Vice President, Programs – International Spy Museum, Washington, D.C.

About International Spy Museum

International Spy Museum is a nonprofit museum dedicated to educating the public about the world of espionage and intelligence through exhibits, educational programs, special events, and public outreach. Through face-to-face and virtual programs, we reach thousands of students and adult learners of all ages with innovative opportunities to explore, learn, and think differently about the world around them. With our many partners, we provide workshops and field trips for underserved youth, open up access to the Museum for those with special needs, and bring the magic of SPY to all. With the world’s largest collection of espionage artifacts on public view, we tell remarkable true stories of resilience and ingenuity and illuminate history and technology in a unique way. In a world of endless information channels, we put the spotlight on how knowledge is created and shared, how facts and analysis can be manipulated, and why critical thinking and problem-solving skills are more important now than ever before.
Position Summary
The Vice President, Programs will be a strategic, collaborative, and experienced museum education leader who will create and implement diverse public and private educational programs, experiences, and events for all International Spy Museum (SPY) audiences. This is an exciting new leadership position after a strategic, growth-based decision to divide one department (Exhibitions and Programs) into two VP level roles.  The ideal candidate will bring high emotional intelligence, exceptional communication skills, and superb relationship management experience. This position reports to the Executive Director and oversees a team of six educators.
The VP will work closely with curatorial and other departments to ensure the museum offers engaging and impactful experiences for all ages and abilities. The VP also will evaluate and measure education programs and multi-faceted initiatives that engage and support SPY’s diverse audiences. This person serves as a member of the senior leadership team and leads the team that engages communities, serves students, teachers, and volunteers, and collaborates across the organization to develop content.
Key Responsibilities

Educational Programming Vision and Strategy

  • Develop and implement a vision and strategy for SPY’s education programming with clearly defined values, priorities, and metrics.
  • Ensure SPY’s programs are aligned with best practice pedagogy and museum educational theory.
  • Create a set of metrics and measurement tools to continually evaluate and refine educational programs; monitor the efficiency and effectiveness of educational programming from a variety of points of view including visitor satisfaction, impact, diversity and inclusiveness, and budget.
  • Keep current with intellectual and programmatic developments in the field and participate in relevant professional organizations and meetings to understand and, as appropriate, incorporate trends and new approaches.
  • Develop strategic partnerships with organizations and experts in the field to enhance programming and engagement strategies and ensure that education programs are responsive and integral to the existing social and educational landscape.
  • Manage all aspects of SPY’s education program budgets in conjunction with finance, annual budgeting and forecasting, and program specific revenue and expenses.

Executive and Team Leadership

  • Serve as a critical member of SPY’s senior leadership team, collaborating across departments on organization-wide initiatives such as philanthropic giving, content development, and exhibition planning.
  • Lead and inspire a talented team in creating innovative and leading-edge programs for youth and adult audiences
  • Create a collaborative and inclusive team culture that inspires and empowers our staff to live our mission to its highest standards.
  • Provide team with clear objectives, evaluate performance, and offer constructive coaching; offer opportunities for professional development.
  • Contribute to a consistent customer service standard across all departments.
  • Work to ensure customer service is ingrained at the core of the team and is reflected outward to our guests and other staff.

Experience & Skills Required

  • At least 15 years of progressive leadership in museum education.
  • Proven experience developing the vision, strategy, and implementation for a museum’s education programs.
  • Experience designing and developing innovative and creative museum content that appeals to diverse audiences.
  • Demonstrated ability to lead, inspire, and coach a talented team; experience cultivating an inclusive and collaborative team culture.
  • Experience partnering successfully with other senior leaders, including development and communications staff, to align goals, secure fundraising support, share resources and best practices.
  • Demonstrated ability to serve as an advocate and spokesperson for the department’s activities and initiatives both within and outside of the organization including helping the SPY team feel connected to the Museum’s educational mission.

Success Traits

  • Creative connector – Able to successfully connect audience passions with what the Spy Museum is and does.
  • Collaborative problem-solver – Seeks understanding and makes smart decisions through consistent, effective communication, positive influence, and leading by example.
  • Flexible innovator – Thrives on a dynamic environment. Is comfortable pivoting to meet opportunity while paying attention to strategic priorities. Curious and able to quickly absorb information and make it actionable. 
  • Creative, persuasive, and sophisticated communicator – both written and verbal, both in groups and one-on-one. 

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