Director of Human Resources

New Museum of Contemporary Art

Posted: 7/9/2019

Position Type: Full-Time (Paid)

Function: Human Resources/Recruiting

Primary domain: Arts, Culture and Humanities

City: New York

Postal code: 10002

State: New York

Country: United States

Organization Information:


$10M - $20M


Mission statement:

The New Museum is a leading cultural destination for global contemporary art in New York City and worldwide with a distinctive mission of “New Art, New Ideas”.  The Museum has a current annual operating budget of $13M, a staff of 150 full and part-time employees, and is in the midst of an $85M capital campaign for a new 55,000 square foot expansion that will double the Museum’s size.  

The New Museum believes in the essential role of culture to a free and open civil society.

We embrace difference, debate, and multiple viewpoints regardless of race, gender, class, or creed. The Human Resources team (Director of Finance & Administration, Human Resources Director and a dotted relationship with the Payroll Manager) provides operational support to the organization; the HR team is responsible for all HR functions, including compensation and benefits, talent acquisition and retention, training and development, employee relations, performance management, policy development and implementation, HR data management, and regulatory compliance.


Position Details:

Job Description:

The Museum is seeking a skilled, smart, sophisticated, and supportive human resources professional to become its Human Resources Director. Reporting to the Director of Finance and Administration, the Director is a critical department head and supports the Museum’s mission, values, and culture. Providing guidance and expertise to Directors and staff, the Director will develop and implement strategic initiatives that drive and support a highly engaged and performance-based organizational culture. 


The Human Resources Director will work closely with the Director of the Museum and the Senior Management Team (Deputy Director, COO, Vice President, Strategic Partnerships, DFA, and Artistic Director) to ensure a cohesive approach and process for addressing employee relations matters, and act as a trusted advisor to people leaders on HR related issues.


We are seeking an adept leader with a demonstrated ability to develop and promote organizational values of accountability and autonomy.  Most importantly, this position plays a critical role in employee relations and is typically responsible for identifying issues and bringing them to resolution.  The Director of HR works closely with staff across the organization and is an active participant in institution-wide initiatives.  

The Director will be a highly intelligent self-starter who is committed to Museum’s mission and its internal engagement goals.  The Director should have substantial experience in managing human resources, ideally for museums or other cultural organizations, and experience with unions and collective bargaining agreements. They will possess excellent speaking and writing skills and be able to communicate successfully and persuasively within the organization and with outside contacts, consultants, and legal counsel, when necessary. The successful candidate will be highly organized, diplomatic, possess sound judgment as well as honed interpersonal skills, and maintain a sense of humor under stress.  The Director will also be very familiar with HR technology and systems.

Principal Duties and Responsibilities

 Programs and Initiatives 

  • Develop and implement initiatives, programs, and practices that support an employee-oriented culture which emphasizes quality, accountability, continuous improvement, team work, cross-departmental collaboration and high performance
  • Build a positive culture based on the principle of emotional intelligence to ensure the organization has a deeply engaged employee population
  • Build the capacity of leaders across the organization by ensuring that people leaders are invested in talent development and equipped with the resources, skills, and mindset to effectively manage and develop their teams; support the creation of employee training and development programs
  • Foster and contribute to a staff culture rooted in social responsibility through applying an equity and empowerment lens to organizational policies and practices
  • Lead and coordinate talent acquisition efforts, ensuring diverse and representative applicant pool across all departments and levels of the organization
  • Lead and coordinate ongoing talent and performance feedback and review processes in coordination with people leaders
  • Oversee compensation philosophy and program and related regulatory requirements (FLSA, etc.)
  • Partner with Museum leadership and staff in support of strategic planning and initiatives
  • Actively participate in proactive workforce planning across all segments of the Museum’s organizational structure
  • Identify and name strategic and tactical HR needs and offer contextualized, achievable solutions. 

Administrative Operational Management 

  • ·     Establish and implement goals, objectives, policies and procedures for HR Department
  • ·     Oversee all HR and administrative systems and processes and ensure efficiency and develop proposals for improvement in these
  • ·     Oversee employee compensation and benefits program, ensuring alignment and organizational standards and efficient administrative execution, including a dotted-line relationship to the Payroll Manger
  • ·      Ensure compliance with city, state, and federal regulations, including wage and hour law, FMLA, ADA, etc.
  • ·     Other duties as assigned



  • ·         Human Resources graduate degree or equivalent (MPA, etc.) preferred; candidates with equivalent, applicable experience and HR certification (PHR, SHRM) will be considered
  • ·         Minimum of six (6) years of direct Human Resources Administration experience with no less than three (3) years of experience in an HR-specific leadership capacity; additional years of experience preferred
  • ·         Knowledge of multiple HR disciplines, including employee relations, compensation and benefits administration, change management and organizational development, in both theory and practice
  • ·         Must possess an appropriate balance between the strategic and tactical aspects of HR and ability to quickly develop a talent-driven vision for where the organization is going and how to get there
  • ·         Strong professional judgment and ability to maintain confidentiality and build trust among staff at all levels
  • ·         Demonstrated experience with employee relations, inculding fostering a positive workplace culture through emotional intelligence and driving employee engagement
  • ·         Keen understanding of employment laws and regulatory systems and requirements
  • ·         Successful track record of driving organizational change and transformation through supervision of and collaboration with staff in a manner that is flexible and supportive, yet ensures accountability
  • ·         Effective and persuasive communication and presentation skills, both written and verbal, to groups both large and small, with ability to appreciate various viewpoints, share relevant information in a timely manner, and maintain a high level of professionalism
  • ·         Demonstrated ability to work in a partnership with a strong leadership team and a committed staff with high standards and expectations, and must exhibit sound judgment and a sense of balance to know when to move with the tide and when to push back
  • ·         Prior experience assessing organizational needs and developing and implementing policies, systems and processes
  • ·         High level of emotional intelligence with a positive outlook and good sense of humor
  • ·         A highly refined sense of cultural competence and awareness with a strong commitment to the Museum’s mission
  • ·         Demonstrated computer proficiency and familiarity with HRIS systems and processes 

For more information about the New Mueum of Contemporary Art, please visit their website at

All positions at the Museum are filled without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, disability, HIV/AIDS status, veteran status or any other characteristic protected by law.  All are encouraged to apply. 


Not Specified


Commensurate with Experience

Posting Expiration Date:


How to Apply:

The NEW Museum has retained the services of Harris Rand Lusk to conduct this search. Inquiries, nominations, and applications may be directed in confidence to: 


Anne McCarthy, Chief Operating Officer

Harris Rand Lusk

122 East 42nd Street, Suite 3605

New York, NY  10168 

[email protected]

Please put ‘New Museum HR” in the subject line of your application


Posted By: Harris Rand Lusk


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