The Museum of the African Diaspora (MoAD)

San Francisco, CA   |   July 26, 2019

The Opportunity:

The Museum of the African Diaspora (MoAD) is seeking its next Director to lead the institution to new heights. Along with the Board and staff, the Director will strengthen MoAD’s place in the arts and cultural landscape all from the most innovative city in the world. This is a unique opportunity to help lead an influential contemporary art museum that celebrates Black cultures, ignites challenging conversations, and inspires learning through the global lens of the African Diaspora.

The Director is the senior executive managing the Museum and representing the organization within the community. Reporting to the Board of Directors, and working closely with the staff, the Director is responsible for guiding the daily operations of the Museum and setting the agenda for its future. The Director will provide leadership in developing strong community relationships, drive the long-term financial health of the organization, and oversee the design, implementation and promotion of Museum exhibitions and programs.

The Director will have a career-making role in the future of the Museum, taking it to the next level in financial vigor, prestige, influence and value to the Bay Area and beyond.
The Director will join a dedicated and passionate leadership team that works together to foster a high-performance culture of innovation, collaboration, and transparency.
Specific responsibilities include:

  • Articulating a vision and a strategic framework for achieving MoAD’s mission;
  • Leading the development of Museum-wide strategies and initiatives;
  • Establishing a strategy for fundraising and executing that strategy;
  • Leading, developing, evaluating, and mentoring a team of professional and support staff;
  • Collaborating effectively with the Board to increase engagement and help the organization achieve programmatic and fiduciary objectives;
  • Planning, developing and implementing public programs, exhibitions and education activities that advance the mission and mandate of the Museum;
  • Representing MoAD externally and fostering partnerships with a broad variety of Bay Area community organizations and the City of San Francisco.

Candidate Profile:

The ideal candidate will have the following professional and personal qualities, skills, and characteristics:

An Innovative and Forward-Thinking Leader

The Director will be a strategic, visionary, and results-oriented leader who is experienced at articulating and implementing a plan for increased impact in an organization’s next chapter. Working in close collaboration with the Board, they will provide focus, long-term direction, and offer creative ideas to amplify the Museum’s presence in the community. The Director will build innovative ideas, projects, and policies into MoAD’s next strategic plan. With a big-picture mindset and an eye for the details, the Director will push boundaries to uncover new possibilities and partnerships and effectively use MoAD’s platform to deepen its impact.

A Fundraiser and Ambassador for MoAD

The Director will be an inspirational and charismatic leader who will serve as the chief ‘Ambassador’ for MoAD. An articulate, informed, and passionate public speaker, they will represent MoAD in the local community and beyond and will be considered a leader in the nonprofit and cultural arenas. The Director will be effective at conveying MoAD’s diverse value add, mission, and vision and generating additional support for the Museum. They will be an energetic fundraiser and asset developer who will fully embrace this aspect of the role. The Director will bring a creative and entrepreneurial approach to revenue generation, enabling MoAD to access previously untapped support.

An Experienced Manager and Leader of People

The Director will have a track record of success in organizational management. They will be experienced with operations and finance and will be a proven leader in staff development and delegation. They will be skilled at building and managing a Board, leveraging their skills and resources for the strategic objectives of the institution. The Director will engender trust in the staff through a collaborative management style. They will maintain a level of appropriate transparency and leverage cross-departmental strengths. The Director will demonstrate honesty, sincerity, humility, and respect for individuals while modeling organizational values.

A Passion for the Mission

The Director will be a global citizen. They will be intellectually curious with a keen knowledge and appreciation for the African Diaspora and Black art. They will have a passion for MoAD’s mission to promote and ensure a rich cultural community and will be committed to, and knowledgeable about, best practices in the field and among peers. The Director will be an accomplished leader and will be well respected for their contributions within global and local culture. They will be a leader of unquestioned integrity, ethics and values; someone who can be trusted without reservation.

About The Museum of the African Diaspora:

The Museum of the African Diaspora (MoAD) is uniquely positioned as one of the few museums in the world focused exclusively on African Diaspora. Based in San Francisco, MoAD plays a vital role in the local arts community by presenting the rich cultural heritage of the people of Africa and African descendent cultures all across the globe.

With an increased focus on Black art in museums today, it is essential that MoAD continue to assert its role as a beacon for communities of color and as a standard bearer for other institutions. Upcoming programs in whole-person engagement like the Chef-in-Residence program with James Beard award winning chef, Bryant Terry, are thriving; and cutting-edge global art exhibitions like the upcoming “Africa State of Mind” curated by Ekow Eshun, focused on 16 emerging African photographers, keep MoAD out ahead of the pack.

The Museum’s IMLS-funded Emerging Artist Program continues to grow in impact and engagement of the local artist communities and partnerships with other museums around the Bay and nationally. Interpretive programs have come to embrace new technologies in the galleries; and staff are exploring new ways for visitor participation that are gaining traction, including open mic poetry nights.

MoAD was developed as part of a public/private partnership led by the San Francisco Redevelopment Agency. In 1999, the City of San Francisco created a mandate to include an African American cultural presence in the last vacant parcel of Yerba Buena Gardens.
San Francisco Mayor Willie L. Brown appointed a steering committee to determine the mission and scope of a cultural facility within the complex. Cultural, management, architectural, and design consultants worked with members of the committee to design a world-class facility and develop fresh, vital programming that existed nowhere else.

MoAD opened its doors in 2005, debuting a gorgeous modern museum designed to showcase art and culture through the lens of the African Diaspora. The building was designed by Phil Freelon, one of America’s most prominent architects. The interiors were done by Deborah Sussman, another notable figure in design.

Today, with a staff of 15 and an operating budget north of $3.1 million, MoAD is the hub for Black art and culture in the Bay Area.

For more information on MoAD, please visit:


Koya Leadership Partners, the executive search firm that exclusively leads mission-driven searches, has been retained for this search. Alexandra Corvin and Ally Johnson will be leading this search.
To make recommendations, or to express your interest in this role, please email Koya directly at All inquiries and discussions will be considered strictly confidential.