Louise Endel Community Engagement Manager

The International Festival of Arts & Ideas seeks a dynamic Community Engagement Manager to join our year-round Festival team. The successful candidate will be passionate about the ways arts and culture build and strengthen cities, building and maintaining relationships with stakeholders throughout the community, possess outstanding verbal and written communication skills, and be eager to work collaboratively with staff in an organization that values the diversity of our city and state.

The Position

The Louise Endel Community Engagement Manager is responsible for designing, planning, and managing community and audience engagement programs, as well as evaluating their effectiveness. The Community Engagement Manager is charged with bringing the values of the International Festival of Arts & Ideas to wider populations and expanding community relationships. They are the Festival's liaison to the community, actively seeking out connections that enhance experiences with the Festival. The Community Engagement Manager will report directly to the director of programming and will be supported by and work closely with all staff including the co-directors, marketing, producing, production, audience services, and development, and will represent the Festival to external constituents in the region.

Major Duties and Responsibilities


  • Identify and steward community partnerships in support of the mission of the Festival.
  • Develop relationships with neighborhood groups, specific cultural communities, university groups, social associations, and others. Work with these groups to identify their interests and to engage them with Festival programs as appropriate.
  • Oversee the Festival’s Community Ambassadors programs, a diverse body of community members who offer insight and guidance to the Festival’s community engagement process, participate in Festival programming, and invite friends, family, and neighbors to join them.
  • Develop artistic and dialogue based programs responsive to current events that occur in the community while tying back to general Festival programming.
  • Enhance the visibility of the Festival through participation in local community fairs and outreach events.
  • Assist in audience diversification, equity & inclusion, and access initiatives.
  • Develop and host community conversations.
  • Manage the local/regional grassroots distribution of Festival materials by volunteers.
  • Fulfill donation requests from other area non-profit organizations.
  • Maintain a department calendar of activities and events.

Internship Program

  • Develop and manage a formal internship program for the Festival.
  • Recruit interns from high schools, colleges, universities, and other segments of the community through on-site presentations, expo attendance, online communications, and personal outreach.
  • Assess candidates as potential matches to the defined internship opportunities. Coordinate the interview and placement process with Festival staff supervisors.
  • Work together with staff supervisors throughout the internship period to help ensure positive and meaningful outcomes for both the Festival and the intern.
  • Provide follow-up assessments and documentation as necessary.

Volunteer Coordination

  • Create and implement a comprehensive plan to re-engage the Festival’s existing volunteers, and increase our pool of volunteers through a broad range of recruitment efforts.
  • Hire, train and supervise the Volunteer Coordinator (a seasonal position) to oversee volunteer activities and coordination of the Festival’s volunteers in an effective and efficient manner.
  • Work with Festival staff to determine year-round and seasonal volunteer opportunities and needs
  • Update and manage the Festival’s volunteer database.
  • Develop and distribute application forms, match volunteers to available slots, and provide each individual volunteer with a schedule of job assignments.
  • Work with the Audience Services Manager to develop a plan and protocol for in-depth training/retraining volunteer Front of House staff.
  • Develop an updated volunteer handbook and other informational materials to distribute at each session.
  • Organize and host a volunteer recognition and thank you event and identify opportunities for greater volunteer stewardship

Essential Skills

  • Deep commitment to engaging people through the arts and humanities.
  • Enthusiastic, energetic, positive, and resourceful.
  • Comfort and familiarity with bilingual communities and urban community organizations.
  • Passion for providing youth and young adults world-class art and culture experiences.
  • Ability to communicate effectively and persuasively in oral and written communication on a personal and group level.
  • Possess strong commitment to team environment dynamics with the ability to contribute expertise and follow leadership directives at appropriate times.
  • Self-starter, who applies individual initiative to get the job done.
  • Experience developing and implementing strategic, community-based programs.
  • Experience, ability, and commitment to working with diverse groups in terms of gender expression, race, sexual orientation, religion, ability, age, class, and immigrant status.
  • Ability to foster and maintain relationships with a wide variety of constituencies.
  • Experience managing and working within a budget to deliver results.
  • Strong organizational, management, and personal skills.
  • Proficiency with MS Office and Google Apps.
  • Ability to exercise professional discretion and confidentiality.
  • Ability to work evenings and weekends as needed.
  • Minimum 3 years related experience.

To Apply

Applicants should send a cover letter and resume with “Community Engagement Manager” in the subject line, to jobs@artidea.org. No phone calls please.

The International Festival of Arts & Ideas is dedicated to building a culturally diverse and equitable environment and strongly encourages applications from people of color and women. This position will remain open until filled and until a diverse and qualified pool of candidates is identified. Applications from populations underrepresented in the field are strongly encouraged to apply.

The International Festival of Arts & Ideas takes positive steps to enhance diversity in both its community and its programs. The Festival commits to this policy, not because of legal obligations, but because it fully believes that such practices are basic to human dignity.

About the International Festival of Arts & Ideas

For 23 years, the Festival has delighted audiences with an outstanding mix of entertaining and inspiring programs Internationally acclaimed dance, an eclectic array of world-class musicians, breathtaking circus, ground-breaking theatre, and engaging speakers define the Festival as our region’s premier arts and culture destination The June Festival boasts over 200 events, at least 80% are totally free. Year-round programs include special town-hall events, a fellowship program for youth, planning and implementing mini-festivals in New Haven’s culturally-rich and under-resourced neighborhoods, and our Visionary Leadership Award.

Each year we welcome artists and speakers from all over the world—Angelique Kidjo, Bristol Old Vic, Camille A Brown & Dancers, Handspring Puppet Company, Rosanne Cash, Claudia, Rankine, Mark Morris Dance Group, The National Theatre of Scotland, Yo-Yo Ma, Bassem Youssef, Druid Theatre, Kronos Quartet, Taylor Mac, Spike Lee, and Salman Rushdie have all shared their talents and ideas New Haven’s walkable historic downtown core and warm June weather forms the perfect backdrop for this highly accessible, international event.

Neighborhood Festivals
Lively one-day neighborhood Festivals take place each year just prior to the International Festival of Arts & Ideas in downtown New Haven. Community Steering Committees, local arts and business partners, and Festival staff and volunteers host local talent, family activities, and vendors in New Haven’s historic and culturally rich neighborhoods.

Festival Fellows
The International Festival of Arts and Ideas’ Fellowship Program offers qualified New Haven public school sophomores and juniors a unique, fully-funded opportunity to learn about the arts. The Fellowship Program is a semester-long college-level course designed to develop students’ skills in communication and critical thinking by immersing them in all aspects of the Festival: performances, lectures, community engagement, production, and management.

About New Haven

Set in the beautiful hills and estuaries of Connecticut, New Haven is home to the Quinnipiac tribe, a storied colonial history, and a long tradition of welcoming people and cultures from all over the world. According to the most-recent US Census, 36% of our community identifies as Black and 28.6% identify as Hispanic or Latinx. One out of every eight residents is foreign-born, and our students speak over 100 languages at home. There is also a tremendous diversity in income, with wealth centered around Downtown and other enclaves while almost half of New Haven households live in poverty or near-poverty. Although these are complex issues, residents widely agree that our diversity is the primary source of our cultural, social, and economic health. We think that’s something we should all celebrate. Join us here for three weeks each June and see what makes this city sparkle.