WITS Program Manager / Employment

October 30, 2022

Organization Name: Seattle Arts & Lectures

Organization Location: Seattle, WA

Type: Employment

Fee: Free


Organization Overview:

Mission: Seattle Arts & Lectures cultivates transformative experiences through story and language with readers and writers of all generations.

We invite you to join our fun, book-loving, social justice-driven team of 12 to fulfill the mission of SAL as our WITS Program Manager. Our youth programs include Writers in the Schools (WITS) and the Seattle Youth Poet Laureate (YPL) program. WITS matches local, professional writers with public school classrooms to inspire K-12 students to discover the power of their creative voices as they develop lifelong writing skills. Our YPL program elevates the powerful voices of local youth poets committed to community engagement, education, and equity in our region. These two programs also intersect with our public literary events which bring the most talented and thought-provoking writers of our times to speak about their work and inspire introspection, connection, and conversation in our community.

SAL offers thoughtfully curated experiences through programs that are intergenerational in nature, bolstering both emerging and established literary artists, and inviting change and new perspectives in our audience. We believe these activities are essential to continuously and courageously revitalize equity, justice, and belonging. Our work both internally and externally is guided by our core values: belonging, racial equity, transparency and trust, curiosity, and joy.

SAL values a diverse workforce and an inclusive culture in all areas of our work and culture. SAL is an equal opportunity employer. Individuals from all cultures and communities are warmly encouraged to apply. Strong candidates will bring a diverse set of skills, characteristics, and experiences, both professional and lived. SAL focuses on a holistic view of potential candidates and understanding that no single candidate will offer every desired skill and characteristic. The following offers an aspirational view of the ideal candidate profile, and we encourage applications from candidates with a wide range of experiences and backgrounds.

Position Overview:

The WITS Program Manager will join a talented cohort of Writers-in-Residence, two Youth Programs staff, and nine other SAL staff members to manage and support the programs that inspire young people all around our region to develop and share their authentic writing voices. The WITS Program Manager works with the Director of Youth Programs to implement all WITS programming. The WITS Program Manager engages with partner school teachers, professional creative writers, and communities and families throughout the year to support and celebrate the work of all WITS students throughout the region. The WITS Program Manager supports our Writers-in-Residence and public-school classroom teachers in their residencies, organizes and executes WITS public events and publications, manages the WITS Apprentice program, and manages the Spotlight Author program. The WITS Program Manager reports to the Director of Youth Programs.


All staff actively participate in SAL’s ongoing efforts to become an anti-racist organization and embody an organizational culture that supports and reinforces our inclusion, diversity, equity, & access goals. Our 2020-24 Strategic Plan and SAL’s Equity Accountability Reports are available on the SAL website under “About.” This commitment and understanding should be demonstrated throughout the performance of the WITS Program Manager’s job responsibilities and staff activities.


WITS Program Management (60%)

• In collaboration with the Director of Youth Programs (DYP), hire, train, and support a diverse, committed, and engaged cohort of Writers-in-Residence with a focus on commitment to anti-racist pedagogy, practice, and leadership, disability justice, and educational access.

• Work with DYP to plan and execute the WITS Writer-in-Residence annual retreat, regular meetings, onboarding materials and processes, and on-going feedback and professional development opportunities

• Maintain a high level of service and integrity for the 25+ sites in the WITS program by supporting classroom teachers and assisting with the development of learning goals and syllabi for residencies.

• Manage Spotlight Author visits to WITS schools, including author and school communication, as well as attending the visits.

• In collaboration with the DYP, manage contracts and residency planning with writers and schools, writer observations, school billings, and writer payroll.

• Manage professional development opportunities for WITS Writers and Teachers, including OSPI-approved teacher clock hours and support other professional development, pilot, and outreach efforts.

• Manage the WITS Writer apprentice program, WITS interns, and program volunteers.

• Contribute to evaluation strategy and consultant planning. Assist with program evaluation data collection and integrity throughout data entry process.

Publication & Celebration of Student Work (25%)

• Work with DYP and Program Coordinator to organize, plan, promote, and implement celebrations of WITS Writers’-in-Residence and WITS students’ work through events such as the WITS Year-End readings and WITS writer readings.

• Work with DYP, Program Coordinator, and WITS Writers to gather, publish, and celebrate student work throughout the year, gathering student submissions and permissions, including an annual publication, student reading, chapbooks and broadsides projects.

• Manage production of annual summer publication celebration in fall including venue communication and logistics planning, staff and volunteer recruitment and training as needed.

• Occasional evening and weekend attendance at public SAL events, supporting of WITS students and their families.

General & Public Programs Support (15%)

• Participate as part of the SAL team in SAL’s public events, WITS programming, annual fundraisers, and other SAL functions to build relationships with SAL supporters and partners to develop a comprehensive understanding of SAL’s work. Attend periodic cultivation and fundraising events, and other SAL functions as requested.

• Support DYP in advocating for the WITS program, including occasional attendance at any of the following: PTSA meetings, school functions, and community arts organization meetings. Work with public programs team on social media outreach related to WITS writers and program activities.

• Participate in SAL’s public programs and fundraising events; assist in general office duties, all staff gatherings and trainings, such as communications and equity along with other related functions as necessary.


• A passion for SAL’s mission, values, and programs

• A commitment to racial equity and social justice

• Minimum three years of experience working in education and/or arts administration

• Knowledge of K-12 education, arts education, and creative writing pedagogy

• Interest and ability to work as part of a highly collaborative team in an open-plan office and in a hybrid work environment. Must be both a self-starter and able to work under direction.

• Strong attention to detail, editing, and project management skills.

• Excellent written, oral, and interpersonal skills.

• Flexible and curious with a sense of humor.

• Working knowledge of Microsoft Office Suite required.

• Experience with PowerPoint, InDesign, database systems, and comfort with Mac OS a plus.

• Experience working with Puget Sound arts nonprofits and public-school communities a plus.


• Valid driver’s license and automobile (regular driving is required in and around the Seattle area to our partner schools)

• Evening/weekend hours required (typically 3 to 5 times per month, September to June).

• Openness to a dog-friendly work space.

• Note: Seattle Arts & Lectures is a fully vaccinated office and all medically eligible new staff members will be asked to provide proof of vaccination.


This is a 40 hours/week full-time exempt position. Salary range is $60,000 – 65,000 per year (commensurate with experience and qualifications) with a robust benefits package, including:

• Generous paid time off, including 20 vacation days/year starting your second year (15 days in year one), as well as wellness time, 3 personal days, and holidays

• 100% of medical, vision, and dental insurance, long-term disability, and group life insurance covered, including an Employee Assistance Program

• 403(b) retirement plan pre-tax distribution with a 3% gross salary match funded by SAL

• Flex time as appropriate

• Hybrid/remote schedule as appropriate with a laptop and support for some home office equipment

• Support and budget for professional development and growth


• We will begin scheduling phone interviews in early November and begin in-person interviews in mid-November.

• Finalists will be invited to a second-round of interviews with SAL’s departmental teams, and we will make an offer shortly thereafter.

• Ideally, the selected candidate will begin in early January.


• Send a resume and cover letter that details, 1.) Why you are interested and passionate about working for SAL and, in particular, managing the WITS program 2.) How your past experiences would inform your approach to supporting a vibrant and diverse cohort of WITS Writers and your work within public schools.

Please Note: Resumes submitted without a cover letter will not be considered.

• Submit applications electronically in one PDF document to salhr@lectures.org. The email subject line should be “WITS Program Manager.”

• Open until filled. For best consideration, please submit no later than 10 p.m. on October 30, 2022.

Contact Information for inquiries related to this position (email preferred):

Liz Keenan
Hiring Coordinator
206.621.2230 x22


Opportunity Website