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Executive Director - Poe Museum - Richmond, Virginia

12 Oct 2021 3:04 PM | Sue Kindred

The Poe Museum, located in Richmond, Virginia, is excited to announce its search for an Executive Director.


The Executive Director position offers the opportunity to bring and implement progressive and strategic leadership grounded in museum best practices to an established, historic, and quirky museum.  The capacity for strong, innovative, and strategic leadership should also be coupled with the hands-on management skills and staff development necessary to maintain and grow a small museum that has an international presence and a solid reputation for excellence.

In addition to fulfilling the museum’s mission to “Illuminate Poe, for everyone, evermore,” the Executive Director will focus their energy on accomplishing the goals and objectives outlined in a new strategic plan. 


The Poe Museum is a century old historic institution in the Shockoe Bottom neighborhood of Richmond, Virginia and is a repository and resource for all things related to Poe’s life, work, and influence.  The museum’s staff and Board of Directors are honored to be faithful stewards and caretakers of Poe’s legacy and to honestly share his story with the world in meeting the mission to “Illuminate Poe, for everyone, evermore.”

The museum creates a sense of belonging and community along with a rich and diverse set of experiences for its varied audiences which include Poe enthusiasts, educators, scholars, collectors, and more.

Additional information about the beginnings and history of the Poe Museum can be found at: About The Poe Museum - The Poe Museum


What We’re Looking For:

Our successful candidate will be imaginative, proactive, organized, and be able to execute across a broad range of strategic and operational initiatives and activities. This candidate will be a professional and visible leader, working closely with community leaders, other local and regional museums, donors, and the museum’s diverse audience.  Further, this candidate will be a critical thinker who is able to align staff and financial resources with the priorities outlined in the strategic plan. 

We expect this candidate to:

  • ·       Embrace all aspect of strong leadership including the development of a strong staff culture and the ability to delegate assignments that allow staff the opportunity to grow in their positions.
  • ·       Promote diversity and equality within the Museum.
  • ·       Maintain and project a professional demeanor and appearance.
  • ·       Employ creativity in achieving excellence when faced with limited staff and financial resources.

Specific Responsibilities. Our successful candidate will:

  • ·       Ensure the operational work of the museum meets its primary mission and consistently work to develop collaborative strategies to encourage growth and outreach to engage a local, national and global community represented by the museum’s diverse audiences;
  • ·       Build and nurture strategic stakeholder relationships;
  • ·       Provide the direction, guidance, integration and implementation of the organization’s short-term operating objectives, short- and long-term action and strategic plans;
  • ·       Prepare a proposed annual budget and ensure the ongoing financial health of the organization by employing sound fiscal measures and managing available resources;
  • ·       Work with the Board and the Fundraising Committee to develop, nurture, and engage funding partner relationships and identify strategies for increasing revenue and resources; identify and apply for appropriate arts-focused grant opportunities;
  • ·       Guide and direct the development of programming that meets the core mission of the museum and that engages the museum’s varied constituents, stakeholders, and audiences;
  • Enhance the reputation and image of the museum by being active and visible in the community (local, national and global) and by working closely with other professional, civic and private organizations.
  • Ensure the corporate and legal responsibilities of the organization are fulfilled; keep informed on legislation and other activities that affect the work of the museum;
  • Serve as the primary resource for helping guide the Board’s understanding of museum best practices relative to organizational operation and collections management; implement policies established by the Board of Directors;
  • Ensure the operational success of the museum which may include task-based activities that are outside the scope of the core-responsibilities listed above.

 Further, the Executive Director will:

  • ·       Report directly to the Board of Directors; but will be managed by the President of the Board.
  • ·       Hire, manage and retain qualified and competent staff necessary to effectively meet the museum’s mission including the provision of cross-training and continuing education as appropriate;
  • ·       Develop an organizational work culture, including volunteers, that is fair, equitable, ethical and is based on the organization’s guiding principles;
  • ·       Provide consistent and timely critical information to the Board of Directors or Executive Committee ensuring they have sufficient information to make informed decisions;
  • ·       Maintain organizational files and documents, including donor data, in a confidential, organized and consistent manner;
  • ·       Serve as the principal professional resource and liaison to the Board of Directors; build a dynamic and robust relationship with the Board and Board chair;
  • ·       Seek external guidance as necessary to meet the goals, objectives and mission of the Poe Museum;

Minimum Qualifications: Our successful candidate will meet the following requirements:

·       Bachelor’s degree required with a Master’s preferred, but not required, with at least 2-5 years in a management position, or an equivalent combination of education and experience with a 501(c)3 nonprofit.

·       Knowledge of museum curatorial standards and best practices.

·       Knowledge of nonprofit accounting practices.

·       Demonstrated skills as a leader with a record of successful collaboration.

·       Demonstrated experience with fundraising, development, and grant writing.

·       Experience with the successful fiscal management of a museum, museum department or similar is preferred but should not be seen as deterrent to applying.

·       General familiarity with museum collections management software and proficiency in Microsoft Office suite.

Salary and Hours This is a salaried, full-time position with some weekend and evening hours required. The starting salary will be between $45,000 and $55,000 depending on experience, with an opportunity for increases as the Museum prospers.


This posting will remain open and active until the Executive Director position is filled. To apply, please email your resume (or CV) with a cover letter outlining interest and specific qualifications to No phone calls please. Receipt of application will be acknowledged by return email and selected candidates will be called for an initial screening interview.

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