Filament Theatre is seeking a Managing Director to replace its outgoing founder this fall. The Managing Director provides direct oversight of Filament’s capacity building and strategic planning, fundraising, financial planning and fiscal management, board governance, operations and supervision, public relations and marketing. This is an exciting position for an early- or mid-career arts leader with a desire to use their administrative superpowers to amplify youth perspectives through professional nonprofit theatre.

Filament Theatre is a midsized Chicago-based non-profit theatre serving 0-12 year olds and their schools, families, and communities. Our mission is to create a more equitable society by celebrating and amplifying the perspectives and experiences of young people of all backgrounds through the performing arts. Since 2014, we have made our home in Portage Park, on Chicago’s Northwest Side, where we serve a rapidly growing audience – approximately 8500 in 2019 – through performances, classes, and camps. Filament is known for its unconventional and experimental approach to Theatre for Young Audiences. Our work is community-based, multisensory, participatory, and blurs the lines between a theatre play and playing. The ideal candidate will be passionate about the transformative power of theatre in the lives of young people, and appreciate both the opportunities and challenges of leading a performing arts organization beyond the COVID-19 pandemic.

For the majority of Filament’s 13-year history, we were an all-volunteer organization, and have recently transitioned to a more robust, year-round producing entity with two full-time paid staff. The position requires a unique ability to work independently alongside Filament’s Artistic Director, and also collaboratively with our Board of Directors, resident artists, contract employees, and youth advisory council. The ideal candidate will have an innovative approach to organizational structure, and reimagine new and expanded management models that maximize Filament’s resources and organizational capacity while creatively engaging our community and supporters.

We are dedicated to expanding our staff with team members who reflect the diverse backgrounds and experiences of our audiences. Historically, Filament has not been as diverse an organization as should have been, to the detriment of our art and our audiences. To better represent our audiences, communities, and the scope of their lived experiences, we are working to broaden the racial and ethnic diversity within our leadership and every facet of Filament as an organization. We are seeking a leader who will passionately support Filament’s diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility initiatives, and is dedicated to the creation of a radically accessible organization that is representative of and co-created by our community. Applicants of all identities are encouraged to apply, including BIPOC, persons with disabilities, LGBTQ+ people, and people at the intersections of these identities. Filament is an equal opportunity employer.

The ideal candidate will have many of the following qualifications and the capacity and curiosity to acquire the skills they don’t have yet with training and support.

Capacity Building & Strategic Planning 

  • Lead and manage annual and long-term strategic initiatives developed in partnership with the artistic director & Board.
  • Increase and stabilize the capacity of the organization in order to support a more robust staff 
  • Diversifying and expanding funding streams in the COVID era

Financial Planning & Fiscal Management

  • Lead in the development, implementation and tracking of an annual business plan, including management of Filament’s annual budget (approximately $220K)
  • Provide financial reports to analyze current financial position and support long term planning.
  • Manage financial operations (accounts payable/receivable) within Quickbooks.


  • Lead in the development, management and tracking of an annual fundraising plan
  • Strategically maintain current donor relations (government agencies, foundations, and individuals) while integrating a strategy to develop relationships with new foundations and individuals’
  • Support and attend fundraising events, opening performances, and other events of the organization

Board Governance

  • Work with the Board President to manage board committees/task forces and align actions with strategic & fundraising priorities. 
  • Manage compliance with local, state and federal guidelines as well as any additional legal requirements.
  • Lead strategic board recruitment and volunteer development
  • Serve as an ex officio member of the Board of Directors

Operations and Supervision

  • Oversee essential operations including human resources, customer service/sales, and venue management. 
  • Maintain safety protocols and compliance with Filament policies. 
  • Support and implement anti-racist policies across the organization in accordance with our Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Accessibility committee. 
  • Foster a culture of inclusion, curiosity, effectiveness, and mutual support 

Public Relations and Marketing

  • Develop and manage an annual marketing and public relations strategy to achieve impact and financial goals.
  • Prioritize and manage all communication tools including social media, patron lists, and company website.  
  • Build relationships with stakeholders, business partners, the local community, and the national TYA network.


A successful candidate will have the following qualifications and/or comparable experiences: 

  • Experience in a leadership role at a non-profit organization
  • Experience in developing and managing strategic and/or business plans
  • Experience in managing corporate finance and developing measures of performance
  • Demonstrated ability to build and maintain relationships with funders and other stakeholders
  • Skilled at seeking out and synthesizing input from a variety of stakeholders
  • Ability to communicate an organizational vision to performing members, audiences, sponsors and donors
  • Ability to independently prioritize, track and manage multiple projects simultaneously and effectively delegate tasks
  • Strong interest in the performing arts and specifically in Filament Theatre’s mission and values.
  • Flexibility and willingness to hold meetings/ attend occasional events on nights and weekends
  • Willingness to learn, collaborate and grow.

Nice-to have:

  • a bachelor’s degree in arts administration, non-profit administration, business management or other related field. 
  • Experience in board development and/or cultivating volunteers.
  • Experience or training in arts management
  • Passion for Theatre for Young Audiences
  • Expertise in developing marketing strategies and utilizing social media platforms to reach new audiences
  • Experience in seeking out grants and foundation support

This position requires some evening and weekend work hours.

The Managing Director is a full-time, exempt employee with an annual salary of $38,000 plus a $2,500 health credit. Filament offers flexible working hours and a supportive working environment.

The position will begin no later than October 1, 2020. Applications will be accepted through July 22. No calls, please.

Applications are not currently being accepted.