Help Wanted: Executive Director - Akron Children’s Museum

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Help Wanted: Executive Director - Akron Children’s Museum



Job Description
Executive Director
Akron Children’s Museum
Akron, Ohio

The Organization
The Akron Children’s Museum (“ACM”) was founded by a small group of parents and community leaders who, after visiting numerous children’s museums throughout the U.S. and querying their peers, determined that such an institution was indeed needed, and could serve Akron and the surrounding region well with Akron-centric, unique experiences. Their plans were set in motion in 2012 and 2013, when the founding board commissioned feasibility and market studies. In 2014, ACM received its nonprofit status from the IRS, added new board members and began fundraising to realize the vision. In 2015, a partnership with The City of Akron was forged with ACM’s Holiday Pop-Up Site at Lock 3. Due to the overwhelming success of the Pop-Up, the board entered into a lease agreement with the City of Akron which allowed ACM to double its footprint. ACM opened its doors to the public over Thanksgiving weekend, 2016. To date, in just seven months, it has welcomed over 42,000 visitors and over 1600 members. ACM strives to become the center for experiential learning for children ages 0-12 in the region by continuing to collaborate with regional partners to provide opportunities to children of all ages and abilities. ACM’s exhibits focus on STEM concepts as well as arts and culture, community readiness and health and wellness. Many of ACM’s exhibits are uniquely Akron-focused, including a soap box derby race track, canal themed water table and Akron marathon themed pedometer exhibit. ACM seeks to introduce new exhibits including many focused on STEM concepts and music.

ACM has a budget of $250,000 and employs 4 full-time and 4 part-time staff members plus grant writers. ACM is now looking for a self-motivated, entrepreneurial individual to lead the organization as Executive Director to help the organization grow and cement itself as one of the premier children’s museums in the country. More information is available at


The Akron Children’s Museum is located at Lock 3 Park in downtown Akron. It has ample and convenient parking (free to members and discounted for patrons) and is located in the heart of downtown Akron, within walking distance to the Akron Art Museum, the Civic Theatre, Canal Park and many restaurants.

Position Overview

The Executive Director will oversee fundraising, planning, staff, programming, marketing and community relations and community partnerships. The Executive Director will report to the Board of Directors and be subject to Board oversight. The Executive Director will work closely with and report monthly to the Board of Directors to develop and implement strategic planning, policies, and provide leadership and support for staff and volunteers.

Key responsibilities include overseeing and managing all aspects of the Museum’s operations, exhibits, and education programming; driving all aspects of ACM’s fundraising; being ACM’s face in the community; establishing and fostering collaborations with both local and regional community partners, leading the development of programming and outreach opportunities.

Reporting Relationship

The Executive Director reports to the Board of Directors and manages a staff of 8-10.

Required Qualifications

· Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university in museum studies, science education, general business, finance, marketing, or related discipline;

· Possesses a passion for childhood education, learning through play and understanding children’s intellectual, physical and emotional development;

· Excellent communication and interpersonal skills demonstrated by a history of effective communications with individuals, community leaders and groups through traditional and social media;

· Exceptional organizational, leadership and administrative skills;

· Demonstrates a high level of financial literacy including experience establishing and maintain a budget;

· Possesses a drive for excellence and ability to encourage innovative thinking;

· Satisfactory background checks absent convictions for crimes that disqualify the individual for employment in a school or other licensed child care facility in Ohio.

Preferred Qualifications

· Advanced degree from an accredited college or university in museum studies, science education, general business, finance, marketing or related discipline;

· Two or more years in an executive or senior management role;

· Coursework or experience in early childhood education;

· Strong working knowledge of museum operations and/or non-profit operations

· Evidence of successful development of sponsors as demonstrated by receipt of major individual gifts, foundation grants, corporate sponsorships or other sources of support.


Salary will be commensurate with experience and benefits are competitive.

Interested candidates should email resume, cover letter, and names and phone numbers of three references to Betsy Hartschuh, Chair of the ACM Executive Director Search Committee, at by October 1, 2017.


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