Job posting

Executive Vacancy: RLT Executive Director


Raleigh Little Theatre (RLT) is seeking an experienced professional to serve as Executive Director of the community theatre.  The Executive Director has the overall responsibility for RLT’s welcoming culture and will serve as the theatre’s chief advocate, spokesperson, and representative.

The Executive Director works with the Board of Directors and staff to ensure the organization’s mission, vision, and values to support the overarching sense of community is upheld through highquality productions, volunteer engagement, connection with new and existing audiences, strong partnerships with institutional funders, stewardship of individual donors, and collaborations with other nonprofit organizations. This position serves as the face of the theatre and manages key stakeholder relationships.


RLT is one of the longest continually operating community theatres in the country. Founded in 1936, RLT uses theatre to enrich, educate, entertain, and engage volunteers, students, and audiences of all ages as part of its welcoming community. Volunteers are at the heart of its successful history of art and education.

Each year RLT produces approximately ten unique productions, with more than 150 performances. At the core of the season are five main stage productions which range from classics to contemporary plays and musicals. The Family Series consists of three productions each year, and the annual production of Cinderella has become a Raleigh holiday tradition. In addition, RLT presents various special events throughout the year, including outdoor movies and concerts.

The Education program is a growing part of RLT’s annual operations. For over 30 years, the program has offered on-site and off-site classes, camps, field trips and workshops to students, ages 2 to 18. In the last five years, RLT has expanded their educational offerings to include adult classes, field trips and residencies with local schools. The department reaches over 5,400 individuals each year.

One of RLT’s most treasured assets is the theatre campus itself, which consists of the Sutton Theatre (capacity of 300), the Scottie Stephenson outdoor Amphitheatre (capacity of 2,000), the Raleigh Rose Garden, and the Gaddy-Goodwin Teaching Theatre (capacity of 150). RLT leases the building and grounds from the City of Raleigh and has a close working relationship with its Parks, Recreation, and Cultural Resources Department.

RLT has a board of 22, staff of 10, and over 650 dedicated and passionate volunteers working in front of house, back of house, on stage, and in administrative functions. Its operating budget of $1,400,000 is funded though ticket sales (44%), education classes and workshops (17%), contributed revenue (35%), and other revenue (4%).

For the past three years, RLT has won the Independent Weekly’s awards for Best Live Theatre in The Triangle. After a successful eight-year tenure and significant growth, the current Executive Director has accepted a new position in the arts. The organization is financially strong and ready for a leader to continue to build on the positive foundation.

To learn more about Raleigh Little Theatre, visit: raleighlittletheatre.org.

The Leadership Opportunity

Reporting to the Board of Directors, and in collaboration with the Artistic Director, the Executive Director leads the organization in executing all aspects of its mission. The Executive Director will be called upon to fulfill the following key responsibilities:

Leadership and Strategy

Serve as the primary advocate, visionary, fundraiser, and spokesperson for the organization. Work with Board and staff in setting clear goals and objectives, including long-range plans, annually to fulfill the mission. Develop relationships and a strong understanding of the organization’s impact with volunteers, artists, government officials, schools, donors, and prospective donors.

Staff Management and Volunteer Engagement

Build a positive work culture that supports a productive, professional work environment. Oversee the hiring, training, supervision, retention, and evaluation of RLT’s administrative staff. Ensure staff members work effectively toward shared goals and a unified vision for the organization. Work with staff to create a positive volunteer experience to ensure the retention of volunteers through meaningful experiences. Ensure a culture of gratitude for the hard work of staff, volunteers, and board members. Oversee all Human Resources practices to ensure legal compliance, clear job descriptions, and equitable compensation and benefits.

Resource Development

With support from the Development Manager, lead resource development efforts and strategically engage the Board in the fundraising process. Ensure short- and long-term fundraising plans are developed and executed. Oversee all aspects of the development process including prospect identification, investigation, stewardship, involvement and investment. Advocate for government partnerships and support. Actively grow funding from individuals, foundations, and corporations. Maintain and steward key long-term relationships with RLT’s Advisory Board, long-term supporters, and families with a significant history with RLT while building new relationships in the community.

Financial Management

Oversee the financial integrity of RLT, ensuring the strategic creation of and adherence to the budget, diligently following approved financial policies and accounting ethics and best practice. Develop an annual operating budget for the organization in consultation with the Artistic Director and all departments and submit to the Board of Directors for review and approval. Oversee management of organization’s investments and audit functions. Think creatively and analytically about how to increase the impact of the organization while being fiscally responsible. Manage all aspects of human resources and operations.

External Partnerships

Maintain the theatre’s welcoming and inclusive culture, as well as its strong community presence through intentional relationship building with key stakeholders including the City of Raleigh Parks, Recreation, and Cultural Resources, the Office of Raleigh Arts, Parks and Recreation, Raleigh Historic Development Commission, Arts Access, Triangle Friends of African American Arts, United Arts Council, Greater Raleigh Convention and Visitors Bureau, Chamber of Commerce, and Arts NC, among others.

Marketing and Communication

In collaboration with the Marketing Manager, guide all communications including newsletters, impact reports, website, social media, and other general communications to ensure the highest level of alignment of the RLT brand and vision. The Executive Director will help the Marketing Manager develop and execute a plan that positions RLT to achieve its production, education, fundraising, volunteerism, and community awareness goals. The Executive Director will serve as the primary spokesperson with the media.

Board Relations

In collaboration with the Board, identify, recruit, train, and retain highly effective board members. Maintain regular communications with the Board of Directors and provide them with the necessary support, counsel, and information required for effective governance. Ensure a quality process for supporting the board and their involvement in fundraising, strategic planning, capital campaign planning, and increasing overall visibility. Serve as the main point of contact for general inquiries from Board members and liaison with Board committees and task forces as necessary.

Attributes of the New Leader

The new leader must demonstrate a firm commitment to and passion for RLT’s mission. In addition, he or she should possess a variety of attributes, including:

  •  Warm and welcoming leader who motivates volunteers, board, staff, donors, and partners.
  •  A passion for community theatre.
  •  Values equity, access, inclusion, and is energized by working in multiple communities.
  •  Strategic relationship builder.
  •  High social and emotional intelligence.
  •  Unwavering integrity and sound judgment.

Skills and Qualifications

  • Five or more years in a nonprofit leadership position or commensurate experience with demonstrated success in organizational management including staff leadership. fundraising, operations, and strategic planning.
  • Strong business acumen with a solid understanding of operations, finance, and budgeting.
  • A proven track record in building and maintaining relationships across a wide spectrum of personalities and professions with a strategic focus on a strong staff and volunteer base.
  • The ability to listen and inspire others through written and verbal communications.
  • A bachelor’s degree or higher from an accredited college/university. Those with a degree in Arts Management or related area may be given preference.

Salary offered for this position is commensurate with experience and the size of the RLT budget. RLT provides full-time employees with health insurance, retirement plan, and a generous vacation and holiday policy.

Application Process

Armstrong McGuire & Associates, based in Raleigh, North Carolina, is conducting this search in partnership with Raleigh Little Theatre’s Board of Directors. To apply, go to AmstrongMcGuire/apply. You will see instructions for uploading your cover letter, resume, and professional references.  In case of any technical problems, contact katie@nullarmstrongmcguire.com. No phone calls please, and no applications will be accepted by email or through third-party sites.

The preferred application deadline is March 6, 2020.

RLT is an Equal Opportunity Employer