of operations, but also maintains long-term focus to support the vision of the strategic plan.
- Holds an understanding that change brings occasional discomfort but can lead through those times with the larger goal in mind.
- Has an open and inquisitive mind, with a keen desire and ability to listen, and knows that this kind of work requires humor, kindness, and persistence.
- Enjoys being an active team member with eagerness to roll up the sleeves and participate in and support an exciting range of activities and events.
- Ability to build trust and loyalty with multiple stakeholder groups: staff, artists, donors, and the larger community in which the organization lives: in Pasadena, in Southern California, and with the national field.
Not sure you meet 100% of our qualifications?
Research shows that men apply for jobs when they fulfill an average of 60% of the criteria. Yet, women and other people who are systematically marginalized tend only to apply if they meet every requirement. If you believe that you could excel in this role, we encourage you to apply.
We are dedicated to considering a broad array of candidates, including those with diverse workplace experiences and backgrounds. So, whether you’re returning to work after a gap in employment, simply looking to transition, or taking the next step in your career path, we will be glad to have you on our radar.
Annual salary of $120,000, with a benefits package including medical, dental and vision plans; retirement account available; generous PTO/vacation/holidays allocations; and free parking!
The search for the Executive Director is being conducted on behalf of Boston Court Pasadena by Tom O’Connor Consulting Group, a New York-based executive search and consulting firm specializing in the arts and culture industries. Cynthia Fuhrman, Vice President/Executive Search, is leading the search process, reporting to a board appointed search committee.
Please use your cover letter to tell us about what you hope to bring to this role, and how your background and experience responds to the desired skills and qualities.
The priority application deadline for this search is March 10, 2023. Applications received by this date will be given priority consideration. While we will still accept and consider applications received after this date, we encourage you to apply as early as possible for the best chance at being considered for the position. Please note that meeting the priority deadline does not guarantee an interview.
To apply, visit the online application and submit your materials.
Your cover letter should include relevant experience, including any direct experience you’ve had with similar roles and institutions.
No phone calls, please.
Boston Court Pasadena
Pasadena, California, United States
Job Categories: Theatre. Job Types: Full-Time. Job Tags: arts center, director, executive director, non-profit, and performing arts. States: California.