Jobs Board

Director of Programs (Asian Cultural Council)

Company Name

Asian Cultural Council

Company City

New York

Company State


Job Location

New York, New York (Hybrid)

Company Information

The Asian Cultural Council (ACC) advances international dialogue, understanding, and respect through cultural exchange activities in Asia and the United States to create a more harmonious and peaceful world. ACC accomplishes its mission of cultural exchange through awarding fellowships, grants, and other programs that support individual artists, scholars, arts professionals, and arts and cultural organizations. ACC is seeking a new Director of Programs to partner with the Executive Director during this exciting time of growth to help advance and deepen cultural understanding and strengthen a global community of program alumni, including artists, scholars, and arts professionals.

The organization was first established by John D. Rockefeller 3rd in 1963 as the Asian Cultural Program of the JDR 3rd Fund to support cultural exchange between Asia and the US through grants to individuals and organizations working in the visual and performing arts. ACC incorporated as a 501(c)3 nonprofit in 1980. Based in New York City, ACC established offices as well as partner foundations in Tokyo (1983), Hong Kong (1986), Taipei (1995), and Manila (2000). To date, ACC has supported nearly 6,000 exchanges across 26 countries and regions in 16 artistic disciplines.

As a grant-making and grant-seeking organization, ACC raises funds from individuals, foundations, and corporate donors. ACC also convenes arts leaders to foster dialogue around the importance of cultural exchange in developing understanding and respect across borders and cultures. Fellowships to individuals include not only grant funds to cover the costs of international travel, per diems, and research activities, but also substantial programmatic support in the form of professional guidance, introductions to artists and other cultural leaders, and logistical assistance during fellowship activities.

The Asian Cultural Council team carries out its work while honoring the following values:

• Commitment to Our Mission and Vision. Demonstrating understanding of and dedication to ACC’s mission of fostering international dialogue through cultural exchange; Centering a Commitment to ACC’s short- and long-term goals; being mindful that program goals should drive work priorities and plans; and seeking to value the work of ACC grantees and be a resource for grantees and alumni in Asia and the U.S.
• Prudent Use of Resources and Accountability. Tending to resource limitations and managing resources to effectively carry out ACC’s mission in a fiscally responsible manner, while striving to maximize the funds available for charitable activity; recognizing the importance of development activities to the organization’s long-term sustainability; and contributing to a culture of fundraising across all departments.
• Teamwork and Professionalism. Appreciating the value of diversity, inclusion, and equity in all work relationships; bringing a willingness to help as well as to learn from colleagues in the U.S. and Asia; working collaboratively with colleagues toward shared goals and objectives; being willing to perform tasks outside of one’s job description; embracing a positive and collaborative spirit that motivates and inspires others to work for the good of the organization. Embracing and fostering continued sharing of information among colleagues.
• Adaptability. Seeking out opportunities to improve the quality and impact of ACC’s work; remaining open to new ideas and ways of working and innovations in the field; supporting diverse ways of thinking or doing and suggesting new approaches in accordance with a dynamic organization that is faithful to its mission; being open to change and new ideas for improving outcomes.

Job Description


ACC is seeking a visionary leader as the next Director of Programs to oversee all aspects of grant-making and alumni engagement and to partner with the Executive Director and senior management team in enhancing the organizational impact of ACC’s cultural exchange work.

The Director of Programs will be a key leader in strategic program development and implementation, grants administration, assessment, and alumni activation and engagement. The incumbent will lead the New York Program team and partner with the Asia teams in developing a portfolio of grants, alumni engagement initiatives, and public programs that align with ACC’s ’s vision, mission, and goals. They will represent ACC at conferences and symposia, within the arts field, and to organizational supporters.

As a member of the senior management team, the Director of Programs will contribute to ACC’s strategic planning, oversee its integration with long-term programmatic vision, and manage implementation of the plan through ACC programs. They will direct the implementation of programmatic vision and strategies across all ACC offices, and oversee, develop, and manage the NY Programs department staff, currently consisting of the Director, a Program Officer, and a Grants Administrator. They will be responsible for directing impact assessment and developing and writing reports and briefs as needed to ensure that the Board of Trustees is informed about ACC’s programs.

The Program Director will engage in the following opportunities and challenges:

Program Strategy and Development

• Direct and develop organization-wide and region-specific program priorities and strategies by utilizing input gathered from ACC’s offices, maintaining regular attendance at events and conferences, and tracking developments related to ACC’s activity, including focused research.
• Adapt, manage, and direct programs to ensure that the grantmaking model is strategic, impactful, and financially viable. Hold responsibility for overall program design and evaluation of program impact, including setting guidelines and overseeing delivery and consistency of program services in a timely fashion.
• Develop the department annual budget, which includes grantmaking and programmatic activities, in partnership with the Executive Director and the Director of Finance and Operations.

Program Management and Implementation

• Oversee the ACC grant-making cycle in collaboration with ACC Asia offices and the NY-based Program Officer and Grants Administrator, including but not limited to:
o Overseeing the application review process, including ensuring that applicant questions are answered, reading and evaluating applications for eligibility and alignment with program priorities, and interviewing short-listed applicants from both NY and affiliate offices’ grant application selection processes.
o Managing the delivery of program services for fellowships as a hallmark of ACC’s program, including coordination with Asia staff and providing programming and networking guidance to fellows.
o Overseeing policies and procedures for logistical services such as J-1 visa applications and compliance, health insurance, and travel guidance.
• Organize alumni, grantee, and stakeholder convenings and other special projects. Organize public programs to raise ACC’s visibility in the arts and philanthropic space and foster learning and networking opportunities for ACC’s alumni and prospective applicants.
• Hold responsibility for the overall program budget and its components to ensure budgetary and programmatic compliance.
o ACC offices in Asia: Oversee global alignment of program budgets for the Asia offices and the NY office. This includes but is not limited to coordinating the allocation of restricted donor funds in collaboration with the Director of Finance and Operations and Asia office directors.
o ACC office in New York: Manage and monitor the NY office’s programmatic budget as well as grant-related budget allocations.
• Supervise overall grants management operations, which includes but is not limited to the oversight of ACC’s grants management system and grant administration procedures and policies.
• Develop and maintain an international network of ACC alumni and cultural specialists to advise grantees and ACC.

Other Areas of Impact

• Partner with Executive Director and Advancement staff on fundraising efforts, including providing support for grant proposals, attending donor meetings, and communicating programmatic impact.
• Draft written materials about ACC’s programs for external communications, including the annual report.
• Develop and maintain relationships with leaders in philanthropy, the arts, and cultural organizations in service of programmatic goals.
• Represent ACC at conferences and other public forums to advance the organization’s programmatic goals as required.
• Lead, implement, and support special projects as assigned by the Executive Director.

Job Qualifications

In addition to exhibiting a commitment to ACC’s values of Mission and Vision Commitment, Prudent Use of Resources and Accountability, Teamwork and Professionalism, and Adaptability, the Director of Programs will demonstrate the following qualifications:

Skills and Abilities

• Strong interpersonal abilities with demonstrated cultural competency and diplomatic capabilities. Ability to lead and collaborate across lines of national, cultural, generational, and other social differences.
• Proven track record of building and strengthening networks with individual, partner organizations, and collaborators.
• Relationship-oriented with the ability to support the professional development of artists and strengthen relationships with funding partners.
• Proficiency in analyzing and framing complex issues simply and clearly.
• Ability to develop program ideas and strategies and to communicate conceptual frameworks effectively to diverse constituents, from grant seekers to Trustees.
• Exceptional analytical, organizational, and written and verbal communication skills that can engage a wide range of audiences.
• Familiarity with one or more artistic disciplines strongly preferred.
• Seasoned multitasker, detail-oriented, and deadline-oriented.
• Demonstrated ability to work independently and manage multiple projects simultaneously, and a team player where collaboration is required.
• Demonstrated experience in being a strategic thinker with implementation capability, especially following through an entire life cycle of a project.
• A leader and a facilitator of collaborative activities with colleagues and grantees.

Education, Experience, and Knowledge

• A minimum of 10 years’ experience required. Relevant experience could include working in philanthropy with a focus on the arts and/or cultural exchange or management of programs or projects in the creative or cultural realm. Experience working in a grant-making organization is strongly preferred.
• A minimum of 5 years of staff supervision experience is required. The Director of Programs supervises two staff members and may also supervise interns, fellows, and/or consultants.
• Advanced degree in the Humanities, Arts Management, or another relevant field is preferred but not required.
• Experience working with individuals, issues, and/or organizations in Asia is preferred but not required.


ACC’s New York office is based at One Rockefeller Plaza. New York staff are currently working on a hybrid schedule with a minimum of 3 days in the office, subject to change. This role will require some travel, including occasional domestic trips and up to one international trip a year, as well as periodic evening and weekend work to attend grantee and alumni programming, cultivation events, and field convenings.

The hiring salary range for this position is $130,000 – 140,000 and ACC offers a generous benefits package.

How to Apply

More information about the Asian Cultural Council may be found at:

This search is being led by Cara Pearsall, Phuong Quach and Eva Rosenberg of NPAG. Candidates may submit their cover letter, outlining their interest and qualifications, along with their resume via NPAG’s website.

ACC is an equal opportunity employer and invites applications from candidates regardless of race, gender, national origin, sexual orientation, age, disability, or religion.

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