Director – Beach Museum of Art, Kansas State University

Academic Career & Executive Search is pleased to assist Kansas State University in its search for Director of the Beach Museum of Art.

For best consideration, please apply by September 9th. On Campus final interviews are expected to take place during the Fall. 

The Marianna Kistler Beach Museum of Art seeks a charismatic and collaborative leader to become the next Museum Director. The Director will lead the staff, set programmatic priorities, and oversee all operations and activities of the Beach Museum of Art. The Director will provide leadership, vision, and direction for the museum’s development initiatives, and will lead the museum in the creation of workplace and programmatic diversity, equity, and inclusion. The ideal candidates will cultivate and maintain relationships with university and community constituents, donors, and Friends group, as well as lead the museum’s strategic plan update to coincide with updates to the Kansas State University strategic plan. The director will serve as the curatorial authority on the University’s collections, ensure a balance of cultural relevance, diversity, and value for the University’s constituents, and directs and participates in community engagement and media interaction.

The successful candidate will be a persuasive, resourceful, and energetic leader, able to inspire and empower the Board, staff, and other key stakeholders to advance the mission of the Museum. Demonstrated financial acumen, strong analytical abilities, as well as experience with strategic planning and developing a visionary path for an organization is also crucial to long term success.

This position reports to the Chief of Staff and Director of Community Relations in the Office of the President. 

Duties & Responsibilities:

Vision and Leadership:

  • Provide vision and creative leadership for the staff to ensure that the museum carries out K-State’s education, research, and extension mission through visual arts programming and innovative collaborations with campus and community partners.
  • Engage in long term and short-term strategic planning. Participates in community engagement and media interaction.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion:

  • Provide leadership in using a diverse range of art to promote ideals of equity, empathy, and connect with cultural experts who can provide input on exhibits involving many backgrounds and interests.
  • Ensure that the diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging values of K-State are represented in the permanent collection, workplace, exhibitions, and public programming.


  • Monitor and work to secure and improve the financial well-being of the museum in close cooperation with the Office of the President and the KSU Foundation.
  • Provide leadership, vision, and direction for the museum’s development initiatives.
  • Cultivate and maintains relationships with university and community constituents, donors, and friends’ group.
  • Engage with donors and supporters, including individuals, corporations, and foundations; city, county, state and federal agencies and departments; private organizations; and neighborhood leaders to create and maintain long-lasting partnerships and funding opportunities.

Art Collection:

  • Oversee care and appropriate growth of the art collections which the museum holds as a public trust.


  • Make decisions and provides leadership during the annual budgeting process. Directly supervises 10-12 FT and 2 PT employees and provides annual evaluations.
  • Maintain American Alliance of Museums (AAM) accreditation with best professional practices. Leads Advisory Council meetings bi-annually and attends Friends Board meetings bi-monthly
  • Other duties as assigned by supervisor.

Minimum Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Five to 10 years of relevant experience in art museum or similar organization
  • Self-directed, motivated, and team oriented.
  • Ability to work with the Museum Advisory Council, Friends of the Beach Museum of Art group, donors, collectors, the public, and co-workers professionally, empathetically, and diplomatically.
  • Knowledge of current issues within the museum profession.
  • Proven record of leadership and ability to work productively with people across a broad spectrum, including a demonstrated commitment to racial equity, diversity, and inclusion.
  • Knowledge of selection, conservation, and exhibition of works of art, and of the legal regulations governing collecting.
  • Understanding of budgeting principles and strategies.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills; effective and at-ease public speaker.
  • Organizational ability with strong leadership, management, and supervisory skills.
  • Ability to assess priorities and work well under pressure; excellent time management, problem-solving, and analytical skills, with a close attention to detail and to maintain confidentiality of sensitive information.
  • Exceptional interpersonal skills, including relationship-building, and the ability to communicate effectively both verbally and in writing.
  • Demonstrated capacity for creative and critical project strategy and development and capacity for organizing programs and long-term initiatives.
  • Unwavering commitment to fostering an antiracist, equitable work environment supportive of people from different cultures, backgrounds, and life paths, and effective at building diverse teams
  • Demonstrated skill in managing people, budgets, and other resources
  • Extensive experience working to build and cultivate a network of relationships and evidence of successful fundraising leadership that includes the acquisition of major gifts and grants from foundations, corporations, individuals, and the public sector at the local, state, or national level is required.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • MA degree, PhD, or equivalent experience in related field
  • Background in art history and/or art education and studio art with a broader understanding of the intersection between art, science, and the humanities.

Other Requirements:

  • Applicants must be currently authorized to work in the United States at the time of employment.

About the Institution

Kansas State University educates nearly 22,000 of tomorrow’s potential leaders and provides some of the best global food systems and biosecurity research in the world. The university is progressing toward its goal of becoming a Top 50 public research university by 2025.  

The university has nine academic colleges and offers more than 250 majors and options. The Graduate School offers 73 master’s degrees, 44 doctoral degrees and 43 graduate certificates in multiple disciplines. The Princeton Review recognizes the university as one of the nation’s best colleges and the association of Public and Land-grant Universities designated Kansas State University as an Innovation and Economic Prosperity University.  

Commonly referred to as K-State, the university is proud of its welcoming environment and considers all K-Staters family. Our athletic teams, known as the Wildcats, compete in the Big 12 Conference and frequently win titles and championships.   

Diversity and Inclusion   

Kansas State University has a long, storied history of embracing diversity and inclusion as a core component of their educational mission. As the nation’s first operational land-grant, K-State has always admitted students without regard to race, gender, or creed. Their commitment to meeting the needs and interests of a diverse student body and preparing all constituents for meaningful engagement in an ever changing, diverse world is unwavering. They believe that diversity adds value to the educational fabric of their institution and students are encouraged to capitalize on the learning opportunities that differences can create.    

To learn more information about diversity and inclusion at K-State, please visit   

The Community   

Situated in the heart of northeast Kansas’ scenic Flint Hills, Manhattan’s 56,000 citizens enjoy a dynamic community with shopping, dining, entertainment, and nightlife. Manhattan is affectionately known as the “Little Apple,” a nod to its East Coast namesake, but has a vibrant culture all its own. Here is just a sampling of what residents look forward to year-round:    

  • Shopping, dining, and socializing in Aggieville, a local entertainment district with a fun, energetic vibe.   
  • A vibrant, revitalized downtown area with fine dining options and local boutiques.   
  • The Flint Hills Discovery Center, featuring exhibits about the beautiful surrounding region.   
  • Beautiful outdoor life at Sunset Zoo and The Gardens at Kansas State University.   
  • Recreation opportunities at the Konza Prairie, Tuttle Creek State Park, Linear Park Trail and more.   
  • The university’s McCain Performance Series, which hosts acclaimed Broadway musicals, comedians, musicians, and other entertainers.    
  • Exciting Big 12 athletic events (faculty and staff are eligible for discounted tickets).  
  • Colbert Hills Golf Course, ranked as the top public golf course in Kansas.  
  • Excellent K-12 education. The local high school ranks among the top 5 percent of U.S. high schools, and the district is home to several Kansas Master Teachers.  

Learn more about the Manhattan community, at  

For best consideration, please apply by September 9th. On Campus final interviews are expected to take place during the Fall. 

To be viewed by the search firm, you must apply directly at:  

Please do not email applications.  

Applications will be reviewed as they are received and should include a cover letter and curriculum vita. All applications are treated confidentially. 

Inquiries, referrals, and nominations are also treated confidentially: 

Inquiries and questions: Please send to  

Nominations and referrals: Please send to  

Institution’s EEO Statement 

Kansas State University is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, age, national origin, disability, or status as a protected veteran. 


Background Screening Statement   

In connection with your application for employment, Kansas State University will procure a Background Screen on you as part of the process of considering your candidacy as an employee.   

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