The Connecticut ForumHartford, CT
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The Executive Director provides leadership and direction in successfully establishing and implementing organizational goals and objectives and maintaining excellence in advancing The CT Forum's mission. Working with The CT Forum Board of Directors, staff, and others, the Executive Director is responsible for fulfilling the organization's mission and vision, managing the budget, financial reporting, staff development, and overall organization health. Key organizational priorities for the Executive Director include:
• Strategy and Vision: Continue to advance a sustainable model that engages large and diverse audiences and attracts highly popular speakers. Explore strategies to migrate programs to the next generation, create experiences that people talk about, hone measurements for impact and direction, create operational efficiencies, and build upon the vision of the founders.
• Audience Growth and Community Engagement: Expand community access to CT Forum content. Increase community outreach to target broader audience participation and reach untapped audiences. With the board and staff, define community and audience, develop more community partnerships, and identify new and different ways to reach audiences. Develop and manage external relationships to connect to the community, corporations and CT Forum attendees.
The Executive Director will provide leadership, management, and oversight for the executive team and staff, serve as a key figure for community relationship building, be central to the annual fundraising, budgeting, and financial reporting processes, report to an active and engaged Board of Directors, and lead an executive team comprised of the Producer and Creative Director and the Director of Philanthropy and Corporate Giving.
Strategic Plan Implementation
Provide overall leadership and management in accomplishing strategic mission-based goals, maximizing opportunities, and ensuring the organization has the appropriate resources to be successful. Implement the current 2023-2025 strategic plan priorities and initiatives aligned around funding, audience, programming, marketing, and staff development. Provide leadership and direction in successfully establishing organizational goals and objectives and maintaining excellence in service to The CT Forum's mission.
Resource Development & Financial Management
Develop and implement a fund development plan aligned with The CT Forum's strategic and operational plans. Set strategy and tactics for fund development. Develop revenue streams, including Forum Event Consulting services and activities, grants, major gifts, and endowment. Create new opportunities for fund development and advancement; drive new initiatives and cultivate clients. Review and manage CT Forum program and grant budgets, financial reporting, and cash flow management. Work with accountants and auditors for sound financial records and reports.
Fundraising, & Donor Relationships
Play an active and direct role in fundraising. Establish sponsor and subscriber communication strategies, maintain commitments and contacts.Oversee and support staff progress in securing funding from corporate sponsors, foundations, and individual donors, season subscribers, and ticket purchasers. Bring on new funders, make new important connections, and activate known networks.
Develop and manage external relationships with The CT Forum community and attendees. Be an authentic and active presence in the community, meeting with people to help engage and unite the Hartford Community. Represent The CT Forum and its interests as lead organizational spokesperson in the community, at community high profile events, promoting The CT Forum's brand and reputation. Oversee outreach and engagement of high school students in Forum events and activities. Build and grow the audience through community engagement, marketing, branding, social media, programming, and technology. Oversee the design, promotion, and presentation of high-profile mission-based forums.
Organizational Management & Leadership
Supervise event planning and logistics for all CT Forum produced events. Hire and evaluate staff, oversee payroll, employee benefits, personnel issues, and reporting requirements. Establish policies, procedures, and practices to encourage staff retention, stability, and performance. Continue to develop an inclusive work environment that supports effective decision-making and collaboration. Utilize and implement technologies to streamline operations and increase social media presence and audience engagement. Serve as the key liaison with The CT Forum Board of Directors, work groups, Advisory Board, and others as determined. Oversee all contracts and agreements, including those with The Bushnell Performing Arts Center, speakers, consultants, insurance coverage, office leasing, equipment agreements, special events, program activities, etc.
Ideal candidates will meet most if not all of the following qualifications, experience and/or skills:
• Leadership: Creative and visionary leadership with demonstrated experience in fundraising, budgeting, organizational management, and programming. Experience working with nonprofit organizations and a board of directors is helpful.
• Passion for the Mission. Deep interest in civil dialogue and an understanding of current events and culture. A finger on the pulse of what's on people's minds, what people are reading about, worrying about, talking about, and laughing about is critical to successfully carrying out the mission of The CT Forum.
• Communication: Strong communication skills, both verbal and written, at multiple levels and with a variety of audiences; comfort and interest in being an active and visible face of The CT Forum.
• Community Building and Engagement: Experience with grassroots initiatives --locally or in an analogous region-- working with people from different backgrounds; diversity, equity and inclusion training, a plus. An expressed interest in community engagement.
• Audience Development: Experience with the media and/or events landscape, entertainment partnerships and collaborations, and/or cultural and arts education. Familiarity with producing content and an audience experience.
The Connecticut Forum is an Equal Opportunity Employer and provides opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability or genetics. In addition to federal law requirements, The Connecticut Forum complies with applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment.