Web Site:www.operacolorado.org
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Managing Director


THE COMPANY Opera Colorado is a dynamic, growing opera company located in Downtown Denver whose productions are recognized for their extraordinary artistry and innovation encompassing a broad range of repertoire including contemporary works. The Company has become known for its outstanding Education and Community Engagement Programs supported by a vibrant Young Artist Program which focuses on the development of young American talent through main stage performance, community education programs and state-wide touring productions. In June of 2015 the Company announced the naming of its first Music Director, Ari Pelto, and in November of 2015 announced the return to presenting a three-opera season beginning with the 2016/2017 season, along with a 5-year strategic plan that focuses on a new artistic vision, expanding performance and educational programming, developing a more diverse, engaged Board of Directors, and expanding the professional staff to meet the goals and objectives of the strategic plan.

In 2013 Opera Colorado embarked upon a financial and administrative restructuring process following a 2012 fiscal short fall. Subsequently, the company has gained significant momentum, exceeding sales goals and achieving surplus budgets for the past three fiscal cycles, while maintaining high artistic and arts education standards. With a 5-year strategic plan, Opera Colorado is positioned to expand its productions and services to the community in exciting and innovative ways.

The company has a dedicated, enthusiastic staff of 10 full-time and 6 part-time employees along with seasonal production and artistic staff, with a base of over 100 active volunteers. The staff is made up of highly motivated individuals with a belief in and commitment to Opera Colorado’s mission, artistic vision and values. The Opera Colorado Board of Directors is made up of 33 civic philanthropists who are passionate about opera, Opera Colorado and the arts community of the Denver Metro Area. Opera Colorado’s 2016/2017 budget is $4 million and annual fundraising goals average about $2.3 million.

Opera Colorado was founded in 1981 by Nathaniel Merrill, a distinguished name in the world of opera, with the goal of establishing a grand opera company in Denver, Colorado. Before coming to Denver, Mr. Merrill spent 28 years as the resident stage director at The Metropolitan Opera in New York, and he led Opera Colorado until 1998. In 1998 Stephen Seifert was named Interim Executive Director and served in that capacity until 2001, when Peter Russell was named General Director. He led Opera Colorado through six years of artistic growth and developed the plans to move to our magnificent new performance space, the Ellie Caulkins Opera House in 2005. In 2007 Gregory Carpenter was named General Director. Under his leadership the company has achieved consistent growth in artistic vision and community engagement, and now presents a mix of traditional and contemporary stagings of standard, lesser known and contemporary repertoire, and engages new young American talent as well as attracting major international artists.

THE POSITION The Managing Director is a key finance and administration leadership position within the company, providing the General Director with input for increased administrative efficiency and financial oversight and planning. The Managing Director works alongside and reports to the General Director. The Managing Director ensures the smooth running of the daily operations through oversight of the Contributed and Earned Income staff, Finance staff and daily organizational functions. This position works as part of a Senior Management team which also includes the Director of External Affairs and Marketing, Director of Education and Community Engagement Programs, the Director of Development and Director of Production. Extensive experience in financial management and in not-for-profit arts administration is required. The selected candidate will have demonstrated that he/she can provide self-initiated management and financial leadership to advance the company’s mission, artistic vision and strategic plans.


Executive Leadership: • Contributes to the work of the Executive Management team in creating a positive and creative day-to-day work environment for the staff that inspires open communication, teamwork and a culture of respect. Serves as a model of leadership, enthusiasm and good humor.

• Develops business and organizational strategies in support of the company’s 5-year strategic plan, initiates recommendations for improvement of strategies based on research and analyses. Oversee implementation of strategies and initiatives.

• Oversees the Directors of External Affairs and Marketing, Development, Education & Community Engagement and Production with regards to day-to-day operational and financial matters.

• Partners with the Director of External Affairs and Marketing and the Director of Development to execute plans for increasing earned and contributed income. Marketing and audience development campaigns are essential areas of focus.

• Works with the Executive Management team to generate financial and administrative reports for the General Director and Board of Directors.

• Leads staff in achieving monthly goals and completing administrative tasks. • Chairs weekly staff meetings to review administrative strategies to achieve established goals and outcomes.

Staff/Human Resource Management:

• Ensures that all human resource policies are maintained and adhered to by all those working to support the company.

• Partner with the Development and Marketing team to create effective marketing, fundraising and audience development campaigns to exceed goals.

• Facilitates the daily movement of the high volume of information and communication flowing through the company’s office.

• Performs all Human Resources-related duties such as maintaining and distributing employee handbooks, negotiating and administering the company’s benefits program including health care, 403B retirement, life insurance, vacation and sick leave.

• Oversees the company’s annual performance review process and serves as the chief point of contact for employee conflict resolution and discipline.

Financial Management:

• Leads the company’s financial department. Analyzes operational and financial data and prepares forecasts and projections.

• Generates all financial reports needed for the General Director, Board of Directors, Finance Committee, and for grant proposals and reports.

• Develops controls and monitors accounting procedures to support all financial preparation, reporting and transactions including annual budgets, payroll, and reconciliation for multiple funds. As needed, upgrades best practices.

• Works collaboratively with the General Director and Executive Management Team to create annual income and expense budgets.

• Tracks weekly/monthly contributed and earned revenue and pledges, and reports directly to the Executive Management Team. Works closely with the General Director on cash flow projections, contributed income projections and managing expenses in order to achieve balanced and/or surplus budgets annually.

• Responsible for all bank accounts, credit card accounts and other financial instruments as required. • Completes and files all local, state and federal reports necessary to maintain the company’s 501-C3 status and complying with all IRS regulations.

• Serves as an ex-officio member of the finance committee and prepares all supporting documentation for the annual audit.

• Serves as the primary financial liaison between Opera Colorado and the Opera Colorado Foundation [a separate 501-C3 Endowment supporting Opera Colorado operations], and prepares all supporting documentation for the Foundation’s annual audit.

• Takes primary responsibility for the preparation of financial materials required for an annual audit, and to complete proposals and reports for institutional grants, particularly with respect to project budgets and final financial reporting.

• Tracks accrual and usage of vacation time, sick time, and compensatory time for exempt employees.

IT/General Operations:

• Manages and completes all SCFD [Scientific and Cultural Facilities District] financial reporting.

• Oversees the purchasing and management of all IT equipment and works collaboratively with IT support providers to ensure the efficiency and security of all IT equipment.

• Oversees all rental contracts related to performance facilities, office and warehouse space.

• Serves as an important member of the Opera Colorado negotiating team in union contract negotiations.


• Degree in business and/or arts administration. • 5+ years of experience in non-profit financial and administrative management, preferably in a performing arts organization.

• Direct experience in leading a staff of five or more. • Deep appreciation for opera and the performing arts.

• Strong interpersonal and organizational skills.

• Ability to juggle multiple priorities effectively.

• Experience in human resource management. • Up-to-date knowledge of employment laws and best practices.

• Up-to-date knowledge of accounting laws and best practices.

• Experience negotiating and issuing contracts.

• Experience managing significant project budgets and schedules.

• Excellent written and verbal communication skills.

• Proven strong administrative and systems development skills, with attention to details.

• Excellent computer skills in Microsoft Office Suite 2010 and Windows 7 Professional environment.

• Excellent skills at managing financial and database software.

• Excellent skills in analyzing financial and organizational data, and in creating easily understandable reports.

• Networking and business development skills are a plus.


• A mission-driven individual with a belief in and commitment to Opera Colorado’s mission, artistic vision and values.

• A good listener and strategist; comfortable receiving input from many sources, and able to analyze and formulate disparate information into a sound, well-organized plan.

• A flexible and creative individual who can find alternative ways to reach objectives when barriers arise; a skilled negotiator.

• A team builder\peace keeper – confident and competent, with strong skills in management and leadership; one who understands the subtleties of motivating and directing a diverse group of personalities with different work styles.

• Emotionally mature with a good sense of humor and the flexibility and sensitivity to work with diverse personalities and situations.

Send resume, cover letter and a list of three (3) references to: Greg Carpenter, General Director humanresources@operacolorado.org Compensation: Compensation, including a generous benefits plan, is competitive and will be commensurate with experience and qualifications. Materials must be received by February 27, 2017 to be considered by the search committee.

Questions about Membership or this application? Please contact Vincent Covatto, organizational membership manager, at VCovatto@operaamerica.org or by calling 646.699.5237.
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