Director of the Hettenhausen Center for the Arts

The Russel E. and Fern M. Hettenhausen Center for the Arts at McKendree University in Lebanon, Ill., seeks a dynamic, energetic leader to replace the founding director of the facility.  The ideal candidate will be a highly motivated arts professional who can build on an established strong foundation, while having the freedom to place his or her own stamp on this cultural gem.

This position offers the right candidate the opportunity to lead Southern Illinois’ premier performing arts center, the only venue of its type in the region. Opened in 2006, “The Hett” hosts more than 200 events each year, drawing 20,000 visitors from throughout southwestern Illinois and the St. Louis metro area. The new Director will manage a 480-seat facility that offers a unique blend of professional performers and speakers, and is a collegiate performance, teaching and learning space for the University community.

The Director will oversee the artist selection, scheduling, contracts, promotion and production for a wide variety of programs and speakers. The Director will be responsible for all aspects of the long-term and day-to-day operations of the facility, including events and programming, budget and financial management, physical plant, fundraising, marketing and promotions, and supervision of professional and student staff.

The ideal candidate must demonstrate an ability to manage many tasks at once, work in a team environment, and possess strong leadership, organizational and communication skills. Frequent evening and weekend hours are required.

Applicants are invited to submit a cover letter addressing their ability to manage the main responsibilities outlined in the position description (see below), a professional resume commensurate with the minimum qualifications required for the successful candidate, and five professional references. Materials can be submitted electronically to or by mail to 701 College Road, Lebanon, IL 62254.  Salary will be commensurate with experience. McKendree University is an equal opportunity employer. 







Director of the Hettenhausen Center for the Arts (Hett)

CLASSIFICATION:  Full-time (Exempt)

DEPARTMENT:  Institutional Advancement                   

REPORTS TO:  Senior Vice President               

 Technical Director, Assistant Director of Patron Services, student employees


Establish mission and goals, implement a long-range plan and maintain annual performance objectives.

Provide overall leadership and direction to the Hett and its staff, implement marketing and financial development strategies, and oversee the long-term and day-to-day operations of the facility.

Develop, recommend, and ensure the implementation of policies and procedures necessary to the achievement of goals and the day-to-day operations of the facility.

Recruit, train, and manage full-time, part-time, and student staff necessary to provide optimal service to the public and to the users of the Hett.

Develop, procure, and prepare contracts with agencies to secure commercial productions/performances in the facility.

Oversee the performers and speakers in the McKendree Presents program and the George E. McCammon Distinguished Speaker series.

Manage McKendree University events and programs that utilize the Hett for performances, rehearsals and meetings.

Prepare and maintain a balanced annual budget, long-term capital budget, financial analyses for programming and forecasts for long-term growth and planning.

Working in partnership with Institutional Advancement Office to develop and implement fundraising strategies to meet the Center’s needs to carry out its mission.

Develop and implement overall and event-specific marketing strategy utilizing direct mail, print, and other various media and public relations in order to maximize attendance and fully utilize the facility.

Represent the facility as its chief spokesperson and serve as the principal liaison to all users, major civic and cultural organizations, and the community.

Work effectively with the Physical Plant Department to establish strategies for the long-term maintenance and facility enhancement, including effective utilization of equipment and technical resources as well as facility maintenance, cleanliness and long-range capital renewal.

Oversee day-to-day operations of the facility including coordination and scheduling hall rentals, box office operations, event management and publicity, facility operations, employee relations and development, inventory control, and capital projects.

Ensure prompt and adequate response to and correction to building, equipment, environmental or performance related systems, deterioration, or malfunctions.

Manage ticketing and sales functions.



Ability to work well with all persons, understanding their job content/missions and points of view.

Ability to motivate staff.

Ability to manage multiple tasks and projects simultaneously.

Ability to resolve disputes in the best interest of McKendree University.


Bachelor’s degree or equivalent work experience is required.

A minimum of 7 to 10 years’ experience in managing all aspects of a performing theater, including talent procurement, financial management, marketing, public relations, and media relations.

Knowledge of facility and production rentals and performance contracts is required.

Knowledge of related laws and local regulations, such as ADA compliance, safety standards, copyrights and compliance is necessary.

Superior organizational, communication, and administrative skills are necessary.

Extraordinary commitment to customer service.

A demonstrated ability to lead people and get results through others.

An ability to think ahead and plan for a one-year time span.

An orientation to quality and attention to detail.

Excellent interpersonal, oral, and written communication skills.

Excellent computer skills in Microsoft Suite.

Familiarity with SABO ticketing software.

Extensive sound and lighting experience as they relate to a theatre environment.


Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services.  This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.  Expert knowledge and appreciation of the performing arts and visual arts.


Office environment; 40 hours per week; normally 8:00am-5:00pm.  On call twenty-four hours per day.  Position requires incumbent to work evenings and/or weekends on an on-going basis.