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Arts administration ,
submitted by
Kyla Spencer

Institutional Partnerships Manager

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No calls or emails please - All applications must be submitted using the link above.

About Steppenwolf:

For 45 years, Steppenwolf Theatre Company has been a cultural leader in Chicago and a model for theatre companies in the United States and around the world. Formed by a collective of actors in 1976, the ensemble has grown to 53 members who represent a remarkable cross-section of actors, directors and playwrights. Thrilling and powerful productions from Balm in Gilead to August: Osage County—and accolades that include the National Medal of Arts and 12 Tony Awards— have made the theater legendary. Steppenwolf produces hundreds of performances and events annually in its three spaces: the 515-seat Downstairs Theatre, the 299-seat Upstairs Theatre and the 80-seat 1700 Theatre. Artistic programming includes a seven-play season; a two-play Steppenwolf for Young Adults season; and LookOut, a multigenre performances series. Education initiatives include the nationally recognized work of Steppenwolf for Young Adults, which engages 20,000 participants annually from Chicago’s diverse communities; the esteemed School at Steppenwolf; and Professional Leadership Programs. While firmly grounded in the Chicago community, nearly 50 original Steppenwolf productions have enjoyed success both nationally and internationally, including Broadway, Off-Broadway, London, Sydney, Galway and Dublin.

Under the direction of Artistic Director Anna D. Shapiro and Executive Director E. Brooke Flanagan, Steppenwolf is currently undertaking a $73 million multi-phase facilities expansion and renovation that will create a launching pad for the next 25 years of Steppenwolf’s life. The first phase of the expansion opened in June 2016 with the 1700 Theatre, and its new café & bar, Front Bar: Coffee and Drinks, a creative space to meet up with friends and collaborators, day or night. The next phases will create a new Arts and Education Center, a signature architectural destination for the city with a 400-seat in-the-round theatre and an education and rehearsal floor providing dedicated space for Steppenwolf’s extensive education and artistic development programs, and renovations to its current 515-seat theater that addresses artist and audience upgrades after 25 years of use. This facilities expansion, driven by programmatic need, will allow Steppenwolf to advance its artistic vision into the future.

Position Description

Reporting to the Institutional Partnerships Director and supervising the Prospect Development Analyst, the Institutional Partnerships Manager serves as a public representative of Steppenwolf in the business community. As part of the Institutional Partnerships team, this role will steward existing corporate, foundation, and government funders and work to identify opportunities for new and increased support from local and national institutions. This position assists with Steppenwolf’s Corporate Arts Council, a rapidly growing community of smart, innovative companies that connect in a unique, exciting environment in support of Steppenwolf.



  • Assist in the creation of clear and compelling institutional grants, reports, and sponsorship proposals that are customized to meet institutions’ giving guidelines, entertainment, employee involvement and recognition goals
  • Develop a diverse menu of corporate sponsorship and entertainment opportunities to pitch to prospective partners
  • Encourage current sponsors to increase giving by presenting persuasive proposals and/or deepening their level of engagement with Steppenwolf
  • With the Institutional Partnerships Director, create and implement an aggressive annual institutional contribution goal that includes strategies to encourage the prospecting, acquisition and renewal of foundation relationships
  • Evaluate new trends in industry growth and change, identify opportunities, and conduct comparative research of other cultural institutions in order to maintain a strong institutional giving prospect pipeline
  • Manage stewardship of institutional matching gift donations, including research and personalized acknowledgements


  • Assist the Institutional Giving Director with the Civic Engagement Committee including planning and executing meetings, writing minutes, and communicating with committee members
  • Work independently through personal communication and meetings, and in partnership with trustees and the Corporate Arts Council, to identify new corporate prospects, cultivate business contacts, and initiate communication with viable prospects


  • Coordinate networking events and prospecting performances in collaboration with other team members, including invitation mailing and response tracking, special event logistics, and event attendee follow up as assigned
  • Complete special projects, assist with department-wide special events throughout the season, and perform other duties as assigned


  • Assist in maintaining institutional files, including electronic records in Tessitura, tracking all points of contact and institutional donor-related invitation status.
  • Coordinate corporate discount ticket offers with marketing and ticket departments
  • Coordinate all institutional recognition updates in the season program, website Tessitura, e-news, etc.
  • Work in tandem with Steppenwolf’s Marketing department and Steppenwolf Education as the first point person in all sponsorship listings, including production and sponsorship listings
  • Collect, track, and archive all Steppenwolf marketing and sponsorship materials for the season for the Development department
  • Process VIP subscriptions, ticket exchanges, and single ticket requests through effective coordination with the Ticket department, as assigned


  • Oversee the review of intern/apprentice/fellow/ applicants and provide supervision throughout the year



  • Demonstrated proficiency with direct sales and/or high degree of resilience
  • Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to build rapport with corporate key leaders and executives
  • Excellent IT/ database skills (Tessitura or other fundraising database experience a plus)
  • Ability to author compelling cases for support with strong editing skills and attention to detail
  • Strong familiarity and/or experience with sales and negotiation techniques
  • A high degree of initiative, confidence and energy to achieve and exceed goals, meet deadlines and manage multiple projects
  • Ability to attend occasional evening and weekend events
  • Theater background or interest in the arts strongly preferred
  • Steppenwolf gives preference to candidates who have demonstrable experience advocating for inclusion, diversity, equity, and access (IDEA).


  • Ability to oversee evening or weekend functions and performances
  • Sitting for extended periods of time
  • Ability to operate a computer keyboard, mouse, and to handle other office equipment

Steppenwolf Mission:

Steppenwolf Theatre Company strives to create thrilling, courageous, and provocative art in a thoughtful and inclusive environment. We succeed when we disrupt your routine with experiences that spark curiosity, empathy and joy. We invite you to join our ensemble as we navigate, together, our complex world.

Steppenwolf Core Values:

Equity + Inclusion
Integrity + Curiosity
Courage + Collaboration
Accountability + Leadership

Benefits Offered:

Excellent benefit package for full time employees, including medical, dental, vision insurance, short-term and long-term disability insurance, life insurance, vacation pay, paid sick time, personal days, Ventra transit benefit program, employee assistance program and 401(k) matching retirement program.

How to apply:

Interested candidates should submit a cover letter, resume and three references.


Steppenwolf Theatre Company is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer. We provide equal employment opportunities (EEO) 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, Steppenwolf complies with applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment in every location in which the company has facilities. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation and training.

We strongly encourage applications from people of color and members of underrepresented groups

Contact Info:
Steppenwolf Theatre Company
Job Type: Permanent
Location: Chicago, IL