Director, Arts and Culture


The Director of Arts and Culture (DAC), an employee of the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo, will lead the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation Arts and Culture Initiative at the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo, including efforts to build and strengthen the sector with a focus on increasing access and inclusion.

In mid-December 2021, the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation (RCWJRF) announced a $100 million commitment to transform the financial strength and long-term viability of the Western New York’s art and cultural community through the establishment of an endowment that will support the sector now and forever. RCWJRF will contribute nearly $60 million over 10 years to establish an endowment at the Community Foundation. To ensure the program has immediate impact, RCWJRF will also provide $3.75 million a year for the first nine years, or $33.75 million. This investment will: (1) create permanent operational funding stream for 13 of the region’s largest arts and cultural institutions that play a critical role as economic drivers; (2) fund primarily small to mid-size arts and cultural organizations; (3) provide permanent capacity at the Community Foundation to manage and operate the endowment and grant program, which includes efforts to advance inclusion and access. The geographic reach includes the nine Western New York counties: Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Genesee, Monroe, Niagara, Orleans, Wyoming.

The DAC will (1) serve as the link between the Community Foundation and key stakeholders, as well as the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan; (2) maintain strong knowledge of relevant community issues; (3) develop and maintain strong relationships in the arts and cultural ecosystem including with regional arts councils, arts advocacy alliances and peer funders, and (4) lead the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation Arts and Culture Initiative grants.  The DAC will also participate in other aligned arts grant programs at the Community Foundation.


  • Manage grant processes including marketing, technical assistance, evaluation, and reporting for RCWJRF Arts and Culture Initiative funds
  • Develop, formalize, and maintain a strong arts and cultural network involving diverse community stakeholders, arts and culture professionals, peer funders, and elected officials, when appropriate. In particular, build and strengthen relationships with relevant organizations serving historically underrepresented communities, as well as arts councils, arts advocacy organizations and other groups designed to support the arts and cultural community in the nine counties.
  • Identify aligned opportunities for sector building with a focus on access and inclusion
  • Seek and secure additional funding to support arts access and inclusion efforts with a focus on national funders


  • Work with Communications team to develop and deliver key messages that reflect the Community Foundation and the RCWJRF brand and brand promises
  • Manage relevant contracts and budgets
  • Identify and implement annual evaluation
  • All other duties, as assigned


  • None


  • Generally, travel is primarily within the nine counties of Western New York and occasionally to Southeast Michigan. Some domestic travel may be required for job training and/or professional development.


  • Demonstrated domain expertise and ability to lead strategy development and collaboration
  • Minimum 10 years of progressively more responsible experience in philanthropy or arts and cultural field
  • Proven program development and project management experience, prioritizing multiple projects to meet tight deadlines
  • Extensive knowledge of the nonprofit sector and experience in leading and facilitating community coalitions
  • Demonstrated ability to establish and maintain effective relationships with persons of diverse backgrounds and organizations throughout the Western New York community
  • Experience in communicating in a persuasive, credible manner, in person, in digital settings, and in writing and presentations
  • Strong analytical, evaluative, and managerial skills
  • Computer proficiency in all Microsoft components
  • Technology skills and the ability to apply software knowledge
  • Demonstrate consistent quality
  • Commitment to the collaborative team work environment at the Community Foundation


For more than a century, the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo has enhanced and encouraged long- term philanthropy in the Western New York community. A 501 (c)(3) organization, the Community Foundation’s mission is: Connecting people, ideas and resources to improve lives in Western New York.  Established in 1919, the Community Foundation has made the most of the generosity of individuals, families, foundations and organizations who entrust charitable assets to the Community Foundation’s care. Learn more at


Community foundations are designed to grow and evolve as our community’s needs change, and new positions are regularly created as a result. As the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo continues to grow we’re looking for talented people who want to use their abilities to make a lasting difference. If that is you, then please send a cover letter and resume explaining your interest in this position and what you would bring to the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo.

Send cover letter and resume as a single Word or PDF document via email to: Please submit responses electronically via email. Responses may also be received by U.S. Postal Service if an electronic medium is not available. No calls please.


Application deadline: Monday, September 12, 2022 at 5:00 p.m.


We thank all candidates for their interest; however, only those selected for an interview will be contacted. The Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo is an equal opportunity employer that values diversity, practices inclusion and works to advance equity.