Live Arts is hiring.

Click here to download the job description as a PDF.

Executive Director

In a dedicated performance space nestled in the heart of the city’s downtown, Live Arts has remained true to its mission of “forging theater and community.” Whether presenting a compelling season of plays and musicals, welcoming hundreds of children to its summer camps and education classes, providing space for playwrights to develop their work, or ushering in Mardi Gras with music, food, parades and costumes, Live Arts is Charlottesville’s hub for creativity, theater education, connecting and celebrating. Live Arts of Charlottesville VA will celebrate its 30th year next season. 

This season, we are in our second year of highlighting the work of playwrights who are traditionally underrepresented – people of color and women. Subscription sales have never been higher, and the stories have never been richer.  To further its mission, Live Arts is engaged in an ongoing conversation in our community addressing issues of diversity, equity and inclusion – including stories from those whose voices are not traditionally heard.

Inside of a Strategic Plan spanning the next 5 years, Live Arts is committed to engaging our community, pursuing equity and representation, developing the human and financial resources necessary to include all, and be a home for those pursuing personal creativity, intellectual expression and the pleasure of being part of an artistic team.

The staff at Live Arts consists of 7 full time and 5 part time positions. Our 29th season began on Friday, October 4, and presents seven full mainstage productions, including two musicals. Live Arts is unique in that all artistic talent is volunteer – no performers or designers are paid, making this a truly volunteer-driven community theater. Production standards are high and volunteers take pride in their ability to work together, whether as actors, directors, designers, technical crew or front of house, to provide theater goers with an experience that rivals those of our professional contemporaries.  More information about Live Arts’ season, education programs, staff and events can be found on our website –

Live Arts’ Board of Directors has determined that the leadership structure best suited to fulfilling on its mission and Strategic Plan is that of an Executive Director reporting to the Board and an Artistic Director reporting to the Executive Director. The Executive Director will have primary responsibility for the business and fund development aspects of the organization, and will supervise the Artistic Director in their responsibility for the creative and production needs. 

Download Job Description PDF here.


Under the direction of the Board of Directors, the Executive Director is the leader of Live Arts and is accountable for the overall success of the theater. Leading a team of 12, the Executive Director is responsible for protecting the organization’s financial assets while ensuring compliance with board directives and applicable grantor, federal and state requirements. The Executive Director ensures that the resources to fulfill the mission are secure and dependable. The Executive Director is responsible for the day to day management of the theater, promoting the organization’s artistic vision and mission, ensuring Live Arts’ fiscal health and participating in long term planning. 


Management, Fiscal Stewardship, and Operations 

  • Oversees all accounting functions including those necessary for auditing, budgeting, financial analysis, capital asset and property management and payroll in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles, board policies and procedures, and all other applicable rules and guidelines. 
  • Authors the annual Live Arts budget in concert with the Artistic Director to ensure there are sufficient resources allotted for theater production. 
  • Manages the bookkeeper and works in collaboration with the Live Arts Treasurer of the Board.
  • Serves as the chief development officer for Live Arts and collaborates with the Board Fundraising Committee to achieve annual development goals. This includes managing the Development Coordinator, as well as oversight of all grant applications, corporate sponsorship solicitations, and individual, foundation, and public funding opportunities. 
  • Works with the Board to develop current and long-term organizational goals and objectives as well as policies and procedures for Live Arts operations. 
  • Develops and nurtures relationships, such as the City of Charlottesville, University of Virginia, Virginia Commission for the Arts, Virginia Theater Association, area, regional and national performing arts organizations, foundations and granting institutions, sister not-for-profit organizations, and national membership and affiliation organizations. 

Fringe Festival 

  • Manages the director of the Fringe team for the American High School Theater Festival and the International Collegiate Theater Festival and ensures the fulfillment of the Live Arts contract with Worldstrides, Inc. 

Vendor Management 

  • Analyzes and evaluates vendor services, particularly for insurance, employee benefits and management of Live Arts funds, to determine programs and providers that best meet the needs of Live Arts.  
  • Makes recommendations to the Board, as appropriate; negotiates services, terms and premiums and executes contracts with benefit plan providers, supply and service vendors, auditors and consultants; manages payroll and benefits programs. 

Marketing, PR, and Communications 

  • Oversees public relations, marketing, and brand identity campaigns for the overall subscription season, all Foundry and ancillary programs and events, Company Member communication and volunteer opportunities, education programs, fundraising campaigns, as well as facility rentals at Live Arts. 
  • Manages and supervises marketing and PR personnel. Directs public relations efforts connected to community outreach and engagement programs. 

Human Resources 

  • In partnership with the Artistic Director, handles all aspects of human resource management including but not limited to hiring and termination, developing position descriptions, setting compensation, performance management, maintaining accurate personnel records, and applying board-approved employee policies and benefits in accordance with federal and state requirements.
  • Regularly supervises, coaches, and mentors the Live Arts staff. 

Education Programs 

  • Oversee the strategic planning and implementation of the Education Program. 
  • Hire, supervise, develop, and evaluate the Director of Education in partnership with the Artistic Director. 
  • Evaluate program results and effectiveness in overall impact and budget. 

Volunteer Company 

  • Support all aspects of the Live Arts volunteer company. 
  • Build and nurture relationships with company members, and actively pursue a culture of volunteerism within the community. 

Facility Management 

  • Oversee all concerns and operations of the Live Arts building / facilities including maintenance, repairs, and custodial needs. 
  • Achieve maximum utilization of the facility as a center of educational and artistic activities for the Charlottesville community. 


Ideally, the successful candidate for this role will possess the following skills, experience, and qualities: 

  • An appreciation of the mission and the eclectic programming that makes Live Arts unique as a community-based theater..
  • A deep commitment to the performing arts as evidenced by prior roles. Although a theater background is preferred, the Search Committee is open to evaluating candidates from other artistic disciplines. 
  • The skills to develop a rich, collaborative and supportive partnership with an Artistic Director and other artists. 
  • A background and understanding of both fundraising and marketing, preferably with demonstrated success in both areas. 
  • Skills or experience in developing and managing effective budgets aligned with strategic objectives. 
  • A successful track record in working within and helping to develop a collaborative and transparent culture with staff, volunteers and the community. 
  • Strong communication skills, both speaking and writing. 
  • A commitment to achieving equity, diversity, and inclusion. 
  • Experience working effectively with nonprofit Boards. 

The following personal attributes will also be considered important: 

  • A love of theater and the people who make it. 
  • Kind, strategic, positive, energetic, and transparent. 
  • High emotional intelligence and an ability to build relationships of trust. 
  • Self confidence 
  • Innovative problem-solver. 
  • Disciplined, effective leadership and management of people and resources. 

Requirements include:

  • 4 or more years of arts administration experience with at least 2 years of direct leadership experience, managing staff.
  • 4 or more years with budget and/or financial experience, preferably with decision-making authority at some level.
  • 2 or more years of active fund-raising experience, preferably with experience securing larger gifts.
  • Demonstrated written and public speaking skills and abilities.
  • Experience with and an understanding of the nonprofit business model, preferably with direct board engagement.

Preferred, but not required include:  

  • Bachelor’s degree or higher in theater, art, art management, business, management, or a related degree.
  • Experience with theater production and the associated supporting roles.
  • Experience in arts education, either production or instruction.
  • Experience with community engagement and collaborative outreach. 
  • Experience with managing a facility and building operations.


This is a full-time, exempt position.

Salary range is $60-70k.

Benefits will include the following (a non-comprehensive list): 

  • Medical insurance funded by employer (after 45 days);
  • Dental insurance funded by employer (after 45 days); 
  • Paid vacation, holidays, sick leave; and 
  • Subsidized parking. 


To be considered for this position, please attach a current résumé, a cover letter of no more than 2 pages outlining your experience and desire to be considered for this position, and three professional references.  

Materials and inquiries should be directed to  Applications will be reviewed beginning October 20, 2019 until the position is filled.

The Search Committee hopes to make its final decision by late 2019 with the new Executive Director starting early in 2020.

Live Arts is an Equal Opportunity Employer.