Job Announcement - Programs Manager

POSITION: The Western Folklife Center, in Elko, Nevada, seeks a Programs Manager. This is an excellent opportunity for a creative person to add their signature to nationally recognized programs as well as contribute to the creation of new programs. 

The mission of the Western Folklife Center is to use story and cultural expression to connect the American West to the world. Our exhibitions, educational programs, media productions, research and preservation projects, and our premier event, the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering, explore and give voice to traditional and dynamic cultures of the American West. Located in the historic Pioneer Building in downtown Elko, Nevada, the Western Folklife Center is both a local and a regional nonprofit cultural center with year-round programming in its exhibition gallery, 300-seat theater, 20-seat black box theater, historic saloon and gift shop. The Folklife Center also maintains an archive of fieldwork materials, program documentation and donated work that supports program development. Our website is increasingly used to bring our programs to far-flung audiences.

The Western Folklife Center is best known for its National Cowboy Poetry Gathering that was begun in 1985 as a regional effort to showcase the tradition of poetry writing and recitation in ranching communities.  Now in its 34th year, the Gathering remains an important meeting place for poets, musicians, writers, filmmakers, gear makers, visual artists, ranchers, cowboys, Western activists and enthusiasts.

RESPONSIBILITIES:  The major duty of the Programs Manager is to manage the Folklife Center’s premiere event, the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering.  The Gathering is a two-week event featuring educational programs, workshops, performances, dances, films and exhibitions. Responsibilities include overseeing artistic and educational programming, artist communications, writing promotional and educational materials, and contracting and supervising technical, logistical, and event staff.  Responsibilities also include project budget management, grant writing and reporting, and creatively extending the reach of Gathering programs beyond this two-week event. 

In addition to management of the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering, the Programs Manager works with program staff to design and produce other events, educational programs, exhibitions and activities highlighting Western traditional culture locally, regionally and online.

QUALIFICATIONS: B.A. in folklife studies, ethnomusicology, cultural anthropology, or related field.  Candidates should have at least two years experience in event and program management with increasingly responsible positions. Candidates should be able to direct staff and volunteers, be able to develop and manage budgets, and contribute to grant-writing and reporting efforts. Must have strong organizational and leadership skills and ability to handle multiple projects and meet deadlines. Excellent verbal, writing, editing and computer skills are required. Best candidates would be comfortable working in a collaborative team-oriented environment and working with a diverse group of staff, volunteers and constituents. They should have an interest in and ability to manage and expand on cultural programs and establish community partnerships. An interest in digital storytelling is a plus.

SALARY commensurate with experience along with benefits package. 

ABOUT THE ELKO AREA: The City of Elko sits at an elevation of 5,060-feet in the Great Basin region of northeastern Nevada and offers a number of outdoor experiences including hiking and camping in the spectacular Ruby Mountains. The city has a population of around 19,000 and the greater Elko population is approximately 33,000. Elko County is one of the largest counties in the U.S. and is home for a range of tribal, ethnic and occupational communities including Western Shoshone, Paiute, Basque, Latino, ranching and mining. Located in the high desert we enjoy four dynamic seasons. Interstate 80 traverses Elko County and by car Elko is approximately 4 hours from Reno, NV, 3.5 hours from Salt Lake City, UT, 3 hours from Twin Falls, ID and 4 hours from Boise, ID.  Elko is served by Skywest Airlines (a Delta Connection), two NPR stations (KUNR-Reno & KNPR-Las Vegas) and an ABC-TV affiliate.  Assets of the community include the Great Basin College, the Northeastern Nevada Museum and the California Trail Interpretive Center.

Qualified Candidates should submit a resume, cover letter, and names of three references to: Meg Glaser, Artistic Director, Western Folklife Center, 501 Railroad Street, Elko, NV 89801, by October 16, 2017.  Applications may also be submitted via email to: