Executive Director & Chief Executive Officer

March 2023 | New York, NY
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About The AKC Museum of the Dog

Kids at the MODThe American Kennel Club Museum of the Dog (the Museum) preserves, interprets, and celebrates the role of dogs in society and educates the public about the human-canine bond through its collection of art and exhibits that inspire engagement with dogs.

Founded in 1979 and opened in 1982, the Museum was originally located in The New York Life Building at 51 Madison Avenue as a part of the American Kennel Club (AKC) headquarters. In 1987, the Museum was moved to a new location in Queeny Park, West St. Louis County, Missouri. After over 30 great years at Queeny Park, the decision was made to bring the Museum back to its original home and reunite it with the AKC headquarters and collection.

Combining fine art with canine artifacts and high-tech interpretive displays, the Museum’s new home at 101 Park Ave, two blocks from Grand Central Station, hopes to capture the hearts and minds of its visitors. Located in the iconic Kalikow building, the Museum offers rotating exhibits featuring objects from its 1,700-piece collection and 4,000-volume library.

The Museum has a strong relationship with AKC and together, they own the largest collection of canine art in the world. Located in the same building, the Museum is supported financially in part by the AKC and has access to AKC’s administrative functions including but not limited to HR, Legal, Communications, and Finance. In addition, there is an active AKC TV studio and a resource library within the Museum.

For more information about The AKC Museum of the Dog, please visit museumofthedog.org.

About the Opportunity

sculpture of two dalmatiansThe Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer (ED/CEO) in consultation with the Board and AKC leadership, will develop and implement the strategy for expanding the Museum’s audience, engaging both the AKC and broader communities, and building various revenue streams in support of the Museum’s operations and programs. This includes increasing the Museum’s visibility, attendance, membership, and institutional growth. Revenue generation is vital to the Museum’s ability to meet these goals and the new ED/CEO will play a leadership role in elevating institutional revenue including raising philanthropic funds.

This creative and engaging leader will form effective external relationships with key local, regional, and national leaders in AKC clubs and events; and in the business, government, and nonprofit sectors. 

The ED/CEO will benefit from the support of Alan Fausel, who is serving as Adjunct Curator due to his deep experience and unmatched reputation in the area of dog art collections and exhibitions. The new ED/CEO will manage a staff of six including the Adjunct Curator as well as a Director of Individual Giving & Membership, a Manager of Visitor Experience, a Digital Media Manager, a Manager of Learning and Engagement, and a Development Assistant. 

Key Responsibilities

  • In collaboration with the Board and AKC leadership, develop a strategic plan/direction for the Museum
  • Develop and oversee multiple robust revenue initiatives that target the unique interests of various donor and interest groups, this includes: AKC’s core constituency, AKC’s network of dog clubs, the Museum’s current membership, dog lovers, both international and national, art lovers, public and private foundations, and corporations
  • Attend and network at AKC major events (approximately 10 events annually with several on weekends) to engage, educate and cultivate AKC constituents in the mission, programs, art and activities of the Museum
  • Engage with a broad range of community and business leaders in the greater New York area and create collaborative partnerships to advance the Museum’s stature, programs, and activities 
  • Serve as the external representative of the institution and regularly communicate with the Board, staff, AKC leadership, Museum donors, sponsors, and the public
  • Lead the marketing and communications efforts with the goal of increasing visibility, number of visitors and community engagement
  • Develop and implement a creative strategy to drive new and recurring memberships
  • Develop opportunities for renting out the Museum facility to appropriate groups and institutions
  • two people admiring artworkWorking in collaboration with the Adjunct Curator and Museum Staff, plan and secure funds for exhibition sponsorships, educational programs, library events, digital development and potential acquisitions
  • Oversee overall operations of the Museum including revenue generation, staffing, curatorial, education, and budget
  • Form a close partnership with the Chairman, Board of Directors and AKC leadership to engage them in the key activities of the Museum, benefit from their commitment and expertise, and keep them informed on key issues and opportunities
  • In collaboration with the senior curator, oversee the Museum collection, including an exhibition plan and the development of programs for the Museum

Key Qualifications

  • Passion and enthusiasm for dogs and mission of the Museum and the capability to effectively serve as the primary advocate for the institution
  • Proven track record of having grown an institution and enhanced its reputation
  • Proven track record in driving institutional revenue growth, including private philanthropic support
  • Visionary and strategic thinker with a keen appreciation for the Museum’s growth potential
  • Strong understanding of (or comparable experience in) the business, community relations, marketing, operational and revenue aspects of directing a museum
  • Ability to attend key AKC events nationally that will require periodic weekend travel
  • Solid appreciation and interest in learning the collections management aspects of the Museum
  • Experience working closely with governing boards to help manage all matters affecting the Museum and its performance
  • Team leader with ability to engage and motivate staff and members through a collaborative, respectful working environment
  • Exceptional oral and written communications skills
  • Authentic and enthusiastic leadership style

All qualified candidates will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.

The Museum of the Dog is offering a salary in the range of $225,000 – $250,000, plus benefits and a performance bonus, commensurate with experience.

Please email your cover letter and resume in confidence to: akc@developmentguild.com

Kieran McTague

Senior Vice President, Principal

Development Guild DDI

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