Executive Search2018-12-03T22:11:17+00:00

Executive Search


TITLE: Executive Director
REPORTS TO: CPA Board of Trustees
Position Open Until Filled

Mission Statement:

CPA’s mission involves increasing the understanding and respect for photography and its evolving role in contemporary culture. CPA strives to address artistic development, build well-informed audiences, stimulate dialogue, and promote inquiry about photography and related media through education, exhibitions, publications, lectures, fellowship programs, and community collaboration.

History and Background:

Tracing its roots back to the Friends of Photography, founded in 1967, the Center for Photographic Art (CPA) remains the second oldest members’ photography gallery organization in the country. CPA honors the history of the renowned school of West Coast fine art photography established by Ansel Adams, the Weston family and many more, by upholding our forbearers’ regional traditions of mastery of craft, the concept of mentorship and mutual support, and the commitment to creating and appreciating uplifting and stimulating art. CPA cultivates respect for diverse subjects, approaches and mediums, nurtures creative growth and encourages photographers to pursue image making unique to each person.

CPA’s gallery is free to the public and features the finest works of contemporary photography. In addition, CPA also offers the unique PIE Labs (Photography + Ideas + Experience) creativity program. The award-winning PIE programs present an uncommon array of talented facilitators and are designed to spark creative thinking and artistic development. The CPA Lecture Series brings a variety of artists, curators, educators, and other leaders in photography to our venue at Sunset Center for in-depth presentations of timely and stimulating topics. Monthly events are offered exclusively for CPA members and include critiques, film screenings, guest artists, book  reviews, technical demonstrations, print exchanges and other inspiring gatherings.


The successful candidate will be able to deliver a responsive, stimulating and effective array of programs and services consistent with CPA’s commitment to the understanding and appreciation of fine art photography.

Essential tasks include but are not limited to:

• Conceive, plan and execute exhibitions, seminars, lectures and events. Hands-on participation is expected during evening and weekend events.
• Interface with artists and curators; identify and secure exceptional artists, lecturers, seminar facilitators, etc.
• Hands-on gallery management; ensure the timely delivery, safe installation/de-installation and return of artwork for each exhibition.
• Maintain a viable and successful series of annual national and international juried competitions.
• Maintain an effective docent and volunteer recruitment, scheduling and appreciation program.
• Direct and prepare text for gallery signage, exhibition catalogs, the monthly members  electronic newsletter focus and oversee a timely and effective print, web and social  media presence.
• Oversee an effective, unique and cost efficient branding, marketing and design effort.
• Oversee efficient and responsible fiscal accounting procedures related to cash, credit and online purchase and sales, banking, insurance, etc.
• Cultivate a positive and buoyant relationship with staff and docent/volunteers.
• Collaborate with the Board in recommending, establishing and refining policies and procedures.
• Ensure that the organization acts in accordance with its strategic and operational goals; monitor and report progress toward these goals and work collaboratively with the Board to achieve them; report outcomes in a timely fashion.
• Collaborate with the Board Executive Committee to ensure adequate financial controls and reporting procedures, including revenue forecasting and budget analyses.
• Ensure that human resources programs are effective and that appropriately skilled employees are available, trained, and empowered to lead.
• Collaborate with the Board to implement Trustee recruitment and development; ensuring that communication with Board members is effective and timely; supporting the full engagement of each Board member.
• Serve as the leader of CPA’s marketing and fundraising program; solicit major contributions; oversee planning and operation of donor identification, cultivation, and solicitation program for gifts and grants at all levels and via all types of fundraising strategies (e.g., capital campaigns, planned giving, major gifts, annual giving, and special events).

• Expertise in current trends and familiarity with artists in contemporary photography, and general knowledge of the history of photography. Knowledge and appreciation of  our rich West Coast photography tradition is also required. A broad knowledge of art history is helpful.
• Bachelor’s degree from accredited college or university; Master’s degree preferred.
• Strong communication skills, both oral and written; ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with all types of stakeholders.
• A minimum of five years’ experience in leading programs or operations in a non-profit agency or other arts; experience in gallery management.
• Leadership skills, including advocacy, negotiation, problem solving, decision making, delegation and employee development.
• Innovative and forward thinking; capable of advancing the visibility and vitality of a moderately small non-profit in the midst of significant national competition.

The Executive Director is a full-time position
; salary is negotiable dependent upon experience and qualifications and commensurate with a fully-engaged, medium scale non-profit organization.

Qualified applicants are encouraged to submit their cover letter, résumé, and other relevant materials online at: gro.yhpargotohp@hcraesApplications will be accepted until the position is filled.
Applications cannot be accepted by regular mail or at any other email address.
Please no calls or inquiries to the CPA office or staff, thank you.

(Click here to download as a PDF)

Executive Director Search

Dear Friends:

With Brian’s announcement to retire next June, we are now embarking on a search to find a new Executive Director who will assume that role in June, 2019.

Qualified applicants are encouraged to review the Job Description (click on tab, above) and submit their cover letter, resume’, and other relevant materials online at the email address listed in the Job Description. Applications cannot be accepted at any other email address. (Please no calls or inquiries to CPA staff, thank you.)

The Search Committee has adopted the following Schedule:
• We will continue to accept applications until the position is filled.
• Interviews with qualified applicants will begin in December with the expectation we will have the finalist identified and onboard by the end of March.
• This schedule will give the incoming Director time to complete existing commitments and have time to work alongside Brian and his team at CPA to ensure an orderly and successful transition by June, 2019.

This is a collaborative process and with everyone’s help we look forward to recruiting a new Executive Director fully able to continue the success accomplished by Brian and his team at CPA.Best,

Brooks McChesney
Board of Trustees

(Click here to download as a PDF)