Full Time

Executive Director

Ashkenaz Foundation and Festival 455 Spadina Avenue , Toronto ON

The Ashkenaz Foundation, Canada’s leading presenter of global Jewish music, art and culture, and producer of the world-renowned Ashkenaz Festival, invites passionate professionals to apply for the position of Executive Director. Reporting to and collaborating with the Board of Directors, in a shared leadership model with the Artistic and Managing Directors, the Executive Director will join a vibrant team of experienced professionals dedicated to excellence. Together, this team collaborates in overlapping spheres of responsibility, to bring into fruition one of the world’s foremost festivals of Jewish music and culture, as well as a year-round event series. 

The Executive Director is responsible for oversight of the Strategic Plan, ensuring the organization’s mission, vision, and values are effectively advanced through its programming and community engagement initiatives. The Executive Director manages Board relations and Board development, prioritizing community representation, diversity, inclusion and engagement among the organization’s lay leaders. The Executive Director plays a key role in shaping organizational communications, marketing and branding, and along with the Artistic Director serves as the company’s public spokesperson within the local, national and international community. The Executive Director stewards relationships with donors, funders and other key stakeholders, participates in relevant professional networks, and develops partnerships with other arts, civic, and Jewish community institutions.

The Executive Director provides oversight of the organization’s finances and works with the Managing Director in developing annual budgets. The Executive Director is responsible for creating and implementing an overall development strategy and ensuring revenue targets are met. The Executive Director oversees private fundraising efforts (including stewardship and administration), corporate and business sponsorships/partnerships, grant submissions and reports (public and private) and oversees the Raiser’s Edge database. Priorities for the current cycle (culminating with the 13th Ashkenaz Festival in August/September 2022) will include: maintaining existing donor base while cultivating new donors; creation of programs to attract younger donors; creation of new fundraising methodologies and events/initiatives; pursuit of increased corporate and business sponsorships; improvement of donor relations and stewardship; and steering the overall diversification of Ashkenaz revenue streams by identifying new funding opportunities.

The ideal candidate for this position will possess the following qualities:

  • an educational background in fundraising/development, business administration, arts management or a related field
  • minimum 10 years relevant work experience, preferably in arts/non-profit sector or Jewish community, with a minimum of five years in a management/leadership role
  • demonstrated skill in private fundraising and stakeholder relations
  • strong familiarity and experience with grant applications (public and private) or similar proposal writing
  • superior writing and communication skills
  • excellent social skills and comfort with public speaking
  • familiarity and skill with contemporary computer programs and web-based business tools (including social media)
  • knowledge/experience in marketing and communications an asset
  • experience collaborating with non-profit boards an asset
  • energetic, positive, fearless, outgoing, self-directed, detail-oriented, passionate, collaborative; an out-of-the-box thinker able to take initiative and willing to go the extra mile to achieve highest-possible results

About Ashkenaz

The biennial Ashkenaz Festival is the largest Jewish cultural event in Canada, and is among the largest events of its kind internationally. Since 1995, the Festival has taken place every two years at Toronto’s Harbourfront Centre and at satellite locations across Toronto. Each edition of this multidisciplinary event includes approximately 80 acts from Canada and around the world (including 250+ artists and performers) working in music primarily, but also theatre, dance, film, literature, craft, and youth/family programs. The world-renowned Festival draws a diverse, multicultural audience of over 60,000 people.

In addition to the Festival, the Ashkenaz Foundation also produces 15-20 events during non-Festival intervals, including concerts, lectures, panels, films, and more. Ashkenaz has adapted to the Covid-era with a robust slate of virtual and live/virtual hybrid programming.

Interested and qualified applicants should send a resumé with cover letter as soon as possible, and no later than December 8, 2021 to: sam@ashkenaz.ca

Start date: January 2022

The Ashkenaz Foundation is committed to equity, diversity and accessibility in the workplace and welcomes and encourages applications from Black and racialized peoples, people who identify as LGBTQ2+, women and non-binary people, and persons with disabilities.

To request any access solutions that you may require to participate in the application and recruitment process, please contact sam@ashkenaz.ca.

The Ashkenaz Foundation thanks all applicants for their interest; however, only those selected for interviews will be contacted.