Executive Director - Tennessee Craft


Tennessee Craft is seeking an experienced and energetic Executive Director (ED) to lead a statewide organization that celebrates and promotes handmade art-craft of varied media. This full-time, exempt status position reports to the Governing Board. Responsibilities include overall strategic and operational leadership for Tennessee Craft’s staff, programs, fundraising/fiscal management, and execution of its mission. The position requires the ability to interface with a variety of constituencies including members, donors, community partners, fellow arts organizations and the general public.


Leadership and Staff Management

Human Resources/Staff Management:

● Hire, manage, coach, and develop staff by motivating and supporting them on their assigned responsibilities.

● Provide guidance on projects and adequately delegate duties to meet the mission and timelines of the organization.

● Provide continuous feedback and conduct annual reviews to encourage growth; provide expanded opportunities as available.

● Ensure human resource policies are followed and employee manuals are kept up-to-date.

Governing Board:

● Develop, maintain, and support a strong Governing Board.

● Serve as ex-officio of each committee; ensure staff provide appropriate support to board committees.

● Seek and build board engagement in activities that support the annual and strategic goals of the organization.

● Organize meetings and report to board on a regular basis.

● Plan annual retreat with the executive committee.


● Ensure ongoing program excellence through collaboration with staff and stakeholders.

● Identify and/or maintain effective systems to execute organization programming.

● Regularly evaluate programming to ensure effectiveness and alignment with mission and strategic goals.

● Communicate successes and evaluations to the board, funders, and other constituents.

Fundraising/Fiscal Management


● Work with Governing Board to set the vision and strategy to realize and exceed annual earned and contributed income goals.

● Assess current fundraising efforts and diversify activities to secure funding from individual gifts; foundation, government, and corporate grants; sponsorships; and bequests.

● Maximize earned income and special income opportunities and/or events.

● Ensure compliance with all relevant regulations and laws, maintain accountability

standards to donors, and ensure compliance with code of ethical principles and

standards of professional conduct for fundraising executives.

Fiscal Management:

Work with the executive committee to develop and efficiently manage organization budget using sound fiscal practices - timely, accurate and comprehensive income and expense budgets, reporting, monitoring, and appropriate checks/balances.

● Expand revenue generation and fundraising activities to support existing operations and future expansion.

● Oversee annual audit and tax filings; along with Board Treasurer, oversees bookkeeping firm.



● Assess, revitalize and expand membership program.

● Act as chapter advocate attending meetings as needed, remaining informed of chapter activities and financials as well as understanding member needs; with Communications Manager, disseminating information to chapters.


● Oversee marketing plan and strategies, executed by Communications Manager, to strengthen and expand Tennessee Craft’s public image.

● Ensure communications strategies seamlessly integrate development, marketing, outreach and program messaging to increase Tennessee Craft’s visibility to new and existing audiences.

● Oversee management of Salesforce CRM (data entry, list management and reporting) to increase interest in programs and maximize effectiveness of development and marketing efforts.


● Sustain and grow relationships with relevant local and national arts organizations to benefit artists and the art community; encourage Tennessee Craft members to engage in these efforts.

● Cultivate relationships with legislators, media, and other important community connections.

● Write articles/letters and advocate as needed on issues of interest to organization.

● Attend conferences, chapter meetings and local events that benefit Tennessee Craft.


● Other duties as assigned.


● Bachelor’s degree or equivalent; minimum 3 years administrative or related experience preferred.

● Outstanding interpersonal and communication skills: good listener and strong communicator, clear and compelling writer and storyteller, engaging and dynamic speaker and strong presentation skills.

● Self-confident with a positive attitude and compassionate understanding of organization and needs of its constituents.

● Knowledge, experience and success in fundraising techniques and trends, particularly donor relations, grant writing, planned giving, sponsorship, event planning.

● Successful marketer with experience planning campaigns, writing/editing, and producing external communications such as social media posts, electronic newsletters, press releases, impact reports, videos, marketing literature, or other print publications.

● Self-starting, strategic thinker whose hallmark qualities include being persistent, personable, team-oriented, and driven to succeed.

● Organized, detail-oriented with ability to follow-through on tasks and goals.

● Advanced skills using technology to efficiently operate functions of agency and social media to galvanize support and expand outreach. Must be proficient with Microsoft Office. Experience with CRM database required, familiarity with Salesforce preferred.

● Diligent adherence to ethical practices.

● Proven ability to build strong relationships with donors, sponsors, artists, and other stakeholders.

● Strong collaborator with an ability to work effectively with and foster teamwork amongst Tennessee Craft’s Board of Directors and staff.

● Ability to operate as both an effective tactical and strategic thinker.

● Excellent organizational, planning, project management, and administrative skills.

● Demonstrated ability to prioritize and complete multiple tasks on schedule in a busy working environment.

● Sense of humor, tact and diplomacy.

● Passion for the arts-handmade craft and the mission of Tennessee Craft.


● Available to work in professional office environment.

● Significant computer work, which may require repetitive motion, prolonged periods of sitting, and sustained visual and mental applications and demand.

● Occasional lifting, bending, pulling, collating, and filing, some of which could be heavy (>15 lbs) or require the use of carts.

● Ability to travel domestically.


Reports to: Tennessee Craft Governing Board

Status: Full-time; Exempt

Salary Range: $60,000 - $65,000 (Based on experience)

Benefits: Health and dental insurance, annual leave, sick leave and paid holidays

Supervises: All staff

Application: Submit cover letter and resume to TNCraftsearch@gmail.com by February 1, 2019.


Tennessee Craft champions the fine craft movement by supporting growth and creative expression for all artists, building a platform for high-quality craftsmanship and reinforcing the importance of fine craft for the entire state. As a nonprofit, we rely on the help of talented artists, supportive donors, committed sponsors and volunteers to serve creators and the community.

Since 1965 we have preserved and advanced the rich history and tradition of Tennessee craft. Grounded in our state’s handmade heritage, we offer multiple stages for today’s makers to showcase their work to those engaged in the fine arts community. One-of-a-kind work shines at our spring and fall Craft Fairs, Biennial Exhibitions showcasing the best of Tennessee Craft, community demonstrations, professional development workshops, the Master Artist Apprentice Program and more.

Tennessee Craft is the premiere statewide resource for artists, businesses and the public to connect, form lasting relationships and identify opportunities to deliver Tennessee’s fine craft pieces from a maker’s hands to a patron’s home. We encourage strong relationships between our members, offering opportunities for connection, mentorship and reunion throughout the year.