Employment Opportunities at South Dakota Humanities Council

Current Openings:


Executive Director

The South Dakota Humanities Council (SDHC) seeks an Executive Director to oversee all aspects of institutional operations, communications, advocacy, advancement, and long-term strategic planning.

Established in 1972, the SDHC has grown to become a diversely-funded state humanities council known for literary arts programs, including the annual South Dakota Festival of Books.

SDHC is a non-profit governed by an 18-member board whose mission is to celebrate literature, promote civil conversation, and tell the stories that define our state. A trailblazer in the field of humanities, SDHC uses diverse humanities programming to tell South Dakota's stories in innovative, dynamic, and inclusive ways to a diverse audience.

The Executive Director will take a lead role in organizational fundraising, strategic planning, government relations, and institutional advancement. The Executive Director sets the vision for the organization in consultation with the Board and manages and oversees all activities through staff. The Executive Director also works with staff and consultants in finance, employee benefits, fundraising and technology.

The Executive Director serves as the hiring official for a 5-person staff, enforcing policies set by the board and funders, including the National Endowment for the Humanities, as well as corporate, foundation, public and associated organizations and individual donors.

Key Priorities

A successful Executive Director will contribute to the growth and advancement of the SDHC. Some key priority areas are:

  • Organizational fundraising and institutional advocacy
  • Management and oversight of the SDHC
  • Organizational vision and planning
  • Budget oversight and planning
  • Program development and evaluation

Knowledge Areas, Skills, or Abilities:

Candidates are expected to have a record of successful leadership, preferably in an educational, nonprofit, or public humanities organization. Candidates must hold at least a bachelor's degree in a humanities field.

A competitive applicant for the Executive Director role will have many of the following knowledge areas, skills, or abilities:

  • Excellent written and oral communication skills, including skills in presenting and facilitating discussions
  • Track record of fundraising, strategic planning, and advocacy experience
  • Ability to be an innovative, forward-thinking, tech-savvy leader
  • Experience serving as an advocate for the humanities, especially literary arts
  • Commitment to diversity and inclusion
  • Ability to guide, train, and inspire staff
  • Vision for inspiring current and prospective donors and partners to deepen their commitment to the organization

Procedure for Candidacy

To apply, individuals must submit a cover letter and resume as pdf attachments via email to apply@sdhumanities.org. Applications will be accepted from June 15 through August 1, 2018.

The South Dakota Humanities Council is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer. Persons who are members of any under-represented group are encouraged to apply.

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