Executive Director

Job Description:

The Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra (A2SO) in Ann Arbor, Michigan seeks an experienced Executive Director who is creative, organized and a goal-oriented team leader who is passionate about the arts and youth education. The Executive Director, who is a key public face for the A2SO, is an active participant in the life of the arts, education, and greater not-for-profit community as well as civic organizations.  This is a full-time exempt position requiring some evening and weekend work.

The Executive Director is responsible for managing the resources of the A2SO, leading the staff, and collaborating effectively with the Board of Directors and Music Director to achieve the Orchestra’s mission and strategic plans. The Executive Director is responsible and accountable for the management of all aspects of the A2SO’s music concerts, education program, budgeting, financial management, negotiations, and professional staff, as well as for implementing the policies set by the Board of Directors. The Executive Director reports to the Board of Directors through the Board President.

About the Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra:

Now celebrating our 90th season, the A2SO performs live, symphonic musical experiences for 70,000 listeners each year. The A2SO is a versatile orchestra, performing the gamut of musical styles – from Beethoven to Broadway.  We are equally at home giving shining performances of the revered classical symphonic masterpieces as we are to our newly minted commissions. The A2SO calls home both the 1,500 seat Michigan Theater and the 3,500 seat Hill Auditorium on the campus of the University of Michigan.  A2SO has an extremely strong educational mission, where it engages with 30,000 young music enthusiasts in Side-by-Side concerts, Kinder Concerts, and instrument petting zoos.

The A2SO is governed by a 39-member Board of Directors and has an annual budget of $1.6M.  It has operated in the black for 25 consecutive years.  The A2SO administrative staff of seven has 160 combined years of service in the orchestra field. During the 2019-2020 and 2020-2021 seasons, the Orchestra will be conducting a search for a new Music Director. The Executive Director will take a leading role in this search. The A2SO’s 71 professional musicians are members of AFM Local 625 while the stage hands/technicians are members of IATSE local 395.


  • BA (required); MA (preferred)
  • Five-plus year’s leadership and management experience with an orchestra, performing arts, or other nonprofit organization
  • Demonstrated excellence in organizational, managerial, and communication skills
  • Strong financial management experience and reporting skills
  • Mastery of a PC-based environment with Microsoft Office tools
  • Ability to work both independently and in collaboration with other staff and volunteers, to take initiative, and to manage multiple projects simultaneously
  • Donor relations, development and endowment management experience
  • Community engagement and relationship development experience
  • Familiarity with symphony orchestra repertoire is essential

Applicants should address how their experience, knowledge, and skills would allow them to meet the requirements and responsibilities of the A2SO Executive Director.

Application Deadline: July 15, 2019

A2SO is an equal opportunity employer with a strong commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Please submit a cover letter and résumé in .pdf format to Searchcommittee@a2so.com