Arts and Culture, CEO/President/Executive Director/Head of School, Nonprofit and Social Impact, Social Justice and Advocacy

Executive Director

  • Artists For Humanity
  • Boston, MA

This position has been filled.

About Artists For Humanity

We are a social enterprise that uses creativity and design as vehicles for social change. Founded in 1991, Artists For Humanity (AFH) provides Boston’s under-resourced teens with the keys to self-sufficiency through paid employment in art and design, using creativity to build equity. We began with the ambitious and unconventional idea that young people can provide, through their innate talent and vision, contemporary creative services to the business community.

Our multifaceted identity as a hybrid of a creative services agency and workforce and youth development program has allowed us to work in innovative, unique ways. As a result, we have grown exponentially as a youth and cultural community resource and a successful enterprise, serving our youth apprentices and the greater community as a learning laboratory in the creative industry. We have become a leader in youth development and are the largest onsite employer of Boston teens, with 300+ youth employed annually in paid apprenticeships in the visual arts and creative industries. We counteract the risks facing young people – one teen at a time – with a range of opportunities, resources, and supports. Through our programs, our teens learn and grow through paid employment and exposure to conducting business, experience the enrichment that comes from the arts and cultural experiences, and are surrounded by engaged mentors in a safe place to go after school with a culture of respect. We also provide academic support to assist our teens with graduating from high school and successfully defining pathways to success in college and career. We continue to pioneer opportunities for youth to utilize creativity, industry, and innovation, with an overarching goal of preparing youth for emerging workforce and educational pathways.

Now celebrating our 30th year, we have built a reputation for the quality and impact of our work, and we have assembled a dedicated and talented team of staff, teen mentors, and teen apprentices. We operate with an annual budget of $6M, generated by a combination of earned income for our creative services and philanthropic support.

Moving forward, we see exciting opportunities to refine and expand on our earned revenue model and develop adaptations of our successful youth employment model. Since 1999, AFH has been collaborating nationally and internationally with city planners, community organizations, arts institutions, and school systems to build and sustain a field for arts professionals working with youth for social change. Through these collaborations, AFH’s model has been implemented as program adaptations nationally and internationally. We refer to these programs as adaptations, rather than replications, to reflect our role as advisors and mentors, rather than as governors. As AFH’s impact spreads, we receive several inquiries each month from communities interested in learning more about, and possibly implementing, our program model. Opportunities for impact through continued adaptation are open-ended for an entrepreneurial leader who can creatively build on our vision.

For more information on AFH and to take our virtual tour, please visit

About the Executive Director Opportunity

The Board of Artists For Humanity is seeking an extraordinary leader to serve as Executive Director, building on the incredible success of our founder Susan Rodgerson. The new Executive Director will support and celebrate our mission, expand our community, and maximize our future. We are seeking a leader who works with an entrepreneurial spirit and a sense of possibility, bringing creativity and innovation in setting the strategy for the next phase of our work.

The Executive Director will guide our team in fulfilling our mission and meeting financial objectives while upholding and modeling our culture and values. They will work in collaboration with staff, Board, and other constituents to develop and implement a strategic plan and will have primary responsibility for revenue generation and community engagement. The Executive Director will work in close partnership with the newly-created Artistic Director position to ensure programmatic outcomes and an evolution of the AFH esthetic. Finally, they will refine our strategy for understanding and communicating the impact of our programs on the youth we support.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Provide inspirational and effective leadership for AFH to build on our strong reputation and results
  • Collaborate with the Board and team to develop a strategic plan that will position AFH for continued success; inspire and guide the team in implementation of this plan, setting clear expectations around goals and fostering a spirit of shared success and accountability
  • Champion AFH as our lead fundraiser, business development leader, and external advocate, deepening existing relationships with our funders and clients and building new connections to broaden our base of support
  • Partner with the Artistic Director to provide leadership and support for AFH staff, teen mentors, and teens in delivering high-quality work in keeping with AFH’s esthetic; ensure the resources and business strategy necessary to fulfill the artistic vision and high standards of our work
  • Act as a culture leader, promoting our values of creativity, innovation, and respect and fostering an environment that is an inclusive, safe, and fun place to grow and learn for our teens, as well as for our team
  • Oversee financial and operational/administrative management practices that meet the organization’s needs, taking into account both efficiency and opportunities for innovation
Candidate Profile

As the incoming Executive Director, you will demonstrate many, though perhaps not all, of the following qualifications and experiences:

  • You offer leadership experience in a social enterprise or in a design firm or other creative business setting that provides an understanding of our business model and the dynamics of our work. Exposure to nonprofit organizations, especially in the areas of youth and workforce development, is considered a benefit but is not a requirement.
  • You are passionate about the potential of young people and are energized by our teen employees’ creativity and artistic expression.
  • You have a demonstrated track record of success in generating revenue, ideally with exposure to both philanthropic fundraising and for-profit business generation.
  • You demonstrate excellent interpersonal and communication skills, with the ability to engage, inspire, and motivate a diverse range of internal and external audiences through persuasive communication and strong relationship-building skills.
  • You are an innovative and entrepreneurial thinker who can apply those skills in both business and creative contexts, with an ambitious and goal-oriented approach.
  • You bring a positive, team-oriented, and flexible attitude with emotional maturity, patience, and sensitivity to leading diverse teams.
  • You have outstanding organizational and project management skills, combined with an ability to be nimble and embrace emergent possibilities.
Compensation, Benefits, and Location Information

The salary for this position will start at $200,000 and will be commensurate with experience. AFH provides a comprehensive benefits package.

The Executive Director position will be based at our headquarters, the Artists For Humanity EpiCenter, in South Boston.


Koya Partners, the executive search firm that specializes in mission-driven search, has been exclusively retained for this engagement. To express your interest in this role, please submit a thoughtful statement of interest and resume here.

Koya Partners is committed to providing reasonable accommodation to individuals living with disabilities. If you are a qualified individual living with a disability and need assistance expressing interest online, please email If you are selected for an interview, you will receive additional information regarding how to request an accommodation for the interview process.

Artists For Humanity is an Equal Opportunity Employer passionate about fostering an inclusive and equitable working environment. We embrace diversity in our workforce and recognize the value a range of experiences and perspectives brings, enhancing our ability to creatively solve problems, effectively connect with the young people we serve, and successfully carry out our mission. We strongly encourage applications from candidates across the spectrum of race, ethnicity, ability, gender, sexuality, education, and other diverse identities, backgrounds, and lived experiences.

About Koya Partners

Koya Partners, a part of Diversified Search Group, is a leading executive search and strategic advising firm dedicated to connecting exceptionally talented people with mission-driven clients. Our founding philosophy—The Right Person in the Right Place Can Change the World—guides our work as we partner with nonprofits & NGOs, institutions of higher education, responsible businesses, and social enterprises in local communities and around the world.

For more information about Koya Partners, visit

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