Executive Director/General Manager

The Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra, the largest fully professional arts group in Northern Ontario and the only professional orchestra between Toronto and Winnipeg, is seeking a new Executive Director / General Manager who will bring a demonstrated track record of senior level leadership, stable financial management, and a life-long passion for the Arts.

This is an exciting and unique opportunity for a progressive leader with proven success in a senior leadership role in performing arts organizations to join one of the most innovative and exciting small orchestras in Canada.

The Juno Award-nominated TBSO is now entering its 60th anniversary season, performing over 100 concerts annually. The TBSO is committed to providing the highest quality symphonic music to the widest possible audiences, presenting specialized education programs in the schools to performances at the Thunder Bay Community Auditorium and in many other venues across the city and throughout the region.

The TBSO is a small but complex organization. The Board is seeking an Executive Director / General Manager who can collaborate and communicate well to provide vision for the Board, clear and consistent direction for staff, build and manage strong relationships both within and outside the organization, and develop private sector and community support.

In addition to supervising all operations and working with the Board of Directors and other stakeholders to determine effective strategies, the ED / GM works closely with the Music Director in the preparation and delivery of artistic programming, and attends Board Meetings to advise the Board of Directors on all matters pertaining to the welfare of the organization.

The TBSO is moving into its second phase of transformation. It has just completed a full brand renewal and has achieved financial stability. This is a dynamic opportunity with an energetic arts organization for the right leader with the vision, administrative and HR experience, people skills, and commitment to taking the organization to the next level. Experience with the classical music industry and the not-for-profit sector are valuable assets.

Principal Responsibilities 

Professional Qualities:
  • Possess a love of symphonic music
  • Provide leadership combined with good business instincts and experience in human              resources management and relationship-building
  • Enjoy working in a flexible and entrepreneurial environment
  • Have exceptional written and verbal communication skills including public speaking
  • Familiarity with arts or not for profit organization operations, including fundraising and granting
Staffing / Human Resources:
  • Supervise up to 4 full-time, up to 10 part-time staff, and other interim or contract staff members, providing direction and support, evaluating their performance, and recommending changes to staff including hiring, promotion, re-assignment, and if necessary discipline and dismissal
  • Participate in union contract negotiations
  • Act as a resource to, and continue to develop, the TBSO volunteer support program  
  • Cultivate business and individual support for the TBSO
  • Assist and mentor the development and fundraising teams
  • Establish sustainable, achievable fundraising strategies and goals
  • Oversee the preparation, administration and monitoring of the annual budget
  • Work closely with the Financial Administrator and the Board Treasurer in the preparation of budgets, monitoring of finances and cash flow, anticipation of financial problems, and recommendations
  • Supervise the payment of accounts
  • Document appropriate controls over revenues and expenditures
  • Responsible for all funding applications submitted to federal, provincial and municipal agencies; monitor success and adjust future applications based on accumulated knowledge and experience
Concert & Event Production Planning:
  • Working with operations staff, ensure a strong working relationship with the Thunder Bay Community Auditorium and all other performance, rehearsal and administrative venues
  • Leading operations staff, ensure timely issuance of contracts and hiring of guest artists
  • Ensure excellent front of house audience experience at every performance
  • Work closely with marketing staff to design and implement multi-media plans for continuing audience development and growth in earned revenue
  • Ensure coordination of marketing and development initiatives, creating a unified message to all constituents, stakeholders and audiences
  • Supervise the organization’s digital media strategy including maintaining and enhancing the website, database(s) and social media platforms
  • Work with development staff to secure and maintain long-term media support and contracts
Internal & External Communications
  • In cooperation with the Board, represent the TBSO in dealings with the media, community leaders, and external stakeholders
  • Participate as an ex officio member of all Board committees
  • Maintain contact with other symphonies and symphony service organizations, and be aware of trends, opportunities, and threats within the industry


Please send your cover letter and résumé with three references in PDF format to: Linda Penner, TBSO President c/o [email protected]. All Applications will be confidential and only those selected for an interview will be contacted. This position will remain open until a suitable candidate is found; we request that résumés be submitted by June 5, 2020 for priority consideration.