Executive Director, The Drama League

New York, NY


Founded in 1916, The Drama League advances American theater by providing a lifelong artistic home for directors and a platform for dialogue with, and between, audiences. Working with the DeVos Institute of Arts Management and our committed board of directors, The Drama League recently completed its next comprehensive strategic plan. With revenues increasing and a foundation of successful programming, The Drama League is at a critical juncture in our evolution and growth. We seek a visionary, dynamic Executive Director who, in partnership with our Artistic Director, will lead the organization to the next level.

Our ideal candidate will successfully cultivate both new and established fundraising sources, expand our exposure with thorough marketing and community relations, and implement our established strategic plan to realize the vision of the board of directors and Artistic Director. The desired candidate has a history of successful leadership and teamwork in a nimble organization, a track record of fundraising, the ability to develop and implement processes, and to cultivate a performance-based culture that delivers measurable results without compromising the artistic integrity and mission focus of The Drama League.



Reporting directly to the Board of Directors and serving as Co-CEO in close partnership with the Artistic Director, the Executive Director (ED) is a full-time exempt position located in the Drama League’s center in New York City.

Responsible for the successful planning and execution of The Drama League’s financial and administrative activities, the ED partners with the Board of Directors as a principal fundraiser for the organization’s support of the mission and artistic efforts. The ED is responsible for the effective management of the Development, Finance, and Marketing staff, ensuring that financial and programmatic goals are met or exceeded. The ED works with the Artistic Director to ensure the successful implementation of the organization’s Strategic Plan, and develops significant external relationships to build new revenue, opportunities, and growth.

As a leader internally and externally of this century-old service organization, the ED is entrusted with the support of an enthusiastic board of directors, a staff of eleven nonprofit professionals (six of which are managed by the ED), and an active membership. The ED serves as partner to our longtime Artistic Director, Gabriel Stelian-Shanks, in leading the organization to expanded success after nine consecutive years of financial and programmatic growth.  This is a reinstated position as part of The Drama League’s strategic plan; it combined its ED and AD roles in 2015, but now is expanding to include two full-time leaders once again. 




Expand and diversify fundraising income, including, but not limited to, annual giving program, project-specific campaigns, institutional giving, special events, major gifts, sponsorships, and membership, through strategic and proactive donor and stakeholder engagement, that meets or exceeds benchmarks established in the organization’s strategic plan;

Proactively develop, implement, and track the performance of short- and long-term strategies for fundraising;

Partner with the Board of Directors to expand and develop their contribution to the organization, especially in the areas of new candidate identification, committee effectiveness, diversity/inclusion, and direct board support of the Annual Fund, among other priorities;

Other duties as needed.


With Artistic Director (AD), implement and oversee the successful implementation of The Drama League’s recently approved Strategic Plan;

With appropriate staff, prepare and monitor revenue/expense budgets, audits, accurate financial reportage, analysis, and data integrity;

Expand the organization’s Marketing Department with the acquisition of a new Marketing Director in FY2021;

With AD, supervise and mentor staff by providing clear expectations and regular actionable feedback, including assessment of work performance of direct reports and department staff;

With AD, administer personnel policies in compliance with current government regulations and human resources services;

Other duties as needed.


Establish a positive and beneficial working relationship with the Artistic Director as The Drama League’s co-CEO, working in tandem and in close communication.

Support an atmosphere where both the AD and ED’s clearly defined responsibilities co-exist harmoniously with their shared duties as leaders, strategic thinkers, and partners in service to the mission.

Offer unified leadership, structures, and support to the staff and volunteer Board to ensure institutional success and enhance the positive, forward-thinking work culture.



The Executive Director must be an exceptional, passionate and articulate leader with a demonstrated record of successful fundraising and staff management. The ED will enter an institutional culture typical of many small arts organizations – a dedicated staff and board wrestling with multiple priorities and finite resources – and will be tasked with shaping a performance-driven culture for all stakeholders. The ideal candidate will be committed to collaboration and teamwork. Working in a multi-tasking environment on simultaneous priorities, the ED is a superb communicator and motivator of the constituencies within and without the organization.



A bachelor’s degree (master’s degree preferred) in Arts Administration, Business Administration, Finance, or related field required; furthermore, a minimum of ten (10) years of increasing responsibility at a senior level of organizational leadership required, including management of staff. An emphasis on fundraising, preferably in an arts, nonprofit or educational institution, is necessary, with evidence of success in donor identification, cultivation, and solicitation among a variety of donor communities. Expertise in organizational management and board collaboration is essential. Strong interpersonal skills and software (Office Suite, donor software, etc.) necessary.



The Drama League offers a competitive salary, bonus opportunities, health/vision/dental insurance, generous PTO and holidays, in addition to a supportive work environment.



Please submit a cover letter including salary requirements and a professional resume demonstrating leadership and fundraising accomplishments to: EDSearch@dramaleague.org. Applications will be accepted on an ongoing basis until position is filled.  No phone calls, please.

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