Chamber Music America (CMA) is the national service organization for the chamber music profession. Founded in 1977 to develop, support and strengthen the small ensemble music field, CMA delivers a comprehensive array of career development services and direct financial support to this community in order to sustain its vitality and innovation. Defining chamber music broadly as “music for small ensembles between two and ten musicians, with one musician per part, generally without a conductor,” CMA represents the diversity and changing character of today’s chamber music community, encompassing instrumental and vocal ensembles, independent musicians, composers, artist managers and other industry professionals, educators, large and small presenters, festivals and chamber music enthusiasts. Representing nearly 6,000 members from all 50 states and Puerto Rico, CMA champions a broad diversity of musical styles including traditional and contemporary classical music, jazz, culturally specific and evolving forms.
CMA’s broad portfolio of programs includes commissioning initiatives, which have enabled the creation of 465 new works to date, and other grant programs that distribute over $1.2 million to the field annually; an annual National Conference held in New York City to convene the field, facilitate networking, and disseminate knowledge from peers and thought leaders; print and digital publications—including Chamber Music magazine and the e-newsletter Accent—that unite the field, discuss rising trends, and report on the chamber music ecosystem; a member-driven website (chamber-music.org) that serves as a knowledge-sharing hub with distance learning opportunities, concert and CD listings, and a growing toolbox of targeted skill-building resources; and free, public concerts presented in conjunction with the annual National Conference in January, and May’s National Chamber Music Month, which unites the field in raising awareness of the numerous styles of chamber music in communities across the country.
CMA has built long-lasting relationships with the national funding community, with support from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, The Howard Gilman Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York Community Trust, and CMA’s Residency Endowment Fund, among others.
The Board of Directors has made diversity, inclusion, and equity a primary focus of the organization's work, and CMA’s Commitment to Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity provides the lens through which all decisions are made, including annual benchmarks to which the organization holds itself accountable. Currently, Board membership is 65 percent BIPOC and the CMA staff is 50 percent BIPOC.
THE ROLE OF THE CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER:
The CEO reports to the Board of Directors through the Board Chair and President, providing the leadership and strategic vision that enable CMA to fulfill its mission and achieve its artistic, financial and organizational goals. The CEO is responsible and accountable for all aspects of CMA’s operations and vision including strategic planning, membership development and services, fundraising, grant modeling and execution, financial management, marketing, publications, public relations and promotion, human resources, education, and community engagement. The CEO serves as an ex-officio member of the Board of Directors.
The Board seeks candidates who can lead this service organization into the future by innovating to overcome the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, developing strategic and creative partnerships, investigating new funding structures and operating models, nurturing and growing an active chamber music community for small ensembles performing all forms of historic and contemporary music from all cultures and traditions, and continuing CMA’s commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion as an organization and throughout the field. The ideal candidate is a collaborative thinker with a passion for and knowledge of music, especially classical and jazz, and who possesses administrative excellence and the ability to successfully develop and launch bold initiatives. Someone who brings strong personal and professional networks, and is immersed in the performing arts. The new CEO must be able to inspire, build community and work with a diverse and talented Board, staff and membership to envision and lead the national and international service organization of the future.
DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:
Serve as CMA’s public spokesperson. Promote, advocate and represent CMA and chamber music nationally and internationally.
Maintain and expand membership and relationships with associated institutions, including government and private funding sources.
With the Board and staff, define and promote optimal mission, strategy and business model for CMA. Develop a collaborative strategic vision complete with an assessment of the resources needed to accomplish those goals and objectives.
Use media and technology to expand the reach of CMA work on behalf of chamber music and composers throughout the world.
Further the mission of CMA by championing the compositions and performances of CMA’s members and grantees.
Take a leadership role in fundraising, with a particular emphasis on the relationships with current foundation partners. Actively identify, cultivate, and solicit gifts from all sources and understand the importance of stewardship.
Assist the board in identifying and recruiting potential new appointed and elected Board members.
Work in close partnership with the Board and staff to evaluate existing activities, enhance standards and excellence of current programs, panelists and recipients, and develop new programs to expand the services and grants available to CMA members.
Apply new ways to solve complex situations including branding of the organization, increasing visibility of grant programs, residencies, commissioned performances and technical assistance availability, and in general creating new opportunities to enhance the prominence of CMA.
Strengthen and expand partnerships and collaborations with a wide range of artists and arts organizations locally and nationally to promote awareness, understanding, and appreciation for chamber music in all of its manifestations.
Oversee the preparation of the annual operating budget and monitor performance against budget. Ensure that the Board and its committees have timely and accurate information to support their decision-making.
Engage, collaborate with, supervise, motivate and evaluate a high-caliber professional staff.
Ensure diversity, equity and inclusion throughout the organization.
Minimum BA or BS degree plus 5 years of progressively responsible positions in mission-driven, not-for-profit organizations. Substantial experience with and understanding of the broader music and performing arts ecosystem is preferred.
Strong knowledge/love of music, with a particular feeling for small ensemble music.
Open, approachable, and personable.
Demonstrates the ability to listen and ask insightful questions, superb communication skills, a talent for articulating a vision and telling a story, and a knack for synthesizing opinions from many constituencies into a set of cohesive tactics.
Entrepreneurial, willing to embrace both big-picture strategic challenges and the administrative details that come with running a small organization.
Proven commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion; ability to build and lead effective, high-performing teams and to develop, partner with and nurture staff by creating a collaborative environment with clear expectations and a respectful culture.
Clear understanding and interest in using technology to successfully assist the organization with new programs, expanding membership and effectively communicating with diverse constituencies.
Experience with strategic planning process and execution.
Excellent administrative, budgeting and financial skills combined with an eye for detail.
History of successful fundraising from a broad range of individual donors, corporations, foundations, and governmental sources.
Demonstrated poise, integrity, and gravitas in representing the institution and use of that public persona to develop new opportunities for the organization.
Ability to deal effectively with uncertainty and a rapidly changing cultural environment.
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