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Art Bridges Program Manager | Crystal Bridges (Bentonville, AR)

Art Bridges is a new foundation, founded by Alice Walton, whose mission is to focus on sharing outstanding works of American art with those that have limited access to our country’s most meaningful works.

Art Bridges organizes exhibitions of American art for display at public and academic art museums of all sizes. These exhibitions draw from Art Bridges’ growing collection, and the collections of private collectors, foundations, and partner institutions.

The exhibitions supported by Art Bridges will be engaging, content-rich, and include in-depth educational and interpretive materials. They will range from single-object loans to fully developed thematic exhibitions, and include support for programming, community outreach, audience engagement, and meaningful evaluation.

As a growing organization, Art Bridges contracts directly with Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art to provide expertise and services vital to the care of its collection, and launching major initiatives. Presently, Art Bridges only staff member, the Program Administrator, also serves at Crystal Bridges Chief Engagement Officer. It is time to expand the team, as the program is growing rapidly.

Crystal Bridges seeks to hire a Program Manager that will focus on the needs of Art Bridges, providing essential project coordination for the growing team.

The Program Manager will provide coordination of new project applications, from initial inquiry to project completion. This involves maintaining excellent records and communications, working closely with staff and partners in fulfilling project needs, and tracking the work along the way. They will also be integral in creating and maintaining files and workflows for communications, exhibitions, and general administration of Art Bridges.

The successful candidate will have experience in project management, a clear communication style, administrative skills, and a proven history of proactively balancing multiple tasks. An understanding of traveling exhibition coordination is highly desirable.

The duties of all Art Bridges team members will evolve over time to accommodate a new, growing organization. The duties are complex in nature and require considerable discretion in the handling of confidential information and financial matters.

The Program Manager reports to the Chief Engagement Officer / Program Administrator, and is part of the Engagement Division at Crystal Bridges.

Major Duties and Responsibilities (Essential Functions)
Project Management

The Program Manager is responsible for successfully processing each new project application, tracking the project throughout its life, and archiving all documentation of the project once complete.

  • Coordinate the application process, from solicitation to completed application
  • Work with database team to enter and track information on every project
  • Draft summaries/dockets of all applications for board review
  • Prepare complete packets of materials for external readers 
  • Receive and enter project reports according to established timelines
  • Work with funding team to insure timely payout of project funds, according to established timelines
  • Summarize final project reports
  • Prepare materials for board review on a regular basis 

The Program Manager is responsible for establishing and maintaining the yearly calendar for application intake and processing.

  • Develop and refine overall project funding procedures each year, improving and streamlining the process as the organization grows
  • Establish, organize, and implement the internal calendar for applications, including deadlines and yearly project goals
  • Interact with and respond to inquiries from funding recipients throughout the project period Communications Coordination 

The Program Manager will regularly communicate with staff, partners, and all external stakeholders.

  • Oversee edits and changes to the Art Bridges website, including updating of checklists, deadlines for applications, and new project releases.
  • Enter and maintain logistical information on Art Bridges-supported exhibitions on internal calendar and external website.
  • Work with partners to insure their websites reflect Art Bridges appropriately and accurately.
  • Oversee use of Art Bridges logo by partners and funding recipients, especially on publications and in digital media. 
  • Manage contact databases, including the lists of potential partners we are engaged with. 

Exhibition Support

The Project Manager will assist staff and partners with some elements of the traveling exhibition process – largely those that are administrative and logistical.

  • Coordinate meetings and communications between exhibition organizers, lenders, and the foundation.
  • Research into some elements of exhibition planning, including venue appropriateness, availability, and schedules.
  • Oversee exhibition submissions by tracking, circulating, and filing necessary documents.
  • Work with collections management teams as needed to keep the exhibition process moving forward efficiently. 

Administrative Support

The Program Manager will provide administrative support for the staff and selected partners.

  • Assist with expense reports, travel arrangements, scheduling meetings, running reports and data analysis, and other administrative duties as they arise
  • Schedule, arrange, and coordinate meetings both in person and digitally
  • Prepare and adapt standardized response letters and forms
  • Develop and maintain professional relationships with staff and partners
  • Monitor the overall budget on a monthly basis, communicating regularly with the Program Administrator on variances
  • Other duties as assigned 

Minimum Qualifications

Education, Training, Traits:

  • Associate’s degree required; Bachelor’s degree is highly desirable
  • Two years of specialized training in office procedures or related field preferred
  • Highest ethics as they relate to all aspects of non-profit and museum practices
  • Ability to understand and maintain the highest levels of confidentiality
  • Very flexible and helpful; occasional evening and weekend hours are required 

Work Experience:

  • Two years of relevant project management experience required; non-profit experience preferred
  • Two years of relevant experience with art exhibitions and/or museums preferred 

Licenses and Certifications:

  • Valid Arkansas driver’s license required. Willing and able to travel regionally. 

Skills and Abilities:

  • Excellent project management experience, including creating new systems from scratch
  • Excellent oral and written communications skills including business letter writing and clear, concise reports 
  • Demonstrated English skills in accuracy, proofreading, grammar, spelling, and attention to detail
  • Working knowledge of arts administration practices
  • Proficiency in the use of Microsoft Office
  • Willingness and ability to learn specialized software as required
  • Proficiency with office technology, including standard office equipment (telephone, fax, copier, computers, projectors) and web-based solutions (conference calls, video conferences, etc.)
  • Strong organizational skills
  • Excellent people skills that are based on courtesy and respect
  • Strong mathematical, quantitative, and analytical skills 
  • Ability to both work independently and be a team player 
  • Ability to multi-task and think critically in a busy work environment
  • Able to creatively and effectively problem solve 
  • Enthusiasm about joining an organization that’s new, evolving, and poised to have major impact on the art museum field
  • A great sense of humor, and a passion for the power of the arts 

Physical Demands and Work Environment:

The physical demands and work environment characteristics described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this position. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individual with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Physical demands: Occasionally, while performing the duties of this job, the employee is required to travel independently regionally and in communities served. In the work environment described below, position requires works at a desk and utilizing a computer and a telephone for prolonged periods of time and good eye/hand coordination, bending and stretching for filing, and physical stamina to life a minimum of 25 pounds to a height of at least three feet for art materials storage and preparation and as appropriate for the demands of the division office. Visual acuity to review written materials is required for this job.
  • Work environment: Work will be performed in an office environment, museum spaces, and in communities served. Occasional evening and weekend hours may be required. The noise level in the Museum work environment is usually low to moderate. 


Crystal Bridges offers a competitive compensation package.


To be considered for candidacy for this position, apply below.

No phone calls please.

The successful candidate will be required to pass a routine background and consumer credit check and drug screen.