IDEA Director

  • Full Time
  • Portland, OR
  • June 30, 2023

Website White Bird

IDEA Director

POSITION:                Director of Inclusion/Diversity/Equity/Accessibility
TERMS:                      Full-time, permanent employee. FLSA status: exempt
SALARY RANGE:     $56,000 – $60,000, DOE
BENEFITS:                Paid PTO and holidays, health and dental insurance, plus addt’l benefits

REPORTS TO:                                   Executive Director
SUPERVISES:                                   No supervisory requirements

White Bird, a dance-presenting nonprofit organization based in Portland, Oregon, is seeking a motivated, passionate individual to fill its full-time position of IDEA Director.

White Bird Mission Statement
White Bird is committed to bringing the best regional, national, and international dance companies to Portland, Oregon and to fostering the growth of dance in the region. Through presenting established and emerging companies and choreographers, commissioning and co-commissioning new work, as well as collaborating with other arts organizations in Portland and the region, we are able to make these dance performances possible.  White Bird strongly believes in making dance exciting, educational, equitable and accessible to everyone, young and old, of all social backgrounds, and through contributed income and sponsorships, is able to facilitate outreach to schools and keep ticket prices affordable. A passionate advocate for dance, White Bird strives to broaden audiences and diversify its programming through the lens of its Equity Commitment.

White Bird Profile
White Bird was founded in 1997 in Portland, Oregon by Walter Jaffe and Paul King and, since 2021, has been led by Executive Director Graham Cole. To date, we have presented over 270 dance companies from around the world in 750 performances before a total audience of 525,000. Each season we present a subscription series as well as non-subscription performances.  We have supported the growth of dance by commissioning 42 new works. We are committed to expanding the audience for dance through extensive community engagement activities. Through our innovative Equity initiative, the NEST (No Empty Seats Today) Program, we distribute hundreds of free performance tickets each year to Portlanders in need.


The Inclusion/Diversity/Equity/Accessibility Director (IDEA Director) will lead the development, refinement and implementation of White Bird’s community engagement and outreach initiatives, as well as the development of new programs which further our commitment to providing a welcoming, respectful, and safe environment for all.

This position also works internally, together with the Executive Director and other Team members, to examine White Bird’s current practices through the lens of our Equity Commitment, and to provide guidance on bringing our collective actions into closer alignment with our values and goals.

The incoming Director will join White Bird at an exciting moment of transition and growth, and will find dedicated partners in action within our Staff and Board. We are a small team of devoted arts administrators, passionate about dance. The IDEA Director, a new position within the organization, is a leadership position with broad involvement in planning and strategizing across the organization.



Planning and Programming (20%)

·         Develop an annual schedule of community engagement activities, as well as budgets for these activities.

·         Together with White Bird’s programming team, research prospective artists for White Bird’s annual WE ARE ONE Festival.

·         Develop new IDEA-focused initiatives for future White Bird seasons.

·         Together with the Executive Director, create funding strategies for current and future community programs.

Relationship Building (30%)

·         Build relationships with local leaders throughout the greater Portland area, especially those representing underserved communities. Maintain White Bird’s network of community partners.

·         Lead the responsible expansion of White Bird’s existing equity and inclusion initiatives, including the No Empty Seats Today (NEST) program and nascent Community Council.

·         Conduct surveys, interviews, and other forms of feedback collection.

·         Synthesize collected information into written reports and sharable digital content, which will be used to communicate the impacts of White Bird’s community engagement and other IDEA-focused initiatives to stakeholders.

Team Support and Leadership (30%)

·         Research organizational best practices with regard to Inclusion/Diversity/Equity/Accessibility, and propose actions which align with these values.

·         Coordinate White Bird Team members and volunteers in the promotion and execution of all community engagement activities.

·         Together with Patron Services and Communication Team members, develop strategies for attracting a diverse range audience members to White Bird presentations.

·         Facilitate opportunities for White Bird team members to receive continued education on topics related to Inclusion/Diversity/Equity/Accessibility.

General Support (20%)

·         Together with the Executive Director, identify and pursue opportunities for new funding to support White Bird’s WE ARE ONE Festival and community programs. This includes support from individuals, businesses, foundations, and government.

·         Review and propose changes to a broad range of external communications, including website copy, press releases, newsletters, grant applications, social media posts, and advertisements.

·         Maintain a presence at White Bird performances, fundraising events, and community engagement activities, as appropriate.



·         A passion for and documented history of:

o   Listening to and engaging with people from all walks of life and age groups.

o   Collecting and using both objective data and informed opinions to evaluate the impact of one’s work.

o   Applying an analysis of bias to one’s own work and the work of others.

o   Initiating and continuing challenging conversations in a direct, encouraging, and non-judgmental manner.

o   Recognizing, and acting counter to, discrimination on the basis of a person’s race, sex, religion, disability status, or any number of other personal characteristics.   

·         Experience working collaboratively within teams of 2-6 people.

·         Familiarity with Microsoft Suite, as well as project management and Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platforms. Experience with Asana and Salesforce, specifically, is a plus.

·         Strong enthusiasm for the Arts, generally, and Dance specifically.

·         Solid project, time, and budget management skills; an ability to progress multiple projects with varying timelines simultaneously, without sacrificing attention to detail.



The expected time commitment for this position is between 38 and 40 hours per week. The IDEA Director is expected to complete most of their work during business hours (no earlier than 9am and no later than 6pm), Monday through Friday, though some flexibility to complete work outside of these hours is possible. Some onsite night and weekend work will be required to be present for White Bird performances.

Work will mainly take place at White Bird’s offices in downtown Portland. The IDEA Director’s presence will be expected at many performances and community engagement events throughout Portland. While some work can be completed remotely, this is primarily an in-person role.



Please email a résumé, cover letter, and the contact information for 2-3 professional references to [email protected].

Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until the position is filled, but early application is highly recommended. The anticipated start date for this position is in July 2023.                                                                                                                    

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