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Concord Community Music School



Concord Community Music School

Executive Director


Approaching its 40th anniversary, Concord Community Music School (CCMS) is New Hampshire’s largest community music school and among the 30 largest community arts schools in the United States. Founded in 1984, its mission is to foster a sense of community through music by providing the fullest possible array of musical experiences for people of all ages, musical abilities, and backgrounds. CCMS’s success lies in its focus on recruiting, nurturing, and rewarding outstanding faculty and building a board and staff that provides superior governance and management skills to the school. Its core values are artistic excellence, access for all, musical friendships, lifelong musical learning, and faculty recognition, respect, and development.

CCMS offers a diverse array of programming ranging from individual and group musical instruction, composition, early childhood programs, music therapy, adult and youth choral programs, music and movement, and more. The school serves approximately 1,650 students across its programs both onsite and off. Its 50-member faculty offers creative therapeutic engagement and provides instruction in 20 instruments and voice in a musical environment that is welcoming and offers access to all.

Pre-COVID, CCMS offered more than 125 public events, concerts, recital, lectures, and weekend workshops, including the Fall Fiddle Festival, Bach’s Lunch Series, Holiday Folk Concert, Jazz in January, March Mandolin Festival, and Community Music Fest. CCMS has restarted public, student, and faculty performances following appropriate COVID restrictions and has created greater accessibility by livestreaming many performances via its YouTube channel.

Following the tradition started by the Settlement House movement a century ago, CCMS has a commitment to making quality arts education accessible to everyone, reaching across barriers of income, disability, ethnicity, and perception to bring people together around the love of music. At least 59 percent of weekly participants are from low-income families or have special needs. Through CCMS’s Financial Aid Fund and the Music in the Community Initiative (MICI), the school proactively reaches out to those who confront barriers of income, disability, racial discrimination, country of origin, or access to transportation. CCMS’s musicians, teachers, and therapists work with clients of all ages, including individuals with mental health conditions, Parkinson’s disease, autism, dementia, Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, cognitive disabilities, and other conditions. As a founding member of Welcoming Concord, CCMS is closely tied to the refugee and immigrant communities, including the gifted Nepali musicians on its faculty. CCMS’s recent community partnerships include Concord Head Start and Laconia Head Start, Merrimack Valley Day Care (all six sites), Riverbend Community Mental Health, The Birches at Concord (a long-term care facility for people with dementia), Community Bridges (an organization serving individuals with disabilities), and Concord, Bow, Laconia, and Belmont School Districts.

CCMS is governed by a 12-member board of trustees, led by Richard C. Simpson, Jr., and currently has nine full- and part-time staff members and more than 40 faculty members. The school is an economic incubator in Concord, with CCMS’s current workforce of 55 employees representing a $1.1 million payroll—80 percent of which supports professional musicians. For the fiscal year ending 2021, annual revenues were $1.3 million, with approximately $530,000 from contributions, sponsorships, and memberships and $770,000 from tuition and other earned revenue sources. Total expenses were approximately $1.2 million.


Concord has the charm of a quintessential New England town with all the cultural assets of a city. The region’s current economy is based primarily in education, health services, finance, utilities, and government. Concord is home to NHTI – Concord’s Community College, Granite State College, St. Paul’s School, and the University of New Hampshire Franklin Pierce School of Law. A desirable place to work, shop, dine, and live, Concord hosts a variety of businesses, state agencies, and nonprofits that take full advantage of local opportunities for doing business, hosting events and social gatherings, and attending cultural experiences.

Concord has a residential population of 43,000 people but, as the capital city of New Hampshire, the active population is upward of 90,000 people during the work week. Situated on the Merrimack River in the south-central area of the state, it is conveniently located at the junction of Interstates 89 and 93. Concord is 18 miles north of Manchester (the state's largest city), 50 miles from the seacoast, within an hour’s drive of the spectacular White Mountains, and 70 miles north of Boston. Concord is among the nation’s top 10 emerging housing markets in an analysis released recently by The Wall Street Journal and

Concord’s vibrant downtown underwent a significant renovation between 2015 and 2016 and serves as a cultural hub for the state. United States Senator Jeanne Shaheen has said that “Concord's Main Street really is New Hampshire's Main Street” and “Concord is the civic heart of the Granite State.” The redevelopment has spawned many new high-quality places to dine, including abundant outdoor options following the expansion of sidewalks and the installation of public art and murals along Main Street. The city hosts multiple local farmers markets, arts markets, artisanal brewers, distillers, and a winery.

Cultural organizations in the city include Kimball Jenkins School of Art, Capitol Center for the Arts, Hatbox Theatre, League of NH Craftsmen, Bank of New Hampshire Stage, Red River Theatres (a member-supported independent and classic cinema organization), Concord Fine Craft Gallery, and Concord City Auditorium. Additionally, Concord is home to many state-wide nonprofit headquarters, including New Hampshire Center for Nonprofits and New Hampshire Charitable Foundation. The lively downtown area hosts festivals and markets through the year. A coalition of the city’s arts organizations co-produces Capital Arts Fest each fall, a city-wide celebration that showcases the community’s creativity through artistic festivities. Concord attracts people from all over New England, the country, and the world, with many cultures represented in the fabric of the community. The city celebrates the growing international population each year during Concord's Multicultural Festival.

The surrounding region offers enough things to do to fill a lifetime. The state boasts an extraordinary diversity of habitats from its vibrant seacoast to the heights of Mount Washington, the tallest mountain in the northeast. Outdoor recreation is a year-round activity with more than 20 public parks and more than 30 public hiking and biking trails within city limits. In addition, Concord offers convenient access to some of New England’s best skiing, snowboarding, hiking, camping, kayaking, and mountain biking within driving distance. Wildlife, covered bridges, art galleries, independent bookstores, local shops, museums, historic sites, walking tours, presidential history, farms, orchards, birding, golf, country fairs, community suppers, youth activities, and four beautiful seasons are part of the many features that enhance the quality of life in the area.


Position Summary

Reporting to the board of trustees, the Executive Director (ED) will provide strategic leadership and serve as an organizational ambassador. They will connect with external stakeholders, donors, families, and students and inspire and engage staff and faculty. An experienced administrator with a multiplicity of skills sets, the ED will enhance CCMS’s development functions, partner with the finance department to explore revenue models and manage expenses, and collaborate with the board, faculty, and staff to lead a comprehensive strategic planning process. The ED will be responsible for all of CCMS’s administrative and business functions and will collaborate with faculty and staff to broaden and deepen the organization’s comprehensive programmatic initiatives. Additionally, the ED will continue prioritizing CCMS’s commitment to inclusivity by centering and championing equity, diversity, inclusion, and access as foundational principles guiding all of CCMS’s practices.

Roles and Responsibilities

Organizational Leadership and Oversight

  • Oversee all daily operations of CCMS, its programs, and personnel to ensure the organization operates smoothly with a singular voice and vision.
  • Recruit, support, and retain the highest quality artistic faculty and administrative staff.
  • Provide positive and collaborative leadership to the management team.
  • Foster and leverage CCMS’s strong reputation as an extraordinary community music school to sustain current programming and to develop future opportunities for expansion and growth.
  • Maintain systematic and active surveillance and prioritization of the risks facing the organization with mitigation plans or strategies for the highest areas of risk.
  • Implement innovative technological strategies and training to support remote and in-person learning, faculty and staff development, and overall IT functions that further refine efficient and effective business and educational processes.
  • Maintain a robust Human Resources function, implementing new policies, systems, and procedures that are in alignment with the organization’s mission and values.
  • Support marketing initiatives by implementing a website update and making prompt decisions to ensure external marketing communications are consistent and timely.
  • Support and sustain CCMS’s positive culture and work environment where all departments are equally valued and staff of all gender identities, ethnicities, and backgrounds feel appreciated.
  • Prioritize equity, diversity, inclusion, and access in all aspects of artistic and management decisions.
  • Demonstrate a genuine curiosity and interest in all aspects of the organization, including attending educational performances, so that all parts of the institution are fully understood and valued.

Community Engagement and Fundraising Excellence

  • Act as a visible spokesperson for the organization, positively engaging with audience members and donors at performances and taking an active public speaking role at events to become a major community leader.
  • Participate in local committees and boards, leveraging the growing population in Concord to develop relationships with individuals in the community who can become donors.
  • Collaborate with other arts and culture organizations locally and nationally, including institutions that are BIPOC-led, fostering new partnerships and growing current partnerships that serve a wide audience and create lasting impact.
  • Develop and champion transparent equity, diversity, inclusion, and access initiatives, ensuring that historically underrepresented people are included in all activities and that CCMS is a safe and welcoming space.
  • Lead and expand fundraising efforts, creating new institutional, individual, and foundation relationships.
  • Identify and establish relationships with key funders and donors to nurture existing relationships and help develop new sources of fundraising.

Financial Management and Board Governance

  • Develop and oversee the organizational budget, carefully managing expenses and income to ensure financial stability and growth.
  • Develop forecasting models for all revenue streams in partnership with the Director of Finance.
  • Lead the finance and executive committees, monitoring and reporting financial performance to the board to support decision making.
  • Explain budgets and forecasts to staff, funders, and board members so that everyone fully understands why financial decisions are made and how resources are allocated.
  • Expand, diversify, and manage the board of trustees by ensuring that current board members are best engaged according to their skills, interests, and the needs of the organization.
  • Regularly keep board members updated, acting as a liaison between board committees and staff.

Traits and Characteristics

The ED will be a collaborative leader possessing exceptional interpersonal skills. An effective communicator, they will have the ability to build rapport and connect to people. They will respect different attitudes and perspectives while striving to gain an understanding of all. This organizational leader will effectively and tactfully handle difficult or challenging issues, offering advice, counsel, and mentorship using their heightened cultural acuity to address organizational issues. The ED will have a strong understanding of the importance of organizational culture. In joining this learning and teaching organization, anticipating and identifying internal and external stakeholder needs will be key to this leader’s success in the position. They will respond to challenges with a sense of urgency, resolve issues in a timely manner, and expend extraordinary effort to address stakeholder needs.

Other key competencies of this role include:

  • Interpersonal Skills and Flexibility – The acumen to effectively communicate and build rapport with a diverse set of people while readily modifying, responding, and adapting to change with minimal resistance.
  • Personal Accountability and Problem Solving – The ability to be answerable for personal actions while defining, analyzing, and diagnosing key components of a problem to formulate a solution.
  • Time and Priority Management and Resiliency – The capacity to prioritize and complete tasks within scheduled timeframes coupled with the ability to quickly recover from adversity.


CCMS seeks a visionary and inspirational leader and organizational ambassador to partner with a committed board and dedicated staff and faculty in preparing the organization for the future as the school approaches its 40th anniversary. The leadership profile of the ED should include developing and funding multifaceted program offerings, sophisticated and effective relationship management related to fundraising and developing strategic partnerships, and an understanding of facilities management. While a candidate with a music background is highly desirable, it is not required. However, the successful candidate must have a demonstrable connection to music and understand its power as an educational, healing, and connective tool. Experience building effective and productive partnerships with a board of directors and a track record of collaborating with and nurturing staff and/or faculty teams are strongly desired. The Executive Director should possess a minimum of a bachelor’s degree and demonstrate significant success in arts administration, nonprofit, business, or educational management. Exceptional writing abilities and presentation skills are expected.

Compensation and Benefits

CCMS provides a competitive and equitable compensation package in the range of $105,000 to $120,000 with benefits that include: medical and dental coverage, Flexible Spending Account (FSA), option to participate in 403(b), group long-term disability policy, and generous paid time off covering vacation, sick, and personal time as well as state and federal holidays.

Applications and Inquiries

To submit a cover letter and resume with a summary of demonstrable accomplishments (electronic submissions preferred), please click here or visit For questions or general inquiries about this job opportunity, please contact:

Calida Jones, Vice President

1030 15th Street NW, Suite 283
Washington, DC. 20005
Tel       (888) 234.4236 Ext. 229

Concord Community Music School is committed to maintaining an environment where each individual who participates in its programs and attends its events feels safe, respected, and supported. Any individual whose behavior interferes in any way with that environment may, at the sole discretion of the Music School, be asked to withdraw from its programs. Concord Community Music School administers its educational and financial aid programs without regard to race, color, religion, age, disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or national origin. The Music School is an equal opportunity employer.

Click here for the downloadable PDF.

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