Seeks Executive Director / Employment

January 1, 1970

Organization Name: Center on Contemporary Art

Organization Location: Seattle, WA

Type: Employment

Fee: Free


Seattle’s Center on Contemporary Art is seeking an Executive Director to lead our collaborative team.  CoCA is a successful, small 38-year old art nonprofit presenting cutting edge exhibitions. We amplify important voices in contemporary art including artists from underrepresented groups.

CoCA’s diverse, cooperative Board is built on a community-focused, inclusive, consensus-driven leadership model; we seek an Executive Director whose skills dovetail with this framework.  The successful candidate will demonstrate strong fundraising experience, deep local connections, & excellent skills with organization, communication, & task execution. Arts leadership experience is a plus.  FT+Benefits; pay $60-65k depending on experience.

We support diversity at CoCA & warmly welcome women, POC, & LGBTQ+ people.  If you promote under-represented voices, strive for purpose, & thrive on task execution, please send CV & cover letter to  Feel free to email with any questions.

Job Description:  The Executive Director (ED) reports to the CoCA Board of Directors. The ED is responsible for interpreting, communicating, and executing CoCA’s mission within and beyond the organization. She/he/they will motivate, engage, and collaborate with artists, donors, members, partners, and allied organizations to increase the organization’s capacity and influence and reach a wider community. The highest priority will be the creation and stewardship of a sustainable organization that reflects the core values of CoCA as a leader of Contemporary Art culture in the PNW and beyond.


Leadership and Management: 

  • Work with the Board of Directors to ensure that the organization has a long-range strategy that achieves its mission and makes consistent progress towards its goals.

  • Supervise all key staff including volunteer staff and any contractors.

  • Provide support and leadership for key volunteers & interns.

  • Engage all Board members as active members of a working Board who have chosen tasks according to their interest and expertise.

  • Maintain high level of administrative tasks, communications, and operational systems.

  • Maintain necessary business records and documents; ensure compliance with federal, state, and local regulations.

  • Provide leadership in developing organizational and financial plans with the Board of Directors and staff, and carry out plans and policies authorized by the Board. 

  • Work at the direction of the Board to develop and implement a Strategic plan with 5-year goals and financial projections.

  • Create alignment of stakeholders through inspired implementation of the Strategic plan, ensuring organizational stability and growth.

  • Maintain an excellent working knowledge of significant developments in contemporary art.

  • Embrace diversity and inclusivity.

  • Demonstrate professionalism and integrity.

Exhibition and Programming:

  • Oversee CoCA exhibitions and programs with the support and approval of the members of the Curatorial Committee and the support & implementation of the CoCA Curatorial Lead, other staff, interns, and volunteers.

  • Maintain consistent and open communications with Curatorial Committee to ensure such programming aligns with the CoCA strategic plan, mission statement, and equity standards.

  • Ensure that the Development & Operations Manager and Curatorial Lead oversee the short and long-range calendar of exhibitions, public programs (e.g., lectures, portfolio reviews), gallery openings, and ancillary events.

  • Work with the Curatorial Lead, Curatorial Committee and Board as they conduct an annual review of the overall CoCA curatorial program and exercise their oversight to insure the program aligns with CoCA goals, capabilities, and artistic mission.

Development, Finance and Fundraising:

  • Plan and oversee all organizational fundraising to ensure progressive growth and adequate financing for all programming, current and future.

  • Manage and execute Board-approved budgets; work closely with Board Treasurer to guide the organization’s direction, planning, and actions as circumstances evolve.

  • Work directly with the Board and key staff on planning and execution of development goals.

  • Build a positive fundraising culture among the Board, staff, donors, partners, and key volunteers.

  • Nurture strong, loyal relationships with supporters, membership and cultivate potential key individual and corporate donors.

  • Plan and execute major fundraising events with Development and Operations Manager, Development/Marathon & Auction Committee, and Board support.

  • Develop and manage mission-compatible earned income opportunities through creative and innovative sponsorships, programming, content, publications, artist residencies, business and community partnerships, exhibition fees, and product sales.

Public Relations and Arts Advocacy:

  • Pursue local, regional, national, and international partnerships with other organizations, communities, and business entities that further CoCA’s objectives.

  • Increase awareness of CoCA by participating in speaking, writing, and media engagement opportunities.

  • Promote positive internal and community perception of CoCA and its strategic vision, both in the PNW and in the wider inter/national art world.

COMPENSATION: The ED position is a (40 hr/wk) permanent employee of Center on Contemporary Art (CoCA) with a salary $60,000-$65,000 (depending on experience) per annum, payable monthly. Two weeks of paid vacation time is included.

Additionally, the ED position may be eligible to receive, on a semi-annual basis, a partial or full reimbursement of properly documented expenses that he/she has incurred in the course of his/her duties as an employee, and partial or full reimbursement for the cost of an individual health insurance plan. Such reimbursement shall be considered a non-taxable employee benefit. Eligible reimbursement categories will include:

  • Expenses directly related to job functions that require presence in, and communication among, multiple locations; including but not limited to extra non-commuting mileage, tolls, and parking, mobile and home telephone charges, internet charges, and shipping fees.

  • Professional development expenses incurred in furthering the ED’s knowledge of, and capabilities within the Development world, including literature, fees, tuition for courses and seminars, and incidental and reasonable travel costs related to participation in such.

  • Individual health and/or individual dental insurance premiums paid during the effective period of the EDs employment with CoCA

The presence, size, and categorization of any reimbursement will be at the sole discretion of the CoCA Board. The Board will base its decision upon a review conducted by the Finance Committee on or before October 1, and then on or before March 1, of each year. That committee’s review will closely consider the organization’s current and projected financial status; it will also consider the ED’s performance in organizational objectives, progress towards fundraising goals, achievement of budgetary targets, and the type, nature, and size of the documented expenses incurred and submitted for reimbursement. They will share the results of this review with the Board along with a recommended reimbursement amount(s) and reimbursement categorization. These recommendations, and therefore the amount of the reimbursement payment, will be voted upon and approved by the Board at their next scheduled meeting and payable within 15 days of that approval.

Opportunity Website