Executive Director

Executive Director

Laguna Art Museum

Laguna Beach, CA   |   November 5, 2020

About The Laguna Art Museum

Laguna Art Museum (LAM) is a premier museum of California visual arts. For over 100 years, it has collected, cared for, and exhibited works of art created by California artists and work representing the life and history of the state. Through its permanent collection, its special loan exhibitions, its educational programs, and its library and archive, the museum enhances the public’s knowledge and appreciation of California visual arts of all periods and styles, and encourages art-historical scholarship in this field.

LAM stands just steps from the Pacific Ocean in the beautiful city of Laguna Beach. The museum is proud to continue the tradition of the Laguna Beach Art Association, founded in 1918 by the early California artists Anna Hills and Edgar Payne. The Laguna Beach Art Association has come to define much of the city’s artistic backbone and has played a pivotal role in fostering many art-driven events throughout the city, including the Pageant of the Masters.

One of the oldest art museums in the state, Laguna Art Museum owes much of its endurance to its beloved place within the hearts of local artists. The museum is infused with a creative spirit that comes from being founded by artists, many of whom have become internationally recognized as leaders in California’s Plein Air movement including William Wendt, Edgar Payne, Anna Hills, Frank Cuprien, and William Griffith. The gallery that the association built in 1929 is part of today’s Laguna Art Museum.

LAM believes that the artists of California have created works of the highest quality and significance. An artistic mecca throughout its history, Laguna Beach is a natural home for the premier museum of California art.

Over the years, the museum has worked to develop a permanent collection that represents the rich history of California art; stage serious exhibitions of high artistic quality that complement the collection; offer a robust education program for children, students, and adults alike; and serve the community as a cultural and social center.

In accordance with Orange County’s COVID regulations for museums, LAM is operating at a capacity of 30 visitors per hour. The Museum is open 6 days a week from 11 am – 5 pm. Visitors are required to purchase tickets in advance for specific timed entry. Additionally, all educational programming has been moved to virtual engagement.

In accordance with Orange County’s COVID regulations for museums, LAM is operating at a capacity of 30 visitors per hour. The museum is open 6 days a week from 11 am – 5 pm. Visitors are required to purchase tickets in advance for specific timed entry. Additionally, all educational programming has been moved to virtual engagement.

Through its broad interface with the community, LAM annually serves 16,000 in-person visitors, 248,000 web visitors, 6,600 adult education participants and 6,000 families and youth education participants. The museum plays an important role in highlighting the place of regional art in larger historical movements. It presents a balanced slate of exhibitions on historical and contemporary subjects, accompanied by diverse educational programs for children and adults. Programmatic highlights include the nationally recognized Art & Nature festival, monthly music concerts and films, and ongoing lectures by artists and scholars. The museum’s permanent collection includes over 3,000 works of art by 966 artists and covers all major visual arts genres practiced in California.

For more information on LAM, please visit: lagunaartmuseum.org.

The Opportunity

The Executive Director of LAM will lead the institution into its next successful chapter, achieving the Board of Trustees vision for increased impact, engagement, and reach. At this critical inflection point, the Executive Director will have the central responsibility for providing leadership and vision. They will be the face of the museum locally, regionally, nationally, and internationally and will serve as a bridge between internal and external stakeholders and the overall geographic and arts community.

An important role for the new Executive Director will be representing LAM to a wide range of local, state, and national stakeholders, and building partnerships with appropriate entities.

In addition to orchestrating the day-to-day management of the museum, the Executive Director will work closely with the museum’s Board of Trustees to develop and implement strategic goals and programs to enable LAM to achieve its full potential. Building on its strong foundation, the next Executive Director will work with the Board to define and execute on the museum’s standards of artistic excellence. They will plan, manage, and improve the business, administrative, and financial affairs of the museum, will actively be engaged in fundraising, and will inspire, mentor, and provide ongoing professional development for its staff. The Executive Director will ensure the museum is accessible, engaged, socially-aware, and serving its community.

The Board believes there are significant opportunities for the museum in this next chapter and is looking forward to partnering with the Executive Director to achieve its goals. For example, the Board believes they can expand the museum’s artistic and creative position to firmly cement LAM as an acknowledged leader in the field, increase community engagement and attendance to the museum by tapping into the more than 6 million annual visitors to Laguna Beach, and add to its already highly respected exhibitions and unique events by increasing both the museum’s endowment and contributed revenue. The Board also believes the museum’s outstanding collection provides a great opportunity to attract additional acquisitions from many Southern California collectors. The next Executive Director will work with the Board on achieving these goals and shaping the future of Laguna Art Museum as a vibrant cornerstone of the California and artistic scene.

The Executive Director will oversee the current budget of approximately $3M in annual revenue. The Executive Director will lead, develop, and inspire a staff of 15 FTE and 12 part time employees. The museum has a growing endowment, currently valued at more than $2.6M.


Koya Leadership Partners, the executive search firm that specializes in mission-driven search, has been exclusively retained for this engagement.

Alexandra Corvin and Ally Johnson are leading this search. To make candidate nominations, inquire for further information, or to express your personal interest in this role please visit this link here or email Alex ([email protected]) and Ally ([email protected]) directly. All nominations, inquiries, and discussions will be considered strictly confidential.

Read and download the position profile here.