Vice President for the Arts

6 days left

California, United States
Salary Not specified
May 22, 2021
Jun 20, 2021
Employment Type
Full Time

Stanford University

Search for the Vice President for the Arts

Stanford, California

Stanford University seeks a Vice President for the Arts to oversee a dynamic portfolio of key arts organizations on its campus and to create a shared sense of purpose among them. In recent years, Stanford has significantly invested in the arts by creating an Arts District and establishing the Office of the Vice President for the Arts. This role presents an opportunity for an arts leader to elevate and integrate the arts at one of the world’s premier academic and research institutions, and to build bridges and foster community across the campus, in the Bay Area, and nationally. 


Reporting to the President, the VP will collaborate across Stanford’s professional, academic, and public communities to bring forward a comprehensive, future-facing vision and plan for the arts at the university. At a time of accelerating change in and around the arts, and increasing expectations placed upon arts institutions, the VP will be entrusted with advocating for and manifesting the arts as an essential part of Stanford’s identity and mission. 


Stanford is actively implementing a recently-adopted long-range vision: Fueled by optimism, ingenuity and a sense of responsibility, we seek to accelerate our purposeful impact in the world. The VP will develop a strategy for how the arts can best contribute to that long-range vision, drawing inspiration from overarching themes developed through university analyses: 


  • First, in a society that has experienced health crises, isolation, technological mediation, economic fractures, civil unrest, and political discord, the arts can provide a way of connecting, processing, and recognizing our purpose. There are corresponding opportunities to redeploy Stanford’s human and organizational assets with a renewed focus on people, community, emotional and physical wellbeing, and engagement. 


  • Second, the arts have a specific and powerful role to play in advancing social justice and catalyzing culture change. Art can strengthen our individual and collective capacities for empathy and action, and help usher in the kinds of transformation the world needs. Artists and those who bring their works into the public arena can be leaders in helping to imagine better futures. 


  • Third, with its unique talents and resources, Stanford has a role to play in fueling the evolution of the arts and providing broad access to them, both on the campus and beyond it. Notably, Stanford can nurture new creative voices, connect the arts to various creative and scientific disciplines, and consistent with its larger mission, serve as a hub for innovation, research, and reflection around the arts. 


These themes have both programmatic and operational implications. In addition, the Vice President for the Arts will be expected to foster equitable, inclusive, healthy organizational cultures and structures that can bring meaningful artistic experiences to life. 


There is strong constituency alignment and excitement around the aforementioned themes. Stanford will be able to magnify its impact in the arts through establishing a clear intention that is right for the current moment. Continuing investment in the vibrancy and accessibility of the arts at Stanford, overseen by the VP, will enhance the university experience to the benefit of students, faculty, staff, alumni, artists, neighbors, and visitors.


More information, including the full position description and application instructions can be found at:


Regan Gough and Brett Barbour

Isaacson, Miller

1000 Sansome Street, Suite 300

San Francisco, CA  94111

Phone: 415.655.4900

Stanford University does not discriminate on the basis of race, religious creed, color, national origin, ancestry, physical or mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, marital status, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, military status, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law, in connection with any aspect of employment at Stanford.