Japanese American National Museum
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Vice President of Programs

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The Vice President, Programs, provides leadership, strategic direction and coordination for the Programs Department in the development and implementation of National Museum programs, exhibitions and media arts. The Programs Department includes the following units: Exhibitions; Collections Management and Access; Discover Nikkei website; Education; Public Programs; and, Watase Media Arts Center. The Vice President, Programs will be a member of the Executive Team and will report directly to the Chief Operating Officer.


  • 1. Provides strategic leadership and supervises directors and managers of programs units, ensuring that professional standards and policies are developed and maintained.
  • 2. Develops concepts, themes, and program ideas to further the National Museum’s mission in consultation with programs, development, and marketing and communications staff.
  • 3. Works with program directors and managers to develop annual goals, budgets and work plans related to programmatic areas and projects.
  • 4. Ensures coordination and collaboration among program units.
  • 5. Works with programs staff to maintain on-going evaluation of program effectiveness and outcomes.
  • 6. Conducts annual performance reviews with directors and managers of program units.
  • 7. Works with the President/CEO and other operational directors to ensure integration and collaboration between programs and other National Museum entities.
  • 8. Oversees development of National Museum's long-range strategic program plans in collaboration with Executive Team and program directors.
  • 9. Assists development and the executive office with donor cultivation to raise funds for exhibitions and programs (individual donors/funders, grants, and donations) and provides development staff with information necessary for program grants/reports and funding opportunities.
  • 10. Staffs the programs Committee of the Board of Trustees, attends quarterly meetings and submits reports and documentation as requested.
  • 11. Represents the National Museum in external affairs related to programs and key institutional matters.
  • 12. Staff members must be able to work with visitors of all ages to support the various events sponsored by the National Museum. Each staff member will be expected to work on a minimum of three museum-wide events per year.

This list is not exhaustive and may be supplemented as necessary. Incumbent will perform related duties as assigned.


Qualification Requirements: To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

Education: Bachelor’s degree in humanities, art history, history, museum studies or similar subject matter, advanced degree preferred; or an equivalent combination of education and experience.

Experience/Knowledge: At least 10 years of experience working in a high-paced museum environment and/or non-profit organization that includes management, program development, project management and budget development and oversight. A record of strong management and analytical skills, both strategic and operational, is required. Knowledge of Japanese American history and culture a plus.

Communication: Excellent communication and negotiation skills. Must be able to provide courteous and effective service to co-workers, volunteers and the general public. Ability to read and comprehend documents such as safety rules, operating and maintenance instructions, and procedure manuals. Ability to write routine reports and correspondence. Ability to effectively present information in one-on-one and small group format.

Computer: Technical skills: Familiarity and experience with appropriate, current software and technology.

Physical: The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to use hands to finger, handle, or feel objects, tools, or controls. The employee frequently is required to talk or hear. The employee is occasionally required to stand, walk, sit, reach with hands and arms, climb or balance, and stoop, kneel, crouch, or crawl. The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 20 pounds. Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, and the ability to adjust focus.

Environment: The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those the employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. The noise level in the work environment is usually moderate.


Reports to: COO
Positions supervised: Collections Manager, Discover Nikkei Project Manager, Director of Education, Sr. Director of Exhibitions, Director of Media Arts Center, Public Programs Manager

The Japanese American National Museum reserves the discretion to change this job description at any time.The Japanese American National Museum is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to their race, religion, ancestry, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, genetic information, disability, marital status, domestic partner status, or medical condition.



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