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President and Chief Financial Officer

California Humanities
California, United States
$175,000.00 - $180,000.00
Closing date
Dec 15, 2022

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Position Type
Employment Type
Full Time

California Humanities seeks an inspiring Chief Executive Officer with the curiosity, imagination
and energy to help define the organization’s next chapter, and lead its work to greater impact.
While embracing the richness of the more traditionally-defined humanities disciplines, the
position allows the CEO to stretch and envision the humanities as fertile ground for bold
thinking, for new ideas, and essential for helping individuals and groups navigate challenge and change. The CEO should bring a thoughtful willingness to:
- Advance a humanities-driven approach to addressing a broad array of urgent societal
issues, such as public health, social justice, civic engagement and climate change;
- Explore how issues of power, equity and diversity overlap with California Humanities’
giving policies and practices;
- See support of the humanities as essential to giving voice to the incredible communities
and diverse cultural traditions in each distinct region across the entire state.

Such exploration is already reflected in California Humanities’ creative range of funding
initiatives and public programs. In fact, a primary strength of the organization lies in its ability
to respond to contemporary issues with deep engagement. However, California Humanities
now seeks a leader with the strategic ability to push the work further – evolving the vision and
programs into an organization even better prepared to embody its values and to meet this
critical societal moment.

The organization currently has a budget of $4.5 million, a staff of ten, and a passionate board of cultural leaders from across the state. With an expansive view of California – its people, places and promise -- the CEO will represent California Humanities in every region across the state, and beyond, giving voice to the organization’s purpose, encouraging partnerships and
collaborations that advance the organization’s mission, and ensuring California Humanities is
seen as an important resource for all.

It is important that within the first year, the Chief Executive Officer:
- Work to thoroughly understand California Humanities – its mission and values, history,
culture, programs, operations, partners, stakeholders and potential;
- Gain the confidence of the Board and staff, forging relationships of trust and
cooperation that continue to bring forth their best efforts and talents;
- Assess California Humanities’ structure – ensuring that staff are well-positioned,
operations are efficient, and programs are focused, relevant and mission-aligned;
- Thoroughly understand the structure, policies and requirements of the National
Endowment for the Humanities – California Humanities largest funder – advancing key
relationships. Prepare for, and oversee the NEH’s 5-year assessment, scheduled for
October 2023;
- Cultivate solid relationships with elected officials at the local, state and national levels,
prioritizing efforts to sustain the support of California senate and assembly members;
Maintain a strong presence in Washington, DC at the annual Humanities on the Hill;
- With a commitment to regional equity and a keen listening ear, proactively engage key
partners across the state – humanities practitioners, artists, community leaders and
others – learning about their needs, interests, and ideas on how to advance California
Humanities’ work;
- Become active in the Federation of State Humanities Councils, the national membership
organization of state councils; and
- Operationalize California Humanities’ equity values statement (found under “Equity at
the Heart of Humanities” at Lead and advance the deep institution-wide
exploration currently underway on what cultural and racial equity mean both for
California Humanities’ internal culture (staff, board, policies, and operations), and also
as a lens for its external work (grantmaking, programs, communications, and advocacy).

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