Reporting to the President of Berklee and serving as a member of Berklee’s senior leadership team, the Executive Director of the Boston Conservatory at Berklee is the executive leader of the Conservatory. Working in close collaboration with the President, the Berklee senior leadership team, and Boston Conservatory at Berklee faculty and administrators, he/she will be charged with overseeing the development and implementation of institutional strategy for the Conservatory, building the scope and strength of the Conservatory's reputation, and expanding development opportunities for the music, theater, and dance programs at the Conservatory.
As a member of Berklee’s senior leadership team, it is essential that the Executive Director possess an understanding of and demonstrate a commitment to the mission, strategic goals and objectives of the combined institution. In addition to serving as the executive leader of the Conservatory, he/she will play a key role in formulating the strategy for Berklee, including online education, new academic programs, career development efforts, student success, as well as community outreach to aspiring musicians, dancers and actors in under-served communities and elsewhere. The Executive Director will help promote the importance of music, theater, and dance education as a tool to help foster a more just world, promote the growth and development of young people, and articulate the ideals and heritage of our cultural resources.
In addition, the Executive Director will be responsible for:
In collaboration with the Provost, providing leadership in curriculum development, including opportunities for cross enrollment by conservatory and college students;
Making a formal progress report at least annually to the Boston Conservatory at Berklee board committee;
In partnership with Berklee’s external affairs group, developing critical communications involving the conservatory, both internally and externally; and,
With the support of Berklee’s institutional advancement group, maintaining and developing important relationships with the classical music, musical theater, and dance communities, including development efforts with existing and potential donors.
Location: Boston, Massachusetts
- Further the global reputation of the music, dance, theatre and related programs.
- Cultivate new relationships and secure external support for Boston Conservatory at Berklee major initiatives.
- Lead the development and implementation of the Boston Conservatory at Berklee strategic plan and report on its progress to the Boston Conservatory at Berklee board committee.
- Develop programs that are unique, distinctive and differentiated from other conservatories.
- Support recruitment of talented and respected faculty to the three divisions of the Conservatory.
- Support recruitment of talented and high potential musicians, actors, and dancers to study at the school.
- Create strategic partnerships to raise brand awareness and to provide expanding opportunities to students.
- Collaborate with Berklee Online to create programs that benefit Conservatory students and prospective students.
- Prepare and propose annual operating budgets for the Conservatory in accordance with Berklee’s established centralized budget process.
- Maintain appropriate accreditation requirements and support overall accreditation process.
- Partner with central college functions on matters related to finance, budgeting, marketing, enrollment management, technology resources, and human resources.
- Serve on the Boston Conservatory at Berklee board committee, and present a formal progress to the committee annually.
The Executive Director will have an outstanding record of accomplishment that includes a significant leadership role in an artistic, cultural, and/or educational organization that values creativity, innovation, and excellence. Recognizing and being able to articulate the importance of a conservatory, he/she will have a deep understanding of the arts and how creative people work and think, with an accompanying interest in experimental and innovative education.
10+ years of experience in increasingly responsible leadership positions
- Experience at the executive level in a complex nonprofit or educational organization preferred
Proven track record in fundraising or demonstrated aptitude for fundraising
- Experience working with individual and institutional donors preferred
Experience with managing budgets
- Responsible for prioritizing and allocating resources
Cross functional team leadership in a complex organization
- Has worked with all levels of senior management and across an organization, including advancement, finance, and program/academic units
- An advance degree preferred, ideally in music, dance or theatre
CRITICAL LEADERSHIP CAPABILITIES
Big Picture Thinking
With the merger between Berklee and The Boston Conservatory, the combined institution is positioned to be a global leader in training students in music, dance, and theatre. To help realize this potential, the Executive Director will:
Describe the breadth and scope of future opportunities for artists in music, dance and theatre; drawing on a deep understanding of and appreciation for the demands and requirements of artistic practice along with real-world examples of innovation and disruption both within and outside the arts; and contrast it with the present-day professional landscape for Boston Conservatory at Berklee graduates.
Revise strategy as needed and propose new educational initiatives and programs that will ensure that students continue to be provided with the highest level of artistic preparation and training and are also equipped to thrive professionally as opportunities for artists continue to change and shift rapidly.
Develop and pilot new programs and collaborations, embracing a spirit of experimentation and a willingness to challenge traditions and conventions when needed, with specific well-reasoned proposals that support continued excellence within the Conservatory, as well as serving the holistic and changing needs of its students.
While the Executive Director is the executive leader of Boston Conservatory at Berklee, he/she must work in close collaboration with the President of Berklee, the Provost of Berklee, senior leaders of other Berklee divisions, and faculty. The successful candidate will be able to operate in a highly matrixed environment with grace, skill and diplomacy. As both an advocate for Boston Conservatory at Berklee and within Berklee, the Executive Director will:
Negotiate with other Berklee units, divisions, and members of the senior leadership team with a genuine give-and-take approach, where both partners act as true peers and decisions are shared.
In a complex and highly matrixed organization, take the time to identify all the stakeholders–including administrators, faculty, trustees, and students – and meet or connect with them to shape a collective consensus that is aligned with both the specific values and mission of Boston Conservatory at Berklee and Berklee as a whole.
Identify opportunities to build relationships between Boston Conservatory at Berklee and other Berklee units that will help strengthen the Conservatory, facilitate innovation across Berklee, and increase opportunities for all Berklee students; and then develop those relationships.
This is a period of significant change, not just at the Boston Conservatory at Berklee due to the recent merger, but in the performing arts and higher education more broadly. The new executive director must have the practical, emotional and social skills to lead the Conservatory through a time of transition, respecting its longstanding traditions and commitment to the highest level of excellence while also helping it thrive in a rapidly changing and unpredictable landscape. Always a steadfast supporter and brilliant advocate for a conservatory education, the Executive Director will:
Communicate changes and new initiatives with transparency and clarity, helping faculty, staff and students embrace change by demonstrating the rationale and potential benefits as well as alignment with the Conservatory’s mission and values.
Advocate for intelligent change, modeling flexibility and openness to experimentation without sacrificing a commitment to rigor and excellence.
Speak at all available opportunities about the future direction to faculty, students, staff, and donors, while always serving as a committed advocate for Conservatory education.
Be a good listener and skillful communicator, adjust communication style to effectively connect with different audiences (faculty, staff, students and donors) in a variety of situations and respond to their concerns.
Other Personal Characteristics
- Keen judgment about excellence, impeccable artistic taste, and a deep and abiding belief in the catalytic power of the arts to better the world.
- Curiosity, flexibility and creative thinking.
- Courage and vision coupled with empathy and the ability to motivate and inspire others.
Applications or Nominations
To apply or nominate an individual for this position, please send an email with resume and cover letter, if applicable, to BostonConservatoryatBerklee@SpencerStuart.com