Chicago Artists Coalition helps people connect with opportunities including calls for artists, jobs, grants, and art advising


Arts administration ,
submitted by
Carrie Spitler

Program Director

Role Description – Program Director

Full-time, salary between $55,000-70,000, benefits

About Snow City Arts

Snow City Arts (SCA) inspires and educates children and youth in hospitals through the arts. SCA provides one-on-one and small group instruction in the visual arts, creative writing, poetry, theater, film, music, dance, and media arts to patients at Rush University Children's Hospital, Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago, and Children's Hospital University of Illinois. In March 2020, Snow City Arts' programming shifted to virtual instruction to meet pediatric patients' needs at our hospital sites. SCA is now employing a hybrid programming model, with Teaching Artists teaching at hospitals and virtually. Snow City Arts' curricula are steeped in studio practices and benchmarked by the National Core Arts Standards and Common Core State Standards. With permission, SCA sends learning outcomes and art portfolios to students' schools to be considered for credit. The Snow City Arts team includes an administrative staff of 4 and an artistic staff of 7 part-time Teaching Artists and interns, work-study students, contractors, and volunteers. As a small yet mighty organization, our team values an "all-hands-on-deck" approach balanced with a commitment to wellness. Snow City Arts is committed to generating a work environment that centers on learning, equity, and inclusion. A cohort member of Enrich Chicago, SCA is committed to advancing systemic change in the arts and building a vision and framework for anti-racist work.

Summary of Position

Snow City Arts seeks an insightful, equity-focused Program Director committed to cultivating spaces for student-centered learning that privilege all young people's abilities. The ideal candidate embraces collaborative leadership, utilizes an asset-based approach to problem-solving, supports a generative learning culture, holds a strong understanding of trauma/healing-informed practices, and is committed to developing the team's leadership and shared vision. The candidate demonstrates a commitment to continue to grow their critical analysis of anti-racist frameworks and practices and has experience fostering anti-oppressive work environments. The Program Director is responsible for SCA's vision and quality of virtual and in-person programming, ensuring curricula, programming and systems are HIPAA* compliant and accessible to learners with diverse cognitive and physical abilities. In this role, the Program Director champions the development and implementation of SCA's project-based curricula within an anti-racist framework, evolves SCA's assessment and evaluation protocols, and plays a pivotal role in advancing SCA's strategic anti-racism initiatives. The Program Director will report to the Executive Director, collaborate with the Development & Communications Associate, and supervise the Virtual Learning Manager, Site Supervisors, Teaching Artists, and the Administrative Assistant & Research Specialist. This role oversees contractual workers and volunteers, including translators, media editors, copyeditors, and graphic designers. The Program Director also leads SCA’s curatorial efforts in partnership with Teaching Artists.

Program Leadership

• Strategy: Lead the development and implementation of the organization’s programmatic strategic vision within an anti-racist framework.

• Innovation: Direct and adapt SCA’s curriculum and pedagogy to embrace innovation, as well as best practices from the field, and ensure curriculum documentation remains up to date.

• Connections: Seek and engage in special programming and knowledge-sharing opportunities in the fields of arts education and arts in healthcare to position SCA as a leader in both fields.

Strategic Partnerships and Relationship Building

• Relationships: Work in partnership with the Executive Director and Board of Directors to develop, foster, and sustain strategic relationships in healthcare, arts education, school districts, Chicago area cultural institutions, and virtual learning spaces.

• Reporting: Provide SCA stakeholders and ambassadors with plans and updates related to program initiatives, partnerships, and projects to ensure strategies, language, and priorities are appropriate for marketing and fundraising.

• Expansion: With the Executive Director and Governing Board Expansion Committee, work to ensure the evolution and growth of SCA by pursuing expansion opportunities.

Staff Management & Professional Learning

• Supervise: Support, manage and evaluate Teaching Artists, Site Supervisors, Virtual Learning Manager and Administrative Assistant & Research Specialist.

• Develop: In collaboration with the administrative team, set yearly agendas for bi-monthly, organization-wide professional learning sessions.

Program Documentation, Assessment, and Evaluation

• Assessment: Oversee the continued development and implementation of SCA’s student assessment protocol.

• Theory of Change: Advance SCA’s evolving Theory of Change.

• Database Management: Direct future innovation and development of SCA’s HIPAA-compliant customized database, in partnership with contracted information management team.

• Reporting: Review and analyze students’ school reports and pertinent data for reporting and messaging purposes.

Curriculum Development and Programmatic Oversight

• Curriculum: Lead the advancement of SCA’s integrated project-based arts education curriculum, ensuring all curriculum is situated within an anti-racist framework.

• Approval: Review all Teaching Artist-developed projects and approve their use in SCA’s curriculum.

• Alignment: In partnership with Teaching Artists, align all SCA projects to state and national learning standards, as well as SCA’s assessment outcomes and best practices

• Curate: Serve as lead curator for SCA exhibits including SCA’s annual event, board events, smaller exhibits, and donor opportunities.

Hospital Administration

• Compliance: Maintain SCA’s compliance with HIPAA*, FERPA**, and other program-related laws and protocols

• Site Management: Serve as the high-level manager at hospital locations - including managing staff orientation and training, compliance, and reporting requirements.

• Clinical Research: In partnership with the Administrative Assistant and Research Specialist, cultivate relationships with medical and educational institutions and individuals that could lead to clinical research involving SCA.

Organizational Administration

• Development: In partnership with the Development team, maintain relationships with pertinent grant-making professionals; provide necessary messaging and data for fundraising purposes.

• Board Involvement: Serve as the staff liaison to the Program Committee and serve as a non-voting member of the Expansion Committee; attend and support Governing and Auxiliary Board meetings and events as needed.

• Budget: Collaborate on the development and management of the annual program budget as well as budgets for installations, events, and projects.

Priority Skills and Experience

The ideal candidate will have a combination of the following professional and personal qualities, skills, and characteristics. Snow City Arts will consider candidates who do not meet every single requirement.

• 3 years of management experience.

• 5 years of experience working directly with youth and families, especially youth and families who identify as ALAANA***, LGBTQI, first-generation immigrants, and people with disabilities with ability to work closely with people from various artistic and administrative backgrounds.

• Strong organization and planning skills with the ability to manage multiple projects simultaneously, respond to shifting priorities, and support multiple aspects of program development and operational sustainability.

• Ability to plan, facilitate, and approach meetings with clearly defined goals in mind.

• Working knowledge of curriculum development benchmarked on state/national learning standards with an in-depth understanding of current education trends, assessment, documentation, evaluation, and differentiated learning.

• Experience in curatorial decision making, exhibition preparation and gallery installation procedures.

• Experience managing databases.

• Self-motivation, accuracy, attention to detail, and ability to meet deadlines.

• Active listener with the ability to synthesize information and translate into strategy or action plans.

• Ability to navigate tense or challenging interpersonal dynamics in a manner that is centered on trust, respect, and shared vision.

Desired Skills and Experience

• Ability to speak and write Spanish and English proficiently.

• Strong understanding of e-learning and cyberpedagogy.

• Specialized knowledge in teaching artistry and/or maintenance of a personal artistic practice.

• Proficient in Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Premiere, Google Drive, and Asana.

• Familiarity with the public school and arts education landscape of Chicago.

• Access to reliable transportation that allows for commuting throughout Chicago, as well as ability to transport artwork and supplies up to 50lbs.

Compensation and Benefits

This is a full-time, non-exempt staff position with a salary range of $55,000 - $70,000 per year. There are 25 paid days off annually split among vacation, sick, and holidays and we offer a flexible work environment. We offer an employee retirement SIMPLE IRA account with a 1-3% match from Snow City Arts.

Background Check and Health Records

• A criminal background will not automatically eliminate you from consideration though a criminal history background check will be conducted on the final candidate prior to beginning employment.

• A variety of documentation (typically related to vaccines and annual tests, which are paid for by Snow

• City Arts) is required to meet the health documentation requirements of our hospital partners.

• Currently, Snow City Arts is categorized as working in healthcare and Covid-19 vaccines have been made available to staff who elect to receive them.

* HIPAA: Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act

** FERPA: Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act

*** ALAANA: African, Latinx, Arab, Asian, Native American

Snow City Arts is an equal opportunity employer. Snow City Arts is committed to building a culturally diverse and pluralistic team. ALAANA-identified individuals, trans and gender nonconforming people, people from poor and working-class backgrounds, and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply.

Interested candidates should send a one-page cover letter; a resume; and one of the following: a writing sample or a curriculum you have designed to This position will remain open until filled with priority given to materials received by 5:00 pm on April 10, 2021.

Job Type: Permanent
Location: Chicago